Inspiration

The idea for the game came from a psychology lecture, where the professor described an experiment intended to test creativity. Research participants were presented with a mix of shapes and letters, and were asked to create a scene or object from these shapes. We thought this concept was quite fun, and decided to create it in an app.

What it does

Block Party allows users to compete against each other in a game of creativity. Players are randomly assigned the same set of shapes, and must move, scale, rotate, and color them in order to create a meaningful object or scene. At the end of the time limit, players can enter a brief explanation of their creation, and then view and rate the creations of all the other players. The player with the most points at the end of the voting wins!

How we built it

The iOS app is built with Swift, the backend is built with python and flask, and the server is hosted on AWS.

Challenges we ran into

• Pusher turned out to be more difficult to implement than we anticipated.
• Allowing users to adjust the shapes presented a variety of issues. We came up with multiple working solutions, but ended up using the simplest method of direct manipulation.
• AWS was quite difficult to set up for a variety of reasons.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

We're happy that we were able to create a functioning app in such a short period of time! We didn't get to fully implement nearly all the ideas we had, but we were able to get the basics working well.

What we learned

We learned a lot about prioritization. We couldn't get everything done, so we had to make cuts to certain aspects of the project because fully implementing them would have taken too long. A good example of this was a real-time collaboration feature between users, where they could create a single scene together. The back-end for this process was completed about half way through the event, but we soon realized that the front-end challenges were too great for the time remaining.

What's next for Block Party

We would like to continue to add features to the game, adding new shapes, colors, and collaboration options.

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