Meleap’s HADO is an augmented reality team sport building lots of momentum in Japan and in countries throughout the world. HADO players wear wireless and mobile AR headsets they can see through and arm trackers.
Casual and serious players gather on a court and throw powered up energy balls at each other like a game of digital dodgeball and block incoming attacks using AR shields. Players have to learn to gauge the actions of the opposing team, customize their weapon and defense loadouts, and work together for points.
As far as the AR eSport realm goes, HADO is the first of its kind.
HADO World Cup 2018
Since we last covered HADO, the game has had 12 countries onboard their PvP, 2v2, and 3v3 arena game for casual competition. Recently, the AR esport company announced that they are promoting their current Master (Pro) League season and are hosting qualifying tournaments leading up to the HADO World Cup 2018 on December 8th.
Posted on their blog, “HADO players that were winners in preliminaries in countries around the world will gather in Tokyo for the most powerful games and prize money that totals three million yen.” It’s expected that 12 to 16 teams from 4 to 6 countries will faceoff on the HADO court. Only one team will rise up at Star Rise Tower as league champions.
Current HADO Pro League
HADO’s Master (Pro) League’s third season will continue to compete in matches until November 24th. Viewers online can watch all competitions broadcasted live on YouTube. Recently, HADO Masters posted about a 13 to 7 game where Team Wow Cha ☆ ☆ Pee Po vs. Hybrus competed.
While watching the match, players had to be fast and flexible, often squatting and then jumping back up to avoid getting hit by energy balls. Some players were even diving onto the floor (with kneepads)!
Future HADO Pro League Tryouts
VR Scout’s Kyle Melnick reports that the newest HADO Pro team is “Launching Q1 2019 in Japan” and that “the pro league initiative will feature the best and brightest HADO players duking it out for augmented glory in one of HADO’s 60+ arenas spread throughout 15 countries.” The Pro League starts their official season towards the middle of 2019, says the VR site.
All HADO hopefuls from the age 7 and up are welcome to play matches. But only the fittest and strategic players will make the cut for its Pro League. We reported that HADO players use augmented reality “shields and larger barriers to defend the players on your side from being hit”. Players also need to be strategic with their shield, “because the shield will get weaker with every hit and will eventually break and need to recharge.”
The game is so movement heavy that those expecting to break into pro level play would need to be able to prove their “ducking, dodging and diving” agility. Players will also need “quick reflexes and coordination to escape those rapid-fire energy balls” and be great at shielding and customizing their offensive and defensive load outs.
If you can’t do any of those high-impact moves with kneepads on, I think you’re out of luck. Don’t be bummed out, you can always train in VR!
Interested in HADO?
#HADO is officially going to be showcasing at #DesignerCon! We are partnering with @VRScout and will be giving anyone and everyone a chance to experience HADO. Are You In?#HADO #DCON2018 #DesignerCon2018 #AR #AugmentedReality #Virtual #Gaming #Sports #esport #AreYouIn #Reality pic.twitter.com/1kwI6qV8NQ
— HADO USA (@hado_usa) November 10, 2018
Players in the United States currently have only one location in Alta Mere, Texas at The Secret Chambers Escape Room to play and practice at. Hopefully, more businesses across the U.S. will begin hosting games.
VR Scout reports that HADO is aiming to grow their league “to the APAC, EU, and US by 2020.” If you’re looking to host HADO at your arcade or LBE business, go here to fill out the interest form.
HADO will be attending DesignerCon which will go from November 16th to the 18th. Check them out if you’ll be there!