This is now the second app jam I have done an I am really noticing the benefit to having to come up with something interesting within the confines of the, er, constraints. This jam was based around the theme of the module which is ‘Location Aware Apps’.
The initial theme was then further constrained with the words Police, Withdraw, and Difficulty. We were told that there would be an added twist in that there would also be a set of modifiers added to the mix. The plan was that you would have to incorporate and, yep, you guessed, ‘modify’ the concept that had no doubt been bubbling in your brain. It served another purpose too. It stopped the Jam getting too technical to quickly and forced us to stay away from actual development and stay with the ideas a bit longer. I think that this was good for me as I tend to do two things, although I am working on both of them.
1: I jump straight in. When I have some idea that I think is awesome, I tend to want to run with it and I do wonder if at least some of that is done to me wanting to get to some sort of execution before the sense of the idea being ‘awesome’ dissipates. I like the excitement of having an idea, developing it out and then seeing it on-screen.
2: I seem to be in good company with this one and it’s the game devs old enemy, over-scoping. I get very carried away once my brain starts ticking and ideas spawn ideas and so on. I will say, although every over-scoping addict will say this, that I think I do have a good ability to stay focused and on track. I don’t come up with sets of mechanics that should really be in different games, it does all fit in with the idea that I am developing. There just tends to be a lot of it. I think that this is why I like Agile, Epics, User Stories and so on. Its a really good way of being allowed to get carried away and then making sure that you just pick that one or two features that you are going to make first.
The modifiers for the Jam were (pulled from Canvas, I dont have the time to type all this!):
- Happy Anniversary!
- Your app should incorporate one of GAM730 2018’s themes – either COMBINE, GHOST or EXPLORATIVE – in addition to this year’s three themes.
- Public information
- Use offline or live data from a public API in your app.
- LEGO Got It Right
- There are no spoken or written words in this app. This is even true in the instructions.
- Wrist Watcher
- The app is designed to run on a smart-watch, or uses wearable technology in some way.
- Use haptics (vibration/rumble) to make your app more accessible to people who have some difficulty seeing or hearing
- Where in the world is…
- App content changes depending on the user’s geographical location (GPS, IP location, etc). The user experience is therefore significantly different for people all around the globe.
So my Idea was to produce a mobile game that uses Geo-Location and Augmented Reality to provide the player with a secret agent type experience. The player would interact with a Handler, who is fully voice acted, and be sent out into the real world on Operations that they would be able to complete by going to a location, performing some action and leaving the area quickly. The suitable modifiers (or Diversifiers) as I have just realised they are called, may be Wrist Watcher, Rumbled and Public Information. I have lots more information about this idea and if I have more time I would like to talk about how I came up with it and perhaps present the entire concept.