These are a step above some other “holographic” Pokémon cards you might’ve seen before.

Who hasn’t wished that they could have a Pokémon battle in real life? Nintendo 64 game Pokémon Stadium and its successors were fine and all, but they were basically just glorified Game Boy battles; we want to see Pokémon slamming into each other, breathing fire and ice, and maybe — just maybe — actually touching one ourselves.

And now thanks to Reddit user kennywdev, the world is one step closer to that dream

Kennywdev wanted to create a 3D game to move holograms around using QR code cards. However, what started out as a generic project suddenly got interesting when they decided to use Pokémon as the test subjects. I think we can all agree that was an excellent choice.

You can watch the holograms in action here:

So now you may be thinking: sure, it’s cool and all, but how does it work?

Luckily the developer created an imgur album with all the details. The setup for the projection battlefield is pretty basic: just some cardboard, a home-made plexiglass prism, and a computer monitor with a webcam taped to it.

The 3D holographic models are projected onto the battlefield via the prism which combines four images from the monitor above together into one. The camera taped to the monitor tracks the QR cards and keeps the image crisp while they’re moved around.

tl;dr: Science!

▼ The battle dome, as seen from above, where Poké-dreams are made.

1 - Makeshift playing field

▼ The camera that tracks the movement of the QR cards.

2 - Yes I taped the camera to the monitor lol

▼ 3D models rendered on the monitor via Unity software.

3 - Unity output

▼ Wait, what the….? Why is Charizard sticking out of that Pokéball like that?
Someone call Nurse Joy immediately!

4 - Unity scene with 4 camera in virtual space

▼ Latios being released from its Pokéball, as seen from the monitor end of business.

5 - uieFqqm

▼ And then Latios inside the battle dome. You can see the monitor above the prism,
and how the four images come together to make it appear 3D.

7 - There you go just a simple projection

▼ An epic showdown in three whole dimensions!

8 - But it looks so good

Even though the developer hasn’t quite gotten things to a point where you can battle with your Pokémon friends just yet, these holograms are still undeniably cool.

In the meantime, if you’re looking for more 3D goodness, check out Goku’s hologram attack. It only takes him slightly less time to charge up a kamehamaha blast than in the show.

Source: Kotaku Japan, reddit, YouTube/KennyWdev
Images: imgur/kennywdev