Battling Darth Vader in a lightsaber duel is pretty much the daydream of every Star Wars fan who’s ever wielded a broomstick around the living room. But short of buying a couple of those indestructible lightsabers and a Darth Vader mask, there’s never been a super-realistic way to pull it off. Until now.
Star Wars: Jedi Challenges is an augmented reality (AR) game from Lenovo that lets users wear an AR headset to fight a hologram of Vader or Kylo Ren. It’s almost like they were standing right there in the kitchen next to your carbon-freezing chamber. From a spectator’s POV, the player ⏤ who’s wielding a badass-looking lightsaber and donning futuristic googles with motion-tracking cameras and an inserted smartphone ⏤ appears to be fighting by themselves against the air. From behind the headset, however, the lightsaber beams clash with every swing, the humming sounds are real, and Kylo’s as angry and hotheaded as ever.
In addition to dueling dark lords, players can also battle an army of B1 Battle Droids, either deflecting their laser blasts or hacking them up if they get too close. There’s also a strategy game where you can direct rebel forces against the Empire in a ground battle that looks similar to Hoth (there are AT-ATs involved) and an awesome throwback version of holographic chess (real name: Dejarik) that fans will remember from the Millenium Falcon in A New Hope.
Compatible with both iOS and Android, Jedi Challenges comes with the headset, a lightsaber, and a tracking beacon that’s sort of reminiscent of the orb Luke used to first learn the Force. The one here, however, remains stationary and is used to identify your location.
Currently available for pre-order and set to release on November 7th, it’s not cheap at $200. Then again, it might be worth every dime. Just depends on how long have you’ve waiting to have a realistic lightsaber fight that didn’t end with a lamp getting broken?