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Mar 7, 2019,  by Allianz Partners Business Insights

Augmented reality: the new LEGO sets come to life to stage a virtual ghost hunt

The legendary Danish building toy is set to take on a new dimension with the integration of augmented reality. LEGO have unveiled a brand new collection called “Hidden Side”, which includes eight transformable building sets that are haunted by ghosts which are visible on a mobile application. To win the game, the young players must embark on a ghost hunt that combines building with virtual reality.

“Hidden Side” is the name given to the new LEGO collection, announced by the firm on 14th February. The group presented eight new “haunted” building sets, which can be transformed using augmented reality, reports the website Usine Digitale. Each of these building sets – which include a school, a bus and even a cemetery – has two versions: a normal daylight version and a haunted version, visible using the app.

Hunt ghosts with your smartphone

In the haunted versions, children can see the ghosts on a smartphone, thanks to augmented reality. The aim of the game is to capture the ghosts to restore normality to the different scenes.

Several short scenarios, written by LEGO, accompany each set, with two main characters, Jack and Parker, on hand to help the children to solve mysteries in the town of Newbury. The young players visualise their constructions through their smartphone and touch the haunted spots in order to get the ghosts to appear, then the aim is to catch them.  

Combining physical and virtual play

LEGO are delighted to unveil this innovative game, which combines physical and virtual play, as it moves away from the brand’s traditional building sets. “We’re breaking the mould of gaming-first AR play experiences to create a new type of play where the physical world actually influences the AR layer,” announced Tom Donaldson, vice-president of LEGO’s Creative Play Lab. The players get to play in the real world (by building the set) and in a virtual world as they follow the gameplay.

The company already has plans to develop this new application further: when the game is released in August 2019, it will boast new scenarios, new games, and even specific challenges. The application, which uses PTC’s Vuforia technology, will be available for free on Android and iOS. The price of the building sets, meanwhile, will range between 20 and 130 dollars on the American market.

Allianz Partners

Cover photo credits: Alan Chia/Wikimedia Commons

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