IllumiRoom Game Project From Microsoft

Microsoft presented IllumiRoom Project at CES, special technology designed for gamers. It utilizes TV, projector and Kinect to create an extended view, while you are playing.

System first scans your room to make note of the furniture and its location. This is needed to distort the picture properly according to room’s geometry and objects’ shapes.

Microsoft Illumiroom Shooter

The result is an augmented reality processed onto your surroundings, while you play favourite shooter or Super Mario 🙂 Field of view is expanded and an added feeling of motion is induced.

Peripheral vision will help you to battle enemies, for sure. Of course, you are still focused on TV, but your sight angle is pretty much the same you have in real life. This is a good example of game world moving forward, without using virtual reality helmets.

Also, technology should be good for different educational presentations for children – planetarium or sea views. Main action is on the screen and flying stars around make it much more real.

Video is said to be “live” without any special effects. Some parts of it reminded me of that cool light shows on buildings, when windows are “crushed”, walls are “falling” down etc.

Now, main question is whether this technology is able to utilize existing projectors? I doubt so, really. Remember, it scans your room? So, there should be a transducer to receive back and use all this data. I believe, Microsoft will have a special device for IllumiRoom, but will it be affordable for an ordinary gamer?

More details should be available at the CHI 2013 event held in Paris on 27th April. Probably, IllumiRoom will be integrated with the future updates of Xbox 360? (maybe 720 model?). Hope it does not stay as a concept for the next 5 years.