I am sometimes a skeptic about VR/AR gaming. Seems to be rather too techy and even often quite low resolution for my liking. And the storytelling and educational aspects often seem a bit lacking. But I would say that, being one who is always looking for the bigger story and valuable use cases rather than just for killing time. The Lenovo STAR WARS:Jedi Challenges technology and Smartphone games Application is of a different breed. Very clever how they use the smartphone at 45º in the headset in a way that lets you see the room you are in (visual see-through, not video) and then lets you play Star Wars Chess or challenge the various Star Wars charactors to Light Sabre duels. But first, to qualify to fight, you need to learn how to use a light sabre! Light Sabre Training also done well, and fun. The light sabre itself is stunning to look at and hold and in your virtual vision and hearing pops out just like in the movie. Lots of virtual charactors and action in your living room or kitchen. Virtual Star Wars charactors and in fact everything in your line of sight is life-sized and lifelike and of course, it is also taking place in the reality of your home setting. This is a great piece of technology Lenovo and a great gaming experience Disney! Fun, fun, fun. Credit goes to the partnership with Disney (and Lucasfilm) to produce interesting, authentic and compelling experiences. Oh yes, and an amazingly reasonable price of $199. to boot. More, More, More please Lenovo and Disney!
And in Lenovo's words:
Inspired by the Star Wars Holochess game shown in Star Wars: A New Hope, the Lenovo Mirage AR headset was built truly from the ground up to recreate an immersive augmented reality experience for Star War fans of all ages. Users were able to truly enjoy key moments in the Star Wars films – a new type of experience that had never existed until now.
Star Wars: Jedi Challenges lets fans live their dream of battling with a Lightsaber in augmented reality and other in-game experiences through the Skywalker Lightsaber and Lenovo Mirage AR headset.
This product comprises three pieces of hardware: The Lenovo Mirage AR headset, the Lightsaber controller and the Tracking Beacon.
* The Lenovo Mirage AR headset is an all-new augmented reality head mounted display (HMD) designed to give Star Wars fans an opportunity to recapture some of their favorite Star Wars moments.
* The Lightsaber Controller is a Lightsaber device that pairs with the Lenovo Mirage AR headset for fans to experience Star Wars in AR. The Lightsaber was intricately designed by Lucas film to be modeled after the Skywalker Lightsaber.
* The Tracking Beacon acts as a stable base and zero reference point for the sensors in Lenovo Mirage AR headset.
Starting price $199 at Best Buy and also available at Lenovo.com.
The small (1" diameter) Ozobot 'robot' gaming pieces bridge the physical and virtual online world with robots that respond to what they see beneath them on the tablet screen or tabletop or both. Basically, they move themselves! An interesting new innovation that could bring tabletop social gaming back to life. Devices and Apps not available until later this year, but I will be looking forward to trying this one.
The fun will come when lots of games and Apps appear.
see video of basics here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xFjTXQ8uho