LEGO are releasing the app LEGO AR-Studio very soon and it touches on the previous worldwide phenomena; Pokémon Go. Users will point their phones at a table or floor and LEGO creations will appear, all in the quest to locate the golden bricks.
Forbes Online quoted that this has ‘the potential to revolutionise how children play with LEGO’. This is because it combines their favourite toy with technology and then reapplies that to the real world. Another benefit stated is that the app is completely free, with no in-app purchases (yet).
This app was designed to enable children to play with a digital version of their favourite LEGO set, as that is the ‘future of play’. Tom Donaldson, the Vice President of the Creative Play Lab at the LEGO Group made this statement "LEGO AR-Studio pioneers new possibilities for imaginative play where children can enjoy both physical interaction and digital engagement at the same time.”
LEGO have considered that they will be compared to Pokémon Go, and that the critics will state that this app will promise a lot, but the level of interaction will be low. To combat this, they have ensured that all gameplay will be very engaging; the 3D images aren’t just static on the screen, the LEGO characters will be moving around and speaking to you, and, as you play, hidden areas will be revealed. Children are also able to tell their characters what to do and then record video clips of them.
LEGO want to keep up with the times as they understand that most children nowadays have access to a handheld screen. Combining the physical world, building a LEGO model, and the virtual world, bringing the models to life, is the new way to engage with young minds.
Digital First love this forward thinking that incorporates the digital world we now live in; while also keeping the nostalgia of physically building what you want with the bricks. It’s important to adapt to your new market, but not lose you values along the way.