At the Hide&Seek Weekender 2010

You can’t buy smiles like that, you have to earn them. It was far too hot and sweaty to play an outdoor exploration game, but these guys pushed through and did it anyway. Team Fruitbat won the coveted Master of Space and Time sticker and topped the Time*Trails leaderboard at 910 points. For a game which only had a total of 1070 points available, often extremely well hidden including one 10 point spot you needed security clearance to reach, this was awesome.

We learnt masses about game making doing this, as well as (for me anyway) geeking out about London’s history. Most people played it as a collecting game, rather than doing the story trails, which was the easiest way to get into the game. Lowest possible barrier to entry always good, however fun it is developing characters and sending them off on stories.

I also learnt that a lot of early adopters (and Hide&Seek is a good place to find them) now have Android phones rather than iPhones. And that watching someone get on passworded wifi, download an app and then set up a user profile on it is like raking your fingers down a blackboard – just excruciating. I look forward to having ID chips in our wrists so all this remembering passwords becomes obsolete. Another thing – the app needed to be in the worldwide store, not just the UK Apple store, as we had to turn away people from all over the world. The weekender has an international clientele.

Final thing – people like stickers, and stickers that say Time Ninja in particular. I may have tshirts made.

pics by Michael Dales, not only programmer but also ace photographer