Projekt ARES

Music: Wepa Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

You want to build a professional dry fire range for little money? Project ARES makes it possible.
Project ARES is a shooting simulation in which you shoot at a projected image with a laser gun. A camera films the screen and detects the light spot of the laser. The position of the laser dot is calculated exactly and the shooting cinema is ready to go. For private users, the software is completely free of charge and also uses inexpensive hardware. This makes ARES significantly cheaper than comparable systems, but it does not have to hide behind the competition in terms of precision or range of functions. In the more than 10 years in which ARES has been constantly developed further, it has been able to inspire thousands of users all over the world. In addition to computer gamers and sport shooters, hunters, security services and even government agencies and their employees use Project ARES to train reaction, skill and safe handling of firearms without bangs, smoke and ammunition costs.

Ares Schießkino Aufbau

ARES is designed to be used with a minimum of components components. You need a simple beamer and a standard webcam with a colour filter. In addition, you need a laser gun that generates a short laser pulse at the push of a button. However, a simple laser pointer is also sufficient for testing the system. The Components section explains how you can build your own laser pistol with a little knowledge of electronics and some manual skills. If you don't want to do it yourself, you can find shop also offers laser guns and other compatible devices. The last thing you need is a colour filter that you can attach in front of the webcam and that is matched to the wavelength of the laser you are using. This is also explained in the hardware section. There is also a camera in the shop that has been selected for optimal function with ARES and has a colour filter mounted.

At the beginning, one has to start the calibration wizard under the menu item "Settings". This guides the user through setting up the system in eight simple steps. First, the camera is aligned with the projected image and then the exact position of the screen is determined automatically. Finally, the image parameters of the camera and the brightness of the filmed laser are set. After that, the system is ready for operation. There is also the option of calibrating an offset to compensate for deviations from lasers mounted at an angle. The entire menu navigation can then also be operated with the laser gun. For each of the steps, the wizard contains instructions as well as tips for an optimal result. In the instructions section, there is also a video explaining the calibration process.

The development of ARES began in 2007 and it was first released in 2012. Since then, new games or other functions have been added again and again, mostly in direct consultation with the needs of the users.


Music: Wepa Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

The calibration of the laser detection is done in a simple wizard and takes only a few minutes. The exact procedure is described in the video above. There are German and English subtitles.


Create and shoot IPSC ranges yourself - the IPSC game and the accompanying editor make it possible. Simply place walls, targets and other objects in the virtual world and create a movement path. Then configure the number of shots and special actions such as reloading at the various positions and off you go. In addition to the typical IPSC targets, drop targets and even moving targets are also available. In addition, there is a selection of walls, crates, barrels and grass to embellish the landscape. It is also possible to use your own image files as backgrounds. The range files have the extension *.IPSC and must be located in the folder "IPSCRanges". For each *.IPSC file, a *.png file with the same name can be copied into the folder, which serves as a preview in the selection menu. A screenshot from the editor is useful here (F1 key). Any image files used must also be in this folder.

If you do not want to build your own, you will find a small selection of ranges already integrated in ARES.

Duck Hunt

Screenshot EntenjagdA game in Moorhuhun style. Time, ammunition and the spread of the shotgun can be adjusted.

Balloon Shooting

Think first, then shoot is the principle of this game. You may only shoot at the balloon that contains the solution to the calculation task. The speed of the balloons and the difficulty of the tasks can be adjusted. Those who are lazy about arithmetic can also choose only the colour of the balloons as a target criterion.


A disc repeatedly rotates towards and away from the player for three seconds, whereby exactly one shot may be fired at the disc at a time. Instead of spinning the disc, the release can also be signalled by a traffic light.

Dueling tree

A game for two players. When a player hits a disc on his side, it flips to the opponent's side. As soon as a player has no more discs on his side, he wins.


Screenshot DosenschießenTwo players take turns shooting a ball against a wall. The colour of the ball indicates which player's turn it is. If the ball is not hit until it reaches the front, the round is lost and the opponent gets a point. The player with the most points after an adjustable number of rounds wins.

Can Shooting

Screenshot DosenschießenThe player has to shoot tin cans and glass bottles from a fence in the shortest possible time. In this game a physics engine is used, which provides a realistic falling behaviour of the cans and glass splinters.

Falling targets

Screenshot FallscheibenThe player has to hit 5 targets as quickly as possible with a maximum of 8 shots. The start signal is given acoustically at a random time. This game demands the highest level of reaction from the player. The size of the targets can be varied.

Drop disc duel

Screenshot FallscheibenSimilar to the drop disc game, except that two players compete against each other at the same time.

Folding discs

The player has 15 seconds to hit as many discs as possible. Only one disc is visible at a time. If this disc is hit, the next one flips up at a random position. There are several targets to choose from in this game and it is even possible to use your own targets. To do this, a 3D model of the target must be copied in MDL format into the folder "KlappscheibenZiele".

Clay pigeon shooting

In each round, 2 clay pigeons are launched in random directions and the player has 2 shots from a shotgun to hit them. The starting positions of the targets and the position of the player are adjustable. The number of rounds in a match and the spread (choke) of the shotgun are also adjustable.The bullets are simulated realistically here, i.e. the spread and the flight time to the target increase with distance. Thus, a precisely adjusted lead is indispensable for a hit.


Similar to the drop target game, the aim is to clear 5 targets as quickly as possible. In single mode, 5 shots are available. In relay mode, there are 3 additional shots in case you miss targets, but they have to be reloaded manually.


In this game, targets appear at random positions, but disappear again shortly afterwards. The player must hit these targets beforehand. The earlier he hits a target, the more points he gets.The game consists of individual levels. The higher the level, the more targets appear at the same time.If the player misses 3 targets in one level, the game is over.


Screenshot FreundFeind-Schießspiel 24 discs appear in a grid - 12 red and white and 12 red and black. The player must hit all 12 white discs as quickly as possible. Each hit on a black disc costs 5 penalty seconds. The game is over when the player has hit all 12 white targets 4 times in a row.


Simple targets, as you know them from any shooting range. In addition to the targets included in ARES, any BMP, PNG or TGA file can be used. All you have to do is copy them into the folder "Targets". For scoring, a second image file of the same type can be copied into the folder with "SCORE" added to the file name.ARES then automatically assigns these scoring targets to the corresponding targets. A value of 1 in the red channel counts as 0.1 points, so that a value of 100 corresponds to ten points. The other colour channels are not evaluated and can be used to make the hit zones in the image easily distinguishable for the viewer.

Running target

This target allows you to practise correct timing and pointing when shooting at moving targets. The same targets can be used as in the target game. The scoring works in the same way.

Mouse simulation

In this mode, ARES technology is used to control the mouse in Windows or other programmes. Programmes, scripts and websites can be called directly from ARES. It is also possible to pass call parameters to programmes and scripts. For this purpose, you can edit the file "MouseSimGames.txt" to add your own programmes/scripts/websites to the selection list.
Each detected shot moves the mouse to the corresponding position and performs a left click. To enable a reload required by make games, a right click or key press is simulated after an adjustable number of shots.

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