Augment Reality was the main tech our group wanted to work with for this Hackathon. Before the event started we all sat down and brainstormed a variety of different experiences made exclusively for AR. Some ideas included a game that teaches you how to properly recycle, and a teeth-brushing AR challenge. What we liked so much about the idea behind Seereal is that we didn't have to alter the packaging in any way to get an AR experience to work. Also, the activities on a cereal box are getting kind of stale, no?
What it does
Seereal is an augmented reality app that uses cereal box packages as image targets in order to create a more engaging breakfast experience. When you point your phone's camera at one of our three cereal boxes, digital objects begin to grow out of the packaging and create an interactive experience. Cinnamon Toast Crunch has a procedural marble maze, Honey Nut Cheerios is an education experience that teaches users about nutrition and bees, and we call our Froot Loops experience "Froot Hoops", which is an AR basketball game.
How we built it
Seereal is made entirely on Unity using the Vuforia plugin. Three members each focused on making their own AR experience on a cereal box, while the fourth member built all the art assets needed for each experience.
Challenges we ran into
In Froot Hoops, we ran into an issue where the tossed basketballs would appear to fly in front of the cereal box. We found out that this problem stemmed from the fact that in AR, the images of the digital objects float above the camera feed. In Unity, we created a masking plane and tracked it to the entire cereal box. After successfully implementing this, the ball would fall behind the box and realistically disappear behind it.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
A majority of the app was made on three different Unity projects. A strong adherence to version control made integrating the three different AR experiences a (relative) breeze. After getting the basic scene built out, we spent a lot of time on polishing our UX, audio, custom 3d models
What we learned
Seereal was our first foray into image target-based AR. Vuforia was a new library for us, and posed a few challenges as we were getting accustomed to the software. We learned how to mask game objects in Unity, which led to a more realistic-looking AR experience. We also learned how to animate custom 3d models in order to create a more "living" AR world.
What's next for Seereal
We'd like to expand on this concept and approach different cereal/packaged food companies to see if they'd be willing to work with us further.