Double Shovel

Double Shovel is a cooperative shovel-based action game (and mess generator) I developed for the Rabble Room Arcade last October. Players use metal shovels to scoop and re-scoop piles of wheat, using speed and precision to complete a parade of labours that get harder and stranger as you go.

It was a great brief: Jenna Gavin and Tom Tyer-Drake were organising an arcade of social play games with unique controllers and asked developers to provide ideas and games, in return they’d provide the skill and materials to build the controller. So I came up with the concept for Double Shovel, Jenna and Tom built the physical device, I coded the game, and Lana did the gfx.

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The trapdoor swings down when a load gets chucked into the bin, and a little screw on the back of the flap hits an arcade button. The arcade buttons are attached to an Arduino, which sends signals to the game, which was written in openFrameworks. There’s no way to know how big the scoop is, but the load has to be fairly big to knock the flap down. Check out the video at the top to see the chaos in action.

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