Since the Kinect showed up, Augmented Reality games have been lopsided to hacking for the Kinect, so it's refreshing to see something different, like this Receipt Racer. This retro top-down racing game, created by joshua noble and undef (Martin Fuchs and Philip Whitfield), combines digital input with an analog environment.
The Receipt Racer was shown off at the 'Let's feed the future' Workshop of the OFFF festival in Barcelona, Spain earlier this month. The racetrack in the game is randomly generated by a laptop running an openframeworks application and printed by a receipt printer. The paper roll darkens when heated so there's hardly any lag when it creates the track and obstacles.
The system uses a projector to display the start signal, score counter, and a single dot representing the car. The player controls the car using a rigged up DualShock3 PS3 controller. The track moves as its printed and the driver swerves left of right to stay in the track and avoid the obstacles until the roll runs out after 50 meters or their untimely crash (the prominent BOOM! in red is a nice touch).
In the dark, pre-Kinect days, most AR games where just like Receipt Racer: a combination of light projection on a relatively neutral surface and motion tracking. Be sure to check out Receipt racer in action with Design Boom's video.
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