Developer Directive Games showed its upcoming title The Machines, a competitive local and online multiplayer game which uses augmented reality to project a realtime 3D battlefield onto a surface when viewed through the phone’s screen.
While AR technology isn’t new – Pokemon GO being the most famous example – Apple’s hardware is taking it to the next level, with The Machines displaying an impressive level of visual fidelity and immersion, showcasing 4K quality textures according to Directive Games’ CEO Atli Mar.
Mar explained how new software played a role: “What’s really cool is, with ARKit and Metal 2 on the new iPhone, we are able to experience games in an entirely new way.
“Since players are able to view the game from any angle, our content has to be incredibly detailed.”
During the reveal, a member of the team pans and zooms on an entire real time strategy-style map with the new iPhone 8 , seeing the whole level from above before seamlessly closing in to control the robots under his command.
In a neat touch, the game features ‘spatial audio’ meaning the closer you get to the action, the louder the sound effects get. The noise of battle even becomes muffled should it be ‘obscured’ by objects such as mountains or buildings.
But there’s been little news on HoloLens in the mean time, and with Apple delivering highly interactive augmented reality experiences on just a smartphone , it looks like Microsoft is being left behind in the AR department.