Embedded UHF RFID is the perfect solution for gaming applications. With a low implementation cost and a fast read speed that doesn’t require the RFID tagged item to be in line of sight, UHF RFID has the capability to greatly enhance how we interact with our favorite board games, video games, and even television game shows.
Hasbro, the makers of SCRABBLE, has announced this year’s final round of the National School SCRABBLE TOURNAMENT will be broadcast live online using an RFID Scrabble board from Mind Sports (International). Each square on the board features an RFID antenna (225 in total) and each tile contains a unique RFID tag. The antennas, which are connected to nine circuit boards, scan the board in 974 milliseconds, analyzing each tile’s placement and allowing viewers online to monitor each team’s tile rack, team score, as well as the ‘Best Word’ each team can play, all in real time. This isn’t the first time RFID has been used in a gaming application.
The Million Pound Drop, a live television game show filmed in the United Kingdom, uses RFID tags to track bundles of money during the live TV event. Contestants are given a million pounds cash in 40 bundles of £25,000 and have to correctly answer eight multiple choice questions to keep the money. The game set consists of four trap doors, each corresponding to one of the possible answers. Contestants have one minute to place all the bundles of money on one or more of the trap doors corresponding to the answer(s) they believe to be correct. When time runs out, the trap doors of the incorrect answers open and any money placed on them tumbles away. Million Pound Drop tags each bundle of money with an RFID tag containing an Impinj Monza 4 chip and each trap door with a Speedway Revolution reader connected to four antennas. When contestants placed money bundles on the trap doors, the reader and antennas below register how many tags were on each trap door. Software then uses this information to calculate the dollar value and feed the data back to the displays, communicating to the contestants and viewers at home how much money was saved or lost. Learn more about how The Million Pound Drop uses RFID.
Activision, best known for the video game Guitar Hero, created an RFID-enabled group of plastic figures to accompany the video game Skylanders. Each plastic action figure features an RFID chip that is read by a portal connected to a gaming device, such as a Nintendo Wii, Xbox One, or Sony PlayStation 4. The figure acts as a wireless storage device, letting users move from a PlayStation 4 to a Wii while saving their gaming progress. As most video games are produced for multiple platforms and feature storylines based on a character or group of characters, RFID-enabled figures may prove to be the future of gaming.