Augmented Reality (AR), Breaking, Comic-Con, Entertainment, Gaming, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Star Wars Chess is Becoming a (Virtual) Reality

One of ways how the new technologies will enable future realities is through entertainment. After all, Six Flags is putting VR experiences on its roller coaster rides. Now, what if experiences from the past come to life? Especially if we are talking about movie effects. One such movie effect is coming to life thanks to Phil Tippet, movie magician that worked on dozens of AAA movie titles, including legendary Star Wars.

The “Let the Wookie Win” scene from Star Wars IV: A New Hope with holographic chess long belonged to the Hollywood prop magic. In the scene, Luke Skywalker is getting acquainted with the light saber, while Chewbacca and R2-D2 are playing ‘battle chess’ with monsters. In a conversation with Han Solo and C-3PO, R2-D2 is advised to loose the game. Here’s a fair use clip from YouTube:

Phil Tippet was in charge of creating this movie prop, which included physically overlaying two 35 millimeter films into one – one with the prop footage, another with the actual main footage. For the better part of the last four decades, the prop was looking older and older until the launch of VR and AR headsets from the likes of HTC, Oculus, Vuzix, Magic Leap and many others. Phil’s own company Tippet Studios teamed up with Happy Giant to launch HoloGrid: Monster Battle. Phil is not the only legend working on the project, as Mike Levine and Bob Driscoll are key member of the project.

Just like Phil, Mike Levine is an industry legend from the golden era of LucasFilm and LucasArts, working on titles such as Sam & Max, Full Throttle, Monkey Island 2 & 3, Star Wars: Jedi Knight 1 & 2 and many others. Personally, the best Mike Levine title I ever played was his team up with Steven Spielberg, The Dig. If you are in game development or story telling, watching The Dig walkthrough is something special:

Coming back1 in to the 21st century, where almost everything is possible, you can see the trailer for HoloGrid: Monster Battle below:

We hope the game will arrive in time for 2016-2017 San Diego Comic-Con, as this could become one of mayor Mixed Reality titles. HoloGrid: Monster Battle is currently on Kickstarter, having collected just one quarter of the funds required to bring this title to life. With or without Kickstarter, we would love to see this coming to market.