Street Fighter II in AR is literally played on the streets
The World Warrior invades the real world in this unofficial ARKit version of Street Fighter II.
Scott SteinEditor at Large
I started with CNET reviewing laptops in 2009. Now I explore wearable tech, VR/AR, tablets, gaming and future/emerging trends in our changing world. Other obsessions include magic, immersive theater, puzzles, board games, cooking, improv and the New York Jets. My background includes an MFA in theater which I apply to thinking about immersive experiences of the future.
ExpertiseVR and AR, gaming, metaverse technologies, wearable tech, tabletsCredentials
Nearly 20 years writing about tech, and over a decade reviewing wearable tech, VR, and AR products and apps
Last year, I played Super Mario in AR on a Hololens. The maker of that game, Abhishek Singh, told me he would be focusing on mobile games and ARKit in the future. Now he has another AR gaming idea he's brewed up: Street Fighter II in AR, using ARKit on an iPhone, so you can literally fight in the street. And it looks... awesome. And, it's multiplayer.
Apple's growing selection of ARKit games has lots of options. There's no actual Street Fighter game, though, and there aren't that many arcade fighting games at all.
Singh's YouTube video shows him playing the game in city streets, on tables and in parking lots. And yes, there's even a car-demolishing bonus round. You can't download it, and it isn't an official app -- but maybe it should be.
According to Singh in an email to CNET, he made the game as a tribute to his childhood. "I loved playing this game on an actual arcade as a kid with my sister and wanted to experiment with multiplayer shared AR experiences, and this kinda just popped in my head. Also realized the linear motion would work well in this kind of shared experience and I also thought it would look cool."
He said it's an actual working multiplayer game, something AR hasn't seen much of. Singh explains: "One player sets up the stage by pointing their phone at any flat surface (streets, tables, etc.), the stage automatically adjusts for smaller surfaces and then the second person points their own phone at the same surface and joins in. They both just need to have the app on their devices. Each selects their fighter and then begins the matchup. It's kind of like a real-life Mexican standoff except you have your virtual gladiators fighting in this ring between you. So it really is a live multiplayer AR experience, fully functional and playable."
It's not the first time an AR fighting game has been attempted, though:
As this year's annual Game Developers Conference approaches and more conversations turn to AR, developers are bound to continue imagining more augmented features to throw into mobile games. Even more so, now that Google has launched ARCore. Capcom might as well just enact this mode in all its future titles: Actual streets as backgrounds are a lot more entertaining than digital ones.
Sadly, it's not officially licensed ("I wish," Singh says). But hopefully, someday, it will be... because I'd love to download it.