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Title:
TRANSPORT SIMULATION IN A LOCATION-BASED MIXED-REALITY GAME SYSTEM
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2018/206605
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A method of controlling a transporter simulator used in a location-based mixed-reality game system is described. The game system may comprise a physical game space divided in game rooms and at least one transporter simulator, the game rooms and the at least one transport simulator comprising sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by the server system, the server system and mobile client devices worn by players in the game system being configured to determine the location of the client devices in the physical game space; the method may comprise: the server system retrieving media content and motion information associated with a transport simulation process of a transport from the first game room via a virtual world to a second game room; and, starting execution of the transport simulation process if the server system determines that the mobile client device is located in the transport simulator; during the execution of the simulation process, the server system receiving input information, including interaction information of a player using user interface (UI) of the transporter simulator; and/or, status information associated with one or more client devices located in one or more game rooms of the plurality of game rooms; and/or, in the transporter simulator; and, the server system using the input information to determine continuation of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the second game room or to determine selection of a third game room from the plurality of game rooms, the third game room being different the first and the second game room; and, continuing execution of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the third game room.

Inventors:
MAKDESSI, Riad (Keizersgracht 184, 1016 DW Amsterdam, 1016 DW, NL)
Application Number:
EP2018/061927
Publication Date:
November 15, 2018
Filing Date:
May 08, 2018
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
TRIMOO IP EUROPE B.V. (Keizersgracht 184, 1016 DW Amsterdam, 1016 DW, NL)
International Classes:
A63F13/216; A63F13/30; A63F13/323; A63F13/327; A63F13/352; A63F13/45; A63F13/52; A63F13/92
Domestic Patent References:
WO2008065458A22008-06-05
WO2015070235A12015-05-14
WO2014188393A12014-11-27
Foreign References:
EP2189200A12010-05-26
US20150091941A12015-04-02
US20110319148A12011-12-29
US20130079142A12013-03-28
EP2886172A12015-06-24
EP2189200A12010-05-26
US8968099B12015-03-03
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DE VRIES & METMAN et al. (Overschiestraat 180, 1062 XK Amsterdam, 1062 XK, NL)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1 . A method of controlling a location-based mixed-reality game system, the game system comprising a physical game space divided in read-world game rooms and at least one real-world transporter simulator apparatus,

the at least one real-world transporter simulator apparatus being configured as a fixed transport simulator apparatus comprising a compartment mounted on a fixed motion platform or as a moving transport simulator comprising an compartment adapted to physically move between game rooms during the execution of a transport simulation process or a corridor connecting one game room with another game room,

the read-world game rooms and the at least one real-world transporter simulator apparatus comprising sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by the server system, the server system and mobile client devices worn by players in the game system being configured to determine the location of the client devices in the physical game space;

the server system comprising a game server, game room servers configured to control the read-world game rooms and transporter servers configured to control the at least one real-world transporter simulator apparatus, the game server being configured to orchestrate sequences of gaming events, a sequence of gaming events in time forming a storyline of a game, a gaming event including the execution by a transport server of one or more transport simulation processes for the at least one real-world transporter simulator apparatus;

the at least one real-world transporter simulator apparatus comprising a compartment comprising at least one entrance gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the transport simulator via the first game room and at least a first exit gate for leaving the transport simulator and entering the second game room, wherein the method comprises:

a transport server of the at least one transport simulator receiving instructions from the game server to execute a first gaming event, the execution of the gaming event including starting a first transport simulation process of a transport from the first game room via a virtual world to the second game room; and, the transport server starting execution of the transport simulation process on the basis of media content and motion information associated with the transport simulation process if the transport server determines that a mobile client device is located in the transport simulator;

during the execution of the transport simulation process, the transport server system receiving input information, including interaction information of the player using user interface (Ul) of the transporter simulator; and/or, status information associated with one or more client devices located in one or more game rooms of a plurality of game rooms; and/or, in the transporter simulator; and,

the transport server using the input information to determine continuation of the transport on the basis of the first transport simulation process via a first path through the virtual world to the second game room, or determine continuation of the transport on the basis on the basis of a second transport simulation process.

2. Method according to claim 1 , wherein the second transport simulation process includes simulating transportation via a second path through the virtual world to the second game room; or, simulating transportation via a third path to a third game room different the first and the second real-world game room.

3. Method according to claims 1 or 2 further comprising:

the server system detecting a client device at a location in a first game room, the location being configured to provide access to a transporter simulator, preferably the transporter simulator being configured to provide a mixed-reality experience of a

transportation from a first game room via a virtual world to one of a plurality of game rooms.

4. Method according to claim 2 wherein the continued execution of the transport simulation process includes:

the server system retrieving further media content and further motion information associated the transport simulation through the virtual world to the third game room and continuing execution of the simulation process on the basis of the further media content and further motion information.

5. Method according to any of claims 1 -4 wherein the status information includes the number of client devices located in at least part of the plurality of game rooms and/or in the transporter simulator, preferably the status information including the number of client devices in the second game room, and, optionally, in the transporter simulator.

6. Method according to any of claims 1 -5 wherein the server system selects the third game room if the number of client devices located the second game room is above a predetermined threshold value.

7. Method according to any of claims 1 -6 further comprising:

the server system receiving a request message from the detected client device, the request message requesting the server system to allow the client device to access the transport simulator, the request message further comprising a destination associated with a second game room, the second game room being selected from one of the plurality of game rooms. 8. Method according to any of claims 1 -7 wherein the transport simulator comprises a compartment mounted on a motion platform, preferably a fixed motion platform, controlled by the server system, the compartment comprising at least one entrance gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the transport simulator via the first game room and at least a first exit gate for leaving the simulator and entering the second game room and a second exit gate for leaving the simulator and entering the third game room, the entrance gate and the first and second exit gate being controlled by the server system.

9. Method according to any of claims 1 -8 wherein the transport simulator is configured as a moving transport simulator, the moving transport simulator moving during the transport simulation from the first game room to the second game room or the third game room, the moving transport simulator comprising at least one compartment comprising at least one gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the simulator via the first game room and to exit the simulator and entering the second game room or the third game room, the gate being controlled by the server system.

10. Method according to any of claims 1 -9 further comprising: the server system continuously receiving position information of mobile client devices in the physical game space; and, optionally,

the server system using the position information for determining the number of client devices one or more game rooms and/or the transporter.

1 1 . A server system for controlling a transporter simulator for use in a location-based mixed-reality game system, the game system comprising a physical game space divided in game rooms and at least one transporter simulator, the game rooms and the at least one transport simulator comprising sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by the server system, the server system and mobile client devices worn by players in the game system being configured to determine the location of the client devices in the physical game space, the server system comprising:

a computer readable storage medium having computer readable program code embodied therewith, and a processor, preferably a microprocessor, coupled to the computer readable storage medium, wherein responsive to executing the first computer readable program code, the processor is configured to perform executable operations comprising:

detecting a client device at a location in a first game room, the location being configured to provide access to a transporter simulator, the transporter simulator being configured to provide a mixed-reality experience of a transportation from a first game room via a virtual world to one of a plurality of game rooms;

retrieving media content and motion information associated with a transport simulation process of a transport from the first game room via a virtual world to a second game room; and, starting execution of the transport simulation process if the server system determines that the mobile client device is located in the transport simulator;

during the execution of the simulation process, the receiving input information, including interaction information of a player using user interface (Ul) of the transporter simulator; and/or, status information associated with one or more client devices located in one or more game rooms of the plurality of game rooms; and/or, in the transporter simulator;

using the input information to determine continuation of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the second game room or to determine selection of a third game room from the plurality of game rooms, the third game room being different the first and the second game room; and, continuing execution of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the third game room.

12. A server system for controlling a transporter simulator for use in a location- based mixed-reality game system, the game system comprising a physical game space divided in game rooms and at least one transporter simulator, the game rooms and the at least one transport simulator comprising sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by the server system, the server system and mobile client devices worn by players in the game system being configured to determine the location of the client devices in the physical game space, the server system, the server system being adapted to executed any of the method steps according to claims 1 -10.

13. A transport simulator comprises a compartment mounted on a motion platform, preferably a fixed motion platform, controlled by the server system according to claims 1 1 or 12, the compartment comprising at least one entrance gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the transport simulator via the first game room and at least a first exit gate for leaving the simulator and entering the second game room and a second exit gate for leaving the simulator and entering the third game room.

14. A moving transport simulator, controlled by the server system according to claims 1 1 or 12, the moving transport simulator being adapted to move during the execution of a transport simulation process from the first game room to the second game room or the third game room, the moving transport simulator comprising at least one compartment comprising at least one gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the simulator via the first game room and to exit the simulator and entering the second game room or the third game room.

15. Computer program product comprising software code portions configured for, when run in the memory of a computer, executing the method steps according to any of claims 1 -10.

Description:
Transport simulation in a location-based mixed-reality game system

Field of the invention

The invention relates to transport simulation in a location-based mixed-reality game, and, in particular, though not exclusively, to systems and methods for transport simulation in a location-based mixed-reality game system and server device adapted to control a transport simulator in a location-based mixed reality game and a computer program product for using such method.

Background of the invention

With the arrival of virtual reality and augmented reality new types of media experiences are developed which can be used to enhance the experiences offered in a theme park or a gaming venue. The experiences provided in the prior art system are however still quite limited and do not provide the experience of immersion, i.e. a perception by a player of being physically present in which the physical and virtual-world are blended into a mixed reality world.

For example, EP2189200 describes a system for enhancing the experience of a traditional theme park attraction, e.g. a roller coaster experience, using computer-based visual effects and simulations. When a cart of a roller coaster moves through a known path in the real world, a person in the cart is provided with augmented reality effects in which visual information is projected over the real physical world using e.g. a head-up display. There is no interaction possible with the virtual objects and the enhancement is limited to the attraction.

Once the ride is over, the experience is over.

Another way of enhancing the physical world is described in US8968099. This document describes a so-called parallel reality location-based game known as Pokemon Go ® in which players can use their mobile phone to access a virtual-world that is "parallel" to the real world. In this scheme, the coordinates of the real-world are used to augment the real world with virtual objects, which are can be viewed by watching a scene through a camera of a mobile device. The described platform allows e.g. players that are in close range of each other in the real-world to transfer of a virtual object. Similarly, virtual objects can be transported using a transport carrier, e.g. a train, in the real world. The problem with the parallel reality location-based scheme is that it only enhances the real world with virtual objects at certain locations. The platform only provides limited possibilities in terms of enhancement and interaction so that a true feeling of mixed-reality cannot be provided.

Hence, from the above it follows that there is a need in the art for a system for enabling a mixed-reality experience, i.e. a system that is adapted to merge the physical world with a virtual-world to produce new environments and visualizations, wherein the physical and digital world can coexist and interact in real-time.

Summary of the invention

As will be appreciated by one skilled in the art, aspects of the present invention may be embodied as a system, method or computer program product. Accordingly, aspects of the present invention may take the form of an entirely hardware embodiment, an entirely software embodiment (including firmware, resident software, micro-code, etc.) or an embodiment combining software and hardware aspects that may all generally be referred to herein as a "circuit," "module" or "system." Functions described in this disclosure may be implemented as an algorithm executed by a microprocessor of a computer. Furthermore, aspects of the present invention may take the form of a computer program product embodied in one or more computer readable medium(s) having computer readable program code embodied, e.g., stored, thereon.

Any combination of one or more computer readable medium(s) may be utilized. The computer readable medium may be a computer readable signal medium or a computer readable storage medium. A computer readable storage medium may be, for example, but not limited to, an electronic, magnetic, optical, electromagnetic, infrared, or semiconductor system, apparatus, or device, or any suitable combination of the foregoing. More specific examples (a non- exhaustive list) of the computer readable storage medium would include the following: an electrical connection having one or more wires, a portable computer diskette, a hard disk, a random access memory (RAM), a read-only memory (ROM), an erasable programmable read-only memory (EPROM or Flash memory), an optical fiber, a portable compact disc read-only memory (CD-ROM), an optical storage device, a magnetic storage device, or any suitable combination of the foregoing. In the context of this document, a computer readable storage medium may be any tangible medium that can contain, or store a program for use by or in connection with an instruction execution system, apparatus, or device.

A computer readable signal medium may include a propagated data signal with computer readable program code embodied therein, for example, in baseband or as part of a carrier wave. Such a propagated signal may take any of a variety of forms, including, but not limited to, electro-magnetic, optical, or any suitable combination thereof. A computer readable signal medium may be any computer readable medium that is not a computer readable storage medium and that can communicate, propagate, or transport a program for use by or in connection with an instruction execution system, apparatus, or device. Program code embodied on a computer readable medium may be transmitted using any appropriate medium, including but not limited to wireless, wireline, optical fiber, cable, RF, etc., or any suitable combination of the foregoing. Computer program code for carrying out operations for aspects of the present invention may be written in any

combination of one or more programming languages, including an object oriented

programming language such as Java(TM), Smalltalk, C++ or the like and conventional procedural programming languages, such as the "C" programming language or similar programming languages. The program code may execute entirely on the user's computer, partly on the user's computer, as a stand-alone software package, partly on the user's computer and partly on a remote computer, or entirely on the remote computer or server. In the latter scenario, the remote computer may be connected to the user's computer through any type of network, including a local area network (LAN) or a wide area network (WAN), or the connection may be made to an external computer (for example, through the Internet using an Internet Service Provider).

Aspects of the present invention are described below with reference to flowchart illustrations and/or block diagrams of methods, apparatus (systems), and computer program products according to embodiments of the invention. It will be understood that each block of the flowchart illustrations and/or block diagrams, and combinations of blocks in the flowchart illustrations and/or block diagrams, can be implemented by computer program instructions. These computer program instructions may be provided to a processor, in particular a microprocessor or central processing unit (CPU), of a general purpose computer, special purpose computer, or other programmable data processing apparatus to produce a machine, such that the instructions, which execute via the processor of the computer, other programmable data processing apparatus, or other devices create means for implementing the functions/acts specified in the flowchart and/or block diagram block or blocks.

These computer program instructions may also be stored in a computer readable medium that can direct a computer, other programmable data processing apparatus, or other devices to function in a particular manner, such that the instructions stored in the computer readable medium produce an article of manufacture including instructions which implement the function/act specified in the flowchart and/or block diagram block or blocks.

The computer program instructions may also be loaded onto a computer, other programmable data processing apparatus, or other devices to cause a series of operational steps to be performed on the computer, other programmable apparatus or other devices to produce a computer implemented process such that the instructions which execute on the computer or other programmable apparatus provide processes for implementing the functions/acts specified in the flowchart and/or block diagram block or blocks.

The flowchart and block diagrams in the figures illustrate the architecture, functionality, and operation of possible implementations of systems, methods and computer program products according to various embodiments of the present invention. In this regard, each block in the flowchart or block diagrams may represent a module, segment, or portion of code, which comprises one or more executable instructions for implementing the specified logical function(s). It should also be noted that, in some alternative implementations, the functions noted in the blocks may occur out of the order noted in the figures. For example, two blocks shown in succession may, in fact, be executed substantially concurrently, or the blocks may sometimes be executed in the reverse order, depending upon the functionality involved. It will also be noted that each block of the block diagrams and/or flowchart illustrations, and combinations of blocks in the block diagrams and/or flowchart illustrations, can be implemented by special purpose hardware-based systems that perform the specified functions or acts, or combinations of special purpose hardware and computer instructions.

It is an objective of the invention to reduce or eliminate at least one of the drawbacks known in the prior art. In an aspect, the invention may relate to a method of controlling a transporter simulator used in a location-based mixed-reality game system. In an embodiment, the game system may comprise a physical game space divided in game rooms and at least one transporter simulator, the game rooms and the at least one transport simulator comprising sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by the server system, the server system and mobile client devices worn by players in the physical game space being configured to determine the location of the client devices in the physical game space.

In an embodiment, the method may comprise: the server system retrieving media content and motion information associated with a transport simulation process of a transport from a first game room via a virtual world to a second game room; and, starting execution of the transport simulation process if the server system determines that a mobile client device is located in the transport simulator; during the execution of the simulation process, the server system receiving input information, including interaction information of the player using user interface (Ul) of the transporter simulator; and/or, status information associated with one or more client devices located in one or more game rooms of a plurality of game rooms; and/or, in the transporter simulator.

In an embodiment, the server system may use the input information to determine continuation of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the second game room or to determine selection of a third game room from the plurality of game rooms, the third game room being different the first and the second game room; and, continuing execution of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the third game room.

In another embodiment, the server system may use the input information to determine continuation of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the second game room using a first mixed-reality experience; or, continuation of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the second game room using a second mixed-reality experience, which is different from the first mixed-reality experience.

The server system may use information of client devices in game rooms and/or the number of client devices in transporter simulators in order to determine the destination of a transport simulation process. This way, the server may e.g. use the number of client devices in game rooms in order to control the movement of players through the game rooms. If the number of players in a particular game room is larger than a certain threshold value, the server system may change the destination of the transport simulation process so that the number of players in game rooms can be controlled. Hence, in an embodiment, the server system may monitor the number of client devices in each game room and, optionally, in each transporter and check if the number of client devices in each game room, and optionally, transporter exceeds a certain threshold value. Different threshold values may be assigned to different game rooms and transporters. If during a transporter simulation process, the game room determines the number of players in the destination game room exceeds the threshold value, it may change the destination game room into another destination game room that is associated with the transporter.

This way, the server system may e.g. a map such as an updated mixed-reality map, including the locations of mobile client devices therein, as a means for crowd control. This process may be executed without informing the players about the real reason for the destination change.

For example, if the server system determines that the destination game room of a particular transport simulation process comprises too many players, the game server may instruct a transport simulator to execute a game event, which changes the destination of the transport simulation process. A game event may for example be executed wherein a malfunctioning of the simulated transporter, e.g. a space ship, is simulated so that players to provide the players the experience that a change of destination, e.g. an emergency landing, is necessary. In another example, bad weather in the virtual world may be simulated in order to provide the players the experience that a change in destination is necessary.

In other embodiments, other parameters associated with the players may be used to change the destination and/or the mixed-reality experience as well. To that end, in one embodiment, the game server may use information stored in the player profiles. For example, a destination or a mixed-reality experience may be selected by the game server on the basis of information of players that participate in the transporter simulation process, e.g.: age of the player, game score of the player, player preferences, etc. Hence, on the basis of the player information, the game server may provide players a personized location-based mixed-reality experience.

In an embodiment, the method may further comprise;

the server system detecting a client device at a location in a first game room, the location being configured to provide access to a transporter simulator, preferably the transporter simulator being configured to provide a mixed-reality experience of a transportation from a first game room via a virtual world to one of a plurality of game rooms.

In an embodiment, the continued execution of the transport simulation process may include: the server system retrieving further media content and further motion information associated the transport simulation through the virtual world to the third game room and continuing execution of the simulation process on the basis of the further media content and further motion information.

In an embodiment, the status information may include the number of client devices located in at least part of the plurality of game rooms and/or in the transporter simulator, preferably the status information including the number of client devices in the second game room, and, optionally, in the transporter simulator.

In an embodiment, the server system may select the third game room if the number of client devices located the second game room is above a predetermined threshold value.

In an embodiment, the method may include: the server system receiving a request message from the detected client device, the request message requesting the server system to allow the client device to access the transport simulator, the request message further comprising a destination associated with a second game room, the second game room being selected from one of the plurality of game rooms.

In an embodiment, the transport simulator may comprise a compartment mounted on a motion platform, preferably a fixed motion platform, controlled by the server system, the compartment comprising at least one entrance gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the transport simulator via the first game room and at least a first exit gate for leaving the simulator and entering the second game room and a second exit gate for leaving the simulator and entering the third game room, the entrance gate and the first and second exit gate being controlled by the server system.

In an embodiment, the transport simulator may be configured as a moving transport simulator, the moving transport simulator moving during the transport simulation from the first game room to the second game room or the third game room, the moving transport simulator comprising at least one compartment comprising at least one gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the simulator via the first game room and to exit the simulator and entering the second game room or the third game room, the gate being controlled by the server system.

In an embodiment, the method may further comprise: the server system continuously receiving position information of mobile client devices in the physical game space; and, optionally, the server system using the position information for determining the number of client devices one or more game rooms and/or the transporter.

In an embodiment, the server system may be configured as a distributed server network, comprising a game server and a network of game room servers configured to control game rooms and transporter servers configured to control transporter simulators, the game server being configured to orchestrate sequences of gaming events, a sequence of gaming events in time forming a storyline of a game, a gaming event including the execution by a transport server of a transport simulation process in a transport simulator.

In an aspect, the invention may relate to a server system for controlling a transporter simulator for use in a location-based mixed-reality game system, the game system comprising a physical game space divided in game rooms and at least one transporter simulator, the game rooms and the at least one transport simulator comprising sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by the server system, the server system and mobile client devices worn by players in the game system being configured to determine the location of the client devices in the physical game space, the server system comprising: a computer readable storage medium having computer readable program code embodied therewith, and a processor, preferably a microprocessor, coupled to the computer readable storage medium, wherein responsive to executing the first computer readable program code.

In an embodiment, the processor may be configured to perform executable operations comprising: detecting a client device at a location in a first game room, the location being configured to provide access to a transporter simulator, the transporter simulator being configured to provide a mixed-reality experience of a transportation from a first game room via a virtual world to one of a plurality of game rooms;

retrieving media content and motion information associated with a transport simulation process of a transport from the first game room via a virtual world to a second game room; and, starting execution of the transport simulation process if the server system determines that the mobile client device is located in the transport simulator; during the execution of the simulation process, the receiving input information, including interaction information of a player using user interface (Ul) of the transporter simulator; and/or, status information associated with one or more client devices located in one or more game rooms of the plurality of game rooms; and/or, in the transporter simulator; using the input information to determine continuation of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the second game room or to determine selection of a third game room from the plurality of game rooms, the third game room being different the first and the second game room; and, continuing execution of the transport simulation process via the virtual world to the third game room.

In an embodiment, the invention may relate to a server system for controlling a transporter simulator for use in a location-based mixed-reality game system, the game system comprising a physical game space divided in game rooms and at least one transporter simulator, the game rooms and the at least one transport simulator comprising sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by the server system, the server system and mobile client devices worn by players in the game system being configured to determine the location of the client devices in the physical game space, the server system, the server system being adapted to executed any of the method steps according as described above.

In yet another aspect, the invention may relate to a transport simulator comprises a compartment mounted on a motion platform, preferably a fixed motion platform, wherein the simulator is controlled by a server system as described above,, the compartment comprising at least one entrance gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the transport simulator via the first game room and at least a first exit gate for leaving the simulator and entering the second game room and a second exit gate for leaving the simulator and entering the third game room.

In a further aspect, the invention may relate to a moving transport simulator, controlled by the server system according as described above, the moving transport simulator being adapted to move during the execution of a transport simulation process from the first game room to the second game room or the third game room, the moving transport simulator comprising at least one compartment comprising at least one gate for enabling a player wearing the client device to enter the simulator via the first game room and to exit the simulator and entering the second game room or the third game room.

In another aspect, the invention may relate to a method of controlling a transporter simulator in a location-based mixed-reality game system, the game system comprising a physical game space divided in game rooms and at least one transporter simulator, the game rooms and the at least one transport simulator comprising sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by the server system, the server system and mobile client devices worn by players in the game system being configured to determine the position of the client devices in the physical game space; wherein the method may comprise: the server system detecting a client device at a location in a first game room, the location being configured to provide access to a transporter simulator, the transporter simulator being configured to provide a mixed-reality experience of a transportation from the first game room via a virtual world to at least a second game room or a third game room; the server system using the position of client device in the physical game space for determining the number of players in the second game room and in the third game room; the server system determining to start a transporter simulation process from the first game room via a virtual world to the second game room or to the third game room on the basis of the number of players in the second game room and the number of players in the third game room; the server system retrieving media content and motion information associated with the determined simulation process and starting execution of the transport simulation process on the basis of the retrieved if the server system determines that the mobile client device is located in the transport simulator.

In an embodiment, if the game server determines that the number of players in the second game room is smaller than the number of players in the third game room, the server system retrieving media content and motion information associated with a transport simulation process via a virtual world to the second game room.

The game system according to the invention is configured as a distributed server network for controlling game rooms and transporters in a real-world physical game space. The transporters (transporter simulators) are adapted to execute a transport simulation process in which players are transported from one game room via the virtual world to another game room. The mobile client devices which are worn by players participating in a game provide real-world location information to the game server. Additionally, the game server receives virtual-world location information associated with client devices which are in a transport simulator that is executing a transport simulation process. The game server uses the real-world and virtual-world location information for updating a global mixed reality map including the location of all client devices on the MR map. The game server may use the location information in controlling the execution of simulation processes in the game rooms and the transports.

A mobile client device uses the real-world location information determined by a locating module in the client device and the virtual-world location information sent by a transporter server during the execution of a transport simulation process to the client device. The client device uses the real-world and virtual-world location information for updating a mixed reality map including the location of the client device on the MR map. Players are able to move around in the mixed-reality game world using the MR map which is visualized by client devices worn by the players.

The invention may also relate of a computer program product comprising software code portions configured for, when run in the memory of a computer, executing any of the method as described above.

The invention will be further illustrated with reference to the attached drawings, which schematically will show embodiments according to the invention. It will be understood that the invention is not in any way restricted to these specific embodiments. Brief description of the drawings

Fig. 1 schematically depicts a game system for providing a location-based mixed-reality experience according to an embodiment of the invention;

Fig. 2A and 2B depict the processing of the locations of the mobile client devices for the formation of a mixed-reality map according to an embodiment of the invention;

Fig. 3A-3C depict schematics of a layout of a physical game space and an associated-mixed reality map according to various embodiments of the invention.

Fig. 4A-4C depict a flow-chart of a method of providing a location-based mixed-reality experience according to an embodiment of the invention.

Fig. 5 depicts a schematic of at least part of a game system for providing a location-based mixed-reality experience according to an embodiment of the invention.

Fig. 6 depicts a schematic of at least part of a game system for providing a location-based mixed-reality experience according to another embodiment of the invention.

Fig. 7 depicts the real-world coordinates of a client device in the location- based game system;

Fig. 8 depicts the virtual-world coordinates of a client device in the location- based game system ;

Fig. 9 depicts the mixed-reality world coordinates of a client device in the location-based game system;

Fig. 10 is a block diagram illustrating an exemplary data computing system that may be used for executing methods and software products described in this disclosure.

Detailed description

Fig. 1 schematically depicts a game system for providing a location-based mixed-reality experience according to an embodiment of the invention. In particular, Fig. 1 depicts a mixed-reality game system 100 in which a physically delimited real-world game space, e.g. a theme park or a gaming venue, is controlled by a decentralised server system, including a central orchestration server, game server 108, connected to a network of local servers, including e.g. game room servers 102i -m and transporter servers 104i -k . As will be described hereunder in more detail, the decentralised server system is adapted to provide a mixed-reality experience to people participating in the game (players).

The real-world game space may be physically divided in different subspaces, which hereafter are referred to as game rooms. A game room may represent a 3D space that has boundaries and which comprise devices that are controlled by a game room server 102i- m. The game rooms are connected via one or more transporter simulators, i.e. static or moving transporter simulators, controlled by transporter servers 104i -k . Such transporter simulator may hereafter be referred to as a transporter. A player can use a transporter to exit one game room and to enter another game room. The servers may include interfaces

114,122 for controlling sensors, actuators and/or projectors in the game room and the transporters in order to provide visual, haptic and/or tactile effects during the execution of a gaming event. This way players are provided with a mixed-reality experience in which the physical game space and a virtual-world are merged. Such game space may be referred to as a mixed-reality game space.

Each player wears a mobile client device 106i -n , which comprises a

positioning module 132 that is configured to determine the location of the mobile client device in the physical game space, e.g. a game room or a transporter. A wireless local area network (WLAN) 112 comprising access points (AP) in the game rooms and transporters may enable the mobile client devices to wirelessly communicate with the game server and the controllers. A player may use the mobile client device to access game rooms and transporters on the basis of a map of the mixed-reality world (in short a MR map). A mobile client device may display a MR map via a user interface 134 to a player. The client device may render the MR map on the basis of map data 135 that may be stored in the memory 138 of the client device. A positioning module 132 in the client device may continuously determine client position information 137 (e.g. real-world coordinates) of the client device in the game space and a client locator module 130 may use the position information in order to display the current position of the client device on the MR map. Additionally, the client locator module may transmit the client position information to a server locator module 142 in the game server, which is configured to monitor client coordinates of all client devices in the game space. The server locator module may generate and continuously update a MR map 148, which may include the current positions of the mobile client devices in the MR world. These positions may be stored as coordinates in the database 110.

The server system may send the locations of client devices in the updated MR map to a media playout device for displaying the updated mixed-reality map, including the current locations of the mobile client devices on the MR map that are located in game rooms, so that a player is able to determine locations of other client devices.

Additionally, the same server may store status information 151 about the game rooms and/or transporters in database 110. For example, during updating of the MR map, the game server may continuously determining the number of players in game rooms and/or transporters. When the number of player in a game room exceeds a predetermined threshold, the game server may take measures to decrease the number of players in the game room by e.g. influencing transporter simulation processes which have this particular game room as a destination game room. Examples of such processes are described hereunder in more detail with reference to Fig. 5 and 6. Other status data may include transporter status data indicating if a certain transport simulator is active or not.

The game server, the game room controllers and the transporter controllers may form a decentralized server system wherein the game server may orchestrate and schedule gaming events 146 that are executed locally by the game room servers and the transporter servers. Gaming events may be executed on the basis of a storyline (i.e. a logical sequence of gaming events in time that follow part of a story in the MR world) and on the basis of the position of the client devices in the MR world. Every game event that is scheduled by the game server and executed by a local server may include the activation of sensors, actuators and/or projectors or the control of gates in game rooms or transporters. Gaming events may for example include the execution of a transporter process in which players wearing client devices are transported from one game room to another game room, while the location of the players on the MR map are continuously updated locally by the client locator module and globally by the server locator module.

Each game event may be associated with its own content (audio-visual content) and game rules, i.e. conditions which may trigger certain audio-visual effects and/or motion effects and/or conditions which may determine when and how a player may interact with servers during the execution of a game event (e.g. interaction which may affect the execution of a transporter process). Content 118,126 and game rules 120,128 of a game event may be locally stored on a storage medium so that an interactive gaming events can be executed without delays. The decentralized network architecture of the mixed-reality system depicted in Fig. 1 , keeps the data traffic in the network low while delays in the audio, visual and motion effects are minimized.

Game rooms and transporters may be implemented according to a theme. Devices in the game room and the transporters providing the mixed-reality effects may include content projectors for providing visual effects, e.g. 2D and 3D media projectors, hologram projectors, etc.; audio effects, e.g. audio equipment for providing 3D immersed audio effects; and, 3D motion effects using e.g. actuators or motion platforms. A game room may comprise one or more electronic gates, e.g. electronic doors, for providing a player wearing a client device access to an entrance or exit of a transporter. A gate controller 118 in the game room server may be configured to open and close of the gates on the basis of sensor input and/or a player using its client device to access a transporter.

The game server may comprise a game module 140, which is configured to orchestrate events in the physical game space and in the virtual-world that is linked to the physical game space. The game server may use a database 110 for storing information that is used for the game, e.g. game events 146. Game rules associated with each game event that are stored with the local servers may determine conditions how players participate the game in the game space. The information may further comprise content 147, e.g. audiovisual content for generating audio-visual effects and, optionally, information about motion movements associated with the content. The game module 140 in the game server may comprise a scheduler 141 for scheduling gaming events that are locally executed by the game room servers and the transporter servers on the basis of locally stored game rules and content.

The location-aware mobile client devices comprising the client locator module 130 and the positioning module 132 may be implemented as computing device including a processor and a memory which may be configured as a mobile game console that can be worn by a player. To that end, a client device may comprise a client game module that controls elements in the mobile client device when a gaming event is executed by one of the local servers, e.g. a game room server or a transporter server. Game rules 136 stored in the client device may determine the functionality of the client device. For example, during the execution of a transporter process, the game rules of the client device may activate certain functions, e.g. a camera for capturing pictures or video, a display means to visualize part the physical game world (e.g. as the field of view of the camera) and/or the virtual-world and/or one or more sensors, e.g. one or more accelerometers, that are adapted to transform certain movements of the mobile game console into certain actions in the virtual-world. In some embodiments, the client device may comprise an optical pointer, e.g. a laser device that can be used for selecting parts, e.g. virtual objects or physical objects in a game room.

Alternatively, and/or in addition, the laser device may be used as a game weapon, e.g. for shooting virtual objects or physical objects in the game room. A user interface (Ul) 138, e.g. a touch-sensitive graphical user interface or a Ul in the form of a head-mounted device, e.g. a wearable device such as Google glasses or the like, allows the servers to send messages, e.g. status messages or a selection menu, to a player or allows the player to send messages, e.g. requests or selections, to the servers. Further, the Ul may display the messages or content (e.g. part of the virtual-world) to the player. The Ul may be used by the player to send messages to a game room server or a transporter server, e.g. messages including a request to use a transporter or to inform a selection of different actions presented to the players via user interfaces 116,125 in the game rooms or transporters.

Each client device is associated with a client identifier ID, which may be used by the game server to identify and monitor client devices in the physical and virtual-world. The client identifiers and other information associated with the client devices that participate in the game may be stored in player profiles 149. Information in the player profile may include information about the player, e.g. age, gender, home address, nationality, gaming score (current score and scoring history), player preferences, etc. The locator module of the server may determine the physical location of a client device in a game room using information of the wireless LAN connection, e.g. the address of different access points of the WLAN located in the game rooms.

The positioning module 132 in the client device may determine the position of the client device in different ways. In one embodiment, it may use information about different access points, e.g. Wi-Fi access points, to determine location information, which is subsequently send to the locator module of the game server system. In a further

embodiment, the positioning module 132 may further include an RFID transceiver which can read RFID transponders that are installed at predetermined locations in the game room. RFID messages transmitted by the transponders and received by the RFID receiver in the client device may include location information that can be used for fast determination of a location of a client device in a game room or a transporter. In yet a further embodiment, when one or more game rooms are implemented as an outdoor space, location information may be provided using a GPS module in the client device. The client locator module may generate a MR map visualizing the game rooms and the virtual-world in which the game rooms are located. Further, it may visualize the current location of the client device in the MP map so that a player can follow its location in the MR world when he uses a transporter for moving from one game room to another game room. To that end, the client locator module may continuously translate coordinates of a player in a physical game room into

corresponding coordinates in the virtual-world so that that the locator module is able to indicate the location of a player on the MR map. This way, the MR map allows players wearing a client device to find their way in the mixed-reality game space.

A player may access or exit a physical game room and an associated virtual game room using a transporter. In an embodiment, a transporter may be configured as a static transporter, e.g. a tunnel or a corridor, connecting one game room with another game room, wherein the tunnel or corridor may include sensors, actuators and/or media players which are controller by a transporter server. In another embodiment, a transporter may be configured as a motion platform that is adapted to simulate a transportation, e.g. a car ride or a space flight, by moving actuators in combination with content projection. In yet another embodiment, a transporter may be configured as a moving transporter, e.g. a moving vehicle, which is configured to transport a player from a first game room to another game room. During transportation, the moving transporter may also be configured to simulate a transportation by moving actuators in combination with content projection so that player will have the impression that they experience e.g. a car ride or a space flight.

A gaming event scheduled by the server game module may include the execution of a transportation process wherein players are transported from one game room to another game room wherein during the transport the location of the client device on the MR map is continuously updated. Similar to a game rooms, a transporter may be associated with game rules 127 and audio-video content 126 which are stored on a storage medium that is connected to the transporter server. Sensors, actuators and/or projectors in a transporter may be controlled using appropriated interfaces 122.

During the execution of a transportation process, the client devices in the transporter receive location information (e.g. coordinates) from the transporter server wherein the location information represents the current position of the transporter on the MR map. In one embodiment, coordinates 129 associated with the content that is displayed during the execution of the transporter is stored together with the content on the storage medium of the transporter server. In another embodiment, a player may interact with the transporter during the execution of the transporter process. For example, the transporter may be a motion platform that is configured as a flight simulator in which a player may navigate a space ship. After take-off, a player may use the user interface Ul 125 of the transporter to navigate the "spaceship" via various routes to an end point. In that case, when the player may interact with the transporter via the navigation controls. Depending on the navigation of the player, different paths through the virtual-world may be selected wherein each path has its own coordinates in the virtual-world. The player interaction may affect different

transportation parameters. For example, the player may also reduce the speed at which the transporter travels through the virtual-world. Hence, the user input may not affect the position in the virtual-world but also the speed at which it travels in the virtual-world. Hence, in an embodiment, user interaction may both affect the location in the virtual-world and the speed at which the location moves in the virtual-world. In that case, a coordinate generator 123 in the transporter server may generate a stream of coordinates representing the game path that is selected on the basis of the input, e.g. navigation control, of the player. The stream may be coordinates at regular time intervals so that the location, speed and, optionally, acceleration along the game path is known.

The processing of the locations of the mobile client devices for the formation of a MR map according to an embodiment of the invention is depicted in Fig. 2A and 2B in greater detail. Fig. 2A depicts a process that is executed by the server location module which receives location information of positioning modules in client devices which track the location of the players wearing the client devices in the physical (real-world) game space using known location techniques based on Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, RFID and/or GPS (step 200). These real-world coordinates may be sent by the client devices to the server locator module (step 202). In case one or more players use a transporter, the server locator module may also receive virtual coordinates of a game path in the virtual-world from the transporter server. The virtual coordinates may be generated by a coordinate generator in the transporter server on the basis of the user interaction that is received (step 204). The generated virtual coordinates are in synchronization with the content that is played out during transportation process. The virtual coordinates may define a game path in the virtual-world (step 206) and are sent to the server locator module (step 208). For each client device, the server locator module may use the real world coordinates to generate a location on the MR map. If the server locator module receives for a particular client device also virtual coordinates, the locator module uses the virtual coordinates to generate a location on the MR map (step 210). The thus generated MR coordinates are used by the server locator module to update locations of players on the MR map (step 212).

Fig. 2B depicts a process that is executed by the client location module which receives location information of a positioning module in client device, which is configured to track the location of the player wearing the client device in the physical (real-world) game space using known location techniques based on Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, RFID and/or GPS (step 220). These real-world coordinates may be sent by the client device to the server locator module (step 222). In case the player is using a transporter, the client locator module may also receive virtual coordinates of a game path in the virtual-world from the transporter server. The virtual coordinates may be generated by a coordinate generator in the transporter server on the basis of the user interaction that is received (step 224). The generated virtual coordinates are in synchronization with the content that is played out during transportation process. The virtual coordinates may define a game path in the virtual-world (step 226) and are sent to the server locator module (step 228). For each client device the server locator module may use the real world coordinates to generate a location on the MR map. If the client locator module receives also virtual coordinates, the client locator module uses the virtual coordinates to generate a location on the MR map (step 230). The thus generated coordinates are used by the server locator module to update locations of players on the MR map (step 232).

Hence, the game system according to the invention is configured as a distributed server network for controlling game rooms and transporters in a real-world physical game space. The transporters (transporter simulators) are adapted to execute a transport simulation process in which players are transported from one game room via the virtual world to another game room. The mobile client devices which are worn by players participating in a game provide real-world location information to the game server.

Additionally, the game server receives virtual-world location information associated with client devices which are in a transport simulator that is executing a transport simulation process. The game server uses the real-world and virtual-world location information for updating a global mixed reality map including the location of all client devices on the MR map. The game server may use the location information in controlling the execution of simulation processes in the game rooms and the transports.

A mobile client device uses the real-world location information determined by a locating module in the client device and the virtual-world location information sent by a transporter server during the execution of a transport simulation process to the client device. The client device uses the real-world and virtual-world location information for updating a mixed reality map including the location of the client device on the MR map. Players are able to move around in the mixed-reality game world using the MR map which is visualized by client devices worn by the players.

Fig. 3A-3C depict schematics of a layout of a physical (real-world) game space and an associated-mixed reality map according to various embodiments of the invention. In particular, Fig. 3A depicts the layout of a real-world game space 300 divided into game rooms 302 comprising sensors, actuators and content players controlled by a game room server (not shown). In an embodiment, the game room server may execute a game room simulation process which controls the sensors, actuators and/or content players in the game room in order to provide a player a certain mixed reality experience. Additionally, in an embodiment, the game room simulation process may control one or more gates that provide access to a real-world transporter apparatus. The game space may comprise an entrance 304, an exit 306 and different types of transporters 308-312 connecting the different game rooms.

For example, in one embodiment, a transporter may be configured as a static transporter 308 controlled by a transporter server. Such static transporter may be

implemented as a tunnel in which a player in a first game room (game room #5) can move to a second game room (game room #7). The walk-through transporter may include gates, an entrance gate and an exit gate controlled by the game server. When a player enters the static transporter content, e.g. 2D or 3D audio-visual content may be played out by a projector.

In a further embodiment, a transporter may be implemented as a moving transporter 312i, 2 . The moving transporter may be configured as a moving vehicle or the like, e.g. a train or an elevator, which may move along a transponder path 318 along one or more game rooms, which is controlled by a transporter server. The moving transporter may comprise at least one gate which can be opened to allow players in a first game room at a first location to enter the transporter and to allow - after the transport process in which the transporter has moved from the first location 312i to a second location 312 2 associated with a second game room - players to exit the transporter and to enter the second game room.

When executing a transponder process, the moving vehicle may follow the transporter path. Hence, a game room, e.g. game room 1 in Fig. 3A, may include a gate controlled by the game room server that gives access to the moving transporter. If a player enters the transporter, it may transport the player to one or more game rooms along the transporter path. For example, when entering the transporter, a player may select a game room and in response, the transporter server may use the game rules and the content for executing a transportation process.

In a further embodiment, a transporter may be implemented as a multi-gate motion platform 310 that is fixed at a certain location in the real-world game space. The platform may comprise a plurality of gates 224, i.e. one or more gates for entering the platform and one or more gates to exit the platform. The motion platform may be configured to generate the effects of being in a moving vehicle. The platform server may control the actuators of the motion platform such that the movements are synchronous with the playback of content. The motion simulator may move the entire compartment and can convey changes in orientation and the effect of gravitational forces. The synchronized video, audio and motion provides the effect of immersion in a mixed reality world, i.e. a perception by a player of being physically present in a non-physical virtual-world. A player may interact with the motion platform during the execution of a transportation process. For example, the motion platform may include a navigation control allowing a player to navigate a vehicle, a space craft, a boat, or any other craft types through a virtual-world.

Players wearing client devices may move through the real-world game space 300 while the client locator modules and the server locator module continuously monitor the real-world position of the client devices in the real-world game space. If a player enters a transponder, a transporter process may be started by the transporter server, including the playout of audio-visual content and the transmission of coordinates to the server locator module wherein the coordinates represents the movements of the transporter along a game path in the virtual-world. The server locator module may continuously update the MR map

300, which visualizes the mixed reality game space (and the players therein) that is linked and mixed with the real-world physical game world. As explained with reference to Fig. 1 , a client locator module in each client device also updates its MR map on the basis of the real- world coordinates generated by the positioning module in the client device or on the basis of the virtual-world coordinates which are generated during a transportation process and provided to the . The MR map 316 may indicate the location of the game rooms 318 in the virtual-world. Optionally, the map may also include an entrance 320 and an exit 322 to the virtual-world. Different game rooms may represent different worlds, cities or places, etc. in the virtual-world and may be part of a location-based multiplayer mixed reality game.

As shown in Fig. 3B, during the execution of a transporter process (using e.g. a multi gate platform or a moving transporter as described with reference to Fig. 3A), the location of the transporter may follow different game paths 324,326 in the virtual-world connecting different game rooms in the virtual-world. During the execution of a game event that includes a transportation process, coordinates of a game path may be determined by the coordinate generator in the transporter taking into account user interaction (e.g. navigation control of a player in the transporter). The coordinates are forwarded to the server locator module and the client locator module for updating of the MR map. Further, based on the coordinates the transporter server may select different content files for playout. For example, if a player navigates the transporter via a first game path, it may use the coordinates to select associated content and if the player navigates the transporter to a second game path, it may use the coordinates associated with the second game path to fetch the associated content from the storage medium.

Fig. 3C depicts for example a real-world game space 340 including a venue comprising different floors 344i -3 comprising different game rooms connected with

transporters in which players wearing client devices may participate in a game which is executed and controlled by a server system as described within this application. A map 342 of the mixed-reality world represents areas in the virtual world that correspond to the game rooms in the real-world. The lines indicate how certain games rooms have corresponding areas on the mixed reality map. As shown in this figure, while the real-world game space may be a limited space, the virtual world in which the game rooms are embedded may be vast covering e.g. different planets, different cites or areas.

Fig. 4A-4C depict a flow-chart of a method of providing a location-based mixed-reality experience according to an embodiment of the invention. In particular, Fig. 4A- 4C depict flow charts of a method of providing a mixed reality experience to users of client devices that are transported by a transporter. Examples of transporter simulators that may executed the process in are described in more detail with reference to Fig. 5 and 6. These transporter simulators include fixed interactive transporter simulators based on a motion platform comprising at least one gate for entering the simulator from one game room and two or more gates for leaving the simulator, wherein each of the gates may be an entrance to a different game room. Other transporter simulators include a moving transporter simulator including a motion platform that is fixed to a moving structure. Such moving transporter simulator may comprise one gate for entering the simulator from a first game room and leaving the simulator into another second game room, wherein during the execution of the transport simulation process the transporter moved from the first game room to the second game room.

The flow chart start with Fig. 4A wherein in a first step 400 a positioning module in the client device may determine its coordinates in the real-world and send the coordinates to the server locator module in the game server (step 402). The server locator module may receive the real-world coordinate and determine the location of the client device in the MR map. Based on the updated location, the server locator module may update the MR map (step 404). Further, the client locator module may use the real-world coordinates to update the location of the client device in the MR map so that the current position of the player in the MR world can be shown to the play via the user interface (step 408). The client device monitor requests from the user for starting a transportation process (step 410). If the client device does not receive any indication, it may continue updating its position in the MR map on the basis of the coordinates in the real world as described with reference to steps 402-408 above.

If the user interacts with the client device and requests to start a transport process, it may send a request message to the transporter server (step 412). In an embodiment, the request may include a destination which may be visible in the MR map. In another embodiment, the destination of the transport request may be determined by the transporter server using status information, e.g. the number of players in the game rooms to which the transporter simulator is connected or which the transporter simulator can move to.

The transporter server may receive the request (step 413) and use the game rules and the status information (e.g. the status of the transporter and, optionally, the number of players in the game room of the requested destination) in order to determine if the request can be granted. For example, if the number of players in the game rooms at the requested destination is too large, i.e. above a certain threshold value, transportation may not be possible. In that case, the transporter server may determine one or more game rooms in which the number of players is below a predetermined threshold value, and send these destinations to the client device of the player requesting transportation. Upon selection, the player may again send a request for transport to the transport server as depicted by step 412 in Fig. 4A. During this process, the client device may continue updating its current location in the MR map using the steps as described above.

If the transporter server determines that the request of the client device can be granted (step 414), it may send the grant to the gaming module, which in response may schedule a gaming event which includes the execution of the requested transportation (step 416) to a destination on the MR map. Further, the transporter server may notify the client device that the request for transportation was granted (step 418).

The flow chart continues in Fig. 4B wherein the gaming module in the game server may start the gaming event by instructing the transporter server to execute the transportation process (step 420). In response, the transporter server may unlock the transporter door (step 422) so that players can enter the transporter. Further, it may load content of the virtual world which reflects the start of transportation from a first game room to a destination (i.e. a second game room) and start the simulation (step 424). The transporter simulator may be configured as an interactive transporter wherein players can interact with a Ul in reaction to the virtual content that is played out. The transporter server may receive input from client devices in the transport simulator and/or from the game server (step 426)

For example, in an embodiment, the transporter server may receive player input in reaction to the projected content. Typically, the player input may be in the form of navigation information which may influence parameters of the transportation process, e.g. the coordinates of the transporter in virtual-world (e.g. because a different game path has been selected by the player) or the speed or the acceleration of the transporter in the virtual- world (e.g. because the player has slowed down the speed at which the transporter travels in the virtual-world).

Alternatively and/or in addition, the transporter simulator may receive input from the game server in the form of status information that is determined by the game server (step 425). The status information may include for example information on client devices in the second game room, i.e. the game room at the destination. Further, the status information may include information on client devices in the transporter simulator. In an embodiment, the status information may include information associated with player profiles, e.g. age, gender, gaming score, etc. In an embodiment, the status information may include information associated with the number of players in the game room at the destination and/or the number of player in the transporter simulator. The transporter server may receive such status information as input.

During the execution of the transport simulation process, the coordinate generator in the transporter server may generate a stream of coordinates representing location, speed and acceleration during the transport in the virtual world (step 428). The generated coordinates may be sent to the server locator module (step 430) which may receive the coordinates and update the location on the MR map on the basis of these coordinates (step 432). Similarly, the generated coordinates may be sent to the client device which uses the coordinates to update its location in the MR map (step 436).

Further, in response to the input the transporter server may update the game content and/or the motion movements (step 427). For example, in an embodiment, player input may signal changes in the direction and/or speed of the transporter in the virtual-world. In that case, the transporter server may update the content and the motion movements in order to reflect the changes due to the player input. In a further embodiment, the server input (the status information) may signal that the number of players in the game room at destination is above a certain threshold value. In that case, the transporter server may decide to selected another game room it is connected to or to which it can move (e.g. a game room comprising a number of player that is below a predetermined threshold value). In that case, the transporter server may update the content and the motion movements in order to reflect change in the destination.

Hence, in this embodiment, the game server may use the status information in order to modify the execution of a transportation simulation process, e.g. by changing the destination, i.e. the game room associated with the destination. Based on the location of the player in the physical game space, in particular in the different game rooms and transporter simulators, the game server can manipulate the transportation of players to game rooms and (thus) the number of players in each game room. This way, the game server can control the number of players in a room and avoid overcrowding.

The content playout and the motion movements may be selected such that players are not aware this crowd control function. For example, if the status information signals that another destination needs to be selected by the transporter server (e.g. because of the number of players in the game room at the destination being too large), new content and motion movements may be retrieved by the transporter server and executed such that a defect on transporter (e.g. a space craft) or bad weather is simulated which make the players in the transporter simulator believe that a change of the destination is required.

The process steps 436-437 are repeated until the transporter has reached the destination on the MR map (steps 438 and 440).

Once the transporter server has determined that the transporter has reached the destination on the MR map, it may unlock a gate for exiting the transporter and for entering a new game room (step 442). The transporter server may notify the gaming server that the transportation process has been ended. In response, the gaming module may determine that the gaming event associated with the transportation has ended (step 444) and that a new gaming event on the story line can be scheduled. At the end of the transportation process, the transporter server may send the last coordinates to the server locator module and the client locator module (step 446-450) so that these modules may update the MR map. Thereafter, the positioning module in the client device may continue determining its real- world coordinates (step 452) for updating the MR maps by the client and server locator modules.

Fig. 5 depicts a schematic of at least part of a game system for providing a location-based mixed-reality experience according to an embodiment of the invention. The system comprises a plurality of game rooms 502i -3 controlled by game room servers 508i -3 and a moving transporter simulator system 504 controlled by a transporter server 510, which is configured to transport players through the virtual world from a first game room to a second game room. The game rooms servers and the transporter server being connected by a data communication infrastructure 512, which may e.g. include the Internet, to a game server 514. The game rooms servers, the transporter server and the game server form a distributed server network, wherein the game server orchestrates gaming events that are executed by the game room and transporter servers as e.g. described with reference to Fig. 1 . The game rooms and transporters may comprise players wearing mobile client devices (not shown) are wirelessly connected to the distributed server network. For example, each game room may comprise one or more WLAN access points 503i -3 and game room sensors, actuators and/or media players 505i -3 . Each game room may further comprise one or more gates 516i -3 , which are controlled by the game room server. As described with reference to Fig. 1 , mobile client devices are configured to determine real-world location information, e.g. coordinates which represent the location of the player wearing a mobile client device in the physical game world.

On the basis of the real-world location information and virtual-world location information generated by a transporter server during the execution of a transport simulation process, a mixed-reality map may be generated by each mobile client device. The game server may use the real-world and virtual-world location information of all mobile client devices in order to generate a mixed-reality map including the position of all mobile client devices. Based on the read-world location information the server system is able to determine the number of players in each room and each the number of players in each transporter simulator.

The moving transporter simulator system may include a moving transporter simulator compartment (e.g. transporter simulator compartment 506i at a first location and the transponder simulation compartment 506 2 at a second location) including a WLAN access point 521 for wirelessly connecting mobile client devices of players inside the transporter simulator. The transporter server may control the sensors, actuators and/or media players 524, a transporter gate 518 and a motion platform 520 of the transporter simulator. During the execution of the transportation process, the driving mechanism 522 may move the transporter simulator compartment from a first position at a first game room 506 3 to a second position at a second game room 506i.

In the embodiment of Fig. 5, the transporter simulator is moving. Hence, in this case, the transporter simulator compartment may comprise one gate in order to allow players from a first game room to enter and in order to allow the players after execution of the transport simulation process to exit the simulator and to access a second game room. In another embodiment, transporter simulator is fixed but nevertheless allows access to different destination game rooms. An embodiment, of a game system comprising such transport simulator is depicted in Fig. 6. This embodiment, includes the same or similar elements as the system depicted in Fig. 5, i.e. game rooms 602i -3 comprising gates, WLAN access points and game room sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by game room servers 608i -3 ; a fixed transporter simulator system 604 including a motion platform, a WLAN access point and transporter sensors, actuators and/or media players controlled by a transporter server 510, a data communication infrastructure 612 and a game server 614 for orchestrating gaming events executed by the game room servers and the transporter servers.

In this particular embodiment, the transporter simulator compartment comprises multiple (at least two) gates 618i -3 , at least one gate for entering the transporter simulator compartment (e.g. gate 6181) and one or more gates for leaving the transporter simulator compartment e.g. gates 618 2 and 618 3 ) and entering different game room.

Depending on the selected destination of the transport simulation process, a gate may be opened. This way, at the end of the simulation process access is provided to a game room which is the destination of the transporter simulation process. Thus providing players an improved mixed-reality experience when playing the game.

Part of the sensors in the transporter simulator compartment of the transporter simulator systems depicted in Fig. 5 and 6 may be configured as a user interface, allowing players to interact with the transporter. For example, user interaction may include a player handling a navigation controller and/or a Ul adapted to modify of a destination so that a player can influence the transportation simulation process at the start of its execution or during its execution.

Depending on the user interaction with the user interface a transport simulation process is executed that will result in a transport through the virtual world to a first game room 502 2 or to a second game room 502 2 . The transporter server may update the game content and/or the motion movements of the motion platform in accordance with a predetermined user interaction. For example, if the player input changes the end-destination, the transporter server may select media files associated with the newly selected destination and update the content playout and the motion movements in order to reflect the changes due to the player input.

In order to improve the user experience, in a typical transport simulation process, the content playout of the transporter simulator is adapted to the real-world game rooms that are used as start and destination locations of the transport simulation process. In particular, upon entering a transporter, the start of the content playout reflects the audiovisual experience of the game room from which the players entered the simulator. Similarly, when exiting the transporter, the end of the of the content playout reflects the audio-visual experience of the game room which the players will enter when leaving the simulator.

Instead of and/or in addition to the player interaction, the transport simulation process that is executed by the transporter server in the game systems of Fig. 1 , 5 and 6 may also be influenced by other parameters such as status information on client devices in one or more game rooms and/or transporters. For example, in one embodiment, the game server may use the number of client devices in game rooms and/or the number of client devices in transporter simulators in order to determine the destination of a transport simulation process. This way, the game server may use the number of client devices in game rooms in order to control the movement of players through the game rooms. If the number of players in a particular game room is larger than a certain threshold value, the game server may change the destination of the transport simulation process so that the number of players in game rooms can be controlled. Hence, in an embodiment, during the updating process of the MR map, the game server may monitor the number of players in each game room and, optionally, in each transporter and check if the number of players in each game room, and optionally, transporter exceeds a certain threshold value. Different threshold values may be assigned to different game rooms and transporters. If during a transporter simulation process, the game room determines the number of players in the destination game room exceeds the threshold value, it may change the destination game room into another destination game room that is associated with the transporter.

This way, the game server may use the updated mixed-reality map, including the locations of mobile client devices therein, as a means for crowd control. This process may be executed without informing the players about the real reason for the destination change.

For example, if the game server determines that the destination game room of a particular transport simulation process comprises too many players, the game server may instruct a transport simulator to execute a game event, which changes the destination of the transport simulation process. A game event may for example be executed wherein a malfunctioning of the simulated transporter, e.g. a space ship, is simulated so that players to provide the players the experience that a change of destination, e.g. an emergency landing, is necessary. In another example, bad weather in the virtual world may be simulated in order to provide the players the experience that a change in destination is necessary.

In other embodiments, other parameters associated with the players may be used to change the destination and/or the mixed-reality experience as well. To that end, in one embodiment, the game server may use information stored in the player profiles. For example, a destination or a mixed-reality experience may be selected by the game server on the basis of information of players that participate in the transporter simulation process, e.g.: age of the player, game score of the player, player preferences, etc. Hence, on the basis of the player information, the game server may provide players a personized location-based mixed-reality experience.

Fig. 7A-7C depict the real-world location of a client device in a location-based game system according to an embodiment of the invention. Fig. 7A depicts a physical map of a location-based mixed reality game system, including game rooms 712,716,718,720 (each game room may be associated with a theme, e.g. earth, Jupiter, Mars, Moon) and one or more transporters (e.g. a teleport or a space ship 714) wherein game rooms can be accessed via transporters as explained in detail with reference to Fig. 1 -6.

Fig. 7A depicts a client device located in a first game room 712 (e.g. a physical space themed as planet earth). The game system may use commonly used positioning sensors and algorithms (e.g. wifi, Bluetooth, GPS) as described with reference to Fig 1-6. The real world location may be partitioned in zones (e.g. game rooms) representing portions of the mixed reality world that are physically accessible by a player wearing a client device. The real world locations are represented on a 2D map by the real word location information (ZR,X R ,Y r ) wherein: Z R represents a zone number (e.g. a game room), X R represents a horizontal offset from the origin O xr point of zone Z R and Y R represents a vertical offset from Cy point of zone ZR. In this example the player starts in a first game room (Earth; zone 1 ) wherein its location can be represented by a player location : (Z R ,X R ,Y R )=( 1 ,5,5) as denoted by dot 702.

Fig. 7B depicts a client device entering a first transporter (room 3) to travel to a second game room (themed as Jupiter). When the client device approaches the first transporter (spaceship 1 - zone 3), it may initiate a transmission of a request to the game server of the game system to use the transporter (e.g. through an RFID scan, a finger print or another form of sensor verification). The game server may authorize and instruct the transporter server that controls the transporter to execute a transporter process. The player wearing the client device may enter the first transporter, e.g. a motion platform, so that the player location is (Z R ,X R ,Y R )=(3,10,5) as denoted by dot 704.

Fig. 7C depicts a situation wherein - after the transporter process - the client device has entered a second game groom (physical space themed as Planet Jupiter). Thus, after the transport process is finished and the transporter door to the second game room representing Jupiter (zone 4) in the real world is opened and the client device may navigate in the game room, wherein the real word player location may be continuously updated:

(Z R ,X R ,Y R )=(4,25,5),(4,35,10) (4,55,5),..., etc.. as denoted by dots 706-710.

Fig. 8 depicts the virtual-world coordinates of a client device in the location- based game system. Coordinates associated by the player-experience during the execution of the transporter process may be used to locate a client device in the virtual word. The coordinates may be may be generated during the transporter process and may include coordinates that can be influenced by the user (e.g. in case of interactive content, e.g. a player can control (in part) the trajectory in the virtual word using) or pre-determined coordinates associated with passive content (e.g. conventional video). The player location in the virtual world can be represented on a 2D map (Χν,Υν) wherein X V represents a horizontal offset from the origin O xv point of virtual world and YR represents a vertical offset from Cy point of the virtual world.

In this example, the player departed earth in a first transporter that simulates a spaceship (simulated by the real word simulator) and navigated through the space to reach planet Jupiter. Some location tracks include (Χν,Υν)

=(70,40), (180,70), (250,1 10),(300,175),..., etc.. as denoted by dots 802-808.

Fig. 9A-9C depicts the mixed-reality world coordinates of a client device in the location-based game system according to an embodiment of the invention. These coordinates may be calculated by the location module in the game server and/or client device. Further, a client device may use these coordinates for display by a user interface. The position of a client device in the MR world may be determined on the basis of coordinates from the read-world and the virtual word (as described with reference to Fig. 7 and 8)

Fig. 9A depicts the position of the player wearing a client device. As shown in Fig. 9A, the MR world may include one or more virtual-world zones 900 and real-world zones 902-908. Each of the real-world zones may have an offset. An offset for Zone X may be given by (ZoneX X MR,ZoneX Y MR) representing the location of a real-world zone (game room X) relative to the origin (O X MR,CVMR) of the MR map. The player location in the MR map is represented by the coordinate (XMR,YMR) wherein X M R represents the horizontal offset relative to the origin O X MR, and YMR represents the vertical offset relative to the origin O V MR of the MR world. In this example, the player wearing a client device 910 may start in a first game room 902 (e.g. zone 1 , Earth, having offset (Zone1 X MR,Zone1 wherein its location on the MR map can be determined on the basis of the real-world coordinates only (e.g.

(ZR,XR,Y r )=(1 ,5,5) as described with referent to Fig. 7A):

(XMR,YMR) =(Zone1 XM R+XR,Zcone1 vM R+YR)=(25+5,15+5)=(30,20)

Fig. 9B depicts the position of the player wearing a client device in the virtual world, i.e. when the player is in a transporter that executes a transportation process, e.g. a simulation process representing a space travel from Earth to Jupiter) as described with reference to Fig. 7B. In that case, its location in the MR world can be directly derived from the virtual-world coordinates. Some location tracks include (XMR,YMR)

=(70,40), (180,70), (250,1 10),(300,175),..., etc.. as denoted by dots 912-918.

Fig. 9C depicts the position of the player wearing a client device when - after the transportation - the player enters a second game room 906 (zone 4, Jupiter, having an offset (Zone4 X MR,Zone4yMR)=(25,15)) to continue its experience. In that case, the location module of the game server switches back to a calculation method based on the real world location. As explained with reference to Fig. 7A, the client device may navigate in the game room, wherein the real word player location may include the rea-world coordinates:

(ZR,XR,YR)=(4,25,5), (4,35,10) (4,55,5),..., etc. In that case, the position in the MR work may be determined in the same way as in Fig. 9A:

(XMR,YMR)=(Zone4xMR+XR,Zcone4y M R+YR)=

(240+25,185+5)=(265, 190), etc.

Hence, Fig. 9A-9C illustrate the process of determining the position of a player wearing a client device when the player participates in a game that is executed by the game server. Real world coordinates and virtual coordinates are continuously provided to the game server and the location module in the game server uses these coordinates to determine the coordinates of the mixed reality world. The game server may use this coordinates of client devices in the MR word to trigger a gaming event. For example, a gaming event in a story line may be triggered if the coordinates of a client device in the mixed reality world meet a certain condition, e.g. the coordinates are in a specific area of the mixed reality map.

Fig. 10 is a block diagram illustrating exemplary data processing systems described in this disclosure. Data processing system 1000 may include at least one processor 1002 coupled to memory elements 1004 through a system bus 1006. As such, the data processing system may store program code within memory elements 1004. Further, processor 1002 may execute the program code accessed from memory elements 1004 via system bus 1006. In one aspect, data processing system may be implemented as a computer that is suitable for storing and/or executing program code. It should be appreciated, however, that data processing system 1000 may be implemented in the form of any system including a processor and memory that is capable of performing the functions described within this specification.

Memory elements 1004 may include one or more physical memory devices such as, for example, local memory 1008 and one or more bulk storage devices 710. Local memory may refer to random access memory or other non-persistent memory device(s) generally used during actual execution of the program code. A bulk storage device may be implemented as a hard drive or other persistent data storage device. The processing system 1000 may also include one or more cache memories (not shown) that provide temporary storage of at least some program code in order to reduce the number of times program code must be retrieved from bulk storage device 1010 during execution.

Input/output (I/O) devices depicted as input device 1012 and output device 1014 optionally can be coupled to the data processing system. Examples of input device may include, but are not limited to, for example, a keyboard, a pointing device such as a mouse, or the like. Examples of output device may include, but are not limited to, for example, a monitor or display, speakers, or the like. Input device and/or output device may be coupled to data processing system either directly or through intervening I/O controllers. A network adapter 1016 may also be coupled to data processing system to enable it to become coupled to other systems, computer systems, remote network devices, and/or remote storage devices through intervening private or public networks. The network adapter may comprise a data receiver for receiving data that is transmitted by said systems, devices and/or networks to said data and a data transmitter for transmitting data to said systems, devices and/or networks. Modems, cable modems, and Ethernet cards are examples of different types of network adapter that may be used with data processing system 1050.

As pictured in FIG. 10, memory elements 1004 may store an application 1018. It should be appreciated that data processing system 1000 may further execute an operating system (not shown) that can facilitate execution of the application. Application, being implemented in the form of executable program code, can be executed by data processing system 700, e.g., by processor 1002. Responsive to executing application, data processing system may be configured to perform one or more operations to be described herein in further detail.

In one aspect, for example, data processing system 1000 may represent a client data processing system, e.g. . In that case, application 1018 may represent a client application that, when executed, configures data processing system 1000 to perform the various functions described herein with reference to a "client". Examples of a client can include, but are not limited to, a personal computer, a portable computer, a mobile phone, or the like.

In another aspect, data processing system may represent a server. For example, data processing system may represent an (HTTP) server in which case application 1018, when executed, may configure data processing system to perform (HTTP) server operations. In another aspect, data processing system may represent a module, unit or function as referred to in this specification.

The terminology used herein is for the purpose of describing particular embodiments only and is not intended to be limiting of the invention. As used herein, the singular forms "a," "an," and "the" are intended to include the plural forms as well, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. It will be further understood that the terms "comprises" and/or "comprising," when used in this specification, specify the presence of stated features, integers, steps, operations, elements, and/or components, but do not preclude the presence or addition of one or more other features, integers, steps, operations, elements, components, and/or groups thereof. The corresponding structures, materials, acts, and equivalents of all means or step plus function elements in the claims below are intended to include any structure, material, or act for performing the function in combination with other claimed elements as specifically claimed. The description of the present invention has been presented for purposes of illustration and description, but is not intended to be exhaustive or limited to the invention in the form disclosed. Many modifications and variations will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art without departing from the scope and spirit of the invention. The embodiment was chosen and described in order to best explain the principles of the invention and the practical application, and to enable others of ordinary skill in the art to understand the invention for various embodiments with various modifications as are suited to the particular use contemplated.