Developer Lucas Rizzotto has created CyberSnake, a free game for Microsoft HoloLens. As explained in the game’s launch video (above), the game is inspired by the 2D Snake arcade game, moved into a mixed reality environment, and played in first person.
Originally found in various arcade games in the 1970s, and famously used by Nokia in their mobile phones from the late 1990s, the maze game known as ‘Snake’ was simple and addictive. There were a few variations, but it usually involved growing a tail by eating dots, with the objective to grow as long as possible without bumping into your own tail.
In the case of CyberSnake, you wear a HoloLens and move around your real space, playing as the snake from a first-person view. ‘CyberBurgers’ appear in the air, which you have to ‘eat’ with your head, growing your ‘CyberTail’. By using HoloLens’ spatial mapping, the game maintains the position of the tail in 3D space, even when you aren’t looking at it, and as the tail grows, it becomes an increasingly difficult obstacle to avoid. And no, this time it isn’t an April Fool’s joke.
To enhance the gameplay, powerups can be used, one of which is summoned by saying the phrase ‘believe in your dreams’ (what else!), which collects nearby CyberBurgers and can strategically blow up parts of your tail to make it shorter. The developer provided some additional gameplay details on his Facebook page, confirming that you can move over or under the tail, and your body is allowed to pass through, as long as your head doesn’t collide with it.
The game can also differentiate a sofa from other objects, sometimes allowing burgers to be placed in a way that makes you climb over it, but never for any other furniture; there is always a burger placed in a position where you aren’t forced to climb anything.
CyberSnake is Rizzotto’s second app created for HoloLens on the Microsoft Store, the first being MyLab, an augmented reality chemistry app that places a periodic table in 3D space, where the user can spawn atoms, study their structure and combine them to make molecules.