Swedish developer 13th Lab has created an iPhone game platform that uses a player's surroundings as the backdrop for fully immersive first-person shooters, even turning fellow combatants into in-game soldiers or enemies.
Rescape is made up of an hardware game controller and Reality Gaming software engine that maps the real-world in 3D and in real time. It sees objects, furniture and other human beings through the iPhone's camera - enhanced with a fish eye lens - and can then allow developed FPS games to replace some of them with gaming equivalents.
To illustrate the controller and system's potential, 13th Lab has created an Office Defender game, which turns the real world into a virtual Call of Duty, but the company is offering the SDK for free to other developers to build FPS experiences around.
To play Office Defender and other similar games in the future, you watch the screen rather than the world around you. But because of the augmented reality elements, you can see where you're going and can even travel up and down stairs.
We've seen similar gun mount accessories for the iPhone before, that work with dedicated AR games, but the Rescape controller is more advanced. It could also feature a 4-way directional pad to aid conversion of existing FPS games.
The system also features multiplayer support over a network, so you could technically spruce up your office parties with a spot of capture the flag or the like.
Rescape has just started a funding round on Kickstarter and will be demonstrated at the Games Developers Conference in San Francisco. It has so far been backed to the tune of $3,241 (of its $150,000 goal) but there is plenty of time left.
Find out more about the campaign or back it yourself at kickstarter.com.
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