Part of idea comes from the VR Game Research. I have been studying the influence of VR on human perception and experience since 2019. This artwork combines the virtual world of gaming with life and death in reality. I think this could help me learn more about the research.
Illustration shows that after people died, they could be quantified by data and stored in a virtual world by using the form of VR game. When a person dies, his traces will be collected and judged in this virtual hell, and his words and deeds will be used as a standard to judge whether he can go to heaven. And the living will be able to enter the world through VR technology to visit them.
In the process of designing illustrations, I studied the interpretation of death in traditional Chinese stories and concepts. I found that people at that time imagined a world where things could be done that couldn’t be done in reality. For example, bad guy could be punished and good people could be reward. Even because of these stories, people constrained their behaviour in reality, hoping they could have a good ending in that imaginary world.
I felt that this point was in line with my research. It matched what I want to study — the relationship between the virtual game world and people’s experience.
Then, I designed a series of scenes and characters. I used GIFs to enhance the character of each image because I felt its sense of electronic wasn’t enough . Dynamic pictures can make the virtual world and NPCs more interesting. Also, the player can have a sense of engagement.
CHARACTERS IN HELL
Yan Wang / 阎 王
In this virtual world, Yan Wang is an AI with a perfect judge system. He is responsible for judging whether dead souls are good or bad, and whether they should stay in the hell or go to the heaven by using his system of criteria.
Mengpo / 孟 婆
Mengpo is a NPC in the virtual hell, and she is mainly responsible for deleting unnecessary data. People can find her to drink a bowl of Mengpo soup to cancel the account if they don’t want to login in this hell.
Ox-head and Horse-face / 牛头马面
Ox-head and Horse-face will appear when players are logging in. They are the game’s security guards, responsible for the game’s data security and player guidance.
Black-and-white Impermanence/ 黑白无常
They are data administrators. After Yan Wang finishing judgment, they will divide the soul data into boxes.