With its adorable, foul-mouthed protagonist, the living room-sized video game in Her comprises one of the film's most memorable moments. For those of us who wanted to play it IRL, it's time to start stocking up on instant noodles: Microsoft basically just invented it, sans-rude alien boy.
RoomAlive is an augmented reality gaming system uses an array of Kinect-enabled projectors (procams) to blanket a room's walls in interactive pixels. These pixels, taking the form of bugs, monsters, or army men, respond equally to physical foot-to-wall interaction and controller input alike, seamlessly integrating physical and virtual gaming worlds.
The possibilites for this kind of gaming seem endless, but the creators suggest a few main RoomAlive gaming modes: Time Crisis-like shooters, ambient interactive environments, and traditional controller-based games that allow avatars to scale walls and floors to battle digital foes. While RoomAlive demo games are still just prototypes, there's never been a better reason to study minimalist decor—more room for gaming.
We can't wait to see what happens when deep, thoughtful games like No Man's Sky are adapted for wholly immersive environments. Goodbye real world, hello feng shui 2.0.
Check out the video and GIFs below to learn more about RoomAlive's auto-calibrating, self-localizing projector system:
Visit Microsoft's research page for more of their innovations in interactive entertainment.