First there were text games, then came 2D dungeons. When Wolfenstein 3D broke out on the gaming scene, it created quite a fuss. But if all you’ve got is a strip of WS2812 LEDs, those are a few dimensions too many.
[treibair] has started up a project on Hackaday.io to start working on 1D video games to be played on a single LED strip. While the end application is something with a cool physical interface, probably driven by a microcontroller, prototyping is a lot easier on the big computer. He’s writing it in Processing, though, so that the transition to the Arduino is easier in the end.
Check out the video below.
There are a couple of other games out there in 1D, including Line Wobbler (YouTube) and, naturally, Wolfenstein 1D. We even saw a one-dimensional “snake” clone at Make Munich a few months back. (Would the author please stand up?)
We think the idea is a good one, and lining up everyone’s 1D gaming experience in one place would be a great help. So link up code and reviews in the comments!
34 thoughts on “Video Games In As Few Dimensions As Possible”
It’s impressive that people can come up with playable 1D-games other than the standard pong-like game.
The Wobbler game looks cool but I don’t understand the gameplay mechanics at all. Maybe it’s a game that you have to try yourself before you grok it… ;-)
You are the first person to use the word ‘grok’ after I read a book that used it all the time. At first it seemed to be to be a fictional word (English is not my native language). But now I grok the word grok it seems entirely fitting to be used here.
On topic: it amazes me how things are simplified by people and still remain enjoyable.
“Grok” was apparently popular among those born in the 60s when said novel was novel. But it fell out of geek lexicon it seems.
Weird and intriguing.
Video looks great, even though I’ve no clue whats going on. :) I’ll look up the normal game later.
Any suggestions for games that should work great in 1D?
Not Tetris I would assume. :P
It might be possible to make a 3D maze-type game, like doom, work: Map depth as pixel brightness, and it’d probably work alright.
Or just use sound tone and volume and make a 0D game.
My idea would be a zero dimensional PONG game that uses PWM. Player one has to press when the light is out and player 2 has to press when the LED is fully lit. The closer to the correct state one presses the button, the faster the LED will fade.
“Simon Says” is a 0D game. It’s got one blinking light.
Time is a dimension, so that blinking is on the time axis.
” so that blinking is on the time axis.”
So every 1D game is also 2D game, and every 3D game is 4D
I’d count using more than one color/brightness as at least one dimension, though.
So, is normal television in 3D then? :P
There’s time too, so 4D
I like the challenge. :)
Seeing Wolfenstein 3D on a friends PC is what made me sell my A1200 and jump ship. :)
P.s. Don’t forget T-rex on the ZX81.
“First there were text games, then came 2D dungeons.”?
1D games already existed In the early days of programmable calculators (like SR52 … TI59).
E.g. sort a permutation of 123456789 by as few rotations of “substrings” as possible.
“E.g. sort a permutation of 123456789 by as few rotations of “substrings” as possible.”
Wouldn’t that be a text game instead of a 1D game? You just contradicted yourself.
I made this one a few years ago. In a subsequent version I added Shadow (the red ghost). Most tedious part was translating music to tone statements.
How in all that’s holy will you play Pacman in 1D?
While you can’t play it in 1D, you can observe a game of Core Wars in 1D.
you definately dont want to use tone() directly while playing the game.
look into non-blocking methods like timers or interrupts.
this will make the game run very smoothly while playing music
I’ll go one further- 1D VR. Edwin Abbott Abbott’s Flatland is screaming for a VR emulation. All the ‘physics’ is right there in the book. I’m no programmer, but I’ve been dreaming of this for years- someone make it happen!
1D games are already pretty popular… I even bough Guitar Hero in a shop!
The first game in the video uses colors, which are a dimension. So it is 2D.
How many dimensions does a ‘3D TV’ have?
There’s also that pesky time dimension we deal with.
4 including time. We’re only perceiving the 3rd dimension through an optical illusion and color isn’t a dimension.
Oops, make that 3. Typo!
That’s a characteristic or trait. My green shirt isn’t 4 dimensional (or 5 including time).
RGB LED strip game idea.
You have a player dot of one color. Equidistant from the center are two goalpost dots of another color, with additional, pulsing dots next to each on the inside. Thus the minimal goal area is five LEDs long.
Level 1. Tutorial. The player dot is placed at a random location outside the goalposts. Move the player dot between them.
Level 2. An opponent dot of a third color is added. It will move toward the player dot. If it touches the player dot a life is lost. Wrap around from end to end (or mount the LED strip in a circle to make that obvious). Get the player dot between the goalposts without touching the opponent dot.
From there, alter opponent speed, number of opponents, goalpost location and/or distance between the goalposts. The pulsing dots avoid confusion as to which side is inside the goal if the posts are a large distance apart, especially if the goal covers more than half the strip when arranged in a circle.
What if the player dot is trapped between two opponents, both seeking to touch the player dot? Getting touched by two opponents simultaneously removes both of them. Good luck with that. :)
Anyone may freely use this idea. Make money off it if you can.
Ooooh! I made a “Racer” game, similar to the ol’ ASCII-based one on TI-82’s, that runs on a *very slowly* refreshed LCD display… (about 1/5Hz). But the thing is, it could probably be implemented in 1D. E.G. have the current track-edges be marked by white pixels, and have upcoming track positions be shades of gray, depending on how far away… Hmmm….
1D-games might be perfect for that environment!
Lineality from this page https://hamsterrepublic.com/dl/
also Tetris 1D http://www.tetris1d.org/
Haha you tricked me!
I made 1D PacMan to test out a network controlled WS2812 strip. It featured scorekeeping, increasing difficulty, and varying enemy speeds. https://goo.gl/photos/qu2fSNkUeicQuNEg8
I guess I wasn’t the only one who made 1D pong. But I believe it’s the only one that’s more than a 2-player game :-)
Now that I see this video again, I really have to step up my entertainment skills
It’s great to see my brainchild featured here. Thanks alot for the positive feedback and the ideas for more 1D (and even 0D) games. I will keep adding stuff.
At the moment I am thinking about the controller concept. I would like to set up an ESP8266 in a way that people can connect to it with their phones and load a page in their browser that’s serving them the controller button(s). Unfortunately the ESP8266 is completely new to me so it might take a while to get that sortet out – if it is doable after all.
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