Daniel Voshart had some great ideas about empathic design for VR in his thesis:
Please consider providing the following empathic design modes:
Wheelchair - standard size wheelchair and large sized wheelchair - Moving only with right and left thumbstick, allow ability temporarily go through matter so you can keep troubleshooting instead of having to remodel the whole building before you can continue.
Glaucoma - Blur the screen to simulate people with bad vision, allow levels of blurring and different optical artifacts seen in unhealthy eyes. This is mostly to test circulation and navigation of buildings or older people.
Color blind - Allow users to experience the world as a colorblind person.
Foreign Language - An interesting idea: change all language on signage to another language. See if people can get around on visuals alone.
Children - Allow us to walk and experience the world at children or toddler height. This will allow us to experience what is dangerous or accessible
95th Percentile small and tall - Allow us to experience the building as a tall and short person. Buildings are often designed for generally tall people, which leaves a lot of smaller woman and men t a disadvantage since the building ignores them as a user.
VR Skirt?! -Allow users to walk around the building in a skirt or dress. Perhaps this will make men more self conscious to realize than people could pep under because of one of their designs.
These are just some preliminary recommendations for empathic design modes. These don't take a lot of effort to implement, but could change the whole philosophy of how we approach design in architecture
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