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CategoryInteractive Spaces

EX 1 – A!R PONG

Board-game designed for the hard-gripping, fun-loving, alternative ping-pong sporting souls. All you need is 4 hands, 4 air bottles, 1 good squeeze and you’re on your way to lots of fun.

Players pit against each other in either a 1 V 1 or a 2 V 2 situation. All they need to do is grab the bottles and squeeze away, with the objective of landing the ping-pong ball into the opposition’s gutter.

This was a really simple concept that I was endeavoring to explore with this exercise, as I occupied myself in the design of a sort of alternate board-game meets sport. My focus was really more on the engineering of fun through simplicity and so allow my participants to Be Part of The Art.

 

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Here are some snippets of the process that ensued:

I begun really, by looking into many hardware / kitchenware / convenient shops for a kind of bottle. One that was handy enough. Could be squeezed with sufficient pressure such that a light ping-pong ball would be propelled on a level plane.

Finding what I needed for the crux of the game, I then proceeded in the designing of the playing field and the rules and such that will make it happen.

I wanted to make the playing field simple. A good level wooden board, nailed in the right places and with the most straight-forward features possible. Hence I needed these cylindrical building blocks, I was sawing in the above GIF, to hold the entire thing together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here above, I was cutting up a good cylindrical cardboard for the purposes of the gutters.

As all these things came together, it was important for me to figure out a good length for the radius in which the air bottles will have their effect on the game.

I used mostly wood and brown string to keep the design ‘look and feel’ consistent and I also desired it to have the appearance of a very much DIY sort of game.

It was much to my delight at the end that I realized there was really not much in the need of rules for the game to work itself out. All my participants sort of instinctively knew what to do when presented with the A!r Pong set. Hence I kinda let the interaction happen without any much exposition on my part.

It all was good fun and I enjoyed the realization of my very simple little idea.

EX2 – 100 Checkers

I have always been fascinated by the game of Checkers (or Draughts). I believe it is one of the most brutally honest versions of Chess. It is what it is, when striped bare of stratagem, it gets down to a simple, unforgiving game of attrition. In this exercise where we have to arrange repeated objects in a space, I simply decided to take to the streets and find a place to play Checkers by myself. It was quite an interesting experience and I soon found myself trying very hard to not break the simple rules of Checkers. It felt like my left brain pitting against my right. The paths I would take with placing my body in this clearly over-sized urban chessboard also changed as the weight of the game shifted to either side. Amidst the sweltering heat that was really getting my perspiration up, I started to lose track of time and less and less thought was put into the moves until I decided that my left and right brains had stalemated.

I took some walks around the Bugis area as I was visiting the Design Center for SG Design Week. So when I got to the pavement outside Bras Basah, I sprang into action as it was perfect for what I had  in mind.

I filled-up much of the pavement with my work and this little performance, but it did not seem to bother the other pedestrians. It was rather interesting to see how people got on with their business even though I was attempting to ‘invade’ this public area for that half-an-hour or so.

The material was reused from wood waste that one of my coursemates, Zi Feng, didn’t need anymore. I collected them and painted half of these curious circular pieces black. It was quite a spontaneous choice. I saw it whilst working on some other projects in the IM room and just went for the idea. Here are some images of that process.

I think simple repetition of objects in a choice spot can generate interesting arrangements. I’d certainly like to try another excursion like this.