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Sony Unveils PS3 Wonderbook Accessory With Harry Potter Title
Sony’s new augmented reality accessory makes stories and art jump out of its pages; the first Wonderbook title will be Book of Spells, a Harry Potter-themed book.
LOS ANGELES—Sony this week continued to promote its Move motion controller, but also explored other unique game-control options with the introduction of the Wonderbook to its library.
Wonderbook is a book-shaped peripheral that can be used with the PlayStation Eye camera found in the PlayStation Move to produce augmented reality stories. The Wonderbook focuses on educational and family friendly content, and the first Wonderbook title will be Book of Spells, a Harry Potter-themed book developed in conjunction with Pottermore, which includes new writing from J.K. Rowling.
The PlayStation Move controller will work with the Wonderbook as a magic wand to cast spells in the Book of Spells. The demonstration video showed words appearing on the Wonderbook while the PlayStation Move controller turned into an on-screen wand, replacing the remote with a wood stick and directing the book to cause dragons to come alive on the page and light the book on fire. The pages became sooty, requiring the player to rub it away. A fire spell let the player draw pull from the book and draw it in the air using augmented reality, showing the fire on screen as the Move controller directed it into shapes. Finally, the book opened up into its own virtual world for practicing the newly learned fire spell, showing the augmented reality area as a small portal through which the player threw fireballs to destroy pests.
The game also turned the book into a pop-up theater that told the story of the discovery of the levitation spell used in the Harry Potter books. The book will have more looks into the world of Harry Potter, with each chapter culminating in a poem describing a failed Hogwart’s student, using their folly as an Aesop lesson.
Wonderbook and Book of Spells both come out this fall.
By Will Greenwald, PCMag