maze race - Making a Game with a LED Matrix

This was a class assignment where our main constraint was: create a game using an Arduino and 8x8 LED matrix. 

I decided to do a game inspired by Pacman. 
Instead of a lone protagonist being chased by automated ghosts, I introduced two players. The first player was the food seeker who was avoiding the second player. Meanwhile, the second player was the 'ghost' trying to catch the first player, thus preventing them from completing their mission.

I found this dynamic to be more intriguing than two players seeking after the same goal. After playing the game with some friends, this was anecdotally confirmed.

To up the ante, the maze would constantly change shape, thus flipping the tables on who had the upper hand.
This was an interesting exercise in driving player motivation through very simple means.


The Process


Since this was a very basic prototype on a breadboard, each player controlled their X and Y position in the matrix with two potentiometers.

Each player's pixel was driven at a higher rate than the maze pixels, causing them to appear brighter and be distinguished from the background maze. Similarly, the food pixel was driven at a higher rate and was also coded to blink for differentiation.

Whenever a player won, the level would end and their number would be displayed. Levels were chosen at random from a set of hard-coded matrices.