Playing in Mock Mode

Using Mock mode to test without a mobile device.


In Mock mode, all AR and networking functionality is mocked inside the Unity Editor, eliminating the need for building to a mobile device at all (although you should still build to device or use the Remote mode periodically, to make sure your app works as expected with real AR data).

The following video demonstrates how to use Virtual Studio and Mock mode in Unity:


The mocking system demonstrated in the video has been updated in ARDK 1.3. For details on mock mode changes see the additional Mock Mode video.

Mock AR Environments

A mock ARSession is constructed and used with the exact same code as a live device or remote ARSession; i.e., there is no new or different code that has to be written to utilize these features.

Using Mock Environments

  1. From the Unity menu, open the Lightship > ARDK > Virtual Studio window and select the Mock option.

  2. Select a Mock environment from the dropdown. There are ready-made environment prefabs available for download through the Lightship portal, but you can also create your own mock environments (see “Creating Mock Environments” section below).

  3. Enter Play Mode, and the environment will automatically be spawned into your scene. A layer called ARDK_MockWorld, which is required to correctly render the mock environment, will be added to your project if it does not already exist.


Camera Controls

Movement and look speed can be configured in the Unity toolbar’s Lightship > ARDK > Virtual Studio window.


Creating Mock Environments

  1. Create a new prefab and add a MockSceneConfiguration component to the root GameObject.

  2. Add 3D models to the prefab to create an environment.

  3. Follow the steps below to add AR information to your environment.

  4. Press the Refresh button next to the Mock Scene dropdown in the Virtual Studio window to be able to select your new prefab for use.

Mock Plane Detection

  1. Add a MockPlaneAnchor component to a GameObject in your prefab.

  2. Use the component’s Center and Rotation properties to position the anchor (visible in the Gizmo) on top of the surface you’re marking as a plane.

  3. Set the Time to Discovery value to be the number of seconds it should take for the anchor to be detected, counting from after IARSession.Run is called.

  4. Repeat steps 1 and 2 for all planes in your scene.

See for example: LivingRoom prefab’s Walls > Wall_Back or Furniture > PlaneAnchor objects.

Mock Image Detection

  1. Create an empty GameObject in your prefab.

  2. Add a MockImageAnchor component to that GameObject.

  3. Import your image into your Unity project by dragging it into the Project view window.

  4. Set the component’s Image property to your imported image. 1. If the image appears distorted, go to the Advanced section of the Texture Import Settings <> and change the Non-Power of 2 value to None. Click Apply to re-import the image with the new settings. Then right click on the MockImageAnchor component in your prefab and select the Update Display option. 2. If the image still appears distorted, right click on the MockImageAnchor component and select the Reset option, then set the Image property again.

  5. Set the Time to Discovery value to be the number of seconds it should take for the anchor to be detected, counting from after IARSession.Run is called.

  6. Set the Name value to the exact same name used to create the ARReferenceImage in your application’s code.

See for example: LivingRoom prefab’s Wall > Wall_Back CrowdImage object.

Mock Semantic Segmentation

  1. Add a MockSemanticLabel component to any GameObject that has a MeshRenderer component.

  2. Set the component’s Channel value to be the semantic channel its GameObject’s mesh should be interpreted as.

  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 for all meshes in your scene you want to add semantics for.

See for example: ParkPond prefab’s Sky or Trees > Tree > Branches objects.

Other AR Features

  • Depth: Any mock environment will automatically surface depth buffers, if a depth-enabled AR session is being run.

  • Meshing: A stand-in mesh to your scene by using MockMesh or MockMeshSequence to load a pre-created mesh file. You can generate a mesh file using your mobile device and the MeshSaver scene in ARDK-Examples. For more details see Intermediate Tutorial: Meshes in the Unity Editor. * In-editor meshes for mock environments (i.e. AR meshes aligning to Unity Mesh objects) are currently unsupported.

Mock Multiplayer

As with mock AR, no additional code is needed to use the mocked network. However, there are some additional APIs that unlock ways of simulating the local player interacting with (multiple) mock players. Mock players and their ARSession, MultipeerNetworking, and ARNetworking instances can be created and controlled either through scripts or the Virtual Studio editor window.

Configuring the Mock Players

To create mock players, first create a MockPlayConfiguration, which is a ScriptableObject defines the properties of each mock player.

  1. In the Unity Editor’s Project window, right click to open the context menu. Then select Create> ARDK> MockPlayConfiguration.

  2. Set the size of the Profile array to be the max number of mock players you want in your play through.

  3. Define the player’s properties:

    • Name :

    • Is Active : true if player should be initialized. Inactive players will have no effect on the application.

    • Using Network : true if the player should initialize an IMultipeerNetworking instance.

    • Using AR : true if the player should initialize an IARSession instance.

    • Using AR Networking : true if the player should initialize an IARNetworking instance.

      • If this property is true, then both Using Network and Using AR must also be true.

  4. Optionally, add a prefab that will be spawned in the scene when a mock player initializes, which can be used to control that player’s AR pose.

Initializing the Mock Players

For entirely script-free control of the mock multiplayer experience, open the Unity toolbar’s Lightship > ARDK > Virtual Studio window.

  1. Check the box to enable the window (disabling guarantees no code from the window that could potentially affect gameplay will get run).

    • Also make sure that the Use Remote box in the ARDK> Remote Connector window is disabled

  2. Select a MockPlayConfiguration asset to use.

  3. Check the Use detected MultipeerNetworking session metadata box to have mock players should connect to their networking session with whatever session metadata was used by the local player.

    • For this functionality to work, the local player’s networking must be connected before mock players are enabled.

  4. Else, type in the networking session metadata that should be used by the mock players. That same session metadata should then be used by the local player to connect.

  5. Click the Connect and Run All button to create, run all the ARSession s, and connect all the MultipeerNetworking sessions owned by the mock players, as defined in the selected MockPlayConfiguration.

    • This button is only enabled when the Unity Editor is in Play Mode.

Scripting Mock Players

Scripting allows for finer control over mock players, in order to simulate and test more complex multiplayer scenarios.

To get all active MockPlayer instances:

using Niantic.ARDK.VirtualStudio;

private MockPlayConfiguration _playConfiguration;

public void AccessAllPlayers()
  foreach (var profile in _playConfiguration.ActiveProfiles)
    var player = profile.GetPlayer();
    // do something with player

From here, the MockPlayer API can be used to access the mock player’s ARDK objects and control them, just as you control the local player’s.

For example, the code snippet below could be used to test how an application reacts to multiple new players joining a networking session.

using System.Collections;

  private IEnumerator ConnectWithDelay(MockPlayConfiguration playConfiguration, byte[] sessionMetadata)
    foreach (var profile in playConfiguration.ActiveProfiles)
      if (profile.UsingNetwork)
        yield return new WaitForSeconds(2f);

        var player = profile.GetPlayer();

        Debug.LogFormat("{0} is connecting.", player);

More examples of using these APIs can be found in the ARDK-Examples project under Assets/ARDKExamples/VirtualStudio, in the ExampleMockPlaythrough scene, which uses the ExamplePlayController.cs script.

Mock Localization

In an on-device ARNetworking session, players in a shared session localize by scanning the environment to find AR maps. Localization in a mock session can be triggered in several different ways:

  • Mock map detection

    • Attach a MockMap component to a GameObject. The map’s position will match the GameObject ‘s.

    • Set the TimeToDiscovery value to be the number of seconds it should take for the map to be found, counting from after IARSession.Run is called.

    • The map will only be detected by the local player. To change the peer states of other mock players, use one the other options described below.

  • Scripted peer state changes

  • Virtual Studio Editor Window > Mock

    • Once a player is connected to an ARNetworking session, a dropdown box will appear that can be used change their peer state.

See Also

Virtual Studio