November 1st, 2007 — Wordman
When a coworker was recently comparing experiences with the iPod Touch, he mentioned how grateful he was to the Kids in the Hall, as emulating them had trained his finger muscles to use the device’s zoom feature. For the uninitiated, zooming out on the iPod Touch involves touching two fingers to the screen and spreading them apart, while zooming in involves moving your fingers together. This is basically the same motion used in a series of Kids sketches involving a semi-crazy guy saying “I’m crushing your head”, while making a similar motion from a distance, like this attempt to crush the head of a statue of Buddha:
All this head crushing and its relation to to the iPod Touch UI got me thinking about the perfect game for the device: iCrushYourHead. The idea would be that pictures of people would randomly drift across the screen at various speeds, and using the “pinching” UI gesture, you would have to crush their heads as they passed. The crushing would be animated with a cheesy accordion-fold type effect. As the game progressed, they would drift by faster and faster, and more would be on screen at once. Naturally, you’d need to be able to import photos of people who deserve head crushing.
The same coworker, hearing this idea, suggested another game, this one for kids. It is a port of those kids books where the page is divided into three sections, one for the head, one for the body and one for the legs, where the kid will mix and match various parts to make fun combinations. It would make use of another cool UI trick on the touch, the sliding scroll gesture where you can kind of “throw” a section of a screen and it will scroll with a sort of natural deceleration. It’s hard to explain if you haven’t used the iPod Touch, but it is very natural. In the case of this game, it would act a bit like the wheels of a slot machine, that you could spin independently with varying degrees of force. The number of choices for the body parts could also be vastly larger than a physical book would allow.
Feel free to send me royalty checks if you build these games.