Lego AR Playgrounds Game Brings Your Bricks to Life

Your phone can show life-like Pokemon appearing on top of the world around you, so why not bring your favorite toys to life? Announced last summer and debuting today on Apple's app store, Lego AR Playgrounds takes your fixed Lego sets and turns them into interactive games using augmented reality.

Playground utilizes Apple's ARKit technology to detect Lego bricks and superimpose animations on top of them. Imagine looking at a Lego castle that appears to be on fire or moving virtual warriors around a physical brick battleground that you set up in your living room.

At first, Lego AR Playgrounds will only work with two Ninjago-themed sets, the Lego Ninjago Dieselnaut (70654) and Ninjago Dragon's Pit (70655). However, even if you don't have either kit, you can play the first five levels of the game in Playground, with the app projecting pictures of Lego objects onto any surface.

Lego Ninjago Dragon Pit

There's also a two-player mode so that you and a friend can play in co-op mode with each other using a combination of the above Lego Ninjago sets and iOS devices. Using the app, one or two players can fight against the evil Dragon Hunters in a battle complete with power-ups, weapons and all kinds of special effects.

The Lego Ninjago AR Playground is just the first of many augmented-reality experiences that the company plans to roll out. The app is completely free, but because it uses ARKit, is available only on iOS for devices that are as powerful as an iPhone 6s. There's no word about a possible Android version.

Avram Piltch
Avram Piltch is Tom's Hardware's editor-in-chief. When he's not playing with the latest gadgets at work or putting on VR helmets at trade shows, you'll find him rooting his phone, taking apart his PC or coding plugins. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram developed many real-world benchmarks, including our laptop battery test.