Digital experiences are becoming increasingly beautiful, better, and more spectacular. While 2D campaigns can be very appealing in themselves, the experience truly becomes immersive when we add an extra dimension. An essential tool we use at LiveWall to create 3D applications is Unity. One of our gems? Without a doubt, the advent project for Rituals. And for the curious among us: yes, we have also made 3D applications with Three.js, like this case for McDonalds.
Unity: More than Games
Unity is best known for its games, but so much more is possible! From designing virtual architecture to creating interactive campaigns, this game engine has truly inspired us at LiveWall. And while games like Pokémon GO are fantastic, we prefer to focus on those other surprising applications.
Unity offers many possibilities, but every tool has its challenges. Our goal? Ensuring everything runs smoothly, even in your web browser. Here's a brief overview of our approach:
Optimization of 3D models: Details are great, but they can affect loading speed. We always seek the balance between quality and speed. For this, we tweak the polygon count. 3D models are composed of polygons. The more polygons a 3D model has, the more detailed the model. However, this also means that the model is heavier to load. Therefore, a decision must always be made where the 3D models look sharp on your phone with as little detail as possible.
Application of light-baking: For a 3D world to feel real, light is essential. By 'baking' the light in advance, we ensure realism without additional load during use. It's like taking a photo. You are essentially taking a snapshot of the light, so it remains fixed and no longer needs to be calculated in real-time.
Efficiency with Static Batching: In the 3D world, merging elements can improve performance. A 3D world consists of many different 3D models. Think of characters, fences, houses, trees, etc. Many of these models can be merged so that fewer individual models need to be created. Static batching in Unity is like efficiently packing your shopping bags. Imagine every product you buy needing a separate bag - that would be a lot of bags and it would take a lot of time to carry them all. In Unity, if every object in our 3D world has to be drawn individually, it requires a lot of computing power, which can lead to a slow loading or jittery user experience.
Rituals 3D Advent Game
The holidays are all about traditions and expectations, and Rituals has made it a habit to launch a special advent calendar every year, full of pleasant surprises. For the 2023 edition, we were given a challenging task: transform the physical advent calendar into a virtual, engaging game experience. Not just any game, but one that embodies the soul and story of Rituals.
Like the physical Rituals advent calendar, the game begins in a snow-covered idyllic village. The style of the buildings and characters is the same as in the advent calendar, as if made of cardboard. Once landed in the village, you navigate the streets by scrolling and activate the individual game levels by clicking on the few darkened houses.
In the connected individual levels, you collect so-called shrines (colored light orbs) by jumping over obstacles at the right times. All of this is set within themed atmospheres that match Rituals' various product lines. The color scheme, background, and audio are fully tailored to each level. This game was specially developed for Rituals, where we sought a balance between a calming and satisfying gaming experience. Once you have restored the light in the four houses, your task is complete, and you get the opportunity to register for a chance to win a physical advent calendar.
This campaign has multiple goals, including increasing engagement, generating quality leads, and increasing customer lifetime value. But central to the campaign is raising awareness about Rituals' advent calendar in an interactive way, immersing the user in the magical Christmas world of Rituals.
Why use Unity for this case?
Let's be honest: we think 3D is very cool. That's why we strive to apply it in an online game like for Rituals. Unity gives us the perfect opportunity to combine a game with so many 3D elements and animations into a complete experience.
In the world of web development, adaptability is essential. Unity excels in this. First of all, it's platform-independent. This means that the developed content works seamlessly on various devices, from desktops to mobile phones. Moreover, Unity's support for WebGL allows 3D content to run directly in web browsers without the need for additional plugins or downloads.
But there's more than just technical compatibility. Unity's user-friendly interface and extensive asset library enable both developers and designers to bring their vision to life quickly. The built-in tools for animation, light effects, and interaction ensure that we can create not only functional but also visually appealing web applications.
We strongly believe in choosing the right tool for the job. For us, Unity is more than just a game engine; it's a powerful ally in creating interactive, immersive online experiences. It's this combination of flexibility, ease of use, and visual finesse that sets Unity apart in the world of web development.
Innovation, creativity, and technology come together
At LiveWall, we strive for a combination of innovation, creativity, and technical expertise. With Unity, we have a powerful tool to provide impressive 3D experiences. Curious about what we can do for you? Dive with us into the world of 3D!