Why World of Warcraft subscriptions are still dropping, according to its lead designer

This clever album promo is a Proteus style, low-fi adventure

Minecraft 1.8 dubbed the Bountiful Update, dated for September 2

castAR aims to bring holo-games to your living room

If castAR sounds like a forgotten fourth announcement from Valve’s week-long unveiling of Steam’s next decade, you’ll feel rightfully smug to discover that hardware engineer Jeri Ellsworth and Linux programmer Rick Johnson were part of Gabe’s hardware division until layoffs in February. When they left Valve’s Bellevue studio, the duo took a pair of prototype augmented reality glasses with them - and eight months later they’ve balanced them on the nose of Kickstarter, like novelty magic spectacles.

Augmented reality is the stuff that allows you to see Pokemon inside tables, or something. I dunno, the 3D slider on my 3DS has been off for a while. But the idea is that it goes one better than VR: projecting images onto special retroreflective surfaces that wouldn’t normally play host to games. The example Ellsworth and Johnson cite is R2-D2 and Chewbacca’s holographic chess. If that was the part of Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope that left you open-mouthed, then that far-away galaxy has just been brought far closer in a single jolt: 

If castAR’s primary application was limited to virtual board games, that alone would be worth talking about - but Ellsworth and Johnson reckon it’s just as viable for shooters and flight sims. One peripheral, the Magic Wand, allows players to position objects in space and control them with a joystick using just one hand. Another, the RFID Tracking Grid, means you can identify, track and mess about with physical objects like cards or game pieces on the tech’s retroreflective surface.

In with the deal is a fully-functional VR clip-on attachment. Yup: castAR is also a Rift competitor on the sly.

“The clip-on has been designed to be comfortable and lightweight, yet still provide the immersive atmosphere you want,” write the developers. “With this component, you will have no need for any other head mounted display.”

Oo-err - them’s fighting words. Pledge options range from a $3 “Buy Jeri coffee” option through a $189 glasses starter package (plus $80 shipping outside the US), to a $10,000 hand-built prototype.

The starter kits are expected to be with backers by September 2014 - assuming the pair meet their $400,000 goal. But I think they might, you know?

Login or Register
Alienware - Game VictoriousNvidia Shield - Titanfall
Heat Signature: surviving in space for as long as you can thumbmail

Heat Signature

Heat Signature: surviving in space for as long as you can

Why World of Warcraft subscriptions are still dropping, according to its lead designer thumnnail

Why World of Warcraft subscriptions are still dropping, according to its lead designer

This clever album promo is a Proteus style, low-fi adventure thumnnail

This clever album promo is a Proteus style, low-fi adventure

Minecraft 1.8 dubbed the Bountiful Update, dated for September 2 thumnnail

Minecraft 1.8 dubbed the Bountiful Update, dated for September 2

System Shock 2's SHODAN voice actress on board for Dota 2 announcer pack thumnnail

System Shock 2's SHODAN voice actress on board for Dota 2 announcer pack

The Crew is a playground, promises new trailer:

The Crew is a playground, promises new trailer: "If you can see it, you can drive there"

Noir Syndrome is a randomly generated murder mystery game thumbmail

Noir Syndrome

Noir Syndrome is a randomly generated murder mystery game

Riot on bringing back Featured Gameplay Modes:

Riot on bringing back Featured Gameplay Modes: "No mode is off the table"

The Walking Dead Season 2 concludes next week, so prepare your emotions thumnnail

The Walking Dead Season 2 concludes next week, so prepare your emotions

Firaxicon: Firaxis is putting on its first official convention next month thumnnail

Firaxicon: Firaxis is putting on its first official convention next month

Script Kiddies: PvP hacking with a hint of tower defence thumnnail

Script Kiddies: PvP hacking with a hint of tower defence

The Vanishing of Ethan Carter: the case opens in September thumnnail

The Vanishing of Ethan Carter: the case opens in September

Gamescom 2014: Hands-on with Alien: Isolation thumbmail

Alien: Isolation

Gamescom 2014: Hands-on with Alien: Isolation

Renowned Explorers: International Society trailer sets the scene for globetrotting and artifact theft thumnnail

Renowned Explorers: International Society trailer sets the scene for globetrotting and artifact theft

How To Train Your Drakken: Endless Legend's next playable race has been revealed thumnnail

How To Train Your Drakken: Endless Legend's next playable race has been revealed

Ancient Space: a Paradox-published RTS with a cast from Star Trek, Firefly, Battlestar Galactica thumnnail

Ancient Space: a Paradox-published RTS with a cast from Star Trek, Firefly, Battlestar Galactica

Is World of Warcraft's Robin Williams tribute a genie NPC? thumnnail

Is World of Warcraft's Robin Williams tribute a genie NPC?

Metal Gear Solid 5's online base infiltrations look absolutely hilarious thumnnail

Metal Gear Solid 5's online base infiltrations look absolutely hilarious

Some new Star Citizen stretch goals thumbmail

Star Citizen

Some new Star Citizen stretch goals

Minecraft Bukkit project lead quits, Mojang take over thumnnail

Minecraft Bukkit project lead quits, Mojang take over

Hi-Rez: Steam free-to-play games have a discovery problem thumnnail

Hi-Rez: Steam free-to-play games have a discovery problem

Watch a man and his elephant go clay human shooting in Far Cry 4 thumnnail

Watch a man and his elephant go clay human shooting in Far Cry 4

Na'Vi Dota 2 squad has

Na'Vi Dota 2 squad has "lost its leader": Puppey moves on with "no regrets"

Resident Evil: Revelations 2 box art and screenshot make a brief appearance thumnnail

Resident Evil: Revelations 2 box art and screenshot make a brief appearance