Over the Christmas break, Lola Daisy and I created a bunch of simple games for the Hypertable. A lot of the games were just simple variants on Pong! But our favorite is a game we call Smash It! The game is based on the fact that the Hypertable can tell which direction movements come from: i.e. on which side of the table the interactors are.
The game is simple. Each player stands on one side of the table. The table waits until no hands are on it, then quickly pops out a little pixel from one of the edges which starts zipping around like a fly. The first to slap the pixel wins. Then the table waits for hands-off, and starts all over again.
The game is totally rediculous. Which makes it all the more brilliant. There are no points, and the only pleasure it really just the fact that you get to smash this stupid little pixel (and probably sprain a couple muscles in the process). The more you put your body into it, the more fun the game is.
During Lola's birthday party today (she's born on the 1st of January) we put on SmashIt! I thought they'd play it for a few minutes then tire. Well, we ended up having to drag the kids off when the party was over. They played it for hours. I don't know if SmashIt! would work for all kids, but kids her age (seven) sure seemed to get into it.
Actually, I have to credit Pierre-Erick who first suggested we make simple games with the Hypertable while we were getting ready for the exhibition Créer du sens à l'ère numérique. We'd been slaving for weeks over the thing, he suggested, and we weren't having any fun with it. While taking a quick dinner break, I whipped up a Pong as a response, and had some fun that we probably shouldn't have been having considering that I had an installation to finish a few days later. Here are some pictures from Pierre-Erick and Lola playing Pong :