Mobile Game Research, 2005

Collaborators:  Clay Howey, GAIT, BCIT, Mike Snelgrove, and Mike Blackstock, Ted Lau, Balistic Arts Media, Rodger Lea, Mobile Muse, and The Dragon Boat Festival, Vancouver, BC

In 2005, the Digital Dragon Boat Race (DDBR) was the first of its kind game experience in North America. It was a competitive REAL game played on foot using wireless technology to discover 6 locations significant to the Dragon Boat Festival´s history in Vancouver, BC, Canada area.   This game challenged teams to achieve the fastest time possible as they navigated a maze of clues leading them through a culturally amplified, treasure hunt.  Players or Teams (up to 4 people) with the fastest times collected clues and discovered locations in the mobile game which lead to the Big Screen Game playoffs at Vancouver’s Science World on June 18, 2005.

I worked with designers, writers and the game infrastructure team to finalize the game concept, prototype and game play experience to the final implementation.  Designed as a research project the goal of this work was to explore how mobile applications can enrich cultural experiences and build community by engaging people on the street and other public places.  Research questions: 1) how can play be embedded into the design of mobile applications that educate and entertain? 2) how does mobile technologies extend the reach of cultural festivals? and 3) how can technology enhance place and community?

Images: This images below represent some of the visual aspects of the game. Ted Lau, Balistic Arts Media

Related Publications
Jeffrey, P., Blackstock, M., Deutscher, M., Lea, R.: Creating Shared Experiences and Cultural Engagement through Location-Based Play. In: Computer Games and CSCW workshop at ECSCW 2005, Paris, France (2005)
Bardram, J.E.: The Java Context Awareness Framework (JCAF) – A Service Infrastructure and Programming Framework for Context-Aware Applications. In: Pervasive Computing: Third International Conference, Springer, Berlin (2005)

About Mobile Muse, 2005
Mobile MUSE (Multimedia Urban Shared Experience) was a research project focused on the exploration of culture and mobile computing funded by Heritage Canada. Mobile MUSE incorporated the work of independent designers, artists and technologists, the MAGIC Lab at the University of British Columbia and researchers at SFU, ECIAD and BCIT. Under the umbrella of Mobile MUSE companies such as Bell, Telus, IBM were brought in as evaluation of research contributions and innovation experts. I worked on the design of the Digital Dragon Boat Race.