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New Assassin’s Creed game features eye-tracking technology

The next instalment in the hugely popular Assassin’s Creed franchise will enable players to control the game using eye-tracking technology.

Assassin’s Creed Rogue will see game developer Ubisoft partner with Tobii Tech to launch the first AAA title to use the innovative control system.

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The eye tracking feature will be available to PC gamers when the game is released on Windows devices on 10 March 2015. The game was launched across Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 consoles late last year.

Tobii’s SteelSeries Sentry (opens in new tab) device uses three infrared microprojectors to scan the player’s eyes 50 times per second to track and record exactly where they are looking. The first 5,000 people to purchase the accessory will also receive the PC version of Assassin’s Creed Rogue free-of-charge.

One of the game’s developers, Corneliu Vasilu of Ubisoft Kiev, believes that the use of eye-tracking technology opens up a number of opportunities for greater gameplay immersion.

“We are one of the first to integrate this technology in a video game, and the first to implement eye tracking as a gameplay input in a game of that scale - providing Assassin’s Creed Rogue gamers with an entirely new, complementary input to the keyboard and mouse,” he said. “We recognized the power of eye tracking early and were quick to work with Tobii to create a completely new way to experience a game – We are really proud of the result with Assassin’s Creed Rogue.”

The SteelSeries Sentry also leaves the traditional keyboard and mouse inputs intact, meaning that a player’s usual habits are not disrupted. Instead when players look to the left of the screen, for example, the game’s camera will pan the same way, creating an “infinite screen” experience.

Oscar Werner, the president of Tobii Tech believes that eye-tracking technology is likely to see further use within video games.

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“This is only the beginning of eye-tracking in gaming,” he said. “It is an important step in Tobii’s long term vision to create a strong ecosystem of games and apps that use eye tracking to create even more immersive experiences.”

Barclay has been writing about technology for a decade, starting out as a freelancer with IT Pro Portal covering everything from London’s start-up scene to comparisons of the best cloud storage services.  After that, he spent some time as the managing editor of an online outlet focusing on cloud computing, furthering his interest in virtualization, Big Data, and the Internet of Things.