Updated March 6, 2016

We've attached our official response to the HH incident below. We hope that MLH and HH would take the appropriate actions to clear this incident up.


I’m currently looking over the comments posted above, and I’ll try my best to explain myself out here.

Firstly as many of you mentioned above, this project is not from scratch. We’ve credited our code to the original authors in our Github repo, as it wouldn’t have been possible without their contributions to the A-frame.io framework and to the WebVR community.

In addition, (especially because we did win an award from MLH and wanted to avoid “plagiarism of code”), I’ve personally contacted the original author after the weekend and mentioned him that we used his code and discussed how we can appropriately cite his code and he said that a mention in a github repo is enough. People in the a-frame slack community took notice of our project and they provided us with a nice comment about our project.

Both the original project and our project sourced our graphics from the same place (a template file included with MagicaVoxel). However, to implement the various animation and additional effects that is included with our project, we’ve significantly modified the original file by breaking it up into several components, as well as creating original objects to complement the initial template. We’ve also put in a good amount of time to figure out how to make the exported object file from MagicaVoxel compatible with the A-frame object loader without losing any of the graphical information due to the difference in format.

Our project is based on open source graphics (the stage graphics is included with MagicaVoxel), and used code that was licensed under the MIT license. From there, we worked to see how we can bring the existing A-frame project further by adding interactivity.

Now as for the MLH guidelines regarding sourcing open source code, submitting this code for SteelHacks, etc, I’ll be waiting for an official communication from MLH and we will discuss how to handle this situation. I believe that MLH will use their best judgement to handle this situation here.

Finally I request that the original poster remove our link to the DevPost and instead post our link to our github repo. Its posted below and I hope that anybody who’s curious about the project, both in a positive or negative way, take a look at is, as I believe that it will be a better representation of of our project. https://github.com/steven77723/Steelhacks

  • As for the HP Vertica Award: Honestly, no clue. We have no idea why they called us for the award as we didn’t use it (we never said we used it). That will have to be answered by the Steelhacks team.

Original Devpost description below


Our inspiration for this web application comes from one of our members. He loves playing the mobile game, Monument Valley, and we thought that it would be interesting if we could play the game in a Virtual Reality setting.

What it does

The whole point of the game is to bring the user from the start position, to the end position. To do this the user has to go to various places in the field to unlock features of the field.

Because this application is browser based, users can either play through a desktop browser using Oculus Rift, without an Oculus Rift, or through their mobile device using a Google Cardboard.

How we built it

We built it using a framework called A-Frame, which is built upon the Three.js library. This framework allows us to create the virtual reality world, in HTML and Javacript syntax, and render it on the browser.

We created the graphics of MonumentVR through an application called MagicaVoxel, which is a 3D version of a pixel graphic editor. Although there was a template similar to our current set up, we had to significantly modify it in order to allow us to include animations and movements in the world.

Challenges we ran into

Our largest challenge that we faced was the issue of how to create this application. The original game uses the 3rd-person view to its fullest, creating optical illusions which are the focus of the game. However, since we wanted to fully use the capabilities of Virtual Reality, we decided to create the game in a first person manner. As a result, we had to find a different way of representing the optical illusions so that they would make sense.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

Creating a browser based virtual reality game that can be run on desktop, Oculus Rift, and in mobile (Google Cardboard).

What we learned

  • Basic HTML & Javascript
  • The usage of the A-Frame framework.
  • Setting AWS up

What's next for MonumentVR

Although we don't think we will pursue this project anymore, we're excited that we now know how to create virtual reality worlds in the browser, and that we can incorporate it into our next projects.

You can play with it at jsa.pary or by clicking the link here.

Lastly, check out our github pages website: http://steven77723.github.io/Steelhacks/

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