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"Ideally, AR objects should be able to blend into our reality, seamlessly moving behind and around real world objects."

Chris Kerr, News Editor

June 29, 2018

1 Min Read

Pokemon Go creator Niantic has previewed some of the experimental technology it might one day bring to its Real World Platform, the augmented reality software it uses to build apps and games. 

One of the more exciting concepts unveiled by the company is a new technique called 'occlusion,' which can be used to better integrate virtual images with real-world environments.

For instance, a new video (shown above) highlighting the work-in-progress tech shows a rather plucky Pikachu weaving through and around different real-world objects like flower pots and benches. 

While that's undeniably impressive, what's more remarkable is how the virtual pocket monster reacts to dynamic objects, with the giddy 'mon actively dodging the legs of unassuming pedestrians. 

"Recognizing objects isn’t limited to understanding what they are, but also where they are," said Niantic, explaining the importance of occlusion technology.

"One of the key limitations of AR currently is that AR objects cannot interact meaningfully in a 3D space. Ideally, AR objects should be able to blend into our reality, seamlessly moving behind and around real world objects.

"Once we understand the 'meaning' of the world around us, the possibilities of what we can layer on is limitless."

There's no word on how far along the tech is right now, and given Niantic has said its only a proof-of-concept, don't go expecting it to arrive anytime soon.

That said, it's a clear indication of where Niantic wants to take its AR platform, and given the company is one of the biggest names in augmented reality, it's well worth keeping an eye on where its headed.

You can learn more about the Real World Platform by checking out the Niantic blog.

About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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