Coffee: A Misunderstanding

A story that kind of looks like your typical “boy meets girl” story at first glance, except the boy doesn’t really feel like a boy and the girl doesn’t really feel like a girl.

A commentary on the weirdness of online friendships that aren’t really friendships, set in the midst of a fan convention called AwesomeCon.

A play where all the actors are audience members. Maybe one of them will be you?

A collaborative game of finding the best ending to the story. Or the worst ending. Or maybe just whatever’s the most satisfying. It’s really up to you. Anything can happen.

Coffee: A Misunderstanding is an interactive play created as part of my MFA thesis work. It is unlike any game project I have ever done before, in that every game I’ve made so far has been purely digital, and this one has a heavy live performance element.

The way the game works is that two audience volunteers are called up and asked to read from a mobile device, which dynamically displays dialogue lines and stage directions. Meanwhile, two additional audience volunteers are given a mobile device on which they can select from a menu of choices that appear at key decision points in the story. It’s a combination of multiplayer Choose Your Own Adventure and improv theatre, resulting in a play experience that’s every bit as awkward as the story it’s trying to tell.

Upcoming Performances
More to come soon…

Past Performances
UCSC Open Studios, June 6, 2014, Santa Cruz, CA
GaymerX, July 13, 2014, San Francisco, CA
DiGRA Blank Arcade, August 4, 2014, Snowbird, UT
IndieCade, October 10-12, 2014, Los Angeles, CA
QGCon, October 26, 2014, Berkeley, CA
WordPlay, November 8, 2014, Toronto, ON
NYU Game Center, November 13, 2014, New York, NY
SubRosa, January 30, 2015, Santa Cruz, CA
IndieCade East, February 14, 2015, New York, NY
IGDA Networking Event @ GDC, March 3, 2015, San Francisco, CA
Carnegie Mellon University, March 25, 2015, Pittsburgh, PA
“New Alchemy” DANM MFA Exhibition, April 25, 2015, Santa Cruz, CA
UCSC class performances, May 26, 2015, Santa Cruz, CA
Games + Learning + Society, July 8-10, 2015, Madison, WI
Mount Royal Game Society, September 16, 2015, Montréal, QC
QGCon Local @ USC, October 26, 2015, Los Angeles, CA
Green Mountain Games Festival, October 31, 2015, Burlington, VT
GX3: Everyone Games, December 12, 2015, San Jose, CA
Different Games Conference, April 8, 2016, New York, NY

Oh, and if you’re the type to want to peek at the source code for this project, it’s here.