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From Pixels to Metaverse: My Wild Ride in the Tech World
Blast from the Pixelated Past: A Trip Down My Technicolor Memory Lane!
Greetings, fellow tech enthusiasts! I'm Pranshul Chandhok, and if you've ever met someone who's practically part cyborg in their passion for creating innovative solutions and immersive experiences, that's me! Buckle up and hold on tight, because I'm about to take you on a whirlwind tour of my professional journey, filled with cutting-edge products, daring games, and the occasional hilarious mishap. Are you ready for the adventure of a lifetime?
It all started back in 2012 when I teamed up with another programmer to create ‘The Brutal Spy’, a top-down action-adventure game so heart-pounding, even James Bond would need to catch his breath! As the first game of its kind, it featured an arsenal of weapons and nail-bitingly tough locations, sending players on an adrenaline-fueled thrill ride.
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Zooming ahead to 2013, I joined forces with another programmer to develop ‘Alphaman’, an educational game that turned learning to spell into an epic quest. Gone were the days of boring spelling bees – Alphaman took kids on a wild ride across diverse maps, proving that learning could be more exhilarating than a theme park rollercoaster.
The excitement continued in 2014 when a small team and I released Merkur Magie, a gaming app that brought the glitz and glamour of Las Vegas right to your fingertips – minus the risk of losing your life savings! With classic casino games for entertainment purposes, this app was the perfect sidekick for those craving a taste of Sin City without the jet lag.
Now, every great story needs a dynamic duo, and mine is no exception. Enter Abhishek Gupta, my partner in crime and co-founder of our last startup, GreyKernel. Our paths first crossed at Merkur Gaming, and it quickly became apparent that we were a tech dream team – think of us as the Steve Jobs and Wozniak of the gaming and AR/VR universe!
As we honed our skills, we ventured into the realms of virtual reality and augmented reality, developing groundbreaking educational products like IRA VR 360 (2016) and IRA VR Metaverse (2018) at GreyKernel. These projects aimed to revolutionize education by offering immersive, personalized learning experiences – it's like having a front-row seat in the classroom of the future!
The year 2017 saw the birth of Machine Hunter Mixed Reality Game, a sci-fi action extravaganza with one simple goal: "Hunt Them All!" This game was followed by Oye Tippa Run (2020), an educational mobile game that not only taught children about road safety but also sent them on an epic journey to school – who said learning couldn't be fun?
In 2020, we also unveiled Celeste AR, an augmented reality app that brought fruits to life in the most hilarious ways – who knew apples and oranges could be this entertaining? And let's not forget Chhota Bheem Jungle Rescue, an action-packed sequel created in partnership with Nazara that had players soaring through the skies of Dholakpur, heroically saving the day.
But our work didn't stop at gaming. Abhishek's business savvy and my technical prowess allowed us to break new ground, developing innovative solutions for organizations like Myntra, TheMathCompany, Swissôtel, Anglian Water, United Ocean, and HomeLane using AR/VR/3D technologies. One standout project was the JPMorgan Gamified Onboarding and Training Metaverse Solution, where we transformed employee training into a multiplayer quest for glory.
Speaking of HomeLane, we worked on SpaceCraft Pro, an internal design tool that provided real-time 3D visualization for customer properties. This revolutionary tool allowed customers to see their new interior design in their space before it was built, like a crystal ball for home renovations! SpaceCraft Pro also streamlined the entire process by generating quotes, CAD files, and cutout files for factories, ensuring quality and efficiency.
Our collaboration even extended to the defense sector, where we developed state-of-the-art training simulations and safety modules. Together, we were like the technological Avengers, saving the world one project at a time!
Some of these heroic ventures include:
1. Tactical Combat Training: This immersive multiplayer warfare simulation used AI-driven behavior and integrated real arms and motion platforms to create authentic experiences across diverse terrains. Our soldiers sharpened their skills in virtual environments that mirrored the unpredictability of real-world combat scenarios.
2. Mixed Reality-based MRO (Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul) Training: This trailblazing training program for armed forces technical and operational staff provided hands-on learning opportunities for crucial maintenance and repair procedures using mixed reality technology.
3. Mixed Reality-based Simulations for Doctors and Paramedics: These simulations equipped medical professionals with sensor-integrated mannequins that presented realistic treatment response scenarios. The immersive overlays visually demonstrated medical procedures, enhancing the learning experience for doctors and paramedics in the field.
4. Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and PLC-based Simulators: Integrated with conventional PLC/mechatronics systems, these simulators featured GPS-mapped terrains that offered highly accurate training environments for various armed vehicles such as LLLR, BLT Tank, T-90 Tank, Tunguska anti-aircraft weapon, M777, and Tata Safari.
5. Mid-Sea/Deep Oceans Safety Training Using Virtual Reality: These training-cum-assessment modules validated learning by demonstrating critical processes that would otherwise be impossible to replicate in real-world situations. These virtual environments ensured that military personnel were well-equipped to handle emergencies and challenges during naval operations.
6. Radar and Radio Telephony Simulator: This advanced simulator trained military personnel in operating complex radar and radio telephony systems. The realistic virtual environment guaranteed hands-on experience and proficiency in communication and tracking.
Of course, it wouldn't be a true adventure without a few unreleased projects and epic failures that, though they never quite made it to the spotlight, brought us enough joy and laughter to make them worth mentioning. Picture this: an Assassin's Creed-esque experience set in pre-independence India, where you'd rub shoulders with historical figures and perhaps even share a cup of tea with Gandhi! Or how about a revamped Snake and Ladder game, complete with magical power-ups that could turn the tables just when you thought you'd met your (board game) demise? Let's not forget Tippa in Space, our ambitious attempt to fuse the classic Hitman Go puzzle game with an intergalactic setting – who knew solving puzzles in zero gravity could be so entertaining? And for all the racing enthusiasts out there, we once dreamt of a Need for Speed-style game set in a futuristic world where hovering cars raced through neon-lit cities. And let's not forget our attempts at immersive compliance training, tackling topics like fire safety, anti-harassment, and cyber security with a fun, engaging twist. Last but not least, there was Kave, our vision for a collaborative office workspace metaverse that aimed to make virtual meetings so enjoyable, you'd actually look forward to your next conference call! While these projects may never have seen the light of day, they've certainly left their mark on our hearts and funny bones, reminding us that sometimes, the journey is just as important as the destination.
Throughout this incredible journey, I've had the privilege of crossing paths with some truly extraordinary individuals who have not only helped me achieve my dreams but also brought joy and laughter to every step of the way. It's impossible to mention them all, but imagine a band of quirky superheroes – each with their own unique talents – joining forces to conquer the world of tech. There's the coding wizard who can whip up a game feature faster than you can say "software," the creative genius whose ideas are so out-of-the-box they make Einstein look like an amateur, and the ever-optimistic project manager who can keep a smile on their face even when deadlines loom like a supervillain. These amazing people have not only been my support system but also the secret sauce behind every successful project. As we've tackled countless challenges together, we've formed bonds that go beyond the realm of work – bonds forged in laughter, late-night brainstorming sessions, and a shared passion for all things tech. So, to my fellow adventurers, I raise my virtual hat in gratitude, for you've made this rollercoaster ride all the more memorable and heart-touching. Here's to the many more adventures and laughs we'll share together!
In conclusion, my journey as a technical leader has been nothing short of a wild, rollercoaster ride, made all the more memorable and heartwarming by the incredible people I've met along the way. Together, we've tackled the challenges of the tech world with laughter, camaraderie, and a shared passion for innovation. I'm incredibly proud of the products and games we've developed, and I eagerly await the mind-blowing projects the future has in store for our quirky band of tech superheroes. So keep an eye out for updates on my work and the thrilling developments we have planned – together, we just might change the world one pixel at a time! And who knows? Along the way, we might even share a laugh or two as we continue to push the boundaries of technology, one hilarious fruit at a time. So stay tuned, and let's embark on this exhilarating adventure together, with our hearts full of gratitude and our eyes set on new horizons!
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