Ever wanted to be in a real-life horror movie? Well, now you can! Step into HorrorLens, an augmented reality escape the room experience. You are trapped in the room with a spooky ghost child and the only way out is to grab the keys to open the door. But watch out — as soon as you look away, the ghost child starts walking towards you, ready to attack!
Begin the game by looking around the room to scan the playspace. When the scan is complete, you will see keys spawn in random locations around the room. You are able to move the door onto various surfaces by using the Hololens gesture tap.
Congratulations! You’ve been hired as an interstellar nanny for little baby Hubble. Using the HoloLens you play games, feed him and give him affection. Make sure you pay attention to him, if not their might be some “explosive” reactions!
Using the distance from the HoloLens to Hubble you have to pay attention to his movements. When Hubble tilts his head, mirror to his head tilts. When Hubble throws his head back. Click the bottle to feed him and when Hubble looks sad get in close for a kiss.
Here comes the sun! Experience the powers of Sun Lennon and bright your radiance to the people of FoolVille. Use the Hololense to get close with the people, but not too close~
Given a 10 week scope, the team researched the pros and cons of using a Hololens. Given it being a device between reality and digital, the team looked at the Microsoft Store to see what made each application unique. Based off of that, the team wanted to spend their 10 weeks polishing one mechanic that cannot be done in other devices. This eventually led to creating augmented objects in the real world and using one’s head to affect the game.
There were dozens of pitches and various prototypes, but it eventually led to the idea of light. The team created a mechanic where the player has the ability to manipulate a sun’s strength. Its the idea of the farther a player is from their creation, the less powerful the sun is. When they move their heads too close, the sun’s beam starts burning what is in front of the player.
Use the distance from your head to the space to affect the environment.
I will openly admit I was incredibly worried to try the Hololens. I went into this class expecting to be doing AR on a phone, and the thought of putting a tiny screen that close to my eyes was headache-inducing. In practice, though, it didn’t cause eye strain and fit well, but I did have some issues. The image didn’t look 3D at all to me (to be fair, only the New 3DS has been able to let me see proper 3D imagery as a result of some minor vision problems) but didn’t look doubled, and the color of the images was never consistent as a result of slightly iridescent lenses. I expected worse, and was rather surprised.
as for the games I got to play, there wasn’t much in the way of variety. Most of the community games were either unbearably basic or, and more so the case for Microsoft’s games, didn’t need to be AR games. Their space shooter game could have just as easily been a first-person wave shooter on PC or VR game. Designing a game that feels built for AR has to go beyond just overlaying a transparent game on the lenses. Gestures felt unresponsive and didn’t line up with where I was gesturing well. The hardware is definitely interesting stuff, but there’s still a long way to go with its software.
The Hololens was a pretty okay experience. It is definitely not worth $3000 for what it is right now.
My expectations were extremely misled solely because of the poor field of view. The field of view almost killed my excitement for developing games on it.
The two games I played with the short time I has was RoboRaid and Young Conker. But before I delved into those games, I had the pleasure of using the menus, which were almost unusable without the clicker.
When I played RoboRaid, I was impressed at the tracking of the room. For being a projection through glasses, It actually felt like the walls were breaking. Although, I could forgive that that the corkboard in the room didn’t look as good as the wall. Technically, the tracking and the way it interprets the room was my favorite part of the Hololens, which is probably why the device is priced at such a high point.
Little Conker has a clever way of circumventing the low field of view by having a guide to lead your eyes to the action, which actually worked pretty well. The fact that I could walk around the room and see a fictional game work was pretty cool. Although, the actual game world didn’t match the environment it was in, so Conker seemed to be jumping off cliffs when there weren’t any. My guess is that the chairs in the room moved, so the tracking messed up, but that’s forgivable.
The Hololens has some impressive accuracy when tracking and mapping its game worlds, but the limited field of view is a deal breaker for me. Development wise, I’ll have to work around it or just see how far my ideas will go without it being a huge obstruction in my game.