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Casino Royale – A 360 Degree Poker Experience

Written by Natalie Brown

No time to dress up and go down the casino? This immersive video of live action poker will have you hooked.

In a world where virtual reality and relating to others online is constantly evolving in new, exciting ways and growing increasingly in popularity, those using technology want to feel immersed in the world they’re encountering. This immersion allows you to have new and exciting experiences and really feel part of the action.

How does it work?

360 degree video is a panoramic video experience that uses multiple cameras which overlap so the seams are invisible, enabling you to view the video as a single, flawless whole. You – as the user – are given control of what you want to watch – able to swivel the screen and view the action with a swipe of your finger. It’s suited mainly to phones, but if you’re on your laptop you can easily drag the cursor to view it.

Unlike virtual reality, 360 degree video tends towards live action compared to a created digital environment. It needs no headset, instead you can simply use your phone enabling you to access it wherever you are. However, both are experiences where you feel fully engaged with the place you’re experiencing. The videos have been around for a relatively long time, but it wasn’t until last year that the big guns, Facebook and YouTube, adopted them, boosting their publicity. That’s where Poker comes in.

The poker debut

For the first time ever, 888Poker held an Asper’s event where professional panoramic photographer, Tom Mills, created a truly cool 360 film of the whole thing. Not only can you look around the table, but you can see the entire room – even watching other games going on around you. For lovers of the game it means you can get all the excitement without needing the time to leave the house – an important factor in our quick-moving modern world. For those wondering if it’s something they’d be into, they can now engage in the game like never before and it’s quick and easy.

Other games, including sports, have also used 360 degree video in a fascinating way. French Football club Paris Saint-Germain teamed up with YouTube to create a series that allowed viewers to experience everyday life in the football club from a charity gala to a warm-up. Fans were able to not only witness but really feel engaged with events they would never normally see. Online competitive game League of Legends also released a 360 degree video to the excitement of the fans who eagerly discussed it on the well-known forum Reddit.

What’s on the cards for the future?

360 degree videos and virtual reality as a whole are really coming into their own and filtering through to every industry. The Omni Treadmill, for example, gives a first person experience in a game, enabling the user to run, crouch, jump, sidestep and crouch – truly being immersed in the whole experience. There has been discussion of transforming the home office, enabling you to lose the humdrum white walls and beige carpets and work instead on the beach for the day without leaving your desk chair.
Soon you may be able to have the pilot’s view of your flight – that’ll stop the kids fighting over the window seat! You could experience the music video of your favourite band while standing right in the action – or see the story of your choosing in immersive storytelling.

As for Poker, imagine the video quality being much higher, sharper, the scene itself being directed more so the experience provokes even more emotion and excitement.

With all these tantalising experiences awaiting us in the future, it is only a matter of time before companies reel them in and travel into depths of immersion that we can – at present – only imagine. The most exciting aspect is the speed at which technology develops; think back where we were five, even ten years ago, and then imagine how far ahead we could be as that same time rockets us into the future. 

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