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Chat with Charles - We talk adventure in VR / AR and Pokemon GO with the creator of Broken Sword

Will the HoloLens be bigger than VR?

Summary Interview Review Screens Videos Articles Tips  
Product: Broken Sword 5 - the Serpent's Curse | Developer: Revolution Software | Genre: Adventure
For: AR   Also on: Android, iPhone, iPad, PS Vita
Broken Sword 5 - the Serpent's Curse AR, thumbnail 1
In the previous Chat with Charles, we discussed the place of adventure in the wild new world of 2016, with the synopsis being that point and click adventures are far from dead, and that adventure continues to thrive as a genre.

We then moved onto what's next for adventure - and with emergent technologies like VR and AR in the spotlight right now, the conversation naturally fell to what adventure would be like on those platforms.

And, ultimately, that also lead to plenty of chat about Pokemon GO - everyone's favourite game right now.

So read on to learn what the distinguished creator of Broken Sword feels about the future of adventure as a genre, AR and VR in general, and Pokemon GO.

Let's talk VR. Do you think adventure is going to change drastically when the genre moves to VR?

"I was blown away in the early days of VR by Lucky’s Tale. It's a pretty standard platformer, but it worked really well in VR because, while you’re still controlling a character, you can look around for hidden objects. That added enormously to the experience.

"VR works for adventures in exactly the same way. Obviously, the most common way to approach an adventure is from a first-person perspective. But the third-person perspective actually works really, really well, and is in some ways even better. There’s no sense that you feel nauseous because you’re moving around a screen, looking for clues, and controlling a character at your own pace.

"You don’t have the problem that the first-person perspective suffers from where you’re moving your head to look around a room, but have to move using a joypad. That immediately creates a disconnect which causes nausea.

"Solve that problem, and I think adventures are going to find a perfect home on VR."

Do you have any plans to work in that space yourself?

"Absolutely, yes."

Will that be with Broken Sword or a new IP?

"It’s something that we’re exploring. And all I can say is that, to date, our experiments have been really exciting and very positive in the way that an adventure can be conveyed within that environment."

What about augmented reality games? Have you had a chance to check out Pokémon Go?

"Of course. I’m on level 7, which is not very high, I know.

"The interesting thing about Pokemon GO is that it’s not actually very well-written. When you flick the Poke Balls at Pokemon, for example, there’s no indication of how high they’re going to go or the angle or anything like that. They don’t even attempt to - as the HoloLens would - anchor the Pokemon to the ground.

"It’s a lovely game though. I really like it. It’s not great in the way that it’s written and designed, But it just works.

"I have to say, I love AR and I love the HoloLens. It's absolutely awesome and I think it’s going to be amazing. It’s not something that we’re currently exploring, but it’s something that we’re very much keeping an eye on, because it’s going to be every bit as big as VR - if not bigger.

"The technologies that are emerging are extraordinary, and offer a range of opportunities. We’ve got to draw a balance between both watching what other people are doing and pioneering ourselves."

Do you think an adventure would work in AR?

"Certainly - though I don’t believe that a traditional point and click adventure would work.

But maybe something interesting and different, like you as the character exploring different environments?

"Exactly. And of course, in AR, there’s much less of that disconnect. Nausea affects so many people, and I think it's kind of overlooked by the industry in terms of how detrimental it will be to a broad audience."

Tune in next time where we've saved the best topic till last - what's next for Broken Sword itself.

Reviewer photo
Glen Fox 4 August 2016
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