Moving on from ARGs Uncovered, which reviewed the IGDA white paper on Alternate Reality Games (ARGs), this post provides you with an opportunity to find out for yourself a little more about the design of the first Perplex City ARG.
First up is a presentation by Adrian Hon (who you may remember we’ve come across before…), of the game development company Mind Candy, which created the original Perplex City ARG as well as its successor….
To set the scene, you may like to read a little bit of background about the game by reading this review of Perplex City… The Wikipedia entry for Perplex City also provides a brief summary of the game.
So now you sort of know what it is, let’s here about the game from the inside: “Alternate Reality Games and Perplex City Season 2”, by Adrian Hon (Google Tech Talks)
Whilst you are listening to the presentation – or maybe afterwards? ;-) – you may like to visit the Perplex City Season 1 retrospective website.
One of the great features of this site is an archive of some of the design notes used when creating the game (Perplex City Season One Story Planning).
You may notice that the game was storyboarded using a series of flowcharts to describe the order of events that were planned for the game. Flowcharts can be used to provide a very concise summary of the key actions and decision points that must be negotiated in a game in order for the story to progress. They can also reveal the complexity of a game’s design at a glance!
The site also contains a brief history of the evolution of the Perplex City map that provided a solid foundation for the game.
You can still explore an interactive version of the Perplex City map at http://www.perplexcitymap.com/.