June 22, 2011 | by Andrew Kameka
Augmented reality was supposed to be the big trend of 2010. Real-world social gaming isn’t expected to be as widely adopted, but it is supposed to be more popular. Viewdle is banking on increased attention and activity in both of those areas as it launches Third Eye.
Third Eye is a multiplayer role-playing game centered on vampires and vampire slayers, with other warrior clans incorporated as well. Using Viewdle’s facial recognition technology, Third Eye takes a picture of someone and determines which side of the war they claim, and then determines the loyalties of people nearby. This helps users build armies and form alliances that will be crucial for later parts of the game in which users begin to battle one another.
I spoke with Viewdle’s Chief Product Officer Jason Mitura and learned that Third Eye is a three-part game. The first stage of the game released today is just to build-up the base of players, and let users become familiar with it and spread the word to friends. Later stages will include battles between clans and other features that will be revealed soon. Mitura tells me that the second installment of the game will be delivered in about 8 weeks, and an iPhone version will arrive soon to expand the pool of players.
Third Eye includes various orders and storylines that will intersect when the later parts of the game are released. I’ll reserve judgment until I get a better chance to test it, but Third Eye should be an interesting test of Viewdle’s technology. The company plans to open up an SDK so we could see developers put their own take on this game or make similar games – imagine a manhunt or secret assassination game you can play with friends – or find other ways to use the live facial recognition. A yet-to-be-named company will even incorporate that feature into the camera app of a future Android phone.
Note: A 1 GHz processor is required to use this app. More information and download links available here.