One of the best, most joyful parts of GDC is Alt.Ctrl.GDC – the section of the show floor dedicated to alternative control methods for games. This year was no exception and I played games using a laser lyre, a box of sand and a bookshelf to name but a few. I think my personal favourite might have been the Calvin and Hobbes-inspired Spacebox [official site] where the player clambers into a massive cardboard box and treats it like a spaceship, leaning to and fro, hitting a tinfoil button to fire and wearing a metal colander with pipe cleaners on it as a space helmet in order to enjoy the human PEWPEW noises coming from the headphones hidden inside.
I feel like that one was my favourite because it did an absolutely amazing job of yanking childish glee out of all the players I saw using it as well as the people watching. I would happily have spent the whole morning in that box and was not-very-secretly disappointed when my time was up. If I hadn’t had an appointment to get to I would probably have asked whether I could do some helpful colouring in on the sides of the box or help make backup spaceships from their stash of emergency replacement boxes and duct tape.
TL;DR? Graham, this is my resignation – I’m going to go and become a cardboard spaceship captain forever now. Read the rest of this entry »