Hello! I'm Irina Kuznetcova, alumnus of the Ohio State University. BOND is a visuospatial game I created as part of my dissertation project. In my dissertation, I was looking into how we can support the development of visuospatial skills in middle school students. The game was the main component of the intervention I conducted in several middle schools. Although for now I tested the game only with middle schoolers, anybody can play it regardless of their age.
If you have played lots of video games, you might find BOND to be different than usual. This game is inherently collaborative - it takes 2 people to be able to play it, and part of the fun is in the communication. Sometimes Player A has clues to Player's B puzzle, sometimes the other way around, and sometimes both players solve puzzles together. However, one cannot advance without the other!
Below you can find more information about the gameplay, game implementation in the classroom, and technical notes. To download the game, head to the Download page.
required instruments & materials
A smartphone with Android 5.0 and up;
Google Cardboard headset or any other generic mobile VR headset;
A desktop computer/laptop with Windows OS, a mouse (optional for laptops but highly recommended for easier navigation) and a keyboard;
Examples of gameplay
notes on implementation
The game does not require installation - simply download the executable and open the file named Bond. The game can be played from a flashdrive as well. To install the Android VR Bond app, download the apk, find it in downloads, and tap on it to install.
Think about this game as an application in beta testing. You can play it using the current version but I am still working on fixing little bugs. The biggest bug reported so far is the difficulty of controlling movement in Virtual Reality with precision. It could complicate level navigation but otherwise does not affect gameplay. You might also experience some other minor bugs.
If you would like to leave a comment about the game or report a bug, please use the form below.
To insert the smartphone in the headset correctly, start the VR game application and find a vertical line in the middle of the phone screen. Rotate the phone so that the line starts at the bottom of the screen.
The phone must be in a horizontal orientation.
If the VR game looks blurry, you can improve image quality by adjusting the phone or the headset lenses. To adjust the phone, move it left or right in the headset so that the line in the middle of the screen is accurately aligned with the middle vertical line in the headset. To adjust the distance between the lenses, move the knobs on top of the headset (if available on your headset) until the image looks clear.
If your phone screen goes black and becomes non-responsive while playing Bond VR, close the app and restart it.
The game is divided into several levels:
Practice - introductory rooms to practice controls and get familiar with the types of challenges.
Level 1, 2, 3 and 4.
Levels 1-3 consist of 5 rooms each. All rooms are numbered so that theplayer can confirm they are in the same room.
Level 4 is one big room consisting of 4 challenges.
There is no save/load system in the game. You can freely choose what level you wantto play but you cannot teleport between the rooms within the same level.
Ideally, all levels should be played in order but you can change the order if you like. The difficulty increases from Level 1 to Level 4 but it is still possible to solve the challenges.
The Desktop game player navigates the environment using WASD on the keyboard for movement and a mouse or camera controls (you can use laptop touchpad but it is not very convenient). Moving the mouse rotates the camera.
The Android VR game player navigates by walking in place, bouncing up and down or shaking their head up and down, and jumps by jumping in place or increasing the amplitude of movement.
All interactions in VR are based on gaze (look at objects to activate them).
All interactions in the Desktop game are based on left mouse click. Right click detaches the camera to look around, another right click attaches it back.
Tip: if you find it hard to stop moving quickly in VR, when you reach the desired point, turn around quickly. It will stop the momentum.
The game works best when the two players don't see each other's screen at any point. This promts more communication - a conduit of learning.
The players can switch the devices they are using after every challenge, after each level, or never. Use your own discretion to set the rules.
The games has no other rules!
Creating this game was a challenging task. Without the help of my friends and collegues, BOND could not have become reality.
I want to give special thanks to Nicholas Abbott, the founder of the GigaBison game company, for his invaluable mentorship and contribution. He was a technical consultant for the game and taught me lots of things about coding.
I also want to thank my research team for helping me to brainstorm game design ideas, implement the intervention, and patient playtesting. Shantanu, Logan, Amanda, Ziye, Marvin, and Qiannan - you are the best!
Finally, I want to thank my adviser Dr. Michael Glassman for his patience, wisdom, and believing in me no matter what.