This project demonstrates advanced possibilities of using the «living 3D markers» technology of augmented reality in print media.
The heart of this interactive 3D game is the idea of a labyrinth with a ball passing through a set of various obstacles. The reader’s goal is to go through the entire labyrinth.
The ball rolls through a maze designed in the form of a computer motherboard. There are different obstacles on its way: microcircuits, chips, wires, cooling fans and so on.
Players control the ball’s movements and push it in the right direction by tilting the «living 3D marker» in front of the webcam.
What’s more, this time we used a nonlinear interactive game with its own set of rules instead of a 3D model with pre-programmed animation.
The result depends solely on the player: he/she can guide the ball to the finish line or lose it somewhere in the maze.
In the process of creating the virtual labyrinth we used real laws of physics. All these laws were modeled in the virtual world by our designers. As a result the ball’s movements depend on gravity, friction, inertia, etc.
Creating the game
At first our specialists created hand-drawn sketches of the labyrinth. Based on these drawings they created a virtual computer world – a 3D model of a motherboard, slot structures, capacitors, coolers and cooling tubes.
In order to make the gaming process more exciting, we devised a set of various obstacles accompanied with some visual effects.
For example, areas, where the ball must not go in danger of losing «life», are indicated by a white-red line. If the ball rolls into these areas, there is a short circuit with flying sparkles and blinking lights.
In order to give players an opportunity to choose a comfortable difficulty level, we created a special interactive menu with three options: «easy», «medium» and «hard». On each level the ball has a different number of available «lives».
Depending on the difficulty level chosen players have a number of attempts or «lives». If a player uses all of them, the motherboard breaks, and the game starts over.
We also added a number of scenes from the «ComputerBild will help» video. They are presented in the form of drawn comics in the game. In the very beginning users can watch a short static comics-screensaver. When players reach the finish line or lose they can see some special comics on the screen.
The main «villains» of the labyrinth are cooling fans. Airflows push the ball away making it difficult to control its movements. A player has to guide the ball through the coolers’ blades. The coolers are not so easy to pass. There is a trick in the labyrinth; it’s up to you to guess it!
You can play this unique interactive 3D game on your own PC right now (please ensure a camera is connected to your computer).