Gotta catch them all, habibi! AR gets an Arabic update.
First the Arabic world gets dedicated emojis and now its own augmented reality game (that’s what AR stands for, obvs).
From the creators of Halla Walla emoji app comes AR adventure Wain Waleed (‘Where’s Waleed?’), which brings to life characters from the Khaleeji keyboard.
First of its kind in the region,Wain Waleed will see gamers use their phone cameras to search for hidden Halla Walla emojis at the mall, beach, shawarma stall, souk – you never know where Waleed might pop up and earn you some points!
And what do points mean? Yep, gamers can win prizes like concert tickets and dining out deals and compare scores on an in-app leaderboard.
First they’ll need personalise an avatar, then go on a quest to find Waleed, Lulu, Shaikha and Ahmed, moving through levels as they roam around Dubai’s landmarks.
Augmented reality – where computer graphics blend with the real world – is set to be huge in 2017, industry experts predict, after the massive success of Pokemon-Go last year, so, as usual, Dubai is head of the game!
And the demand for a GCC take is clearly there. Packed with throwback references and tongue-in-cheek nods to Dubai stereotypes, Halla Walla has already been downloaded 10,000 times.
Both are the creations of digital entrepreneurs Yasmine Rasool, who is Bahraini, and Eriko Varkey, originally from Japan, who both live in Dubai.
Eriko said: “On a surface level, digital entertainment may be one dimensional and irrelevant but it is important for cultures to have something that reflects sociality and tradition.”