Author Topic: Table Top Computer Board Games  (Read 41959 times)

Offline Wiweeyum

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on: December 19, 2008, 08:35:55 PM
I don't like video games because of their lack of a social aspect. Playing games to me is supposed to be a fun way to enjoy other peoples company while challenging each other. A way to taunt and jeer and just plain have fun. Videogames take away the social aspect, and no matter what is done to re-introduce it (mic's, LAN parties, MMORPG's, etc.), they will never as socially engaging as a board game. When one is used to staring at a screen for entertainment, it's hard to do anything else.

That said, I don't think board games are the end all be all of game entertainment. Yes I think they're more wholesome and fulfilling in the long run, there's only so much you can do with them before they become too tedious or boring. I also think that technology should be taken advantage of in its fullest extent. So my idea is to blend the complex number crunching ability and graphics capabilities of computers with the social aspect of board games.

I set up this powerpoint presentation to explain the concept. Basically it's a wiimote whiteboard projected onto a table.
http://docs.google.com/Presentation?id=dhn9d2vr_148dx5mwxhg
In the powerpoint, I describe some advantages and disadvantages of games as they are now.

This is a powerpoint presentation describing one of the many ways that this setup could be leveraged. I reworked the classic game RISK to fit the limitations and possibilities of being a table top computer board game.
http://docs.google.com/Presentation?id=dhn9d2vr_71cnjf7n5d

Here's a thread I started a while ago that uses the same concept, but is gear toward single player instead of multi player. This was mainly an exercise to see if I could simplify the controls for an existing game to fit the limitations of the wiimotes tracking.
http://www.wiimoteproject.com/project-ideas/single-input-stylus-rts-game/

One of these days I'll be able to get past prototyping and actually implement something. :) I made both of these mostly so I wouldn't forget, but also so I could use them as a way to introduce them to folks on the internet, or to someone who's very visual.

Thanks guys,
-Scott

EDIT:
Two posts down, insertnick posted a link to a thread here on the Wiimote Project boards with a goal of finding the cheapest projectors around so they could be used for a table top computer board game setup. Check out the thread here.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2008, 11:11:02 AM by Wiweeyum »


~"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction."~
- EF Schumacher


Offline insertnick

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Reply #1 on: December 20, 2008, 05:45:41 AM
Awesome, Scott.
We should cut down the expenses at max for this kind of computer board games to be an affordable thing for normal individuals. Assuming a laptop is already owned, we need a cheap, compact, small video projector (under $100), which still doesn't exist at my knowledge.

I'll make a post to hear about the cheapest, smallest, practical video projectors around which could be used for you computer board games setup.



Offline insertnick

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Reply #2 on: December 20, 2008, 05:58:37 AM
« Last Edit: December 20, 2008, 06:30:27 AM by insertnick »



Offline Wiweeyum

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Reply #3 on: December 20, 2008, 06:48:32 AM
Thanks insertnick! That's been the biggest hold back up to this point. Hopefully some good inexpensive projectors can be found. :) I don't have access to a school projector for my own uses, so finding one of these would be great for home use.


~"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction."~
- EF Schumacher


Offline Wiweeyum

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Reply #4 on: December 21, 2008, 09:11:34 PM
After talking with Deceit for a bit, he's going to be working on building a prototype for the RISK game. Awesome!

So to help, I made this powerpoint that goes stage by stage and describes what the controls will be like exactly. I think it'll work well.

www.vioflem.com/files/wiimote/StageControls.ppt


~"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction."~
- EF Schumacher


Offline insertnick

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Reply #5 on: December 22, 2008, 04:46:25 AM
Go, go, go!!! :)
If you need some help in 2D graphics, I can try.



Offline Deceit

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Reply #6 on: December 22, 2008, 12:13:54 PM
if your up it it nick that would certanly help out, at the moment im still working on the basic engine so im just using place holders for now.

 but we should all get on AIM or something to talk about features and the overall "feel" or look we are trying to acheive

i should have the first stage's (reinforcment) engine done and ready to show your guys by tonight or tomarrow morning at the latest ( had some problums with my D3D drivers yesterday but thats all fixed now,... still dont know why they crasheds :( )

anything helps so feel free to give your input or provide resorces... thats what im here doing ;D

anyway i have to go to work but my AIM is : Deceit303

i should be on later ,



Offline Wiweeyum

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Reply #7 on: December 22, 2008, 01:54:50 PM
Sounds great.


~"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction."~
- EF Schumacher


Offline insertnick

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Reply #8 on: December 22, 2008, 02:13:08 PM
For those who don't have Power Point (like me), here it is an online version of Wiweeyum's previously posted .ppt file.



Offline Wiweeyum

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Reply #9 on: December 22, 2008, 02:14:44 PM
Ah, I'll make I do that from now on. Thanks insertnick.


~"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction."~
- EF Schumacher


Offline insertnick

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Reply #10 on: December 22, 2008, 02:43:51 PM
but we should all get on AIM or something to talk about features and the overall "feel" or look we are trying to acheive

I can't use AIM or something like that by now, sorry.
Btw I think graphics should be essentially black background, and very bright coloured thick lines for contours, with zones filled with a darker colour. The map shot in Scott's ppt presentation conveys the idea somehow. I think Tron-style graphics is the path tho follow here, because we'll have the game projected on the table, which means every unessential source of light must be avoided. Contrast, contrast contrast. Lot of black. Evident stuff full white, mainly lines, contours, etc. Other lines with saturated colours, and fills with dark colours.
Tricks like dotted lines for differentiation, etc.

I think the best way to go could be 2D vector graphics, which will give us more independence from resolution (which is a good thing here). Or, better (cool!) a 3D engine (the game would have a 2D look and feel, but sometimes surprising/entertaining the players us cool 3D effects when necessary).





Offline Wiweeyum

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Reply #11 on: December 22, 2008, 02:56:18 PM
I can't agree more. This is what I imagined (with a bit more color variation) when I was looking for a map background to be used in the powerpoint stuff. Th virtual reality Tron look is exactly right for this.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fa4rzo3uSkU&eurl=http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=defcon&emb=0&aq=f&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

The game's worth looking at so you can see the vector based country outlines, and how clean it looks with all the functionality it has.
Grab the demo here at www.introversion.co.uk. The download is small and it's very system friendly resource wise.
If you can't watch youtube for whatever reason, here's a link to some screenshots.
http://www.introversion.co.uk/defcon/about/screenshots.html


EDIT:
I threw together a picture that separates the continents from each other. I think this could work well if it was like this.

« Last Edit: December 22, 2008, 03:22:17 PM by Wiweeyum »


~"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction."~
- EF Schumacher


Offline insertnick

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Reply #12 on: December 22, 2008, 05:55:34 PM
Here it is a quick remake of the same thing:



And a "fake simulation" of what we'll hopefully achieve with a reasonable ambient light and a cheap projector (few lumens):

« Last Edit: December 22, 2008, 05:57:46 PM by insertnick »



Offline Deceit

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Reply #13 on: December 22, 2008, 08:41:55 PM
yeah deffinatly the "tron" type grahpics are a good call, i just got off work so im about to get working on the engine mock up i started. almost have a playabe 1 player test

EDIT: ok now that the rough demo of stage one is done, ive started working on the IR calibration code (taking much longer than expected) lol but i am making it from scratch, most of the night was devoted to learning the math ;)

anyway this will probably take a few days to impliment so nick ill be sure to get you the "alpha" soon, this way you can have plenty of time to look it over
  (its nothing special yet but it your like me, seeing it work will help stir the imagination).

lol now i have to go to bed, but i bet ill wake up in 30 mins wanting to work on the calibration more ;)
« Last Edit: December 23, 2008, 06:13:03 AM by Deceit »



Offline UndCon

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Reply #14 on: December 23, 2008, 05:12:55 PM
Anything with vector is good as you get scaleability?. (spelling?)

If you get your hands on a cheap projector they might not reach the resolution you need.
//UndCon