Video: Intel Project Alloy Shows Multiplayer Gaming in Mixed Reality Demo

headset shipping in Q4 of 2017


Project Alloy, Intel’s VR headset with mixed reality (MR) capabilities revealed at Intel Developer Forum last August, got a little extra stage time this CES, as Intel showed off some more of the headset’s gaming chops.

The video shows two users playing a multiplayer wave-based shooter from the comfort of a living room. Since it’s a tetherless mobile VR experience, the entire play space is made available for the users, and even re-skins common household fixtures like furniture as game elements. It’s unsure if what we saw on stage was a true live demo, or an orchestrated tech demo of what ‘could be’.

Intel, dubbing Project Alloy a “merged reality” experience, says that thanks to RealSense, the headset will be capable of both positional room-scale tracking and hand-detection. The company also stated at IDF that the headset is capable of “collision detection and avoidance,” enabling users to traverse large volumes of space without running into walls and other objects.

image courtesy CNET
image courtesy CNET

Hardware specifics are still thin, but PCWorld reports the prototype headset has a pair of RealSense depth cameras positioned basically on either side of the user’s nose, along with two RGB cameras at roughly the user’s eye line, and a pair of fisheye cameras at the edge of the visor. Those sensors can be used to render the wearer’s surroundings in virtual reality.

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich announced at CES that Project Alloy will start shipping in Q4 of 2017.

We have feet on the ground at CES in Las Vegas. We’ll be swinging by the Intel booth for a look at Project Alloy and reporting all things AR/VR (and MR) in the coming days.

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  • Bryan Ischo

    Can’t wait to see if their inside-out tracking is really that good.

    • Get Schwifty!

      Myself as well. Oculus bet their initial strategy on camera-based tracking, partly because of a desire to incorporate the surroundings, the user, etc. If camera tracking from inside out including controllers is this good, it backs up their approach. What I find interesting is outside of HTC Vive, I can’t think of another vendor using a Lighthouse-style tracking system, they are all camera based…. its either gross herd mentality, or HTC decided to go for a sure-thing currently with Lighthouse over camera-based…

    • DiGiCT Ltd

      It still comes with issues as they all have with camera based tracking.
      You can see they use a demo room where the ceiling is a light and the very colorful furniture is also there for a reason, light reflections.
      If a room is too dark or furniture has to many the same colors, this system will be more unstable.
      It really depends on having good environment and lightsources to have good tracking.
      Just look back to the oculus prototype inside out tracking, they do the similar thing in their demo room.
      It is just the tech problem, it has a minmal requirement to work right.

      • Get Schwifty!

        Perhaps so, but its clear that there is a significant use for camera-based tracking, you can’t deny that. In time the camera processing will continue to improve, but there will always be a need for certain light level for these systems to work. I could easily see having a couple good lights setup to do it, still a small price to pay for the other advantages it offers.

      • Hivemind9000

        Intel’s RealSense tech uses an infrared laser/camera as well as an optical camera, so it can “see” quite well in the dark apparently.

        You’d have to watch out for heat sources though – sunlight coming through a window, or a heater/fireplace – as they will definitely mess with the IR detection.

  • Facts

    Why its so big

  • OgreTactics

    It’s such a huge waste. Nobody wants to have a limited mobile computing locking the system unless it’s for the convenience of a smartphone. Because otherwise they are doing the important job here: integrating inside-out external tracking which is detrimental for the success of VR as a usable product.

    And I’m glad they’re using their RealSense tech while we’re waiting for an actual Tango Daydream phone.

    I just wished they would drop that non-sensical ugly Vslam 3D reconstruction rather than…you know, video overlay of what you’re supposed to be seing through the camera, why reconstructing it?

  • Tony a