It’s like being in the gunner’s seat on the Millennium Falcon, without being in the Millennium Falcon.
The concept of augmented reality games – games like Ghostwire that use technology to turn the real world into a playing field – has been incredibly fascinating to me for a while now. The biggest barrier, of course, is having the technology to make this sort of thing feasible, which isn’t so much of a barrier anymore.
The game you see here is Star Wars Arcade: Falcon Gunner by Vertigore Games, a shooter for the iPhone. The game asks you to shoot down Imperial TIE Fighters a la the famous scene from Star Wars – only instead of blasting them from the turret in the Falcon, you’re doing it in a parking lot or wherever you are.
“This is a deep shooter,” Vertigore CEO Josh Shabtai explained to Wired. “You progress through a handful of episodes that are broken down into sublevels, shooting enemies and collecting upgrades,” like improved heat shielding on your cannon that means you can maintain continuous fire for longer periods of time.
Honestly, I’m not sure that really matters, because the idea of shooting down TIE Fighters in the skies above your hometown of choice is a really cool one. I imagine the illusion doesn’t hold up nearly as well if you’re playing it on your couch, though – unless you imagine that they’re miniature TIE Fighters piloted by cockroaches or something. Falcon Gunner will also include non-Star Wars settings, but why would you ever want to do that?
If this is where augmented reality titles are heading, then I’d say we’re moving down a pretty cool path. A pretty cool path where you get to shoot down TIE Fighters with your iPhone.