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Role Playing (Games) Science Technology

AR Facade Moves Beyond the Lab 39

Renata writes "Researchers from Georgia Tech's GVU Center have installed AR Façade at the Grand Auto Text exhibition at the Beall Center for Art and Technology in Irvine, CA. The AR Façade installation presents an augmented reality version of desktop-based game Façade. The exhibit marks the first time this elaborate augmented reality interactive drama has been seen outside the GVU lab. The AR Façade immersive drama presents the virtual characters of Façade inside a real, physical apartment. Players play the role of an old friend invited over for drinks at a make-or-break moment in the collapsing marriage of the reactive characters, Grace and Trip. While some players attempt to pacify the characters, others break the ice with comic relief, performing for friends who can observe the unfolding drama from outside the exhibit. The uneasy social situation becomes all too real as players are able to move freely throughout a physical apartment and use gestures and speech to interact with the autonomous characters who appear graphically imposed in the space using a video-mix head-mounted AR display. The three month long exhibition will be open to public until December 15th."
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AR Facade Moves Beyond the Lab

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  • Players play the role of an old friend invited over for drinks at a make-or-break moment in the collapsing marriage of the reactive characters, Grace and Trip.
    Will a threesome be available at release or will that be in the expansion pack?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    BWAHAHAHA! It would be so fun to wach people play this in an AR!

    (Trip opens the front door.)


    Ah I'm so happy you could make it! -- (interrupted)

    Hello sexy!

    Dude, that is a weird way to say hello...
  • While some players attempt to pacify the characters, others break the ice with comic relief, performing for friends who can observe the unfolding drama from outside the exhibit.

    So how many players just start stabbing everyone in the face?
    • by deniable ( 76198 )
      or ignore them and start looting the fridge. I could just see a couple having a domestic and some players are sitting on the couch trying to find porn on the TV.
      • Why not? I've seen this sort of thing happen in real life.

        The technology isn't there yet but, if you ignore them or do something else anti-social, they should ask you to leave. If you don't go, Trip will push you out the door and lock it behind you.

        If you stab Trip in the face, Grace will scream and call the cops. If you kill her, well their you are, in a room with two dead bodies and nothing good on TV.

        I any case, the game will end and you'll either be frustrated or (hopefully) feel ill because you just

    • What is up with the sex panther???? Are they paying you?
  • I swear... if I could get one of these that could fool my girlfriend into thinking I'm "McDreamy". I'd be a VERY happy man, even if I have to put up with role playing all the drama!

    Oh wait, this is slashdot and I have a girlfriend... I guess I should just be happy with what I have!
    • Oh wait, this is slashdot and I have a girlfriend...

      You can only have one of these I'm afraid. You have a difficult choice ahead.

  • I was concerned about the novelty waning, but now I see they've go a killer-app. European lesbian sex videos overlayed on reality, oh wait, that's my other tab . . .
  • I've been through AR Façade before, and no amount of AR would ever make up for what a terrible game Façade is. They think they have some awesome academic natural language game going on, but the parser is worse than practically any text adventure...

    (Wait, you have to put a subject in these things? Why?)
    • Re:Unimpressive (Score:5, Interesting)

      by DingerX ( 847589 ) on Saturday November 10, 2007 @03:27AM (#21304963) Journal
      I think you're being unfair here. They could very well have a supersweet natural language parser going on.
      It doesn't matter.
      The job of the avant garde is to scout the terrain ahead to avoid leading the army into a dead end or a massacre.
      Facade is definitely avant-garde; I'm just up in the air about whether it's a dead end or a massacre.
      Yes, the artwork is, well, ugly. The characters are not pleasant to look at, and the walk around like John Wayne in bad need of a box of ExLax. The narrative should suck you into the story, instead it just sucks. To play Trip's role, you need to care about and like the unhappy couple. Instead, you're confronted with two bitter, ugly creatures in an ugly apartment.
      But all that is beside the point. The core problem is the concept. This is supposed to explore computer games as interactive psychological drama, as a way to communicate rich emotional tones with subtle details. You are supposed to interact with the two AI characters about their relationship. But no parser can be fine enough to the task. So the user becomes immediately aware of the irreality of the situation: yes, they are fighting; no I don't think I'm ever going to be fed. I am supposed to do something, but whatever I type in doesn't get understood; or if it does, it's not understood correctly. I mean, it might work in a sort of "Premenstrual Eliza" kinda way, but it's not a game anyone really wants to play.
    • by iMacGuy ( 199233 )
      I should say, the AR part is really good. If you don't mind wearing video goggles and having a Powerbook strapped to your back, the game overlaid onto what's actually in front of you is very well-done and quite immersive. But I don't think they'll attract any attention by using it to play Façade; setting up a really uneasy social situation is one thing, but having Trip asking you the same question ten times, or picking a completely random unrelated conversation because it didn't understand you at all,
    • by grumbel ( 592662 )
      I agree that when seen as a pure game Façade has it is problems. The text input often doesn't properly register and so most of the game runs on auto-pilot, the level of real interaction is pretty slim. However while Façade itself might not be the perfect game, it is a great demonstration of what games could be. You don't fire a single shot, no aliens involved, no puzzle, no real goal and basically almost nothing else that you would expect from a normal game. Instead you have an interactive story l
      • by Faylone ( 880739 )
        I don't know about Fahrenheit or The Last Express, but isn't HalfLife2 before you get a gun...an FPS without shooting?
  • So to those Slashdotters out there who have a girlfriend, or know what a girl is, here's your chance. Addict her to the joys of cutting-edge tech with the new take on that hoary old standby, the soap opera. Just think...one exposure to this and she'll be dragging you back to the scene of the crime again, and again, and again. You'll even be able to justify canceling that holiday in the Bahamas to buy the AR display and software.

    Then, the minute her back's turned, you can use the set-up for it's REAL p

  • PORN... of cause
  • ...they HAVE NOT completed the virtual reality porn machine.
  • LARPing is for emo fruits! Real men roll d20!
  • They didn't manage to get acceptable stability of the camera tracking. The superimposed models are wobbling on the video backgound. Usually biggest problem of wearable/mobile AR is due to insufficient CPU power of the handheld, which do tracking. Complete 3d image tracking is quite computationally expensive. But here they have big laptop strapped to back, and still get tracking quality of handheld. With powerful laptop they could get a lot of feature points extracted or have image otherwise stabilized in
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      While many of the comments are pretty amusing, I thought I'd reply to this one.

      The registration between the characters and the world is negatively affected by a variety of things including
      (a) the original facade rendering engine does not use real 3D perspective, and converting (due to the way trip and grace are procedurally rendered) would have been a huge undertaking; we spent some time on this and decided it wasn't going to be worth the effort, in the end. So they appear to float as they move away from
  • In next weeks episode Grace discovers that Trip is actually John, her long lost half brother by marriage twice removed. He lost his memory in a car accident and then Nick's evil Uncle had his faced changed by a plastic surgeon in Argentina. John is now convince that he is Trip and has forgotten that he is a world famous brain surgeon and impressionist painter. Meanwhile, Trip discovers that Grace had a baby out of wedlock when she was a teenager - 2 years ago. The baby is now a 17 year old orphan living in
  • The demo is in California. Most technical demos and convention are in California. Doesn't anybody think that Chicago residents are interested in more technical stuff than advanced cow tipping? Unlike California, Chicago has not had a major disaster in over a century (unless you count the Democratic conventions).

    Common technical exhibitors, there are three million people here starved for advanced technology conventions and a major financial center as a source of investors.
  • Confronted with a marriage in trouble, most seem to think of it as an opportunity to scam on the wife

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there." -- Will Rogers