Solving Cities

Fun urbanism: Group video game in a Madrid plaza

Fun urbanism: Group video game in a Madrid plaza

Posting in Cities

An urban video game in Madrid is another example of a new trend: fun urbanism.

There's a new trend in urbanism, making the city fun. Popping up around cities are everything from swings at bus stops to trash bin basketball.

Here's another addition to the list of fun urbanism: a collaborative urban video game played in a Madrid plaza.

The game, called City Fireflies, looks fairly simple but lots of fun. All that's needed is the light from a cell phone, open public space, a large screen, and some willing gamers. Players gather in the plaza (presumably at night) in front of the screen. A video of the players in front of the screen is superimposed onto the screen and the light from their phones is used to remove the "threats."

Its creators say, the point of the game is to "explore new ways of interaction in public spaces."

What makes the game work is that its design is easy to use, and understand, says Fast Co.Design:

The game was meant to be casual: easily intuited rules, instant visual feedback, and a porous structure so that players could enter and leave the gamespace at will without disrupting the gameplay. Which meant that the interaction design had to be ultra-casual as well--so transparent that the energy barrier of joining the game was reduced to nearly zero.

Watch the game being played:

City Fireflies v0.2 from Victor Diaz on Vimeo.

City Fireflies, An Urban Video Game Whose Screen Is A Building [Fast Co.Design]

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Tyler Falk

Contributing Editor

Tyler Falk is a freelance journalist based in Washington, D.C. Previously, he was with Smart Growth America and Grist. He holds a degree from Goshen College. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure