I recently completed the game design and implementation of a new Augmented Reality puzzle game for A&E television. I worked closely with the extremely talented programmer Patrick O’Shaughnessey, who I have worked with on-and-off since the mid-nineties. We did the project for a new agency called Circ.us.
It’s an innovative project, and here’s why: Unlike most other examples of Augmented Reality, we created a simple puzzle game that uses the marker itself as the input device. To Patrick and I this seemed like a pretty obvious thing to do, but apparently there are not a lot of other examples that do the same (at least not outside of academia.)
Augmented Reality is in a sort of awkward adolescent stage… the printed marker is clearly not an ideal way of doing things, but it’s all we have right now. So in order to make the best use of that limitation, it just seemed to make sense to take advantage of the toolkit’s ability to recognize how the marker is oriented. (It helps that Patrick is such a great programmer.)
Although our example is pretty simple, and the game mechanics are that of a child’s toy, I think the experience itself turns out to be pretty good one. I imagine that using the marker as the input device will probably catch on with other developers.
Hopefully we’ll be able to do some much more interesting AR for smart phones and other devices soon.
- Me: Game Design, UI programming, Art Direction
- Patrick O’Shaughnessey: Game Programming (gameplay, 3D rendering, FB connect)
- Shaun Bingham: 2D art and layout
- Sam Pizzo: 2D art and layout
- Chris Leathers: 3D art and animation
- Tim Wagner: Sound design
- John Swords: Project management/production
- Adam Broitman: Sales and account management