Kōan is a drawing, most certainly a plan. And the architect wants you to break it. Softly, methodically, the way you would hit the keys of a piano if you were alone and serene.
But the architect being an architect, he won’t let you just break things without making things. New things, new architecture. Parametric-biomimicking-mathematically-poetics things that architects love so much.
So here you are, slowly crafting architects flowers that get sent to his garden of a server.
And you like it, because even though the process is all but exciting, it leaves you in a better state than the one you came in with.
You’d be very wise to ask yourself such questions as:
IS IT A VIDEO GAME?
IS THIS GAME ADDICTIVE?
It is good to know that, even though the creator of Kōan regularly starts his teaching on the topic of video games by showing to picture of Dopamine molecule and explaining that the whole industry of this kind of entertainment thrive on addiction, he decided to spare his users from this unhealthy traits. …Making Kōan “unfit” to the video game market.
The point being that the creator wishes to provide a well being and meditative experience rather than competitive and frustrative one.
DOES THIS APP STEAL MY DATAS?
The app will ask for Internet access permission in order to allow the rankings to be downloaded and the user’s flowers to be sent to the garden. If synchronizing, the one information that gets sent to the server with each flower is the Android device ID. It is used in order, for the user, to be able to see “his” tallest flower in the world ranking.
DO I HAVE TO SIGN INTO ANYTHING?
Just open it, use it and enjoy this tiny place of freedom and simplicity.
IS IT FOR ME?
If you read everything above before reading this line then, may be: YES. Otherwise, most probably: NO. The word is full of enticing video games and you should go toward those.
Kōan is an app for Android from KitKat on. Beware that a rather potent machine is required to get a good FPS. Kōan has been developed with the Nvidia K1 for test machine.
HOW DO I PLAY THIS VIDEO GAME?
In the center of the screen is the paddle.
The primary gameplay consist in orienting the paddle, using your finger on the screen, in order to bounce the red ball that comes out shooting out of the canon.
The canon moves along a circular rail around the center of the screen.
By bouncing the ball the player get it to hit tiles that form a sort of maze around the rail. Each time a tile is hit, a point is added to the score that is displayed big and clear in the center of the screen.
Then there is the secondary gameplay, or advanced gameplay.
The radial architecture that forms the maze is made of rings of tiles. There are 8 rings in total, each made of 20 tiles.
Each time a ring is entirely cleared, BINGO!, the whole maze is shifted and a new petal line is added, right to the center of the screen.
By clearing rings of tiles, the user is adding petals to what is becoming the plan of a flower.
It is important to notice that the type of petal added to the flower depend on the ring that is cleared. The further the cleared ring is, the more complex the petal is.
The player is given 3 lives, the number of which being displayed in the center axis of the paddle. A life is lost by letting the red ball entering the center axis of the paddle.
When that number of lives reaches 0, the party will come to an end.
Finally, when the party ends and the “GAME IS OVER” text is displayed, the player is rewarded with his creation. The drawing of his petals is transferred into a seed and, right away, the flower goes into parametric growth and blossom (Isn’t it nice?). The higher the score, the taller the flower.
As a final touch, if the flower is nice enough, the user has to give it a 5 letters name that will make it yours in the (server) garden.
TO KNOW MORE ABOUT KŌAN
Head to http://rich.gg/koan/koanEN.htm