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U-505 VR

U-505 VR

Welcome to the fascinating world of the U-505 VR project, where the Museum of Science & Industry, in collaboration with Envoy and Razmus Media, has created an extraordinary virtual reality experience. This innovative project takes visitors on an immersive journey through the periscope of a WWII submarine, providing a truly unique and memorable adventure.

With a talented Unreal Engine developer and cutting-edge technology, the U-505 VR experience offers the client the opportunity to elevate their offerings and deliver unparalleled, interactive experiences. Join us as we dive into the challenges, solutions, and stunning results of this partnership, where the virtual world meets the historical depths of the U-505 submarine.

  • Creative Direction / Production
  • Unreal Engine/Gameplay Programming
    Razmus Media
  • Color & Look Development
  • SFX/Audio Design
Museum of Science & Industry
Project Type
Real-Time / Unreal Engine
  • Unreal Engine Programming
  • Virtual Reality
  • VR Ocean Simulation
  • Custom controller programming
  • VR Closed Captions

A VR experience from the perspective of the periscope.


Build an engaging virtual experience, in a periscope

As Razmus Media, we have always prided ourselves on tackling projects that push the boundaries of what's possible, incorporating cutting-edge technologies and methods to create unique experiences. The project presented by the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, in partnership with ENVOY, was exactly the sort of challenge we were eager to undertake.

The task involved building an engaging, educational, and entertaining virtual reality (VR) experience to be controlled entirely through a World War II-era periscope. This experience was intended to last between 5 and 8 minutes, during which users would be fully immersed in a digitally recreated world, learning and interacting within the simulated environment.

The primary technical challenge was developing a VR experience that could be seamlessly and intuitively controlled via the periscope by turning and interacting via a series of buttons on the handles.

An additional challenge was implementing alternate VR Head-Mounted Display (HMD) tracking. It was essential to maintain a high level of accuracy and response to user movements, ensuring that the virtual world moved in sync with the user's actions in the real world. This required considerable fine-tuning of the VR hardware and software components to ensure a flawless and immersive user experience.


Deliver an optimized, solid virtual reality exhibit

The project's scope demanded the creation of an optimized ocean simulation for VR. Constructing a realistic and responsive ocean environment, which would act as a convincing backdrop for the periscope-based VR experience, was no small task. It required rigorous optimization to guarantee that the VR experience was as fluid and lag-free as possible, enhancing the sense of immersion for the user.

We had to ensure that our VR experience was fully accessible. This meant taking meaningful steps to make the experience enjoyable and educational for all users, regardless of any potential physical or sensory limitations. Balancing the technical requirements of VR with accessibility considerations required innovative problem-solving and an inclusive approach to design and implementation.


An immersive, educational, and entertaining experience

Through rigorous development and testing, we achieved a seamless integration of the WWII-era periscope with modern VR technology. Users found themselves at the helm of a virtual submarine, using the authentic periscope controls to navigate the ocean and embark on an educational adventure.

Perhaps most importantly, we ensured that our VR experience was as inclusive and accessible as possible. Through the careful design and implementation of accessibility features, we ensured that all users could enjoy and benefit from the experience. These features allowed for adjustments to suit users' individual needs and capabilities, which led to a positive reception from a broad spectrum of museum visitors.

Looking for something similar to
Museum of Science & Industry
U-505 VR
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On Patrol

Patrol the seas on a re-created conning tower, complete with both an attack and an aerial-navigation periscope. Using these periscopes, outfitted with high-resolution LCD displays, race against the clock to launch a torpedo and determine your vessel's bearings to decide whether it is safe to surface.

On the attack periscope, become "Captain" and attempt to identify and lock in on an enemy target. A "Watch Officer" mans the aerial-navigation periscope, seeking out critical visual and navigational information. The patrol is a success if you can identify the harbor or dive before aircraft or enemy destroyers detect your vessel!

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  • Implementing VR without conventional tracking
  • Create an enjoyable and memorable experience from the perspective of the periscope
  • Include accessibility options in a WW2 era periscope


  • Using a laser tracking device we implemented the turning movement using the actual periscope movement
  • Game interactions are implemented by looking at the correct object, different timing challenges, and aiming
  • The attack sequence uses the same math principles that were used on the submarine for aiming and firing torpedoes
  • The Morse code that is used during gameplay via flashing hand-held lights, uses real Morse code that can be changed via a config file
  • All audio and instructions have VR captions
  • An analog slider is implemented to turn the view in-game without needing to move the actual periscope to ensure this exhibit can be used with only one hand
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A VR Periscope

With the U-505 VR experience, you control the sub using a replica periscope. You will have your hands on the massive, steel periscope as you peer into another world.

As you rotate the physical periscope, the in-game view follows and you feel as though you're in the real submarine.

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Looking for something similar to
Museum of Science & Industry
U-505 VR
🚀 Book a call

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