Soon you can walk through the halls of Captain Picard’s Starship Enterprise-D in a virtual reality tour. 3D artist Jason B is using Unreal Engine 4 to recreate the entire ship from Star Trek: The Next Generation, which will be optimized for the Oculus Rift or other VR headsets.
Jason B recently released a 12-minute video showcasing his work on the project. Recreating all 42 decks, which regularly housed more than 1,000 (including crew and their families) and in emergencies could hold as many as 15,000, is a daunting task. Because of the scope of the starship and the limitations of technology when the show was created, much of the ship was never actually seen.
Jason B referenced official and set blueprints, HD episodes, and production drawings to imagine the details of the ship. This video tour takes you through the Shuttlebay 01, which was only glimpsed in the show because of its immense size. The video also showcases the Ten Forward lounge, the bridge, and other places that were never seen on the show.
Fan-made virtual reproductions based on the Star Trek franchise are not new. Many artists have recreated various starships based on the technical specs that have been available for decades, but none of them come close to matching the scope, beauty, detail, and vision of this new project.
While the virtual tour currently is just a hobby, to complete the project Jason B hopes to get licensing approval from CBS, which currently holds Star Trek rights. Once that is secured, he can turn to crowdfunding resources so he can hire additional developers, programmers, and artists to fully realize the scope of his vision.
Eventually, once the entire starship is complete, Jason B would like to populate the ship and expand into space stations and other planetary systems. An exciting possibility for Star Trek fans and gamers would be to develop an on-line gaming component.
Jason B details his thoughts and progress on the project through his blog. He explains how and why his aim was to stay true to the original aesthetics of the show. You can also find “Enterprise Construction Project” on Facebook, or follow enterprise3dproject @enterprise3dpr on Twitter.