Gaming technology is drastically evolving! Although the concept of Virtual Reality was already introduced in the early 50s, it was the release of the Oculus Rift in 2012 that changed everything. It successfully provides an entirely new gaming experience to everyone by taking us all in an immersive realistic simulation of an alternate world. After the success of Oculus Rift which was eventually acquired by Facebook (now known as Meta), several gaming companies also launched their respective VR devices that would work well with their consoles. While VR Gaming is a massive hit, Augmented Reality is an absolute game-changer.
Unlike Virtual Reality Games, Augmented Reality games do not require headsets or any form of extra devices other than your mobile device. An AR game mixes both reality and computer-generated virtual elements by superimposing images or animations on top of a video or a camera viewer. Almost all AR games are designed exclusively for mobile devices which gives this technology a great advantage to attract a wider audience. The success of Pokemon Go in 2016 put AR Gaming into the mainstream. As a result of its increasing popularity, many game studios are starting to embrace the concept and develop their own AR game to the market.
However, just because a game is equipped with this innovative technology doesn’t guarantee instant success. AR gaming is still relatively new to mobile gaming so these games could either be a hit or a miss depending on the concept and visuals they try to deliver. Today, we’re listing down five of the best Augmented Reality apps that you should definitely try! Since Pokemon Go is already a well-established AR game, we are excluding it from this list.
Five Nights at Freddy’s: Special Delivery
Five Nights at Freddy’s is one of those indie games that surprisingly became a massive hit. A huge part of its success is from the playthroughs from some of the famous YouTube streamers like PewDiePie and Markiplier. The concept of this horror survival game is simple, watch over a pizza restaurant at night and survive the terror brought by some creepy animatronic mascots. The success of the game eventually expanded to numerous sequels, spin-offs, graphic novels, and even a potential movie adaptation. Almost all the major Five Nights at Freddy’s titles are also available as paid app games on both Android and iOS devices through Clickteam.
One of the recent additions in the franchise is the Five Nights at Freddy’s: Special Delivery developed and published by Illumix. Unlike the major titles, Special Delivery utilized augmented reality technology which effectively adds realistic and terrifying experiences at the same time. The game is presented in a first-person perspective where you as the player is only equipped with a flashlight and a controlled shocker. Using your phone’s camera viewer, you can freely navigate around your house and detect static signals to locate where the animatronics are. With such well-polished gameplay, a unique combat system, and a compelling mystery plot, Five Nights at Freddy’s: Special Delivery is definitely an AR app game that you should not miss!
Similar to Five Nights at Freddy’s, Pikmin is also a successful game franchise. Knowing that this game is created by Shigeru Miyamoto, the same guy behind the iconic video games like The Legend of Zelda, Donkey Kong, and Super Mario, the success of Pikmin is already written even before the game is launched. This puzzle game is generally simple yet surprisingly tricky and often mind-boggling. The goal is to explore a new planet and to take control of a horde of plant-like creatures known as Pikmin to overcome obstacles, defeat enemies, and solve puzzles along the way. The success of the first Pikmin game in 2001 eventually expanded to three more sequels (and an upcoming fourth installment), a spin-off, and the recently added AR app game – Pikmin Bloom.
What really makes Pikmin Bloom more interesting is that the game is developed by Niantic, the same studio behind Pokemon Go. The game works the same way with Pokemon Go where players are encouraged to wander outside in an attempt to find seeds that allows them to grow their own Pikmin! You can also find items to feed the creatures so they can grow flowers, which in turn can be used to plant more flowers on the map. It also features multiplayer systems that allow you to interact with other active players. To top it all off, you can also use your phone’s camera to take real photographs with the adorable virtual Pikmin. If you enjoy playing Pokemon Go, you will surely love this free-to-play AR app game!
Whether you are a fan of the Knightfall tv series or not, the AR game by A&E Networks (the broadcasting company behind the History channel) is certainly something you must try. It is a free-to-play app and is the only mobile game offered by the network in their app store. Although the game is obviously created just to promote the series, the concept of Knightfall AR is surprisingly unique compared to other Augmented reality app games in the market. In this game, you do not have to wander and explore places but you can pick any area in your house or even outdoors where you want the AR battlefield map to be placed.
Knightfall is generally a tower defense app game that is presented in an augmented reality environment. The goal is to protect your kingdom from all the upcoming invaders by firing them with arrows and fireballs. Aside from its Single Player mode, the highlight of this app game is the multiplayer campaign that turns the AR battlefield into an action-packed PvP arena where both players will virtually compete against each other. There is also a Photo Mode where you can take real photographs with the virtual characters that you unlocked from the game.
The Witcher: Monster Slayer
From another well-acclaimed game series, The Witcher: Monster Slayer is CD Projekt Red’s take on augmented reality. While the game is extremely far from its original gameplay, Monster Slayer still provides the same level of experience and excitement. This game will bring some of the familiar monsters and maps that are presented in console-grade visuals. The goal is to become a professional monster slayer. To do so, you have to navigate and explore the world around you and fight all the monsters you encounter along the way.
Interestingly, the world map is based on your actual location supported by Google Maps. You need to move around the real world to move your character in the game world. What makes this game even more engaging is that your journey is affected by the time of the day as well as the current weather condition that could either help or harm you (virtually) in the process. It also features a Quest system that gives you some RPG elements similar to the original Witcher game. The game also features a crafting system, skill tree, and an impressive weaponry system too.
The Walking Dead: Our World
The actual TV series is probably coming to an end but that doesn’t stop us from having our well-deserved walker-killing spree moment! There is a great number of The Walking Dead-inspired app games on the market today but The Walking Dead: Our World will give you a unique AR experience. Developed and published by Next Games (the same team behind The Walking Dead No Man’s Land), The Walking Dead: Our World is a location-based augmented reality app game. It literally transforms your actual location into a post-apocalyptic world. What’s great about this game is that you have the option to either explore the area around you or take advantage of its newly added free roam feature.
In observance of the global pandemic, Next Games (which was recently acquired by Netflix) decided to add a free-roaming feature that allows the player to travel around the map without actually traveling or moving around. In addition to that, The Walking Dead fans will enjoy exploring areas along with their favorite TWD characters. There are also Multiplayer campaigns that allow you to team up with other players to complete missions or to fight against another team of real-time online players. Building shelters and rescuing survivors are also part of its core gameplay. If you are up for some action-filled horror survival, this AR app game is a perfect fit for you.
What do you think about these Augmented Reality App Games?
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