Interactive multiplayer game
“We:Balance” is a multiplayer game that requires people a sense of balance, cooperative attitude, and competitive spirit. This game implements Nintendo’s Wii Balance Board as controllers. Players need to step onto their Wii balance board and change the center of pressure of their body to control their characters.
Wii Balance Board
HOW IT WORKS
All game play happens in the tilting platform. The platform is tilting based on the center of weight of all players.
The ultimate goal of the game is to stay on the platform. At the same time, trick other players to fall off from the platform by breaking the balance of the platform.
To win this game, players need to be competitive and cooperative.
ITP WINTER SHOW
We Balance was presented at ITP WINTER SHOW 2013 and we got a great amount of attention from audiences. We got some invitation for game shows and were asked to present our project for medical usage. If you are interested in our project and have them played in your place for any event,
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The original intention of this game was to deliver a narrative of unveiling part of your life. The story was about choices that we never made and choices we didn't even know exisiting. But the narrative seemed to be too serious and couldn’t come out with an idea to build a game to deliver this story.
Instead of “Choices”, I’ve decided to change the main concept to “Balance”. Then, I came out with the idea of balancing on the our small world and found the biggest inspiration, “Balance(Wolfgang y Christoph Lauenstein, 1989).” Players are on the tilting floor, and need to keep balance to survive, or not to let others fall off, or just to keep the good balance of their own world.
After making decision of what type of game I wanted to make, I decided to invite Jaewoong Hwang to join my project as he is an experienced game developer and is knowledgable of game mechanics. We often had intense meetings to set, prove, and reset our concept together.
We wanted to build a physical game, which people need to play with their body to encourage physical interaction among people. We looked through from sony motion controllers, kinect and custom-built consoles to explore variant type of interaction. Our final decision was to use wii balance board, which perfectly matches our game concept, Balance.
The game mechanism is simple, but it does tell a story with elaborating level structure to bring the narrative of balance in our life. The first level is just an empty platform that tilts. As the level goes further, however, it starts to represent some environments we face everyday; like home, office, and the entire city, thus makes players to feel engaged into their real life as a stage while playing the game together.
To play test our game, we participated in EYEBEAM’s Playtest on site. There are several things we wanted to test before presenting at show.
- Is it fun to play? Does people understand the underlying narrative?
- Does players understand how to play with Wii balance board?
- Should we ask people to hold their hand or not? Would it impact on game play?
The feedback was great and play testers loved the game. However, there was a complain about the interface. Since the perspective of the platform is isometric and wii balance isn’t, people who are not familar with wii balance won’t know how to play instantly. So,I came out with a solution.
We Balance Interface Demo
To solve the perspective issue and train players how to use wii balance board to control their game character, I created a tutorial interface to indicate which direction their character will go with their input.
We deploy this interface before starting game for players to explore wii balance board and players at show instantly understand how to control.