October 15th, 2010
by Tony Bussert
Here’s a great write up by Dave Lashmet on Project Tuatara at the Intel Extreme Masters Event at ComiCon New York:
Written by Dave Lashmet, with pictures by Jari Honkanen
“The big event at this season’s North American stop at Intel Extreme Masters was the launch of a new concept prototype, which we dubbed “Project Tuatara.” As background, you should know that a Tuatara is a 30″ long carnivorous night hunting lizard. And there’s the reason for our naming a projector after this beast… See, “Project Tuatara” is a 30″ long non-firing replica of a rifle with a PicoP® inside, that lets you play first- or third person perspective video games in the dark.
Now, most of these first person games tend to be shooters. And at ComicCon, we launched Project Tuatara in cooperation with CapCom’s Lost Planet 2 for PC. You can see a “Lost Planet” all around, because the infinite focus and instant color creation of the PicoP Display Engine let you use a projector as a digital flashlight. Granted, this also requires a pretty beefy computer to build a photorealisitc image. That’s why we used a top-of-the-line machine from Intel, with Core i7 Extreme. Beides the projector, the game title and the PC, the secret sauce is in a tracking module that records your movement and sends this to the PC like mouse commands. The net result is PC gaming display that is backward compatible to any first- or third-person game. And because it looks like a rifle, these tend to be shooter games. This is a huge market: there’s 75 million avid players of these games, across multiple platforms, including PC’s. And one top-performing title can sell 20 million units. Capcom’s Lost Planet series is clearly a AAA title, and the graphics, story and artwork were amazing. That’s why we combined our launch with Lost Planet 2 for PC.
We will post the transcripts of the speeches at the press conference as soon as we can transcribe them. Until then, here’s some pictures and annotations…
You can see the Lost Planet 2 trailer running in the background, on the two large screens. These four PC’s are also playing the new game.
Inafune-san knows what he’s talking about. He worked his way from a graphic designer for CapCom to lead all its game design. Fortunately, Inafune-san also got to play with Project Tuatara before his speech. So his remarks were from a top expert in the world…
Mike is the Vice President for Sales, Marketing and Business Development at Microvision. He focused on “Infinite Reality Gaming,” Intel and CapCom. And “infinite reality gaming” means that your walls, floors and ceiling extend to infinity with a video game like Lost Planet 2 for PC and Project Tuatara.
Jeff leads the group at Intel that helps optimize video games to work with Intel-based PC platforms. So, he has a deep understanding of video games. Jeff thought that Project Tuatara was a new class of gaming experience, and he loved LP2. To learn more, please see his comments in our press release.
That is Microvision’s Andrew Rosen in the foreground. He joined our away team at Intel Extreme Masters as “Master at Arms.” See, Andrew designed five generations of our gaming prototypes, culminating in Project Tuatara, the wireless HD version of the concept demonstrator.
The line for Project Tuatara was constant, and it varied from 10 minutes to two hours. We had two rooms running this demo, and over 1000 people saw it. Overall, people loved it. But my favorite reaction came from two twin fourteen year olds, who called it “revolutionary.” That was pretty cool.
Intel Extreme Masters is a competition as well as an exhibition. And here’s a picture of the competitive side of the giant Intel booth. To be a professional video game player requires extensive knowledge of the game, stunning reaction time and very fast deliberation.
Last picture. We had over a dozen temporary staff members work with us for the three days of Comic Con. All of them had a great time. For my part, I can still see the giant Gordiant from Lost Planet 2 for PC in my mind’s eye. This game was visually arresting using Project Tuatara.”
Thanks for the great write up Dave!