I know I can’t be the only person that loves playing tabletop games but hates the setup, cleanup, and organizational headache they often cause. I’ve loved playing Dungeons & Dragons for years, but it’s a hassle lugging my literal treasure chest full of gear and supplies around. Playing online is great, but it lacks the physicality of playing in person. With the power of AR, a lot of that could start to change soon.
The Machines is an upcoming concept from Directive Games that was made using Apple’s ARKit and Unreal Engine 4. In the video below you can see a table transform into a war-torn battlefield with units spawning at opposite ends of the map. It’s nowhere near as complex of a game as something like D&D or Warhammer 40K, but it represents a big step forward for tabletop gaming all the same.
It reminds us of HoloGrid: Monster Battle, a decent tactics game that uses rudimentary AR mechanics from existing smartphones and tablet devices. We even saw a prototype of HoloGrid running on a Microsoft HoloLens that works similarly to what we’re seeing with The Machines here — in fact, they just recently launched it on HoloLens as well.
Mechanically The Machine appears to be a relatively simple game. You spawn units, they run forward and attack enemy units, until one side destroys the other’s base. Each unit also appears to have a special ability that can be activated when it’s not cooling down. We don’t know if there are other game modes or not, but Directive Games did tell us that player-vs-player combat (PvP) will be supported.
What do you think of The Machines? You can find out more on the official website here. Let us know your thoughts down in the comments below!