Spatial Gameplay in Full-Court 3D

Japan is distinguishing its bid to host the 2022 World Cup with a plan to broadcast the entire thing as a life-size hologram.

[Image: Courtesy of the Japan Football Association/CNN].

"Japanese organizers say each game will be filmed by 200 high definition cameras, which will use 'freeviewpoint' technology to allow fans to see the action unfold from a player's eye view—the kind of images until now only seen in video games," CNN reports.

[Image: Courtesy of the Japan Football Association/CNN].

British football theorist Jonathan Wilson puts an interestingly spatial spin on the idea: "Speaking as a tactics geek," he said to CNN, "the problem watching games on television is it's very hard to see the shape of the teams, so if you're trying to assess the way the game's going, if you're trying to assess the space, how a team's shape's doing and their defense and organization, then this will clearly be beneficial."

Watching a sport becomes a new form of spatial immersion into strategic game geometries.

[Image: Courtesy of the Japan Football Association/CNN].

Of course, there's open disbelief that Japan can actually deliver on this promise—it is proposing something based on technology that does not quite exist yet, on the optimistic assumption that all technical problems will be worked out in 12 years' time.

But the idea of real-time, life-size event-holograms being beamed around the world as a spatial replacement for TV imagery is stunning.

(Thanks to Judson Hornfeck for the tip!)

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8 Comments:

Anonymous Rob said...

Stunning. Though I feel as though maybe you have not emphasized enough the magnificently odd quality that this spectacle would have? People all around the world trooping into giant stadia (deep into night and morning, at least in the Americas) to watching ghostly projections of athletes enacting regulated spatial patterns on formal landscapes hundreds and thousands of miles away.

If soccer can be read as the projection of an abstraction of the English village landscape, then this somehow feels like a necessary (and maybe even nearly final) iteration of that idea. The abstraction having reached such an idealized point that it demands not just the duplication of rules and diagrams in a thousand different stadia (not to mention informal playing fields), but also the uniformity of the game being watched in those stadia.

December 01, 2010 3:15 PM  
OpenID saintneko said...

The Japanese prize their humility and modesty. If they say 2022 I wouldn't be surprised to see it delivered with apologies for not being earlier and higher quality in 2018. Hatsune Miko, anyone? I'm not saying they'll pull it off, just that I wouldn't be shocked, dig?

It'll probably require supercomputers, but today's video game cards are about compute equivalent with 1999's finest single supercomputer. In ten years, ditto for today's being smaller than a box of chocolates.

And if this is done, we could project life-size video games. It could finally become the spectator sport people have been dreaming about for years.

December 01, 2010 10:49 PM  
Blogger charliesaidthat said...

The prospect of this happening excites me a lot. And who else to do it other than the Japanese!

Bring it on!

December 02, 2010 5:57 AM  
Blogger cemenTIMental said...

"This is a war universe. War all the time. That is its nature. There may be other universes based on all sorts of other principles, but ours seems to be based on war and games." -WSB

December 02, 2010 6:40 AM  
Blogger Adam said...

A shame then that Qatar won the vote, although the site of cool, green surfaces in the middle of a baking hot desert will be pretty surreal too.

December 02, 2010 10:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Proof of concept?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-w7UXCAUJE

December 07, 2010 6:14 AM  
Anonymous Kumiko Ide said...

I can't get over how brilliant this is. Looking forward to seeing it in action.

December 09, 2010 12:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is just great. More than jus being a spectator, you could just have a real/vs hologram game, or replay some great games against the projection. real videogame sport.

December 14, 2010 9:01 AM  

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