With gamification having consumed every aspect of our lives, there is no reason for you not to transform your surroundings into a realm of competition and adventure. There’s a very good chance, in fact, that several games are being played right under your nose – on your commute, at your workplace, in your haunts and homes.
Whether you’re simply looking to get started or you’re looking for the next way to defeat your neighbors, Frisky Mongoose is here to help you determine what GPS-enabled games are right for you.
As a creature of habit and a person of predictable movements, your domain is small, but you know it well. Location-based gaming can still be for you, even if you only find yourself in a small handful of locations. You will find triumph in games that reward you for visiting familiar locations with high frequency.
Recommended Title: My Kingdom
4X gameplay doesn’t necessarily sound ideal when the map is the real world and each turn lasts half a day, but for the gamer with a few minutes to spare at a time, My Kingdom lends itself well to the everyday traveler. Players claim virtual villages in real space and their telephone functions as their personal caravan, ferrying goods from one location to the next. To expand the mining camp at your workplace, for example, you’ll want to collect the lumber from the mill inside your apartment building. A persistent world with diverse biome regions can ultimately lead to territorial disputes or alliances, all played out a few minutes at a time across your daily visits. Give it a try – just don’t miss your train while managing the village you’ve spawned at the station.
With the local area firmly under your control, it’s time to strike out for new lands! The quest for points and prestige can be a great excuse to go exploring, finding sights and secrets in places you’ve always meant to visit. Yes, your eyes will be glued to your phone for most of it, but at least you’re trying.
Recommended Title: Geocaching
For an experience that blends real-world exploration, technology, and gamification, it’s tough to beat the original. The official Geocaching website is still going strong after more than a decade, with thousands of treasure hunts waiting for players in most any location worldwide. Excellent apps are now available for all popular mobile platforms, so as long as you’ve got a cellular signal, you can check to see if you’re near any caches whenever the mood strikes you. For the truly adventurous, of course, you can plan an entire day around a faraway find by checking the website first. Always BYOP and mind the muggles.
If these walls could talk, what stories would they tell? Whether you’re curious about which dishes are best at a new restaurant, or wondering who else has appreciated the sunset at your favorite beach, there are countless alternate realities that hold the thoughts, photographs, and experiences of the people around you. Try a few social apps and leave your mark on the ever-tweeting, always-growing landscape that is location-based crowdsourcing.
Recommended Title: Dokobots
Have you ever picked up a dollar bill with a “Where’s George” mark on it? Dokobots replaces the currency with adorable virtual droids, and adds on-the-spot journal entries with geotags and photos. Users are encouraged to scavenge new bots from the world around them, assign them a desire or personality, and turn them loose for the next person to find, after which point their journeys will be related through future users’ entries. Bots can even be placed on in-game airplanes to automatically appear in different cities worldwide, in hopes of following one’s favorite find on a globe-spanning adventure.