Disney teases Star Wars fans with virtual reality lightsaber game

From Holochess to 'Jedi Challenges,' Star Wars is coming to VR.

This new AR headset lets you wield a lightsaber. Credit: Lenovo

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As I can attest, you're not a die-hard Star Wars fan until you've demolished a beloved knickknack by swinging a broom around like a lightsaber (sorry, ma). What can I say? I was an ambitious kid that took her Jedi training seriously.

If you've ever wanted to become a real-life Jedi, you're in luck: Disney wants to turn your childhood dreams into a reality.

The House of Mouse has teamed up with Lenovo and Lucasfilm to develop a smartphone-based headset and "augmented reality" (AR) platform called Star Wars: Jedi Challenges.

The trailer below may be only 28 seconds, but it's just as exciting as a full-length Star Wars flick—my heart was pounding as the young woman, donning the wireless headset, raised the lightsaber controller to her face.

Similar to Samsung's Gear VR, the headset is designed to work with a smartphone. All you have to do is download the app, slip your phone into the headset, and interact with the world. Instead of a virtual simulation, like what you'd get from the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive, AR-based experiences super-impose digital content onto the real world. You might remember a little game called Pokémon GO? Same thing.

Disney wants to turn your childhood dreams into a reality.

Alongside Jedi Challenges, Disney unveiled that a couple of other AR apps are also in the works. In one prototype, you'll get to watch a group of rebel fighters take down an AT-AT atop your coffee table. The other features a relaxing game of Holochess, the game Chewbacca and R2D2 play aboard the Millenium Falcon in Star Wars: A New Hope.

There's no word yet on the official release date or price, but you can sign up for more information on the launch site. We don't know much about the hardware itself, but the headset appears lightweight and well-designed. What a time to be alive!

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