The future

by Chris F

Well, that’s about it for the game, really. It’s as finished as I can get it, released it into the wild and people play it and hopefully enjoy it. But what’s next?

In the future

I know this is “just a dissertation project”, but too many people have told me over the past months that this is a really good idea, both as a game and as an OpenStreetMap awareness project that I don’t really want to leave it hanging in the wind. I will continue to iterate it over the summer and see where I can get with it. Adding more minigames, balancing the points you get and how you get them, maybe a multiplayer cooperative mode, all these are things that I would like to play with in the future, considering the feedback that I got.

But the change that I want to do the most is make a map of Bucharest for my Bucharest-ian players to play on. Till now I’ve only played on the Ipswich map because that’s the map that I iterated on and constructed from the beginning, and the 6 types of amenities that are shown on it are typical for Ipswich. If I were to just go to Bucharest and use the same settings it wouldn’t be as good. I will do this, sometime in the future.

Speaking of locations, Bucharest is only one location. It could work for any town or city, or even parts of towns or cities. People could explore and find out a lot more about New York or Paris or Tokio by playing this game. It took me about 30 hours in total to get the board in the state that it’s in at the moment, and these all seem like good ideas, but it would be quite a lot of work, and I won’t be able to put 30 hours of work for every request for a town that I get. But wait a bit. OSM is open, and ITO have been known to release some of their maps to the public. I could create a set of settings so that people could make their own maps. ITO could export the PoI map, and then people could download the Hex grid and card templates and make their own map! It’s in the spirit of OSM and it’s definitely something that would further the game a lot in the future, so that’s something else that I would like to do in the future.

Lastly, and I think this would be quite far from coming true, it would be amazing to get the game or variants of it (iterated in time) themed for various fictional universes. Would you like to play the game in Azeroth? What about at Hogwarts? All these could be possible if maps of those locations, with the PoIs in place, would exist. And I think they do, so I think it’s completely do-able in time.

That’s about it. I hope you enjoyed the trip we took together through gamification and board-game design, and you, just as me, learned something.

Chris F.

P.S.: It would also be nice to turn this game into something digital, where I would be able to apply all the theoretical concepts I’ve used in the board game, so if anyone who’s reading this wants to collaborate, send a Tweet or an email my way.