Urban Games, Part 3

  • During the last days we have written about the phenomenon of urban gaming, coming with beautiful examples of youngsters chasing each other in the streets of today’s world cities. Those urban games are not just games; they certainly make a statement or show a profound fascination towards our social realm and public space. ‘Pacmanhattan’ already showed how interesting and weird urban games can get when you combine the digital with the physical.

    Today I read an article on the Make blog about ‘Parallel Kingdom’, a new mobile/urban game that “brings new meaning to Role Playing Games by using GPS to place the virtual world on top of the real world. Attack, chat and interact with your friends and anyone else around you.” The game is downloadable for iPhones as well as for Android-running devices. For the moment the game can only be played in the United States, but it will be brought to more countries in the near future.

    Parallel Kingdom makes use of Google Maps to show your current location, surrounded by a few blocks. This means you can only see other players that are nearby in the real world. Collecting items, finding and chasing opponents and battling with them means physically moving to another location in the city. This all results in “a combination of straightforward video game play combined with the fun of discovery found in geocaching”, is stated in the article. It all sounds really interesting. It also makes me curious of how many of those mobile games will be launched in the years to come.