NFC - a new game genre? (Possibly....)

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More a super-geek plaything than a mainstream set of games at present, but I can see where Nokia is going with this... Beta Labs just released a small set of NFC games, simple titles that leverage the NFC chip in the C7 and the newer Belle devices. You'll need a compatible device (obviously) and a number of NFC chips (e.g. in cards and stickers) to play though. Video and quotes below.

NFC gameFrom the Beta Labs post:

At Nokia Research Center, we are using NFC to open up a whole new category of mobile games not possible before – tangible mobile games.

These games let you play with physical objects in the real world.  They bring back the fun of playing traditional family and party games, where you can hold, shuffle, and trade objects, play face-to-face with other players, and even make up new game rules with your friends.

The phone only needs to detect the tags, and does NOT collect, write, or change any data.  So, you can continue using your cards as usual after playing the games.  And, since you can use the same tags for different games, you can download and play more games from the Nokia Store in the future without having to buy more tags.

For starters, we are releasing 3 new games for your enjoyment:

  • Nokia World Flags. This is a matching game with a twist -- instead of flipping cards, wave your phone over physical NFC cards to magically reveal hidden flags.  Almost 200 flags to match and learn.
  • Nokia Shakespeare Shuffle. Wave your phone over different NFC tags to hear parts of famous quotes from Shakespeare.  Rearrange and tap them in the right order to complete the quotes before time runs out!
  • Nokia Nursery Rhyme Shuffle. This is a kid’s version of Shakespeare Shuffle, using nursery rhymes from Mother Goose, together with beautiful artwork from the early 1900’s. It is also great as a cooperative game between kids or between kids and their parents.

We also have several more games in our labs and on the way, including word games, math games, adventure games, NFC-enabled variations on old board games, and even some games that can be played with a teddy bear.  (Watch our video for a preview.)

Early days then. Actually, I'm far more excited about real real world NFC games, where you interact with physical objects and real people around (for example) a mall or city. When most of our smartphones have NFC this type of game could really take off.

(Thanks to ZOMGit'sCJ for the heads-up)