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Hands on: Lenovo’s Star Wars: Jedi Challenges is fun, easy, affordable augmented reality

  • We played Lenovo’s Star Wars: Jedi Challenges, and based on our experiences it’s augmented reality done right.
  • It’s affordable at $199, it’s easy to set up and use, and the games are fun, though limited to the Star Wars movie franchise.
  • The kit includes an authentic-looking Jedi lightsaber, a single tracking beacon that you use to establish your location in a room, and an augmented reality headset that you pair with a compatible smartphone.
  • You can move around a lot in a lightsaber battle, or chill out playing a game of Holochess on the Millennium Falcon, just like in Episode IV: A New Hope.
  • Lenovo’s Star Wars: Jedi Challenges cuts through most of that with its simple, well-documented setup and fun gameplay, all for a very good price.

Lenovo’s Star Wars: Jedi Challenges makes augmented-reality gameplay affordable and easy with its single positioning beacon, authentic-looking lightsaber, and a headset you pair with your phone.

We played Lenovo’s Star Wars: Jedi Challenges, and based on our experiences it’s augmented reality done right. It’s affordable at $199, it’s easy to set up and use, and the games are fun, though limited to the Star Wars movie franchise.

The kit includes an authentic-looking Jedi lightsaber, a single tracking beacon that you use to establish your location in a room, and an augmented reality headset that you pair with a compatible smartphone. The list of smartphones currently includes iPhones 6 and up, the Samsung Galaxy 7-series and up, and Google Pixel phones, with more being added (most recently, iPhone 8).

(Note: Because the headset comes with interchangeable micro-USB, USB-C, and Lightning connectors, it could theoretically be used with any phone that can download the app. However, some phones may lack the display or processing power needed for the game to work correctly.)

Downloading and starting the app will initiate the process for setting up the hardware and the tracking beacon, and pairing your lightsaber. Your smartphone slides into a sleeve on top of the headset and projects an image downward that’s reflected back to your eyes. The reflection also allows people to watch what you’re seeing in your headset by looking into the front.

To play, you select a planet from Star Wars lore, then a character or group of characters to fight. The goal is to achieve Jedi Mastery levels by winning various games. You can move around a lot…

Hands on: Lenovo’s Star Wars: Jedi Challenges is fun, easy, affordable augmented reality

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