Social Bluetooth Games
While surfing the web, trying to find some good bluetooth games, I ran across this nice text by Daniel Blackburn (manager of Carbon Based Games) about social bluetooth games. It explores some of the possible social gaming opportunities that now exist due to the recent proliferation of Bluetooth enabled mobile devices. The author has good points about it:
One of the main problems will probably be gaining a critical mass of players to make the game work. If the only way people can play a game is via Bluetooth they will soon loose interest if there are no other users around them to interact with. One way around this is to view the Bluetooth elements of the games as an enhancement rather than the core game. (...) Bluetooth has the added excitement that the people you playing with or against are within a few metres of you. They may be know to you or they may not be. (...) One way to establish Bluetooth social games initially would be to allow users to set up there own games for just them and there friends that they have invited into the game. 'Killer', the live action role-playing game by Steve Jackson is a good example of this. (...) Another factor that could help to speed up this process (...) Bluetooth offers a new viral like form of distribution.
Relying on the Mogi-Mogi game experience, the author questions whether the bluetooth social games might modify people's behavior in physical space by creating new technosocial situations:
With GPS games such as mogi some players would detour from their everyday routes to go and pick up a virtual object. With Bluetooth enabled game will people try to get within range of someone while there phone is in their bag so they are unlikely to hear it so that they can steal virtual objects without their knowledge. Or will they stay clear of people at work because they are at a high level than the game than them and they want to avoid defeat again. Or will they be constantly checking their phone because they're convinced someone is trying to virtually assassinate them an could set of a bomb at any time. Meaning they would need to run with there phone to get it out of range of the blast.
Why do I blog this? I follow this closely from the HCI and game design point of view, the emergence of behavioral changes due to technological disruptions is still not met but it might be a matter of time. In addition, I like the idea of using bluetooth a technology for simple game design concepts a la Killer.