Augmented reality (AR) is finding its niche as a gaming technology, especially since it first burst on the scene with Pokemon Go. Though that smartphone-enabled game was a very basic example of the complexities of AR game development, it served to bring augmented reality to the masses in an entertaining and engaging way. With the raging success of this game and the popularity of others, AR games are beginning to transform how players’ worlds intersect with reality.
For most players, they will insist that immersion is the key to enjoyment. AR games provide precisely this, on all levels. Below are a few ways in which augmented reality games provide the full video game experience.
The technology that goes into an AR game means the player feels completely immersed in a realistic environment. Considering it is unlike virtual reality, which puts the player into a completely new and unfamiliar environment, AR feels more real in that it overlays artificial designs onto the user’s current setting. By incorporating elements of the player’s existing surroundings, they can feel more fully immersed in the game.
Another element that heightens the full gaming experience is the 3-D rendering of objects in AR games. Once graphics processing units (GPUs) were developed, players were able to picture the world around them more realistically in 3-D by combining their own perceptions with those elements presented by the game. In doing so, video gaming takes on an experiential attribute, rather than just serving an entertainment or utility function.
Avatars Encourage Greater Immersion
Even in traditional video games, avatars function as ways to enhance the emotionality and social features of gaming. Considering that augmented reality heightens the realism of gaming, these psychological features become exacerbated, too. Though the avatar doesn’t necessarily have to be true-life of the player, the fact that in AR games it would appear as a more realistic rendering would allow players to connect more easily with it. Doing so also enhances the overall entertainment and satisfaction derived from the AR game.
The beauty of an AR game incorporating elements of the person’s natural surroundings is that fewer prompts and guidance are necessary to appear on-screen. The greater challenge this presents to players encourages greater engagement and problem-solving. Players already spend inordinate amounts of time trying to solve challenges in traditional video games. Imagine their perseverance, then, with the situations presented in AR games.
Cognitive skill building is one of the advantages built into augmented reality video games. In the realm of first-person shooters, for example, AR players experience improvements around hand-eye coordination, reflex speed, and spatial awareness.
These games also serve a stress-relieving function. Not only do video games boost player’s moods and increase positive thinking, but also they’ve been successfully used to treat traumatic brain injuries and stress disorders. With AR games’ heightened realism, these benefits are only magnified.
The immersive gameplay offered through AR games is starting to transform the entire practice. Through more realistic features, greater interactivity, and overall better technical features, AR video games are steadily proving themselves to be the future of gaming.
Scully Creative Labs offers strategic consulting, rapid prototyping and full project lifecycle management services to companies looking to incorporate augmented reality development and marketing to improve their core business functions.