Augmented Reality (AR) has fascinated me ever since I tried the game Pokémon Go and when I finally got the opportunity to intern in this field. To be honest I have tried different domains but none of them attracted me the way Augmented Reality does.
Deekshita Verma is a second-year B. Tech (IT) student at Indira Gandhi National Technical University. She is currently a student of C++ Data Structures & Algorithms at Coding Ninjas. During the summer of 2020, she joined Verzeo as a training intern in AR/VR.
Sharing insights about her latest project, we asked her to answer a few questions for us.
Tell us in detail about your project and its features.
The project name is Snake Snack inspired by the classic Nokia Snake Game. It is a single-player game and has 100+ downloads in one month. The game got a huge response on LinkedIn which is why it was converted into a full application and launched on Play Store.
Features of the Game:
- Snake snack is basically the infamous Nokia based snake game deployed in augmented reality.
- The game requires your phone to be AR Core compatible and is available on Google Play Store under the company name Cosmoreal Inc.
- When the application starts you come across an interface that provides the introduction to the game followed by instructions.
- When the game scene loads up, the camera asks you to point your phone towards a plane and scan slowly to detect the plane you are pointing to.
- A mesh appears and when you click on the mesh there you can find snake and food items apple, banana and pizza and a bomb floating around.
- Collect maximum food items and try not to bite the snake’s body by its face or else you’ll get the prompt game over.
So when you start the game you would encounter a full UI based welcome page, when you press the button to start it you come across an instruction page. Once you allow the game to access your camera you come across an animation asking you to slowly move your phone so that it can detect a plane, once the plane is detected you can see a mesh around that plane and you need to click on the mesh to see the snake and some food items available in the scene.
The game was pretty simple, keep collecting the food and your snake keeps growing but there was no end to the game as provided by the exercise. What is the fun in playing a game that never ends? So we tried making it complex by adding a bomb and just like losing the game by the tail cut in the traditional game we added that feature here as well. Still what’s the point in playing that same game over and over again? So we added a Json file which stores your previous data so every time you would actually try to beat your own score.
How long did it take for you to complete this project?
The whole process took me and my mentor around two months but we finally published the game and actually revamped the older one completely and made our own. I believe you learn by remaking something that already exists. It’s not copying, it is learning from someone else’s path and when we cloned the already existing game it wasn’t something that I actually liked that much so we just took the inspiration from the game and created our own. The game was launched on 4th September and a month later it has already crossed 100+ downloads which makes me so proud and overwhelmed.
Who is the target audience?
The target audience is basically gamers who enjoy playing games. I believe that in the lockdown almost all of us have become gamers and launching a gaming app in one of the most upcoming technologies is like icing on the cake.
When I completed the exercise there were elements which I personally didn’t like that much so I made changes of my own and then had put a preview video of it on my LinkedIn and the game reached over 30k+ views and 2k+ likes which was huge for me and so many people wanted to try out the apk so I talked to my mentor at Verzeo and we decided to make further enhancement in the game and launch it on Play Store.
Can you name the tools, technologies and programming languages that were used while making this project?
The tools and technologies used are Unity Engine to make the entire game, AR Core package to deploy the game in Augmented Reality form and Google CodeLab exercise which had the tutorial regarding the basic game.
Basically unity engine is a game developing engine and is used worldwide to make 3D games. Unity Engine has packages that help in developing Augmented Reality apps (some of them are AR Foundation, AR Core, AR Kit).
Google has plenty of Codelab Exercises one of them involved making a similar app using the AR Core package and this sample application was optimised by changing its UI, adding more functionalities and enhancing the application with bombs and Json files to store the high score of the person as well.
Did you optimise your project further?
I did optimise the project with my mentor by converting the entire game into the AR Foundation package and version two of the game will be launched very soon. It is just an addition to the gaming industry and for someone who is learning AR, it would be a really cool project to work on.
The three apps that she made thereafter were:
- An AR Album dedicated to my very favourite shows F.R.I.E.N.D.S. It displayed iconic scenes of those characters by scanning their names.
- An AR Filter app which was as good as a replica of Snapchat.
- A Car Visualiser which can visualise cars and can rotate or move them around and also has the ability to change the colour of the car by picking any colour from the room or place you are in.
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