Oculus Rift

All my game names begin with ‘E’.

July 18, 2016
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Are you ready to see the future of sound?

I am excited today to announce Echosphere!

Echosphere is an audio visualization experience for virtual reality, putting you in control of sound like never before. Through immersive graphical displays and advanced motion tracking, we’re offering an all new way to interact with music that is unlike any experience before it.

Learn more about Echosphere on the official website:  soverance.com/echosphere/

Echosphere is built with Unreal Engine 4 and designed exclusively for virtual reality. Echosphere will support Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and OSVR devices.

Featuring music from my good friend, local Atlanta artist Shiny Baubles!


If you’ve been following my work, you might recognize that Echosphere is the re-branding of the work I’ve done over the last few years in UE4 audio visualization, previously referred to as ‘Synesthesia’. There were a couple reasons for the name change, but most notably because someone has already trademarked that term in the U.S. for use with another virtual reality product.

Echosphere is the result of over two years of experimentation with audio visualization in Unreal Engine. An early prototype of this project was one of the first things I ever put together in Blueprints (a video of which you can see here), and the method behind it has become my second most viewed video on YouTube, ever (watch that tutorial, here). We’ve even had an implementation that worked with Kinect (watch that janky mess, here).

With Echosphere, we’re leveraging the great work of UE4 legend eXi and his Sound Visualization plugin. His solution does more or less the same thing described in the above tutorial video, but it can actually be packaged and it pulls audio from the hard disk. Baller.

So with that solution in place, we’re moving forward with this one, and you should expect to be immersed very soon!

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Ethereal Legends Alpha Test

January 1, 2016
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Welcome to the Ethereal Legends Alpha Test!

This is a private alpha test phase exclusively for Steam users. If you would like to participate in the alpha test, you must request a key by submitting the Alpha Access Request Form found by clicking the button below. If accepted, you will be emailed a Steam key within 72 hours for participation in the alpha test.

(Please note that this alpha test phase is now complete, and no more keys will be provided. We’d like to thank you all for your participation and valuable feedback!)

If you’ve already played the Alpha Demo, we’d really like your feedback! Hit the button below to start our feedback survey.

Start Survey


A powerful sorceress has taken control of Arcadia, and you must ascend a supernatural spire to defeat her. Explore dungeons, battle monsters, solve puzzles, and use all the tools at your disposal to reach the top of the tower.

Ethereal Legends takes place in the world of Arcadia. You’ll control a party of three mages – Absolut, a wandering wizard from a distant land; Sonya, a beautiful heroine and master of the sword; Morrigan, a youthful sorceress with the power of flight. A twist of fate would bring them together against a common antagonist – a powerful sorceress who worships an omnipotent god, and summons him to conquer Arcadia and all within it’s borders.

Gameplay in Ethereal Legends consists of two major “modes”: an Exploration mode and a Combat mode. In Exploration Mode, you’ll be able to explore the area, manage your party, solve puzzles, speak with NPCs, uncover hidden loot, and hunt enemies to battle. In the Combat Mode, you’ll actually use all of your spells and abilities to overcome terrific odds against powerful foes.

We’ll explore these modes in further detail later in this post.  promo4

Ethereal Legends is a game designed to be played either with a regular monitor OR a virtual reality HMD. When starting the game, the application will auto-detect if you have a virtual reality HMD ready (for example, you have an Oculus DK2 plugged into your PC and the OVR service is running). If a qualified VR device is found, the game will start up in VR mode. If no VR device is found, it will start in the regular monitor mode. If you have a VR device connected and would still like to play the regular monitor mode, you should simply disable your VR service and restart the application.


The Ethereal Legends Alpha Demo only supports gamepads, and works best with an Xbox controller. All user interface graphics currently use the Xbox gamepad layout, although we are likely to add an option to toggle the UI to use the PlayStation layout.



In the Exploration Mode, you’ll be able to navigate the world using the left stick of the gamepad. You’ll only be able to control a single character at any given time, however, you can switch characters by using the shoulder buttons (LB/RB). You’ll need to strategically switch characters during exploration in order to successfully navigate areas and solve puzzles within the environment.

Each character has a single unique ability during exploration, allowing you to interact with the world in various ways. Each ability is triggered with the same general control scheme – enable the ability with the “Y” button, and actually use it by pressing the “X” button.  promo3

  • Absolut – RETURN
    • Drop a light into the world by pressing “Y“.
    • Return to the light from any location on the map by pressing “X“.
      • This ability can also be used to illuminate dark areas.
      • Incredibly useful for returning to places quickly, or saving yourself from falling.
  • Sonya – GRENADE
    • Toss a magic grenade into the world by pressing “Y“.
    • Detonate the grenade by pressing “X“.
      • This ability is useful for breaking rocks and affecting the environment.
      • Use grenades to uncover hidden objects and pathways.
      • (This ability is incomplete, and grenades cannot be detonated)
  • Morrigan – FLIGHT
    • Press the “Y” button to toggle hovering on or off.
    • Press the “X” button while hovering to get a small flight boost.
      • This ability is useful for navigating areas and clearing gaps.
      • Use Flight to get to places you otherwise couldn’t.


During the Exploration Mode, you can call up the Main Menu at any time by pressing the “Start” button. When opening the menu, you’ll always be greeted first by the Party tab. The Party tab contains all of the communal information about your party, including:

  • The party’s Level. (In Ethereal Legends, your party shares a single level across all members).
  • The number of Orbs you’ve obtained compared to the orbs available in the game.
  • Total number of gold you’ve obtained.
  • Your EXP to next level.
  • Your party’s AP level (a currently unused combat feature planned for a later update).
  • Your party’s Items and their quantities.


While most of the Party tab is informational, you can scroll through your list of items using the “Up/Down D-Pad” buttons. All items in the Alpha Demo are labeled only for “Use In Battle”, however some items in the future may be labeled for “Use in Explore”. A list of currently planned items can be found below.

In Ethereal Legends, magical spells are harnessed into the power of Orbs. Numerous Orbs can be found or purchased throughout the game, however there are only six Orbs available for the Alpha Demo.

Orbs can be equipped to individual characters so that the spells they contain can be cast during combat. Each character has three slots in which Orbs can be placed, although a fourth slot can be unlocked later in the game. Orbs can be equipped on any character, though you may want to strategically choose which characters cast which spells to give you the greatest advantage in battle.


Navigate the Bindings tab by using the “D-Pad” to select different slots and orbs, and hit “X” to switch between character tabs. You’ll notice that the details panel will change based on the context of your selection:

  • Unbound
    • An empty slot is selected.
  • Unknown
    • An orb is selected that you have not yet obtained.
  • Orb Info
    • Spell Name
    • Spell Description
    • MP Cost

To bind orbs, select a slot and press “A“. The menu will change context to allow you to scroll through the list of Orbs. When you find the orb you’d like to bind, press “A” again and the orb will appear in the slot. A bound orb is represented by a green checkmark in the list. Orbs cannot be bound twice; they must first be removed before they can be bound to another character. To remove a bound orb from it’s slot, simply select it and press “Y“.

A list of proposed Orbs (Spells) is found below:

The in-game map provides a top down view of the world, with debug indicators outlining points of interest. You can adjust the camera position of the map by using the analog sticks.


The map will display the following items:

  • Altars
    • Used as Save Points within the game world. They grant a large EXP bonus when first discovered.
  • Enemies
    • Enemies roaming the world. Touching one will initiate Combat Mode.
  • Bosses
    • There are two bosses in each area. One must be defeated in order to progress; the other is special.
  • Chests
    • Loot crates containing items and gold.


Combat in Ethereal Legends is based on the Active Turn Battle system popularized by Final Fantasy.  Battle strategy is determined by a handful of statistics laid out for each character and enemy. They are as follows:

In battle, a character’s turn speed is determined by their SPD stat. A character’s speed will charge over time until it reaches a limit. A character’s turn speed is represented by a yellow bar in the battle HUD found in the lower right corner of the screen, while their current HP is reflected in the green bar, and their current HP and MP values are shown as text. When a character’s SPD bar fills up, they will be placed in the turn queue, awaiting input. Once you’ve given them input, the character will act, and the SPD bar will return to zero and begin charging once again.

Use the battle menu on the right side of the screen to have your party members take action. Characters get a choice of three options in battle:

  • Attack
    • A standard attack.
  • Magic
    • Access the spells bound to this character.
  • Items
    • Access the items available to your party.

Victory is achieved when all enemies have been defeated.


Ethereal Legends is created, designed, and built by Scott McCutchen and Jacob Corle. As the founders of Soverance Studios, we’re dedicated to innovating gameplay for virtual reality, and providing you with fun and exciting experiences in the process. We’re extremely excited to bring you the Ethereal Legends Alpha Demo, which is our first major production to be released on Steam in 2016. What you see here is an early preview of the full game, and we’re working every day to make it better.

We work heavily with Unreal Engine and the Oculus Rift to create great content. Art assets provided by 3D Foin and Arteria 3D.

We’d love to have your feedback on the demo, so if you’ve had the opportunity to play the game, please help us out be filling out the form linked below.

Thanks, and we hope you enjoy Ethereal Legends!

Start Survey

One of our fans, vrgamerdude, was kind enough to make a quick video of him trying out the alpha demo, which you can watch below. It’s a great video! If you enjoy it, subscribe to his YouTube channel at this link.

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Project Ethereal – Unreal Engine 4 Elemental Demo

November 23, 2014
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I was really in the mood to get back into working with Unreal Engine 4, so I took some time over the weekend to build this out using their Elemental tech demo.  This was a ton of fun to put together, modding the demo like this to work with the Rift and give you a character to play with.  It uses the 360 gamepad, but the buttons only run animations.  Press “A” to jump and “Y” to detonate!  I was originally prototyping using the side-scroller template, and am still going to move the game back outside… but I wanted to see what the cutscene looked like first!!  That’s how I managed to get these screenshots and one of the videos.

The very next day, I fixed up a bit more in the demo! Added all new side-scroller gameplay outside the volcano, including prototype features for double-jumping, character swapping, and camera zooms.  I also went to the trouble of packaging the demo up for everyone to try!  I’d love to get some early feedback on it, as I turn the experience into a much more fun and interesting game!

Download the Ethereal 0.1 demo here:  Sorry, this download is no longer available.


Ethereal is exclusive to Windows OS

Supports the Xbox 360 gamepad ONLY

** Hit “Alt-Enter” to go fullscreen and enter stereo mode

  • Head Tracking –
  • Left Analog – Character Movement
  • Left Stick Down (L3) – Unused
  • Right Analog – Camera Zoom In/Out
  • Right Stick Down (R3) – Unused
  • Directional pad – Unused
  • A – Jump [press twice to double Jump]
  • X – Unused
  • B – Unused
  • Y – Detonate [anim only]
  • Left Trigger – Unused
  • Right Trigger – Unused
  • Left Shoulder – Cycle Character Left
  • Right Shoulder – Cycle Character Right
  • Start – Unused
  • Back – Unused


Ethereal utilizes DirectX 11 by default, and was built using Unreal Engine 4.1. Soverance recommends the following for the best experience:

  • Windows 7/8/8.1 [Macintosh is not supported at this time]
  • X-Box 360 controller
  • DX11 and SM5 compatible graphics card [minimum 2GB graphics memory]

Recommended Rift Display Mode Settings

  • – Direct HMD Access from Apps [NO]
  • – Extended Mode [YES]
  • – DK1 Legacy App Support [YES]

When running this demo, Soverance Studios recommends cloning your displays while using the Rift.


  • – Yes, you can fall off the left side indefinitely by hopping over the wall.
  • – Cannot “soft” quit the application.
  • – Yes, the lighting needs to be rebuilt.


A complete version history can be found on the Soverance Studios website.



Design and Programming
– Scott McCutchen

“Elemental” Demo
– Epic Games

Character Model
– 3dFoin


No longer available for download.

If you have any feedback, questions, or support needs, feel free to email me at info@soverance.com. Alternatively, you can make a new post in the studio’s subreddit, r/Soverance. That’s the fastest way for me to address things!

Follow me on Twitter @Soverance for all the latest updates and announcements!

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Endless Reach 2.4.1 Beta Update

November 15, 2014
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Ok, lets try this again!  Today I’m releasing yet another update to Endless Reach;  this is a smaller update just to address a common error found in the last build.  So here we go, Endless Reach version 2.4.1!

Download Beta Version 2.4.1.

When I released version 2.4 last week, I had feedback across the board from the majority of players wherein a crash would occur on startup.  A few great users were kind enough to send me their error logs, and every error log I’ve looked at produced this:

OculusPlugin.dll caused an Access Violation (0xc0000005) in module OculusPlugin.dll

It’s incredibly strange to have an issue appear for so many clients, but to never see it once on my own machine.  Even more so, that made it incredibly difficult to diagnose and fix.  While I never was able to reproduce the issue on my own machine, Oculus released a more stable SDK a day later (v so I’m hoping it will address this issue.  About to find out!  A user on the Oculus forums claimed the crashes stopped when he changed the quality settings from “Fastest” to “Good“, so we’re now also defaulting to “Good” on startup, in case that has any effect.  Additionally, I’ve made the game utilize DirectX 11 by default.


So, in addition to the updates that came with the last version update, here’s what you’ll find available in version 2.4.1:

  • Updates to Oculus SDK
  • Now uses DirectX 11 by default.
    • If you experience issues, DirectX 9 can be forced by creating a shortcut to “EndlessReach_DirectToRift.exe” and adding the “-force-d3d9” parameter without quotes to the shortcut’s target path.
  • Quality Settings now default to “Good“.
    • Quality Settings can be changed when launching the game by holding CTRL while double-clicking the “EndlessReach_DirectToRift.exe”.


  • Direct HMD Access from Apps  [YES]
  • DK1 Legacy App Support  [NO]


Please let me know how things work for you, and definitely provide me with any feedback you have!  You can email be directly at info@soverance.com, or post anything you want to on the game’s Official Subreddit.  Be sure to follow me on Twitter @Soverance for all the latest info!

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Endless Reach 2.4 Beta is now available!

November 9, 2014
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Endless Reach 2.4 Beta

Download free at http://endlessreach.soverance.com/play/

  • Updates to Oculus SDK 0.4.3
  • The scores based on which players receive medals have been adjusted to the following:
  • Bronze: 300,000 or better
  • Silver: 600,000 or better
  • Gold: 1,000,000 or better
  • Audio programming and resources are more efficiently optimized
  • Certain sound effects have been modified, and their replication counts have been capped.
  • An “Exit” button has been added to the main menu, allowing users to more easily quit the application.
  • The first version of the Nautilus has been implemented. The Nautilus is an interstellar drone carrier, piloted by an advanced A.I. known as “The Voice of Ethereal”. It can be considered a “hub” level, as the place you’ll dock the starfighter between missions and select new systems to explore. In future updates, you’ll also be able to install upgrades to your starfighter from the engine bay of the Nautilus.
  • The Voice of Ethereal has been added. Ethereal is the A.I. companion on board the Nautilus. He is your psychic link to your starfighter drone, Aurgus, and will be your sole source of information concerning mission objectives and status. Listen to what he has to say, as the voice of Ethereal provides valuable insight into playing the game!
  • The Galaxy Map has been added. The Galaxy Map is effectively a replacement for the “Level Select” menu, which has been removed. Activate the Galaxy Map by pressing “A” when in range of the pedestal. A black hole will appear to let you know you are in range. Use the Galaxy Map to select the system you wish to explore. Choosing a system will notify your intent to Ethereal, who will open a portal in the staging area. Entering the portal will link your mind to his, and together you will launch the Aurgus to the chosen planetary system.
  • You can hit “B” at any time to close the Galaxy Map
  • Level 4 – Coral Dreamscape has been added.
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Nautilus Preview (ER Hub Level)

November 3, 2014
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I am really excited to show a preview of what I’m calling The Nautilus; a sort of “hub” level for Endless Reach.  The Nautilus is the place you’ll return to between missions, where you can select new planetary systems to explore and upgrade your starfighter drone with any available parts.  I’ve been wanting to build this level for quite some time, as I’ve been feeling the need for some type of disconnect between the first person perspective naturally endowed by VR, and the third person perspective that you play Endless Reach with.  Hopefully the Nautilus can provide a believable scenario where a third person perspective makes sense.

Any time you enter the Nautilus, you’ll do so by re-awakening inside a cryo chamber.  Each time you do this, you are greeted by the voice of Ethereal, the A.I. companion on board the Nautilus.  He’ll also provide you with valuable information about operating inside the Nautilus, as well as piloting the starfighter drone.  Ethereal’s voice acting was done by yours truly, which was then piped through Audacity to be cleaned up and then modified to make me sound like a robot.  Recorded on an $8 mic, it worked out ok and sounds pretty good, though it definitely could be done better (and I’d totally prefer a female voice actor).  Either way, it was a pretty interesting exercise in recording!

The meshes used for the Nautilus mostly come from a construction set I purchased through Arteria3D, which makes an incredible amount of high quality assets.  Due to time constraints, I didn’t bother to really build out an original design, so the Nautilus is a slightly modified version of the demo scene that came with the Arteria3D package.  All I really did was change some of the lighting and add more windows.  I had to modify some of the collision, as well.  I then placed the whole thing inside the skysphere I’ve used for the main menu so you’d have something to look at through the windows.  Additionally, I docked the starfighter drone outside so you can look at that more closely, too!

The real changes though, came in the form of the Galaxy Map.  Seen operating in the video, it’s effectively a replacement for the level select menu found in earlier versions of Endless Reach.  It shows a more 3D view of the planetary systems you’ll visit during each level.  Choosing a system will notify Ethereal of your intended destination, and he’ll open a runic portal that allows your mind to control the drone.

I’ll be releasing the first playable version of the Nautilus on November 8th, in the v2.4 update to Endless Reach.  I’ve got a number of other things planned to expand and polish this level, and I can’t wait to get feedback on it.  Be sure to let me know what you think here in the comments, on the subreddit, or via Twitter!



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Endless Reach 2.3 Beta Available Now!

September 28, 2014
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I am really excited to release version 2.3, as we’re turning the difficulty up to eleven with The Watcher! You’ll find him in Level 3, the Spiral Downs. This one is a smaller update, though it should help balance the gameplay a bit, and add a fair challenge for the devoted shmup fans!

Download the 2.3 Beta, free on the Official Website

You’ll find the change log below!

Watch a full video playthrough of Level 3 – The Spiral Downs

More in-depth information on the game’s intricacies can be found on the wiki page.

[Implemented for 2.3 Beta]

  • Updates to Oculus SDK 0.4.2
  • Level 3 – The Spiral Downs has been added.
  • A new enemy type has been added.
  • A new turret type has been added.
  • Limit Break Chaining has been added. A countdown timer will now appear on the HUD to notify the remaining duration of a Limit Break. Collect another blue orb before the overload begins to reset the countdown timer and extend the Limit Break duration.
  • HMD Orientation can now be reset manually at any time by pressing the “Back” button on the gamepad.
  • The screenshot function has been removed.
  • Turret lasers now have a mid-beam energy pulse that dictates the hazardous point along it’s path.
  • Fixed a bug where the targeting reticles on Boss01 – Aern and Boss02 – Celestial Archon would appear in the incorrect positions.
  • Fixed a bug wherein the Limit Break shield would remain visible during the status screen.


  • Status screen does not recenter properly when returning from viewing a Leaderboard
  • Instantiating audio will sometimes cause a frame rate lag

I hope you enjoy the 2.3 version update of Endless Reach! As always, I’d love to hear from you, so be sure to provide me with any feedback you may have here in the comments or on the game’s official subreddit.

If you enjoyed the beta demo, be sure to vote on our Steam Greenlight page, or give a rating on Oculus Share. You can also follow me on Twitter @Soverance.

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Endless Reach 2.2 Beta is now live!

September 3, 2014
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DOWNLOAD 2.2 BETA from the Official Website





These features and fixes have been implemented for 2.2:

  • Updates to Oculus SDK 0.4.1
  • Level 2 – The Celestial Plains is now able to be unlocked.
  • Universal online leaderboards have been introduced. View the leaderboards outside the game on the official websiteLeaderboards are separated by individual level. You will be prompted to enter your name if your score surpasses one of the universal high scores. Entering names must currently be done with a keyboard.
  • When starting the game, a Soverance splash screen now prefaces the title screen, during which the HMD orientation is automatically reset
  • Screenshots can now be captured during gameplay by pressing the Left Stick (L3). This is an experimental feature, and is resource intensive. Using it will cause a momentary pause in frame rate. Additionally, only one screenshot may be saved, and all successive screenshots will overwrite the previous one. Future updates will allow for multiple saved screenshots.
  • Cameras now fade during level loads
  • The game can now be paused by pressing the “Start” button at any time during gameplay. You can restart the level, or exit back to the main menu from the pause menu. Hit “Start” again to unpause the game and resume play.
  • A new model for the player’s starting drone has replaced the placeholder model using in version 2.1. This new drone is currently known as the Mark I.
  • All firing rates have been slightly increased, and bullet collision has been improved.
  • Fixed a bug where the player could still overload after defeating the boss, causing both a complete and failure status screen to appear, as well as a constant and unstoppable controller vibration.


  • All sound effects are still super rough.
  • Status screen does not recenter properly when returning from viewing a Leaderboard
  • Targeting reticles on Boss 01 – Aern appear in the incorrect positions. They are centered instead of around Left/Right engines
  • While Boss 02 – Celestial Archon’s head can be targeted with homing missiles, no reticle appears. It’s actually there, it’s just too small for his giant head
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2.1 Version Update to Endless Reach now available!

August 3, 2014
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We’re extremely excited to bring you the 2.1 version update for Endless Reach! The demo is now available as a free download on the game’s official website.

Sorry, this version is no longer available.

The 2.1 Beta includes a number of feature additions, improvements, and bug fixes! Some of them are listed below:


Lock-On Targeting via head tracking

Missiles can now be fired at locked on targets by pressing “B“. The only targets currently available for tracking are turrets and the boss.

Boost mode

Hold “Left Trigger” to initiate. Initial boost shockwave will destroy all enemies in a small range. Movement speed is increased. Boost power is limited to a meter, and a new pickup has been introduced to help replenish the available boost power.


  • DK2 support!
  • Force feedback added to 360 gamepad
  • Firing control has been moved to the “A” button
  • Purging control has been moved to the “X” button
  • A UI object has been introduced to prompt the user when to purge
  • HUD has been modified and relocated
  • FPS counter can now be toggled on and off with the “Left Shoulder” button
  • Movement dead zones have been tightened for a “snappier” feel
  • Full 3D physics have been implemented
  • Turrets have been relocated, and now rotate erratically in order to be unpredictable.
  • Turret and Boss laser colors have been changed to be more visible
  • A number of visual effects were modified
  • Trail effects have been added to the player’s engines
  • Probably some more stuff that I’m forgetting

We recommend running the DirectToRift.exe in extended mode to play Endless Reach. If you get a lot of stutter running the demo and have a DX11 capable card, the -force-d3d11 fix may work well for you.

If you like what we’ve built here, we’d love if you could vote us up on Steam Greenlight!

We hope you enjoy playing Endless Reach, and we’d love to hear your feedback! You can discuss the game here on it’s official subreddit, r/EndlessReach, or follow us on Twitter @Soverance.

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Oculus Rift: Gothic Cathedral

November 30, 2013
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A representation of a Gothic cathedral for the Oculus Rift using UDK, built as a project for an Art History course at the Art Institute Atlanta.

Lighting is one of my favorite things to do inside of UDK. The Unreal Engine has just made it really easy to take mediocre assets and, through decent lighting, create something that looks truly amazing. This was one of my first experiences attempting to create a stained glass lighting effect, and while I may have gone a tad overboard on rendering light shafts, I think it turned out really well overall. I enjoyed it so much that I’ll probably make a tutorial on how exactly I pulled this off.


The meshes and textures I used to build this cathedral were purchased from a user on TurboSquid, and they were not my favorite option. They were simply the cheapest route, and I guess you get what you pay for. Either way, at least as my first experience with TurboSquid, I managed to get those assets in a number of different formats and was actually able to use them (albeit with some modification to the textures). Sadly, that’s a pretty huge bonus compared to scraping the internet for free assets. Even with these meshes being low-quality, once they’re inside UDK you’re able to just do so much to improve their visual fidelity that the quality argument is much diminished.

This was also my first look at creating light functions in UDK, which I used to make the flickering lights emitted from the fires. I can see how this can be an incredibly powerful technique, as it was really simple to implement and can create a lot of really cool effects based on the textures you sample. Will need to do more experimentation with these to see what I can come up with.



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