Carcade takes in-car video games to a new level

by Mark R

Sometimes I wish that the full console games that they put in cars now were available when I was a kid. Even if car companies could have put an Atari 2600 on a backseat screen, it would have made long drives a lot less boring.

It appears that a few students at Berlin Univeristy of Arts are taking backseat video games to a new level with the Carcade. The Carcade works by attaching a webcam to the side of the car, which is then connected to an ordinary laptop.

Somehow, the webcam and the laptop work together and scan all the buildings and trees that the car is passing in order to make them part of the game. The result is something that looks like old-school Defender video game, but the objects your ship pass over are real. Check out the YouTube video after the jump if you don’t believe me, as I had a hard time believing it.

You may notice how quickly the demo shows the ship hitting a building that is unfortunately taking up the view of the web camera. Perhaps you should not play this game passing a city of tall buildings. I suppose that goes for playing this game when there is nothing but wide open plains, as there would be no scenery to maneuver around.

By the way, if the car increases in speed, so does the game. Hopefully, this won’t lead to more accidents as soccer moms pay attention to Junior saying “drive faster, mommy, I want to improve my game”.

As I mentioned before, this is a project by Berlin University of Arts students Andreas Nicolas Fischer, Martin Kim Luge, and Korbinian Polk. So there is no word if this project will ever be picked up by a big video game manufacturer. But come on, how can you resist?


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