Almost 20 years ago there was Quake 2. This game had it all. Networked gameplay, mods, level editors, custom player skins and above all gameplay. We've spend countless hours playing, building, learning and making new friends while at school.
One of the most memorable things from that time was our effort to create a map resembling our school. It was a big school, 12.000+ students, and a new building. This was a major undertaking and i can't remember it ever beeing finished but the goal was clear.
We wanted to shoot each other in familiar surroundings!
Now if you are not into games this could sound quite horrifying, but it is for many games the objective to shoot as many other players as you can. Most kids (and adults) do this on a daily base and in 99.9% of the cases this is just a game.
With project Tango (and other upcoming devices) we can map and virtualize our world by walking through it. By aiming your device the camera's combined with the internal sensors will map your surroundings.
It will be 'easy' to accurately create 3D maps and this is wonderful, it is necessary for a good augmented experience and there will be lots of innovation based upon it. Playing your favourite game will also be way cooler playing in familiar surroundings giving you an advantage over other players.
It does raise some questions about our future. With the arrival of Google Maps and enhancing resolution we saw a lot of garbled buildings appear for security reasons. With Tango these buildings will probably not appear in Google Maps or their future version of it, but what if somebody mapped a building without gps coordinates into their own game which they play offline.
Maybe it will also spark a new kind of industry where white hat gamers give advise to companies for the security of their buildings. Who knows? ;-)