Your chance to go pro in energy dodgeball has finally arrived.
Like many of you, I too have long dreamt of teaming up with friends to throw glowing balls of plasma at my enemies in a heated match of augmented reality dodgeball. After all, if 90’s movies have taught us anything it’s that the future of sports is basically replacing balls with lasers.
Now it appears that future has finally arrived as the HADO WORLD CUP AR eSports tournament is finally making its way stateside. The AR team sports uses a headset running an iPhone 6s, a motion sensor secured to the wrist, as well as several AR trackers. This lets players run, jump, and weave their way throughout the designated battlefield, generating points by physically tossing “energy balls” at opposing players.
The team that scores the most during the allotted time while simultaneously dodging incoming fire via holographic power shields wins. Users can play by themselves, but the experience truly shines when you team up with 1-2 buddies and duke it out in a PvP team battle. Starting to get some goosebumps now, aren’t you?
“In a VR world, you basically put on the head-mounted display and you kill zombies,” stated Jasper Tan, founder of HADO Singapore. “But you are restricted by not having the ability to move even three steps away from where your position is, or where your original position is. You can’t move around, you’re probably tied down by cables in that environment or you are seated in a chair, in a roller coaster simulation, or whatsoever.”
The HADO eSports tournament first launched in 2016 exclusively in Japanese theme parks and malls, but has since managed to expand into countries including Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam. 2017 saw its second official international tournament as 12 teams from three different countries gathered together to duke it out.
Now us Westerners finally have the chance to represent as the Blade Runner-style sport rolls into U.S. entertainment centers later this year.
Not a big fan of laser dodgeball? Still have some not-so-fond memories from a particularly brutal year of gym class? Then maybe you’ll have better luck with the companies latest multi-person VR offering, HADO KART, launching later this month. The all new location-based AR experience pits 3-8 friends against each other in a fast-paced race against time.
The experience will offer a variety of game modes upon launch with additional support planned for the future. The first mode, “Coin Collection,” tasks drivers with collecting the most coins in the provided amount of time while avoiding bombs which when struck will suck away 50% of your points. “Battle Mode” changes things up by having players pick up ammunition scattered around the map to load their weapons and shoot opposing players ghosts.
So whether you’re looking for a casual kart-based VR experience or an intense competitive AR throwdown, it appears as though HADO has your back. So keep yours eyes peeled next time you’re wandering through your local mall. I know i’ll definitely be there–throwing elbows and winning matches.