AR Games: Schedule
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Things to think about.

Toys (a perspective puzzle game)

Why it's good:

  1. A no-button game - just move mouse.
  2. A similar game in AR might work really well: move phone around a marker to align objects into a shape, such as a car or an animal.

A game similar to Toys is Pictorial on the iPhone:

Procedurally-Generated and Manipulated Content

If you use the above the game mechanic fromToys mentioned above and merge it with procedurally-generated content, the movement of the phone around the marker could cause a cloud of 3D shapes to twist and change color like a 3D Kaleidoscope.

Why it's good:

  1. We don't have a lot of dedicated artists, but we have some strong programmers that love art.
  2. It hasn't been explored in AR.
  3. Mapping movement of phone might feel intuitive to do (like twisting a kaleidoscope) but the results might look amazing and strange.
  4. Imagine a tiny little scene with lo-fi (but procedurally generated) grass, trees, and flowers like Darwinia blowing in the wind on top of an image marker sitting on a table. Perhaps the light source (the sun) is coming from the phone's position or perhaps the wind blows from the phone's position. Or perhaps moving the phone around causes the landscape to bloom, play musical notes, transform, and change.


Wikipedia entry

Why it's good:

  1. Lots of cool games like Fez and Passage began from the Gamma competitions they throw.
  2. The parameters are simple, yet inspiring. The pathos of their collective might inspire us to make pleasurable innovative little toys.

Experimental Gameplay Project

Why it's good:

  1. Innovation is structured around themes (gravity, deception, a one-button game, etc.) that help creativity (nothing worse than starting blank).
  2. You make a game based on the month's theme, and don't spend more than 7 days on it.
  3. Like an extended game jam where games get more polish.

Handheld AR Exemplars

1) Levelhead

Why it's good:

  1. Intuitive interface - it literally has pick-up-and-play mechanics
  2. No Set-up
  3. When you start the game you know what the goal of the game is: get the guy out of the maze.
  4. Cohesive design (art and game mechanics work well together)
  5. Gallery exhibition has captive audience

2) Be Careful, Fragile DISCONTINUED (describe

Why it's good:

  1. Intuitive interface - just poke the air above the plinth
  2. Immediate reward
  3. Inverts gallery culture of fragile objects
  4. Gallery exhibition has captive audience

3) Paparazzi

Why it's good:

  1. Uses readily available image (dollar bill) to play
  2. Get too close and character breaks camera
  3. Character twists body to look at camera
  4. Intuitive mechanic of taking pictures with phone
  5. Intuitive movement of phone as inspection tool
  6. Character grabs device which encourages player to forget about tracking and actually move phone around because the character swings with momentum

A two-player game that uses two one dollar bills is Shotgun Showdown. It also adds the dimension of gambling - lose the game and you lose your dollar.

4) Artvertiser

Why it's good:

  1. Liberal media eats culture-jamming art up - see Yes Men
  2. Uses readily available images (billboard ads)

5) Dennoh Figure ARis (Cyber Figure Alice) by Geisha Tokyo

Why it's good:

  1. Intuitive wand interface
  2. Lots of free publicity because of sexual content

6) Nerdherder

Why it's good:

  1. Intuitive use of interface distance and angle (push nerds away from phone's position).
  2. God-games work well on AR mobile platform (thinking about a little world on a table is a familiar concept).

7) Bugjuice

Why it's good:

    1. Magnifying glass mechanic is intuitive (distance of phone must be just right to focus light into a flame)
    2. Slow movement of phone to follow bugs is good for platform (you don't want the phone to move to fast).

8) ARhrrrr - An augmented reality shooter

Why it's good:

    1. Landmarks on printed marker helps orienting the player.
    2. Use of color to plant bombs, etc. (player can put any bright colored object in game, such as a red Skittle, and it becomes integrated into the game).

9) Candy Wars

Why it's good:

    1. Intuitive use of physical props. Player uses hands to manipulate physical markers to tweak and adjust angle of forces and objects in game.
    2. Free arrangement of markers in space (there is no limit to the game board

10) Nintendo 3DS AR

Why it's good:

    1. Level and game design is super simple.
    2. Card sinks into table forming a virtual pit that encourages the player to inspect / look around with device.
    3. The dragon and characters will twist body to look at camera - causing an emotional connection with player.