I am Marisa Malahowski, lead for the Digital Humanities Game Engine/ Design team, today I am making a guest post explaining what Harvey is all about.
For those of you that are just hearing about this now and know absolutely nothing about this project here is a little background information: Harvey Hall is an educational building on the University of Wisconsin- Stout campus. It has been used for home economics classes, English classes, and faculty offices since it’s construction in 1916. The building is currently undergoing a redesign and is out of commission until 2016; it’s centennial anniversary.
The Digital Humanities Capstone class and the Design 3D Modeling and Animation class teamed up to research Harvey Hall and create a physical model of it. Harvey could be described as a game, but it is better described as a virtual environment with game components. We want the user to explore a historically accurate Harvey Hall as it was throughout its years and renovations.Within this explorable virtual environment the user will come across optional mini games to play. These games are located in the rooms and hallways they explore. The user will either be prompted to play a game, or will come across a game on his or her own.
As of November 24th 2014 there have been two games created: the Wasp game and the Hats game. The ideas for these games were inspired by the research the teams uncovered while exploring the University of Wisconsin-Stout Archives, and other research facilities.
For example, many people who have been inside Harvey know of its wasp problem; wasps can be heard buzzing in the ceilings and interrupting classrooms. When the user explores the 4th floor of Harvey Hall, they will come across a buzzing bunch of wasps. A fly swatter will appear in front of them and it is up to them to squash every wasp in the area. Once the user squashes these wasps they will receive an achievement badge to show they have completed the game. Below is a picture of the fly swatter the user will use.
The idea for the Hats game actually came up as a joke from a team member, Alec. He saw a picture of Lorenzo Dow Harvey in a derby hat and joked about how it would be funny to have the user search for Harveys’ Hat. However, because there was a millinery class in Harvey Hall (when it was the Home Economics Building) we thought, why not actually have the user find randomly placed hats throughout the building? The user will encounter these hats as they explore Harvey Hall and will gain an achievement when they have collected all 10. No one will prompt the user to play this game, they will just come across it. Below is a mock up of the hats the user will come across.