Think 3D TV is an annoying gimmick and want no part in it? Here’s one intriguing use for 3D televisions that you may not have considered: Multi-player videogames where each player gets a full-screen view of his or her part in the action on the same set. Would you be willing to wear glasses for that?
Split-screen gaming could become a thing of the past. The concept is logical enough. A 3D TV works by displaying slightly offset left-eye and right-eye images either in rapid succession (active shutter variety) or interlaced with one another (passive variety). The 3D glasses ensure that each eye only gets the imagery intended for it. With a little tweaking, it should be simple enough to design a system where – instead of left and right views of the same image – two completely separate 2D images are displayed. One viewer’s glasses (both lenses) would be tuned to one of the images, while the lenses of another viewer’s glasses would be tuned to the other image. Both viewers would see their separate 2D images in full screen on the same TV at the same time.
Can existing 3D TVs do the same thing? In theory, yes, but only if the compatible glasses support the viewing mode of syncing both lenses to one image. I imagine that this would require new glasses specifically for this feature, at the very least. I’m not sure whether the TV would also have to transmit separate sync signals for each viewer, or if these theoretical new glasses could simply tune into the existing sync signals for the appropriate “eye” and ignore the other image.
In either case, this dual-view system will only work with compatible games specifically authored to take advantage of this feature, much like 3D gaming. Existing multi-player games like ‘Call of Duty’ and whatnot will continue to display in split-screen mode.
This seems like an innovative development, but I question how many people it will really appeal to. Don’t most of today’s gamers play their multi-player titles online, rather than in the same room?