Unfolding the 8-Bit Era

The 8-bit era of gaming had a huge collective cultural impact on an entire generation of gamers, but the actual gaming experience was typically an individual one. With few exceptions, hardware and design limitations restricted gameplay to one or two players in front of a low-resolution display. With their work on «Unfolding the 8-bit era»,researchers from the ETH Game Technology Center have turned this idea upside down. Their custom hardware and software setup elevates the classic Nintendo Entertainment System into a collective group experience where games unfold around a large group of players in continuous 360-degree immersion. A real-time panoramic texture algorithm stitches game video together live as players play, which is delivered to a multi-projector setup that seamlessly covers all walls of a large room. A custom-built eight-way hardware multiplexing board hands off control automatically between eight gamepads, which encourages multiple people to play and adds a new level of social interaction on top of existing gameplay. Taken together, the ETH system transforms classic gaming into an immersive, cooperative multiplayer experience designed to enhance large parties and other social events.
Find out more about this project on the  ETH website.