This could be something to with its USP being rather hard to demonstrate over the internet. For those who haven’t been keeping up, the Fire Phone is the first to utilise something Amazon calls ‘dynamic perspective’. In layman’s terms, it’s glass-less 3D vision.
Of course objects on screen don’t literally jump out at you, that would be impossible (come on science, sort it out). Instead you get an effect akin to what you experience when using a Nindendo 3DS, if you’ve ever had the pleasure. Essentially the phone can track at what angle it’s being held, and at what angle and distance the user’s face is. You can then move the device around in your hands or bob and weave your head around to make the 3D perspective on screen shift.
You know what? It’s probably easier to grasp if you just watch these two trailers. They’re for the Fire Phone’s first two platform-exclusive games, both of which attempt to make use of its dynamic perspective.
The first is To-Fu Fury, a cute platform/action hybrid which sees you pinging a small, martial-arts-trained cube of tofu around a series of levels. Using the dynamic perspective you can shift the view of the camera you can better asses where and when to ping him from one surface to another. Truth be told, it actually looks like a remarkably solid launch effort. The first titles that attempt to utilise a platform’s new hardware are often underwhelming or rushed efforts, but To-Fu Fury looks like it has real potential. Hell, it even looks like it would be fun without the pseudo-3D trickery.
The second trailer is for Saber’s Edge. It’s a match-three game mixed with a turn-based RPG, so think along the lines of Puzzle and Dragons or Block Legend, but with altogether more realistic visuals in a something of a real-world setting. Swipe to line up the matching blocks and watch as your party cuts up its enemies.
Again, a fairly sound, tested concept, but in this case we can’t help but feel that the dynamic perspective trickery may be a little forced. The trailer states that you can use it to ‘peek around the edges of the cube’. So presumably it’s used as a way to preview what gems lie around the corner following your current turn. It certainly sounds like a fun game, but whether or not shoehorning in the dynamic perspective capability of the Fire Phone adds anything is yet to be seen.