Updated: 27th April 2018

‘Pokmon Go’ on Microsoft HoloLens looks freakin’ incredible

How “Pokmon Go” could look on Microsoft HoloLens.
Image: CapitOla VR

If you’ve played Pokmon Go at all (and at this point, who hasn’t?), you know that one of its most compelling features is its use of augmented reality (AR). That is, when you try to snatch one of those pesky little Pokmon with a Pok Ball, the creature appears superimposed over the real world, captured in real time by your phone’s camera.

It’s pretty cool (and fun!) to see Pokmon running around your neighborhood, the office or even on your daily commute. However, you quickly see the limits of AR tech on smartphones: The virtual characters don’t actually interact with real-life objects, your interactions with them are very limited, and you have to ugh actually hold your phone.

To solve all those problems, you’d need advanced AR hardware a wearable headset that frees up your hands and is loaded with sensors so the virtual Pokmon can actually interact with you and the world in more sophisticated ways. Luckily, such hardware exists in the form of Microsoft HoloLens. Even more luckily, someone has actually done the work to export the Pokmon Go experience to Microsoft’s mixed-reality platform.

David Robustelli, the head of digital for Capitola VR, posted this Twitter video showing how Pokmon Go could work on HoloLens. Using one of the device’s built in gestures, the “pinch,” the wearer can throw a Pok Ball at whatever virtual critters are wandering nearby. Even cooler, the balls return to the user once the Pokmon is caught.

Best of all, though, the Pokmon stay firmly positioned in the real world and can even interact with objects. In the video, a Charmander sits on a tabletop, and when the Pok Ball envelops the little guy, it bounces on the table, too.

The experience could use just a little more polish and interactivity with people and other objects, but this is an excellent first stab at taking Pokmon Go‘s augmented reality to the next level. If Pokmon Go developer Niantic Labs isn’t already talking to these guys, it should be.

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