Experiments with SkyQ

In partnership with Flavourworks and Sky, I worked on a number of R&D projects with a view to get FW’s Erica game playable on Sky’s Q set top box. This had a number of challenges, as Erica requires seamless transitions between video sequences and playback of multiple transparent videos.

I really enjoy trying to get hardware to do something it’s not meant to do, and learned all about various alternative JavaScript video playback engines, video caching, WebRTC, and more about the complexities of video codec encoding parameters than I really needed to know 🙂

Deathtrap Dungeon: The Interactive Video Adventure

Forming Branching Narrative with Matt Spall, we spent 18 months developing this game together, with the infamous Stoo Cambridge providing graphics and UI.

The game is entirely written in JavaScript, contained within bespoke native code wrappers. This enables us to publish as native apps on PC, Mac, iOS, Android and console; even allowing an online streaming version, which we use as a playable demo directly on branching narrative.com.

We’re planning on releasing more Fighting Fantasy titles with a variety of actors in the future.

Buy it now!

Pose Recognition Unity SDK

This was another Unity Plugin SDK project for iOS and Android, but with particular emphasis on optimisation.

Nexus Studios were using Tensorflow in an AR dance game to track player’s movements and apply particle effects as they moved. For this to perform well, data needed to be sent to Tensorflow and the resulting pose data retrieved back as quickly as possible – otherwise the effects would be out of sync with the player movement.

This involved optimising the AR image pipeline, the C# to native interop, image manipulation within Tensorflow itself, and delivering the data back to my C# API for the game to use.

MARS Lightgun Unity SDK

Another Unity native code Plugin project – this time across PC, PS4 and XBone! As well as developing the cross-platform C# plugin SDK, I had to also develop the underlying native console device drivers, delivering USB data from the MARS hub up to the C# SDK for parsing, resulting in Unity-friendly events and delegates.

Lone Wolf AR

Lone Wolf was a unique (at the time) location-based AR game, released to tie in with a new Lone Wolf book release at a Comicon event in Lucca, Italy.

Written in Unity for iOS and Android, using Vuforia for AR, the game presents a map of the local vicinity, showing the first location where the game begins. Alongside location tracking, we also used image recognition as a backup trigger for the in-game events.

The game guides you through the city, fighting monsters and solving puzzles, being ultimately rewarded by entering into a free prize draw.

Dansac/Hollister Ostomy Game

Dansac is a large medical products company, who needed a fun way to educate their customers through the different pH values present in various parts of the intestines, together with the properties of various products used to safeguard patients’ skin against the effects of intestinal leakage which occurs with stomy invasive surgery.


We provided two game scenes – a simple “place the correct pH value on the correct area of the body” game, followed by a Breakout-style arcade game, which educated and informed players of the various product properties as they played.

In partnership with our friends at Quintessential Productions, we set up the game on a large touch screen on Dansac’s stand at the ECET trade show in Berlin. The game was a huge success, leading to future work from Dansac and their parent company, Hollister.

Playora

Playora is an iOS and Android app allowing you to play PC or Flash games on a phone/tablet, or stream content from a PC or phone/tablet to a Smart TV.


Challenges included low-latency video encoding, so games could be played without any noticable lag, and DLL injection coding, effectively hijacking a game or app’s visual and audio output from within the app itself, rather than simply recording the screen.