By Edward Wang (Age 8), Grace Zhang (Age 12) , Daniel Zheng (Age 10)
On June 9th, we (Edward, Daniel and Grace) went to an exhibition called “Game On 2.0.” It was hosted at the Ontario Science Centre. We had an amazing time and learned a lot about the current gaming industry, as well as the history of gaming. Why don’t you take the tour with us?
By Grace Zhang (Age 12)
Step into the sphere, put on the headset, grab a gun and shoot! The virtusphere allows gamers to step into their own virtual universe, with hardly any limitations at all. Players can move freely within the 10-foot hollow sphere and examine their environments. The game is shown on a screen in front of your eyes through a head-mounted display, behind the headset.
The virtusphere is predicted to have a huge impact on the next generation of gaming, bringing virtual reality/ stimulation games more into focus. My personal experience with this new way of gaming was exhilarating. As I slipped the headset over my eyes and took hold of the gun, I could feel myself being whisked away to another dimension; the dimension where games came alive. I gripped the gun tightly, and took my first step forward. The sphere rotated and I saw myself become one with my character. When an enemy appeared, I shot at nothing in reality, but killed monsters in this other dimension.
When my turn was over after eight minutes, I returned to reality, where monsters didn't exist, where you couldn't grab a gun and shoot randomly. It was truly an amazing experience. Perhaps there will be something else superior to the virtusphere in the near future, but for now, gamers will be thrilled with this technology. All in all, I would rate this platform 8.5 out of 10, as the program does tend to lag and is slow to respond. This is due to the fact that it is a prototype and has ample amount of opportunities to be refine.
By Daniel Zheng (Age 10 )
Later, we tried out another activity called Joust. You might have thought that we were riding on horses and holding huge lances, but we didn't. It was a game that requires you to move with the music and try to get other people out of the game by knocking over their motion controllers. We all tried to win, but it was really hard, because if you moved faster than the music rhythm or tilt your controller, you lost a life. Every player gets three lives in the game. Then we interviewed two hosts working at the exhibition, Kira and Mariam.
"Jousting was actually originally played with knights, horses and a lance. The rules were that two knights rode on a horse on either side of a fence and you had to knock the other knight off their horse on your side of the fence! Of course, we can't play the original Jousting!" said Mariam with a chuckle.
“Jousting is interesting because it doesn't require a TV or a PlayStation to play,” said Kira. “I think interactive games are gaining more popularity among people and it is a great way to get adults moving and having fun too!”
Then it was free time, and we all played the games that we wanted to play all morning.
by Grace Zhang (age 12)
Perhaps older folk still remember some of the very earliest games in history, like Pong, PAC-Man and Donkey Kong. These games, despite being simple and repetitive, were the starting points for the gaming industry.
But where would they be without the consoles? Game On 2.0 featured some of the oldest computers and consoles, including Capcom, Apple, Sony, Sega and much more. We asked the crowd what they liked best about this exhibition and what improvements needed to be made. “It’s nice how people who love games and just technology in general can come together like this,” said Steve Waters, a parent at the exhibition. “But some of the older games are prone to breaking.”
The Waters loved the PAC-man, Pinball and Street Fighters.
This exhibition also provided some information about upcoming platforms, like the new Xbox One and the PlayStation4. The rumour says that the new PlayStation will support used games and run more smoothly than before. The Xbox One has returned to the form of the first generation; a huge, bulky rectangle. It is quite literally a monster of a platform, very heavy and big in size. As for Nintendo, nothing new has been going on with them, except for the WiiU. They have some catching up to do!
The day was a very eventful and exciting experience for the three of us. We hope to be able to visit another exhibition like this one soon!