Meeposphere

As a Meeple the globe is a dangerous place. Unable to find a way on their own, they need somebody to assist them on their way to find the cube in the center of the world.

The Player, watching the Meeples and their dangerous territory through a tablet, guides them by placing markers on the surface of a real existing sphere. With these markers the player is able to maneuver them safely through the world or catapult them over otherwise impassable obstacles.

 

Meeposphere was one of two three week game jam projects of the 5th term. Each team, consisting of 3 students, got a unique theme that was randomly assigned and could be swapped with other teams. Our team got ‘Globe Game’ and we kept it because it sounded interestingly enough.

The constraints were simple: the interface and/or display of the game should be a sphere existing in reality. It was suggested to use AR-technology and pattern tracking for the game. Since we found out during our work that pattern tracking on a sphere is a rather difficult task, we put a cube in a transparent sphere.

Game Concept

The basic concept for Meeposphere was set on day one. We knew that three weeks are not much time, especially when we needed to work with unknown technology, so we kept our ideation process short. We decided on a simple idea that translates well through tablet and the real life sphere. Meeposphere is an obstacle course in which the player has to guide little creatures over the surface of the world. The player can place markers to call these creatures or to push them in a desired direction. Scattered over the globe are more Meeples for the player to collect and rescue but only one of them is needed to win the game.

Impressions

Summary

Compared to earlier project this was a new experience for me in more than one way. With three people we were a rather small team. The responsibilities needed to be clear. We talked as a group about everything concerning the game but it was not possible to leave the area of one’s own to try something unfamiliar.

It gave me the opportunity to improve my routine regarding structured programming. I got the opportunity to write an AI and path finding on a sphere nearly from scratch. I loved this challenge as well as the exposure to the Augmented Reality technology. I would liked to have an additional week just for experimenting but I am mostly satisfied with what we achieved in the time we were given.

The atmosphere of our team was great and I enjoyed working with them everyday at our working place in the university.