Carleton Students Win a Prize For Innovative and Challenging Mobile Game

Four Carleton students have won a $1,000 prize for the Most Technically Challenging project at the Great Canadian Appathon (GCA) competition.

The GCA was a national 48- hour challenge organized by XMG Studios, that invited participants to make a fun and creative game for the Windows Phone 7 platform. With the help of the Carleton Game Development Club and the School of Computer Science, Carleton University was one of six hub locations to host this event.

The Carleton student project called Sandscape was designed to help players remember those happy, sunny days at the beach when the most important thing in their lives was a competition to see who could build the biggest network of sand trenches.

Andrew Erdeg, president of the Carleton Game Development Club, says members of his team are currently in discussion with XMG to publish their game.

The goal of the single player puzzle game is to fill coloured drains with matching fluids that takes full advantage of the interfaces offered by modern mobile devices. The player can dig trenches in the sand to channel the fluid by drawing shapes on the touch screen in the same way they would trace out shapes in the sand. In order to move the fluid, the player simply tilts the phone, causing it to spill down the channels. The challenge lies in not wasting fluid by channelling it down mismatched drains.

“I found my experiences at Carleton helped out a great deal in this competition,” says Erdeg. “In the third-year game development course, we learned how to use XNA and C#, which is the framework we used on the Windows Phone 7 platform. In order to come up with a game concept that was fun, unique and quick to make, the team was able to draw on our collective game design experiences at Carleton.”

All members of the team are computer science students. Jamie Madill and Jacob Agar are both masters’ students, while Gail Carmichael is a PhD candidate. Erdeg is a fourth-year undergrad.

Madill is currently researching fluid simulation techniques for his thesis so the team decided to take advantage of the resource.

Carmichael’s blog about the experience is available at: http://compscigail.blogspot.com/2011/03/my-great-canadian-appathon-experience.html.

Another Carleton project Irrigator was selected as one of the top 15 games for the CGA competition, as was Sandscape.

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For more information:
Andrew Erdeg
President, Carleton Game Development Club
andrewerdeg@gmail.com

Lin Moody
Media Relations
Carleton University
613-520-2600, ext. 8705