Just Astronauts Playing HoloLens Space Invaders on the ISS

American astronaut Scott Kelly and British astronaut Tim Peake are saving us from a serious alien invasion floating high over Earth.

The two astronauts are supposed to be testing an advanced augmented reality system called Project Sidekick made in collaboration between NASA and Microsoft. The virtual aid system uses the Microsoft HoloLens AR headset and has been deployed on the International Space Station since December 2015.

Project Sidekick has two modes of operation. Remote Expert Mode utilizes Skype to provide real-time guidance from Earth and Procedure Mode displays animated virtual illustrations on top of real-world objects. But now it looks like the astronauts found where the games were stashed on the HoloLens and recorded this latest video uploaded to ESA’s YouTube channel (special laser effects were added later on Earth).


Peake said the game was “just a bit of fun”, but judging by his beaming smile while playing, it was certainly more than that.

“Scott and I were being attacked by aliens from all over the place and we fired our canons by squeezing our fingers together. We had to dodge their missiles hence a lot of ducking and weaving going on…much fun!”

After his return from nearly a year in space, NASA astronaut Scott Kelly gave Microsoft’s HoloLens headset a big thumbs-up for work on the International Space Station during a news briefing earlier this month – and for shooting down aliens in his spare time. Kelly said he played RoboRaid on the HoloLens as well, another alien invader game that is all part of “training” to defend our planet against little green men.

About the Scout

Jonathan Nafarrete

Jonathan Nafarrete is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of VRScout.

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