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Pokémon Go creator Niantic Labs is partnering with Punchdrunk, the New York City-based production company behind seminal immersive theater piece Sleep No More. The partnership will see both companies work toward “developing multiple projects that will reinvent storytelling for a 21st century audience and further expand the horizon of interactive entertainment.

Sleep No More, launched in 2011, is an immersive theater production that lets audiences walk through a series of rooms and experience various storylines and other elements of the production at their own pace. Influenced in part by haunted houses and other nonlinear live productions, immersive theater sounds like a prime fit for augmented reality because it could allow for Niantic and companies like Punchdrunk to create fantastical virtual worlds that are then overlaid over real spaces.

Immersive theater seems like a prime fit for augmented reality

“It is hugely exciting to be joining forces with the preeminent AR company in the world. At Punchdrunk we create richly cinematic 3D worlds where audiences can explore, touch and smell the environment; where the boundaries between reality and fantasy are indistinguishable,” Felix Barrett, Punchdrunk’s artistic director, said in a statement. “Those that have seen Sleep No More often liken the experience to how it might feel to walk into a video game. What happens if you take that sense of adventure into the real world? Tear down the walls and the world becomes your stage. “

Niantic offered a few more updates to its current production pipeline, too. The company is still currently working on the mobile AR adaptation of popular board game Catan called Catan: World Explorers. The game is being built on top of Niantic’s Real World Platform in partnership with the company behind the board game and French game publisher Asmodee. Niantic now says the game will enter a beta phase “very soon.”

Niantic also says it’s building “new forms of gaming” for both smartphones and AR glasses, although the company did not elaborate on exactly what headsets from which companies it may be building for. “Currently, we have more than 10 new games in development including prototypes for AR wearables, each with unique and innovative gameplay, centered around outdoor exploration, movement and social interaction,” the company says.

In December 2019, Qualcomm announced it was working with Niantic on a smart glasses reference design as part of the chipmaker’s Snapdragon XR2 platform. And back in 2017, when support for Apple’s ARKit was first added to Pokémon Go, Niantic strongly hinted it was working with Apple on experiences that could arrive for the iPhone maker’s not-yet-announced but strongly rumored AR glasses.

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Breaking News : 8,000 million to build the largest urban complex in the Mediterranean

Breaking News —

Athens, Jul 3 . .- With an investment planned for around 8,000 million euros, the works of what will be the largest urban development in the Mediterranean began today on the grounds of the old Athens airport, after years of political obstacles and bureaucratic.

This project, located in front of the sea and located between some of the most select residential neighborhoods of the capital, will have an area of ​​about 620 hectares (about 1,000 soccer fields), will generate about 80,000 jobs and will be developed by the Greek developer Lamda Development.

Shopping centers, sports facilities, restaurants, a casino, marinas, some 5,000 luxury homes and a huge park the size of Hyde Park in London, will be some of the developments that will be located on its land.

The first phase of construction will last a maximum of 5 years, during which nearly a thousand buildings will be demolished and the leisure complex, hotels and the shopping center will be built.

It will be followed by the renovation of the waterfront, with the creation of two marinas, homes and 30% of the park, which aims to become the largest green area in the capital, according to its promoters.

The start of work on this project – which was attended by the Greek Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis – does not definitively clear the future of this urban development, since there are still a series of disputes that must be resolved.

One of them has been raised by the multinational Hard Rock International, which was one of the two companies admitted to the contest and which has appealed the award of the casino to a consortium formed by the American Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment and the helena GEK Terna.


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