During Apple’s iPhone 8 event last week, we are introduced to an AR competitive multiplayer title – The Machines. The game was a part of Apple’s augmented reality platform – ARKit who allows developers and designers to publish their AR-based apps for iPhone to try them out.
In the game demo, we could see The Machines turning real-life surfaces into battlefields, where players are able to point-and-shoot just using their iPhones. As the player moves around, the scene showing on the iPhone get closer and if the player leans into the battle, the volume increases. Navigating a battle looks natural and effortless. The game is a MOBA-like game, so your aim will be battling out your opponents and thus destroying their bases. You can also play the game locally with your friends over a shared table or through the internet.
AR technology is not new to us as we got it on Nintendo 3DS and the popular Pokemon GO. AR element adds fun to the game but in fact, it is not applicable as it seems to be. For example, most of us get excited when Pokemon GO came out with AR technology but the longer time we play it, we would rather turn AR off to catch Pokemon easier (you will need to stick your camera at an angle to catch the Pokemon when AR is on).
Apple obviously improved the technology, enabling you to view the game at any angle you want and giving a more immersive experience. However there is still some downside: You will need to hold your phone up straight whenever you are in the game, you will also need an absolutely flat and clean surface to project your game on it. The battery life will be a big problem too as you will need to activate the camera all the time (especially for iPhones).
Well, AR game is still at its primary stage so there is still a lot of space to improve. The Machines will probably go live together with iOS 11’s ARKit in the coming few days, so maybe we should give it a try and leave our opinion later!