Phusicos VR: Virtual reality for real learning

Published 22.06.2021 , last updated 17.09.2023

Virtual reality to help learn how nature-based solutions can mitigate natural hazards at the PHUSICOS case sites.

PHUSICOS-VR takes you across Europe to show how different nature-based solutions work to mitigate natural hazards, including floods, agricultural run-off, rock falls and avalanches.

Nature-based solutions, or green solutions, work to increase safety while also preserving biodiversity. It comes with various co-benefits which set them apart from more traditional measures. In a climate adaptation perspective, this is becoming increasingly important. 

This experience is developed as a virtual reality game as part of the WP6 Learning Arena activities.  The overall goal of PHUSICOS-VR is to empower politicians, planning authorities and other decision-makers but also the general public to learn about nature-based solutions and how these may offer good solutions for managing hazards. 

While the game is originally developed for use with the Oculus Quest VR headset, we also have created a desktop version that can be explored using an internet web browser.  Join the game here.

How to play

To play:  Use the arrow keys (or letters A W S D) to move around. The left mouse button is used to select items.  
Hold down the right mouse button and move the mouse to ‘turn your head’ to look in different directions.
Future developments

The game is designed as an open-source, modular package.  This will allow other case sites or examples to be added in the future, for example in connection with other EU projects or organizations who would like to contribute to this learning tool.

Article by James Michael Strout, NGI