We often go out to a local park to test the range of beacons. As we are regularly looking at our phones and moving about, people sometimes ask us if we are playing some sort of location-based game.
Location based games involve solving puzzles and finding clues via a location-enabled smartphone app. Examples include Ingress Prime, Minecraft Earth and Pokemon Go. While most only use GPS, beacons allow greater precision and use indoors. The user’s location and sometimes the location of other players is commonly shown on a map or plan. It’s also possible to use beacons with Augmented Reality (AR) to show the location of people or things on top of the camera image.
Location-based gaming isn’t restricted to pure gaming but can also be used to gamify other situations such as visitor spaces. The principles are the same except that simpler information is usually displayed, with clues and directions, rather than use from a gaming engine. Retailers such as Macy’s have also used gamification in retail.