Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Foursquare - Location Based Gaming


Gaming at large scale with the city as the play field has gathered pace with its community adapting new tools and technologies in the social networking domain. The likes of Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare are offering platforms additional gameplay ideas can extend upon.

In the past year or so a number of such a add ons to the Foursquare location based social networking platform have been developed.

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Image taken from worldoffourcraft.com / At sign up choose your home team.

World of Fourcraft is a New York based game that uses a NYC as a battle ground for borough teams to battle the grounds and fight over ownerships for territories. It is based on Foursquare check-ins and with each check-in territory can be gained.

The players sign up via a Foursquare and choose the borough they want to play for. After that each check-in counts towards the boroughs count of check-ins in a particular area. The area belongs to the team with the most check-ins.

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Image taken from worldoffourcraft.com / The battle map of World of Fourcraft NYC. The different colours indicate the borough ownerships.

You can always check the battle map to keep up to date on how the grounds are won and lost. Its a bit like the strategy game Risk where territories can be won in battle. On this one it would be great to see a timeLapse on how the game board has developed over the past few month. Check out more on Mashable.

Oust.me is a platform to transform your places and check-ins into territories and defend them against invaders. The platform is run by a small team based somewhere in the Slovenian region and draws location data from Foursquare, Gowalla and Facebook Places.



Oust.me user Matija wrote a Short Guide how to build territory in 4 easy steps. You will need your mobile phone with your favorite check-in service: Foursquare, Gowalla or Facebook Places, a pair of walking shoes and some time.

Check your neighborhood in Oust.me (if there is already any territory)
Be sure that distances fits into 2km area between two locations
Start walking (use sports-tracker app for measuring distance)
Check-in into the locations on your way - or create new interesting ones
Voila - you have a territory in Oust.me

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Image by Matija taken from Oust.me blog / Creating a territory on Oust.me using Foursquare check-ins in four easy steps.

In this manner I created my territory around Gatwick Airport with some m20 checkpoints and a total area of 1.08 km2. Of course there are a handfull of people invading near, but Oust.me keeps me up to date on their moves and send me a message if they are invading my territory. I am not quite sure how exactly the shapes are created and sometimes they can have some detached extensions (like my Basel, Davidsboden territory), but generally the area looks pretty good.

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Image by urbanTick / My territory of 1.08 km2 around Gatwick Airport created with about 20 check-in points and multiple check-ins.

Less of a game but a useful tool for gaming is the crosspost service. It offers to transfer your check-ins from one service to another. If you check-in to a location on Foursquare it will automatically be transfered to your Facebook Places and you are checked in there too. For the games platform this can be quite useful as you get double check-ins.

Enjoy the games, happy gaming. Also check out the earlier post on gaming, as forexample using London Oyster card data on Chromorama, Map Attack and Street Grab or Urban Defender and more.

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