What pervasive game designers can learn from Snow

(cross-posted from sandpit.hideandseekfest.co.uk/blog

The snow generated a huge amount of comment about social changes. A return to innocence, a rare moment when talking to strangers, play, urban creativity are all allowed. A suspension of the usual rules of engagement… All themes close to Hide&Seek’s heart, so I thought I’d reflect briefly on what snow might mean in terms of games design.

1. Snow is pervasive. Well, that’s certainly true… It’s a unifying social event - more than football, Strictly Come Dancing or Brad Pitt, snow affects every single person underneath its blanket.
2. Snow is transformative. It changes everything. Speed of travel, acoustics, the way the world looks. It’s an incredibly powerful game-rule. Incidentally, when in a game has it snowed? And has the impact of snow ever been truly brought off in a game?
3. Snow is an enabler of play and creativity. Like sand, but even better. It’s affordances are numerous - you can slide on it, build things with it, throw snowballs. All complementary activities, especially building snowmen and throwing snowballs - bored of building? Start a snowball fight. Bored of fighting? Finish your snowman. Furthermore, this technology is non-digital, and free.
4. Snow reminds us of childhood, family, and fun. I was out at 7am yesterday, and the giddy sense of joy I felt recalled each REALLY BIG snowfall, all joined together in my memory, a Proustian rush of sledging, waking in the middle of the night and seeing the flakes under the sodium streetlamp, yells of ‘It’s Sticking’. Snow is the opposite of work - it’s ingrained in our minds that Snow=No School=Play.
5. Snow is a little bit extreme. It’s really really cold. It hurts your hands. You might fall on your bum. A snowball in the gob or a sledge crash can be a bit harsh. But all of these threats are relatively mild (compared to, say, a rugby tackle, or a F1 racecar crash.
6. Snow is temporary. It’s perfect when it lands, and you know, you just know, it’s all going to turn to slush and ice in no time at all. So you have to play while you can.
7. Snow only happens outdoors. Snow increases in quality, the further you are from traffic. Parks beat side streets beat main roads.
Anyone got any ideas for a pervasive game that might reflect some of the qualities of snow?

Views: 5

Add a Comment

You need to be a member of 38minutes to add comments!

Join 38minutes

Comment by Stuart Cosgrove on February 9, 2009 at 9:44
Snow also turns yellow with urination as do books and box-sets and games if you are not careful.
Comment by DebPolson on February 9, 2009 at 9:16
sorry... better info on the family version: http://newishmedia.com/index.php/projects/sms-treasure-hunts/
Comment by DebPolson on February 9, 2009 at 9:14
take a look at http://scootgame.com this game is originally designed for families to play together. Guided by virtual characters that SMS them quests from another world... the family groups move from museum spaces to city squares and parks... collaborating and competing with other families.

Four yummy things we eard them say:

1. "Now Everything Looks like a Game" Young girl
2. "You brought his world to my world" mother of 2 boys
3. "Im going to make my own game!"Young girl
4. "I just found myself learning!" Young boy

(However the latest version is for a University, helping new students to meet each other and orient themselves to the their new campus...)

email me with any questions... I LOVE chatting about this stuff as much as I love making these games and watching groups play.
deb@newishmedia.com

Members

Latest Network Activity

Twig added a discussion to the group Wanted; Jobs, Skills, Resource
Thumbnail

TWIG – Production / Post Production Assistant

TWIG – Production / Post Production Assistant – Six months initial contract. Immediate Start £16,000 p.a.Closing Date: Fri 29th May 2015Location: GlasgowOrganisation: TwigContact Link: www.twig-world.comContact Email: recruitment@twig-world.comSalary: £16,000 p.a. Twig is a dynamic multi-platform producer and distributor of factual film and digital resources for the…See More
18 hours ago
Chris Goodwin left a comment for Nicholas Tocher
"I had a look at your showreel video and I think it looks great.  I hope you have great success in the future."
yesterday
Chris Goodwin posted a photo
yesterday
Radiator Digital added a discussion to the group Wanted; Jobs, Skills, Resource
Thumbnail

Vacancy - Graduate Front End Developer at Radiator Digital

We are looking for a talented individual to join our front end development team. The ideal candidate will be proficient in taking design mock-ups and converting them into pixel-perfect responsive layouts, as well as adapting and customising existing builds in line with changing business needs. All work must be tested and optimised across many different platforms and devices, with problem-solving and polish applied when necessary.In order to apply you will need:HTML5 & CSS3Basic working…See More
Thursday
Daniel Brown posted a blog post

Cement Tiles – Best Choice for Home Improvement

Are you planning on home improvement? If your answer is yes, you must consider cement tiles. These tiles are not only colourful and attractive but they are also waterproof, compact and very durable. Cement tiles are also known as Moroccan tiles, Encaustic tiles and Portuguese tiles. These are handmade tiles and manufactured following an old process. Unlike other tiles, handmade tiles are not baked but pressed through a hydraulic tile press.…See More
Tuesday
Joanna Susskind and Russell are now friends
Tuesday
Chris Goodwin posted a photo
Sunday
Nicholas Tocher commented on Nicola Sinclair's group 'This way for talent'
"Hi all, I'm an experienced motion graphics designer currently looking to collaborate on projects large and small. I have experience in 2D animation, graphic design and editing. Check out my showreel for examples of my work: Please get in…"
May 15

Companies, Groups and Organizations.

Contributors

38minutes is run by a small group of
volunteers, including:

 

Nicola Sinclair

Site editor

 

 

 

Gavin Robertson

Groups Co-ordinator

 

 

 

Espen Brunborg

Runs the Web group

 

 

 

Ashley Smith Hammond

Runs Digital Innovation group

 

 

 

Frank McGowan

Runs TV & Film group

 

 

 

Brian Baglow

Runs Gaming group

 

 

 

Would you like to volunteer? Get in touch!

Photos

Loading…
  • Add Photos
  • View All

Videos

  • Add Videos
  • View All

© 2015   Created by Nicola Sinclair.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service