Startup Aims to Bring Video Game Features to Real-World Paintball Combat

Overwatch Paintball App

Popularity of Combat Action Play

There’s no shortage of players in combat simulation video games such as that of the Call of Duty and Battlefield franchises. With each new title, more and more combat enthusiasts try their hands at first person shooter games, turning even the most unlikely of people into military heroes, if only in their fantasies. As technology progresses and games become more advanced, even true-life war fighters are finding the games fun, and sometimes frustrating, as they get fragged by hidden talents in these realistic simulations.

Those that prefer live action play will always direct themselves towards live combat action role playing (LCARP) using replica guns that shoot tiny plastic pellets or reenact through paintball combat. Much like the video games, both types of live action activities are usually played in some kind of staged arena with life-sized obstacles, barriers, and hiding places where each team eliminates the other by playing out combat roles towards a common objective. While the interest in live action play for the video game enthusiast is rising, there is a huge gap when playing with a controller and that of an actual mock weapon.

Bringing Video Games to Real Life

For 17 year-old Josh Moody, bridging that gap has become his primary mission. Moody, a paintball combat enthusiast as well as an avid gamer has started a company called Innovis Labs. The Bentonville, Arkansas teen developed a cell phone application that is aptly named Project Overwatch. The purpose of the app is to be able to apply the benefits of the first-person shooter advantage in video games to real-life applications.

In video games, a player often has an assortment of tools that help them accomplish their mission. One of the most commonly used and most helpful tool is the inclusion of an area map. The map generally lists the locations of the objective, your teammates, as well the location of any obstacles. Some maps include a general location of your enemies that you may have to encounter on your mission.

Project Overwatch uses live Global Positioning Systems and WiFi to generate a map of the playing arena complete with obstacles, objectives, and for those connected to the grid; player locations. The application then transmits this information between team members as well as allows them to communicate with each other. All by using their iPhone or Android smart phones.

How it Works

By implementing the use of 4G and other data transmitting protocols, the Project Overwatch app will allow players to communicate in any area where a signal is received. This opens the doors for players to engage in airsoft or paintball combat just about anywhere they want to play. Additional features such as “radar jamming,” where the players can scramble their signal so that only their team can see them on the map, are also in the development works and will be added on as a premium feature. The basic application, however, will be free to download.


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