You Are Near #5


Two competing teams aim to get as close as possible to a digitally simulated object that moves through the city’s streets. The object randomly follows the city's streets and is visualised as a big green dot on each player's mobile phone. The added distance of each team towards the object is updated and visualised in real-time in the game. Summing up each player’s distance towards the object, a team wins if it gets as close as 50 meters to this object.


The prerequisites for playing the game is that you are outside and carry a mobile phone with 3G and camera. Three apps are used for this game: A compass (you can use/install any compass app), the browser and WhatsApp. Use Safari browser for iPhone and Firefox for Android. Each player's mobile phone has to be set as follows:

When all players have set up their phones the game administrator creates a new game with a timer for when the game will start (this will be between 10-15 minutes). After doing this (not earlier!) each player goes to the browser and selects "play the game". The screen remains grey until the game starts. Now players switch to the compass app and start walking in different directions. After a couple of minutes of walking the players switch back to the browser. As players continue to walk in the same direction they wait patiently for the game to start. It can take a while, but if you think it takes much longer then it should you can refresh the page.

At some point small red and blue dots appear on each player's mobile phone (each dot represents a different player). Additionally, one big green dot is to be seen (the digitally simulated object). The aim for each team is to have players get as close as 50 meters (summing up their distance) to the virtual object. When players manage to do this a message appears on all mobile phones stating which team has won.

In the grey field, players have to find out which dot is theirs and they have to figure out where the object is located. As the players move they leave traces of their movements on the grey background. Team members can communicate via WhatsApp but both competing teams have to use the same chat. If someone is able to disclose the location of the opponent, the person is disqualified. Players furthermore have to be on the lookout for members of the competing team as a player can shoot another player with his/her camera and share it in the WhatsApp. After a player is shot (s)he cannot participate anymore in the game and therefore cannot take a picture back of the opponent. The game administrator removes the shot player from the game so that the added distance always stays accurate. A team can lose up to two players. Especially towards the end, when all players get closer to the virtual object and to each other, it becomes more difficult to stay hidden. The streets where the players have walked become excluded for the digitally simulated object. In this way, the city's game-board also becomes gradually smaller while the game evolves.