Lenovo Star Wars: Jedi Challenges Review: Battling Darth Vader In AR

Star Wars: Jedi Challenges Installation and Setup

As we've mentioned, there are several components that need to work together to enjoy Jedi Challenges. We've already talked about those components: the Mirage AR headset, your smartphone, the Lightsaber, and the Beacon. For the best experience, be sure that all the components are fully charged -- the headset and the Lightsaber each have their own Micro USB chargers included, but beacon requires AA batteries. Since your smartphone technically runs the show, this is where all the components link together.

app setup 2

You start by downloading the Star Wars: Jedi Challenges app from Google Play or the Apple App Store. The app installs just like any other. After the app is installed you need to find an area that is large enough to play, which can be a challenge if you have a small home or apartment (it was for me). Lenovo recommends a clear and open area about 4.5-feet by 10-feet in size.

star wars challnges palnets

Lenovo notes that it's best to stay away from direct sunlight and bright neon colors and lights, so playing outside may not be ideal. I played in an area smaller than recommended and it worked fine, however. One big caveat with the setup and positioning for play is that you need to be at least 4-feet from the beacon. If you are closer, it's very hard to see all the content, since menus and many enemies will be placed directly above the beacon.

Pay Attention To The Prompts

Everything has to be synced with the app running on your smartphone. The app does a very good job of walking you through the entire setup process for each piece of gear. Bluetooth does have to be on for the system to function. The calibration for the Lightsaber is simple, but critical, so be sure that you follow the instructions precisely.

I also learned the hard way when pairing the Lightsaber and headset with my phone to tick the boxes that tell the accessories to connect automatically. This will save you from some potential frustration once the smartphone is inside the head-mounted display (HMD), because you can’t touch the screen to tell the accessories to re-connect.

The installation of the smartphone into the headset requires simple a plastic tray designed to securely hold your smartphone in place. There are several cables included with the Jedi Challenges system that are very short and designed to connect your smartphone to the Mirage AR headset. Be sure you choose the appropriate cable and connect it with the cable on the left side of your smartphone with the length sticking up vertically from the handset.

tray tabs

You then place the smartphone into the plastic tray and slide some silver tabs to lock the device into place. Those tabs are important because they clamp the smartphone into the precise area it needs to be for use within the headset; they keep the smartphone from sliding around as you fight enemies and look around during gameplay. There is also a little plastic stopper that needs to be slid into place, to keep the phone from bouncing around. Improper adjustment of that stopper makes inserting the tray into the HMD difficult.

tray opening

Once all that setup is complete, you will be greeted with a continue prompt that will turn into a launch button that needs to be pressed before slipping the tray inside the headset and connecting the little cable. This is where I realized how important it was to have checked the boxes allowing the HMD and lightsaber to content automatically, so be sure you do too. If you miss this you have to remove the tray and sync again.

tap start

Once the tray and smartphone are inside the headset and the short cable is connected, you are ready to put the HMD on your head. It’s very easy to adjust the fit using the Velcro tabs to keep the headset in place as you play. After the straps are tightened, you simply look at that glowing pink beacon, press a button on the lightsaber, and you are ready to play.

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