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The Force Comes to AR with Star Wars: Jedi Challenges

Disney and Lenovo are developing their own smartphone-powered AR headset.

A slightly surprising amount of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) information has emerged from Disney’s D23 event taking the place this weekend. From the announcement of Marvel’s first full VR videogame, and now word that Disney and Lenovo are developing their own AR headset for a Star Wars AR experience.

The headset uses AR to place animated overlays on top of the real world, letting users wield a lightsaber as part of an experience that Disney are calling Star Wars: Jedi Challenges. There are few details on exactly how it would work, or what the gameplay entails. A very brief teaser trailer for the experience is available to view below. The video shows a woman donning the headset, which features a clear visor to display the AR images, and picking up a model lightsaber. It’s not clear at this point if the model lightsaber is part of the experience as a motion controller, or if it is acting as a prop.

Star Wars: Jedi Challenges was introduced at D23 by Mike Goslin, who also spoke of other AR apps that Disney are working on: “Disney has always used new technologies for new ways to tell stories. We’ve been working on our own version of augmented reality.”

The headset, creating in partnership with Lenovo, is a smartphone-powered device, though at present there are no details on what smartphones will support Disney’s AR functions. Disney have also confirmed that a version of HoloChess, the monster-battling board game from Star Wars: A New Hope will also be available.

VRFocus will bring you further information on Star Wars: Jedi Challenges as it becomes available.


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