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"Harry Potter: Wizards Unite": The future of the AR game?

The lush pavilion in the park around the corner has never looked inviting. But threatening? He's just recently; for now he is a fortress, and whoever comes there must duel with monsters and black wizards. A young man killed in a tree's tree slowly looks up. Why are so many people standing here? Then he sees it on one of the screens – okay, they play such a mobile game. Harry Potter Wizards Unite "is the new gig of Niantic creators of" Pokémon Go "and it is This weekend also began in Germany It works similarly to Pocket Monster Collecting, which became a global phenomenon in 201

6. Just as people walked through the cities of the day, the Harry Potter game wants to attract their backup guides to another, invisible world – a world they are looking for and Protecting Magic Artifacts.

How It Works " Harry Potter: The Wizards Unite "

"The Wizards Unite" and " Pokémon Go " depends on two particular techniques. overlay a camera image of the real world with game graphics – this is Augmented Reality AR, secondly, they include location data from the GPS sensor on the smartphone, they overlap the reality with their gaming world. are, churches or even pavilions in the city park become special meeting places in the game.

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Hidden in " Pokémon Go " Nice pocket monster to gathering in the world, this time it is "heatable things" that are protected by so-called "find keepers". Mobile phone owners must track artifacts and snatch the guards with rods. In practice, they use the telephone camera to search for the AR artifact and draw gestures on the screen to enchant opponents or collect objects. This is a corner more complicated than the " Pokémon " controls were limited to simple writing and gesture commands.

Are the AR effects just a gimmick without benefit?

Related to Real Map, such games make special. Your own neighborhood suddenly appears in a new light. The AR function on the other hand is still underdeveloped. Inserting computer graphics into the real world is usually a good gimmick without any real advantage. Long-time Pokémon fans like Jan Ochoa editor of the popular game site Giant Bomb, complain that the AR effects are only "cool in the first five minutes". Then turn off and play without stopping.

Similarly, it may be Harry Potter . If Gnome lurks in the city park, it looks fun. Technically, it is also well implemented. But the effect wears off quickly. If players want to move on, they have other priorities: The game must work quickly and reliably, without the cell phone battery being emptied too fast. Although the GPS sensor will still be needed to detect artifacts, the spell duels work just as well without AR.

Crazy hats and funny glasses

Not that AR would be useless. If it goes well, it can surprise spectators. It raises curiosity. But she's often a magic trick, and for the tenth time it's no longer impressive when the illusionist pulls a rabbit out of his hat. For Augmented Reality to be more than a gimmick, it takes more than robust technology – it needs new ideas.

One of the most popular applications for AR today is apps like Snapchat and Instagram . The youthful users can change faces in the camera view live, can infect their friends beards, turn them into pandas or makeup basically. Even the young wizard in "Wizards Unite" can put on hats and funny glasses. The function is good, but in constant danger of tearing off. It lives on that there is always something new to try. Of course there are also paid costumes for the "Free-to-Play" title.

Conclusion: " Harry Potter Wizards Unite" is entertaining from the beginning, in every respect better than the superficial Pokémon Collective. But what a deep game should look like, where AR is more than just a gimmick, will not be answered here.

By Jan Bojaryn / RND

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