Codenamed “Tonehenge”, this multiplayer game brings puzzles to life with augmented reality.
Figure 5: Codename: Tonehenge - nianticlabs.com
Figure 6: Codename: Tonehenge - nianticlabs.com
These puzzles can only be solved if you strategise, communicate and execute as a team.
This is a great game to play if you want to get to know someone without any superficial small talk. Can i hear all the introverts say amen?
Organizations may even start to adopt this style of gaming when on-boarding new candidates, to test their teamwork skills.
Pokemon Go was not perfect.
Characters did not interact realistically with their surroundings and would often run through objects rather than avoiding them.
Figure 7: Standard AR without occlusion technology - nianticlabs.com
WIth Niantic’s development of occlusion technology, augmented reality characters are now more realistically bound by the physical constraints of this world by actually interacting with the objects around them.
If a character’s trajectory intersects with an object, the character will adjust its trajectory and avoid it.
AR characters will even be capable of interacting with dynamic objects. If somebody is walking in your playing field, AR characters can predict their trajectory and adjust accordingly.
Figure 8: Niantic AR with occlusion technology - nianticlabs.com
Social impact of AR and VR.
The success of Pokemon Go was not only limited to its monetary profits. It demonstrated a fascinating concept: Gaming can now be used to bring members of the community together.
Strangers who would not normally interact with each other joined forces to hunt down digital creatures.
What a bizarre yet powerful sentence.
The social benefits of augmented reality and virtual reality are too difficult to ignore. As a result gaming development is transitioning into the social impact space.
Here are some exciting prospective developments:
Walking in someone else's shoes
VR for Charities
It is often very difficult to convey an experience to another person. Words and illustrations just don’t have the same impact as a firsthand experience.
As a result, the way we communicate experiences is about to dramatically change.
Thanks to virtual reality, we can now literally walk in the footsteps of another person to experience, and finally understand the depths of the hardships they face.
If you want to experience what life is like in the third world, slipping on a virtual reality headset could instantly plunge you into the aftermath of a tropical cyclone.
Seeing first-hand the damage caused by nature in such a fragile setting will convey the needs of the community in a very impactful way.
Charities have started implementing VR technology into their street campaigns to give prospective donors a vivid experience of what life is like for the needy.
Amnesty used virtual reality headsets to bring a piece of war-torn Syria to the streets of London, resulting in a 16% increase of direct debit donation sign-ups.
This wasn’t even a true virtual reality experience. They used still photographic images displayed on smart phones.
Charity Water took things further by creating a virtual reality documentary to tell the story of a little girl’s transformation as a result of their efforts in her community.
This campaign was so successful it raised an incredible $2.4 million during a balck tie fundraising banquet.
The natural direction forward for charities is to invest more time and effort into creating ultra-high definition 360 degree experiences for prospective donors and philanthropists.
This does not have to be limited to VR documentaries, gaming could be a new method for charities to encourage the younger generation to pursue social enterprise establishment.