Pebble Wristwatch Opens up Unexpected Avenue for Gaming

Last we reported on the Pebble wristwatches (about a week ago), the Pebble Kickstarter was sitting on $4.5 million after just a few hours. The Pebble had already beaten out Double Fine as the most funded Kickstarter and was well past its funding goal (which in retrospect seems hilarious low-balled) of $100,000.

The Pebble's appeal lies in its ability to run its own apps, and, through Bluetooth, to sync to Android phones and iPhones to notify wearers of new messages or to allow wearers to control simple phone tasks, such as skipping tracks while listening to music.

However, the Pebble developers at Allerta want more out of the Pebble watch. They want to take advantage of the Pebble's technology to allow users to game on the go. With the watch's four buttons, accelerometer, and e-paper screen (that refreshes at 30 FPS), games can definitely work on the watch. According to Pebble creator Eric Migicovsky, the folks at Allerta are already prototyping games for the watch: "Internally, we built Space Invaders on it, and I think there are a lot of really cool little casual games or classic games that we can bring over to Pebble… I can definitely imagine things like Tetris clones, or multiplayer games going on with the watch. It would be awesome."

Since the watch can sync with a smartphone via Bluetooth, there's always the potential for developers to develop apps and games that use the Internet.

The SDK is free and Migicovsky hopes that developers hop on board to develop for the Pebble before it launches so that Pebble games can really take off.

The Pebble watch will be released September later this year. As of now, there are over 45,000 backers. If you're looking to grab up the Pebble yourself, you've already missed out on the early bird specials, but you can still get the Pebble in Jet Black at $115, which is far cheaper than the intended retail price of over $150.

Catherine Cai is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in Tom's Guide, Tom's Hardware, VG 24/7, RipTen, and The Game Fanatics. She has also worked as a lead producer for video game projects, a manager and lighting director for the stage, and a software engineer. Currently, she works as a Production Engineering Manager for Shopify.