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lmbarns

AR games

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I'm trying to come up with some simple games using augmented reality. I think long games would be annoying holding a screen in front of you to play, so I was thinking about mini games. A simplified tower defense where you set out your pieces and watch how it unfolds could be neat.

 

Last weekend I got the basic mechanics working for recognizing cards, and this week wrote some game logic to attack each other if the cards are near enough, and a monster spawner to create mobs at an interval to pop out bad guys.  

 

So a tower defense with physical card pieces, say 10-15 that you can place in an orientation, maybe on a printable game board so you can lay your cards out according to tiles. Then start the app on a tablet with a camera and watch it all come to life?

 

I got some basic functions for virtual buttons, if you occlude part of the card with your finger that's mapped off as a button it can trigger a function. 

 

For development I was just using my webcam, then making builds and testing on my gf's phone when it's available. Seems to run great:

 

This is from last Saturday when I had the basic mechanics to recognize multiple cards and 2 virtual buttons that toggle skeletons on/off also I don't have a printer so I just pulled the textures/targets up on the monitor and point the camera at it, but it works on the phone with rotation just fine.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=nol8SmRppf0&list=UUuPUwB98LX-ir9PKx1aN6Mw

Edited by lmbarns

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That's a concept that--if it were to achieve its potential, with detailed 3d-scanners and the like--would be a huge success.

 

Unless I'm misunderstanding you or something. I'll see if I can draw it out... is this pretty much what you're describing?

 

 

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I would make the camera able to detect some kind of patterns which can be put on top of boxes or simply laid out on the ground. Then I would have the players mount a camera somewhere high up, so that it can capture the positions and rotations of the boxes. This data would be sent to a game server who would manage a game. In this game you have these 3D creatures standing on top of the boxes, as buildings, cowboys, snakes or fire/effects. The players can view the game-board-pieces through their phones, who are being synched to the game-server. It could probably be fun as a "high-tech" version of Chess played over Skype or some other chat software where you have video conferences.

 

Another much simpler version is perhaps a game based on what IKEA did with their catalog. Make a card game/board game that comes to life when you view it through a phone. If you play Creature A and Creature B ( put their cards on the table) you can detect the cards with a phone and actually view the creatures take on each other through some animation in the phone, rendered on top of the desk. This is more feasible in the sense that there are a lot of produced card games out there on the market and in peoples homes, so there could be a demand from the manufacturers to add value to their existing product.

 

A third thing which would be cool as a game is to have phones collect 3D data from a landscape (outdoors) and then through some software trick turn the whole thing into a fully-fledged battlefield, which can be viewed and documented through a phone or tablet.

 

nB6md.jpg

Edited by mipmap

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Yeah that's how it works guys. I can use an image or drawing or 3d object like a soda can as a target. When you open the app and point the camera at a target it recognizes, it can spawn whatever you want within the game engine that can have whatever game logic you want.

 

At work I made cards as targets with 3d animated fbx characters for each card. If you move the cards close enough to each other, they play animations and do damage until one dies.  I also made intro and exits so if the camera loses the target a particle effect starts and the character disappears. When the camera recognizes the card an intro particle effect plays and the character appears, playing an idle animation.

 

You can rotate the cards, pick them up and as long as part of the target is still showing it's pretty good at following it.

 

Similarly I was thinking of making kids puzzles where once you put it together, you can view it as a 3d scene with animated animals and stuff.

 

For tower defense you could position your pieces on a game board or on a table top, and point your cam at it to watch it play out. Tablets are better with big screens than phones but it runs smoothly on both.

 

I made a mob spawner than drops models at an interval and they can walk toward a waypoint and you could put your character cards in it's path to make them fight. And if any of the enemies make it to their waypoint it counts against you.

 

But you can apply any game logic you'd use in a game engine. The camera feed is simply the input. Once a target is recognized you can spawn 1 or many models with or without animations, with or without AI...

 

This was last weekend when I first got it working, but each target spawns different set of models. In this vid only 1 target at a time but now it can track dozens at the same time:

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@mipmap yeah at work they were showing me the ikea catalog and we're doing something similar with a different catalog to show as a demo to prospective buyers. You can spin the cards around to view the models from 360 degrees. And you can even add virtual buttons where when map off a region of the target and when it's occluded from the camera stream you can trigger a function in the game engine...

 

My whole job right now is to make demos to pitch to some big brands. I work at a post-production studio with a half dozen artists and me as the programmer. They hired me to make stuff more interactive, some is just simply javascript and html but the larger projects are conceptualizing AR applications. I'm making stuff that goes on a sedna for digital billboards in big cities.

 

Edit:: One idea I was thinking was to go take pictures of landmarks in the city from common positions and use them as targets which you could spawn stuff around. I also made a screenshot script that will snap a shot of the virtual stuff over the real life scene. So I could make targets of statues and when you load the app and point the cam at the statue you can add ears, mustaches, noses, hats, etc and people can pose in front of it and it will all be in the image in their phone's gallery.

Edited by lmbarns

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That's a concept that--if it were to achieve its potential, with detailed 3d-scanners and the like--would be a huge success.

 

Unless I'm misunderstanding you or something. I'll see if I can draw it out... is this pretty much what you're describing?

That's how it works....

 

There was a tech demo last week at the University of WA computer engineering and they had a demo where they took a kinect sensor and waved it in front of the people standing there and it created 3d models of them, then he pressed a button and it textured them............................no shit.

 

 

Here' I used a logo from a website as a target but it was not a great target(not a lot of unique features) and it just spawns some rocks, trees and an animated skeleton over it:

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Edited by lmbarns

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Those demonstration videos are impressive.

 

For my money, the best possible application of this technology would be to take a 3D-scan of whatever's on your desk and turn it into a 3d platforming level. I've wanted to make Super Mario 64 courses out of stacked VHS tapes since I was like eight.

 

Where and when will this technology you're developing be available for others to download (that is, if you're going to do that)?

Edited by Davoo

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