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Augmented reality is a more physical experience than the typical “controller-in-hand” while staring at a screen. Instead, the screen is all around you, and with a special headset, you can interact with a video game, watching a concert, or a live movie. The options are endless when you think about it; how cool would it be to shop with a wink and a nod?
A prominent example of augmented reality is the HoloLens, a Microsoft invention that has been receiving a lot of press in the last five years. Fragments and Young Conker are two of the more popular additions to the platform from Asobo Studios. David Dedeine, one of the developers that oversaw both projects, thinks that exploration in augmented reality will change the landscape of gaming as a whole, especially in the online gaming sphere.
Not just that, but it will change the way gamers look at gaming.
Taking a look at the games
In Young Conker, the player will control a squirrel with their eyes. Looking up will cause the squirrel to jump while looking left will make Conker walk right. What’s interesting about Young Conker, is that the game considers your surroundings. You’ll literally be playing your living room. Maybe try to set up some high books, or some exciting obstacles.
Fragments is a crime investigation game. You’re the detective, and you use your room as the crime scene. Clues could be located around any corner, and with the AR headset, you can manipulate objects and talk to NPCs that stand about your house.
There is also massive potential in the AR online gaming sphere. For example, despite the growth of online casinos, one major downside to the experience is the excitement tradition casinos give to the player. With AR technology, there is potential you could feel like you’re right there with all the flashing lights.
Imagine a bartender coming up to you and giving you a virtual drink, or more tokens. Imagine seeing the other players there with you. Maybe someday, places like Casumo casino in India could be right in your living room.
But like with any new invention, there are its downsides. With Virtual Reality having the unfortunate risk of actual motion sickness and nausea, you won’t want to be playing for long with this massive headset on your head. This is the same with AR, and with the experience being more immersive than VR, you may actually forget you’re playing a game. You also have to worry about the headset overheating.
AR is still in its baby stages, which makes it difficult to develop games for. Most developers at this point have had some experience with VR, with many classic games like DOOM and Skyrim having VR versions it’s more challenging to change an established game into AR.
There is also the issue of scanning real-world objects into the AR world. The developer will have to make a note of a “random factor” whenever a player chooses to boot up a game. Maybe the scanned area won’t work with the required game, or perhaps the space is too small, or too large.
The Best is Yet to Come
The wow factor is still not lost on the potential here. In the already mentioned Fragments, characters will sit beside you on the couch and talk to you. You may also have to move an object in your house, like a table or sofa, to find a clue hidden behind it.
For now, this technology is not what it could be, and eventually, like any new technology, we will get used to it. There are already online gaming options available through various apps and games. Chat rooms are available, and people have even met friends on the HoloLens. Eventually, you’ll be able to hold massive online competitions as well.