How To Play

Click (or touch the smartphone screen) to trigger the spring effect that pushes the ball forward (like pinball). Hit the first four cubes on the ramp to see how fast the ball is moving. Guide the ball around the white wall on the ramp to gain access to the left side of the maze. Click right\left to guide the ball. Up and down to control speed.

Inspiration

We love science and we believe there must be an innovative way to help students play and learn the beauty of important subjects. We chose physics due to its native implementation in the Unity 3D platform.

How We Built It

Our brief demo game shows the basic physics concepts behind classic games like pinball and maze (a semi-hybrid of both.) To make it more engaging, we built a lite version of it for Google Cardboard.

The Unity platform allowed us to create simple yet relevant graphical content in less than 24 hours. Its advanced physics engine also allowed us to fine tune the movement of the ball (player) according to real world constants (gravity on Earth.)

Challenges

It was a very challenging undertake for a team in a hackathon for the first time. With so many options (APIs and other resources), various ideas for projects, and different skill sets, we spent all Friday brainstorming. With respect, collaboration, and willingness to learn from each other, we were able to spend all Saturday learning and hacking with Unity 3D.

Also, when preparing the video for this page, the game turned out to be more difficult than expected, which made us want to beat the system even more! So we had to shoot a couple of videos and add a barrier (big yellow bar) at the end of the ramp until we could make the ball stay on the ramp and pass over the division wall (white bar.)

We noticed that the yellow bar on top moved when it stopped the ball, which will give us another opportunity to explain the inertia and friction in a future version of the game.

The trigger (to push the ball) doesn't work properly on Android, only on Windows as of this version.

Accomplishments

With so much excitement to do something and many cool ideas, the team was proud to be able to stick with one plan and go all the way with it. We didn't make a flagship game, but we are proud to have finished something (our minimum viable product) within the deadline!

What We Learned

For those paying close attention, a hackathon has a lot to teach about making choices. Opportunity cost is one of the biggest things. By choosing VR instead of a classic mobile app, we learned how much more there is to learn about this new media.

What's Next for Visual Physics

Visual Physics aims to become a fun game for all ages. As long as we achieve that goal, we hope word-of-mouth will do its job and we will be happy with that.

Special thanks to our friends Julie and Rishi for their support and all the hackathon staff for their incredible work.

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