Social AR

A multi-player remote AR experience with gesture interaction

Let's Have a BBQ Party in AR During COVID!


Exploration about how could AR make a change for social purpose?
For people trapped at home During the COVID-19, we created a multi-player remote AR experience to foster social connections.
Team Project (5  people), Jan. 2020 - May 2020
Carnegie Mellon University - AR exploration project
My role: Game Flows, Interaction Design, 3D Models, 2D resources, Props

Quick View


All about Social

When do people want to socialize and communicate? I found inspiration from people's social life: 
Party Games
Video Social Games
People social when they: 
Cooperation, Competition, Communication, and Emotion Sharing.


I designed 2 minimal interaction demos to testing on social connections.
Demo 1:
Grab & Pass cubes
Demo 2: 2 player holding a balance board
Through play-testing on these demos, we found out how people react and their desire in social activities. 

User Journey

As the scope was to deliver an experience about in 10 mins, the team brainstormed about how to merge social activities in a storyline.
​And we found the BBQ party could be a delightful and relaxing social scenario.
I designed the player's journey based on BBQ party activities.

Special about


Although VR could provide a higher quality environment, there is advantage brought only by AR: 
Bring virtual into reality, player could enjoy the real world at the same time.


According to this found, I created physical props of a campfire and a magic box to connect the two remote players. Each of them had a set of props, and they all felt to invite the friend to there own house.

Magic Box gave player a magical feeling, and let players grab anything they need in the experience.
Campfire provide a delightful atmosphere, and players will cooperation on building campfire together. 
Final Experience

From Demos to Finals

After exploring demos and feedback we got from play-testing, I turned demos into social interactions in the BBQ scenarios.
Construct campfire together
Demo 1:
Grab & Pass cubes
Construct campfire together
Demo 2:
balance board
Players set grill together

Social Highlight Moments

Cook together
Eat & Feed each other
  1. Always pay attention to the scope, keep narrow down to make a concentrated experience. 

  2. Confused about the design? Time to play-test.

  3. Take advantage of AR: the mix of reality and virtual could bring a wonderful experience.

Design by Lai Wei © 2021