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Treasure Island

Adventurous location-based game experience based on Louis Stevenson's classic of the same name.

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Design Skills


Project timeline

The Brief

Geo-location games are an exciting new genre, but the majority of experiences on the market fall into some category of the ‘endless collectathon’. With this self-directed project I wanted to experiment within that largely unexplored potential.

See it at Reveal 2019

The Project

I began with the vision of crafting an experience that delivered a sense of adventure, and so I researched the development of adventure literature and of adventure games throughout the ages. Among my discoveries was that adventure media involves a risk/reward balance and that situations and locations are narratively hyped up before a reader or player eventually gets to experience them.

I judged that my project would benefit from an ability to narratively foreshadow and mechanically prevent access to certain areas. Additionally, it could be imperative for there to be some risk of a loss of resources and progress - as opposed to the Pokémon Go model where everything is accumulative.

To this end, I based the rough narrative structure for the prototype off Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic adventure novel Treasure Island, and considered which story beats translated naturally into mechanical experiences and which did not. This setting allowed me to experiment with islands to transform the playspace from the world we know to something altogether different, which to my knowledge no other location-based game on the market has attempted.