The inspiration behind GeoBlitz is simply our love for making physical activity more enjoyable for everyone! Finding the motivation to get outside and be active can be a struggle, but having some friendly competition while you do it can be the encouragement people need to make better decisions for their health.
What it does
When this web application opens in a browser, GeoBlitz will display a map of your current GPS location along with a grid that will allow players to choose and mark their ship locations by physically moving throughout the real world. Just like in the traditional Battleship board game, two users will be able to take turns to strategically aim and fire at their opponent. After all available ships have been placed according to the players' decisions and willingness to be active, the game will begin. Unlike the monotonous, processed version of the standard two-player warship attack game that we all knew and tolerated as children, there is one twist in GeoBlitz that can change the scope of the entire game. Rather than sluggishly picking places and lackadaisically strategizing on the best way to destroy your opponent's increasingly-boring fleet, GeoBlitz will feature opportunities to get savagely ripped through the encouragement of completing extra exercises in order to acquire and maintain shields for portions of your interactive armada. If one player is under the impression that their opponent is planning an attack on a particular ship, they will simply activate a boost to their gameplay by completing physical challenges. This encourages a continuous effort to be physically active in order to best protect your ships and maintain your advantage over your friends and opponents.
How we built it
We built GeoBlitz by using the most important tool, our collective imagination. First, we started with getting the domain from our friends at Domain.com. After our domain was registered, we began to design a website to have a map for mobile platforms that was interactive for all users. During this time, another teammate began to work on a large portion of the backend data by using Firebase, Google Maps API and many other Google APIs. We then made sure that the website was visually and interactively pleasing, and we started making the logos and other images that would be used within our game.
Challenges we ran into
A huge challenge that we ran into was getting the website up and deployed. Because we were using Google Cloud, we had to use their website to verify that we owned our domain, which took a little more time than expected. The next huge issue was getting all of the different languages and skills to work together with the APIs that we were using.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Some major accomplishments that we as a group thought were very interesting include our desire to try many new things as a group. None of our team had ever really tinkered with the Google APIs. This was quite challenging at times, but throughout the competition, we realized that many of them were not incredibly difficult to use! The Google Maps API was critical to GeoBlitz, due to the gridded map layout comprising much of the user interface.
What we learned
During this hackathon, we learned most importantly how to work on a team together to tackle new challenges during the most trying of times. By working on different aspects of our project at the same time and then coming together at the end, we were able to accomplish much more than if we had just used peer programming the entire time. We also gained meaningful experience with the Google API kit that we likely would not have been exposed to otherwise.
What's next for GeoBlitz
The next idea for GeoBlitz would be to get our website fully functional with spectacular graphics and riveting sound effects. Due to only having 36 hours to work on a project that was entirely new, we could not fully implement as much functionality as we would have liked, but we are planning to continue building GeoBlitz into the compellingly interactive and healthfully rewarding game that we know it can be.