RUSE: strategy game of the future?

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Game company Ubisoft is coming with a new strategic game – RUSE: Truth is the first casualty of war. Although I’ve mainly seen screenshots, I think this will become an interesting game. But it’s not the game I want to talk about. No sir… it’s the trailer of the game that teased my inspiration.

In order to promote RUSE the creators decided to make the trailer you see below. This time they’re not showing the game as it is played, but how it should be played in the future. And maybe it’s just me, but I’m getting really excited about this idea. First, check it out:

Wow. Great isn’t it? I know some aspects aren’t thought through, but as a whole it’s a pretty solid concept (and that for just a trailer). This is the new way of playing Stratego: having a multitouch table with different strategic challenges on it. No more Axis & Allies you have to put away every time your wife wants to put dinner on the table…

There could be different ways to play around with this. I like the players having a position opposite of each other. It really triggers the imagination of being ancient field generals. Of course this does limit the way you can play scenarios. You could also have multiple players moving around the table, moving their forces all over the battlefield.

It’s a really good idea to place the battlefield on a table. Almost all strategic computer games have a top down view, so it is a logical decision. But actually being able to physically stand over the battlefield really makes all the difference in comparison to a standard computer, in my opinion.

Again, I know it’s just a trailer. But my dream bubble hasn’t popped yet. Because I know there is a table around somewhere that has multitouch technology inside it: Microsoft Surface. So all we have to do is kick some asses over there and force them to make this possible for us.

Jeroen van Geel

Jeroen van Geel is founder/chief kahuna of Johnny Holland and the interaction director at Fabrique [brands, design & interaction], a Dutch multidisciplinary design agency. You can follow him on Twitter via @jeroenvangeel.

2 comments on this article

  1. Interesting game. Just wanted to give my 2¢ on surface technology: in my opinion Jeff Han’s Perceptive Pixel display is a lot more interesting than MS surface because it’s made from much less expensive parts (projector, IR camera vs. huge LCD and detector matrix). That and it doesn’t necessarily have to be epoxied to Windows.

  2. Hi Jeroen,

    thanks for your posts. They’re always interessing and refreshing.

    In fact this is NEITHER a dream NOR a Microsoft Surface. The hardware used is an IntuiFace : http://www.intuiface.com and R.U.S.E can be played with multitouch gestures.

    Here is a video shot at E3 last week in LA : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUuRqzVhJmA

    In fact we worked with Ubisoft on bringing multitouch interactions on RUSE for a couple of months.