In fact, there are video games that already include augmented reality but, generally they are mainly oriented to children . For example we can take a look to the “Eye Pet” developed by Sony, where children can have a “virtual” pet and play with it using only a card that works as target.
But actually, we want to talk about action games, or sports games, where the introduction of Augmented Reality could lead to new and engaging experiences for gamers. It is not strange to think that the spreading of the Augmented Reality technology will also reach the game industry, due to its wide range of possibilities. Using next coming generations of AR systems, we will be able to map our room, or the environment where we are, and display a huge set of Augmented objects which will give us a more immersive game experience. Apart of improving the direct user´s interaction with the elements of the game by adding new augmented objects that the user is able to play with, AR may enhance the cooperation and the experience of multiplayer games by geolocating elements where the action takes place.
In order to get this idea, please imagine an action game like the well known “counter strike”, where several users belong to a team and have to kill another game players. Now image that, instead of staying at home, in front of the computer, each player plays outside, and has a device with an AR system integrated that is able to track where each of these players is and show the location of all the players on their devices’ screens. Wouldn´t it be exciting?
All of this is mostly achievable at the moment. We don’t need complex 3D tracking, but provide the players with a space already prepared (for real) to this purpose. In the glasses, players would be able to see the typical HUD (Head up display), showing things like team scores, bullets left, and radar with the players on it.
This approach would take videogames to a whole new level… or take the reality to a new level! After all, this is what Augmented Reality is meant to do! Similar things have been done already, (even they weren’t including AR so deeply), but what about taking this to fun fairs? Or imagine going with your friends to play paintball using this new technology!
Nowadays, videogames are evolving a lot, but the improvements are mainly in graphics quality and interaction level with in-game events (more options, destructible environments, decisions which have an impact on the story…). But the thing here is that the player is always in front of a screen, playing with a controller. There have been also a lot of innovations in the controller field: devices like WiiMote from Nintendo or Kinect from Microsoft, which allows you to use your videogames moving the controllers, or your body. All these are cool technologies, but let’s be honest, nothing like hanging out with your friends for real, and play a “real” videogame!!
After all, we’re playing videogames with realistic graphics, but what can be more real than reality itself?? Augmented reality only increases the “usability” of reality to make it more enjoyable, or in this subject that we’re talking about, increase the entertainment experience of the players. Also, it would help fighting obesity! Let’s see what we have in a few years to play with!Tags: Augmented Reality, games