Sony has published a patent that looks at the potential of utilizing players’ phones as secondary screens and controllers. The patent could lead to a unique new feature for Sony’s future games and consoles if the company decides to pursue the ideas presented in the patent.
This follows multiple other recent patents filed by Sony that introduce some incredible ideas for features like AI working to make games more accessible and allowing esports events to let watchers choose their perspective. This particular patent discusses systems that utilize the position of a mobile device to enhance a gamer’s experience using augmented reality technology that could work either with a mobile device or smart glasses like the pair teased by Niantic.
One possible function explored in the document is allowing the player to use their phone to control the camera and look at the environment around them in the game in different ways. An example given is allowing a player driving a jeep in a game to move their phone around them to view the environment surrounding their character in the game. The concept seems like it could do a lot to help immerse players into games and could allow them to view the beautiful world of the games they love in an entirely new way.
The other large application the patent explores is using the position of a player’s phone to simulate the avatar of an opponent in the real world. Using the phone of a player, as well as the phone of the opposing player, the patent could lead to Sony being able to use the positions of both of their phones to simulate the position, posture, and movements of both players. Then, either player could use their phone to see a simulation of their opponent standing in the same room as them. While this application does not have as clear of uses, it could be a big feature for any future PlayStation exclusive multiplayer titles.
Augmented reality has enjoyed a growing presence in the games industry with huge titles like Pokemon GO pioneering it on mobile devices. With the increasing popularity of AR experiences, as well as Sony’s interest in expanding into the mobile market, this particular idea has a good chance at becoming a reality. While many patents are filed without ever leading to any real releases, this one could lead to some drastically different gameplay experiences in the future. If anything does come of it, players will likely have to wait at least a couple more years to hear any news, but it seems like it could be well worth the wait.