When I was in Barcelona for Mobile World Congress, I met Tatiana, Marketing Manager for Ogmento, an augmented reality (AR) mobile game development company at the Pocket Gamer After Party.

She showed me a cool new location based, augmented reality app they have released called “NBA: King of the Court”. In the real world, basketball players often turn up to local courts to play pick-up with random people. In a similar way, through this game, players can find virtual basketball courts around them and challenge other players to a shoot-out.

It works like this: turn on the app, see a Google map of your area to find virtual courts surrounding you or use the 360 degree camera browser view. Select a court to play on, then the game will open up. The goal is to tap the ball when the bar hits a certain section of the meter to shoot the ball. Each successful shot earns you points and coins.  There are only a certain number of balls to shoot for a limited time, similar to those basketball shooting games at arcades.

If you attain the highest score for the court you become the ‘King’. As the King, you are entitled to defend the court through using power-ups. Power Ups make it more difficult for other players to win. For example, ‘Lockdown’ means shrinking the opponents shot zone . You can unlock more challenging defences by redeeming your coins or paying for in –app purchases.

Of course the game is also a social experience and allows players to find friends to track scores of or see how you rank against other teams, in the global realm or against the top 10 players. You can also compete in weekly competitions to win rewards and badges. Like many other social games, you can brag to your friends that you are the ‘King of the Court’ on Facebook and Twitter.

The game is in fact the world’s first location-based sports game and the first mobile game to combine a top sports franchise (NBA) with location based technology and augmented reality into one overall dynamic game experience. For die-hard NBA fans, the game also dynamically updates for what happens in the real-world NBA games with synchronization for NBA team events, partner campaigns, and contests on both a local and national level. Tatiana says “We believe the game sets the bar on what becomes a true social sports game.”

Since the game is very new and I am probably the first to hear about it in Beijing, I have already become King in four courts around Beijing CBD area. Time for you to challenge me for the King position! You can download it for free here.

Jason is an Australian born Chinese living in Beijing, specializing in entrepreneurship, start-ups and the investment eco-system in China, especially in the tech and social area.

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