The development of SidebySide could mean that gamers are soon be making use of projectors to improve their experience.

The new concept from researchers Ivan Poupyrev and Karl DD Willis combines a camera and a projector within a device. Each player has a device and the two images that are projected onto a screen or a wall are able to interact with each other.

This works by using a modified DLP projector in each unit to output a single colour of visible light as well as an invisible infrared image. The infrared is picked up by the camera on the second device and used to inform it of what the other player is up to and where its character is.

The processing on the system is handled with a Macbook Pro, which will handle the interactions between the onscreen avatars. Game characters are also capable of actions through a button on the devices, which will facilitate games such as competitive boxing or cooperative brick destruction.

Previous versions of the system were developed by the researchers, but they did not allow for multiplayer gaming. Karl Willis explained that SidebySide does not require any kind of camera installation, Bluetooth pairing or Wi-fi setup to allow people to play together.