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Featured Projects

Airtime VRAirtime VRAirtime VR

On 01, Jun 2017 | In

Airtime VR

In partnership with Papillon Paragliding at Mt. Wasserkuppe a group of CGL researchers and students are developing a VR paragliding simulation. The project is currently in an early phase with a first rough prototype which is set up at CGL and can be tested upon request.
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Porta Praetoria C.C.A.A.Porta Praetoria C.C.A.A.Porta Praetoria C.C.A.A.

On 15, May 2017 | In

Porta Praetoria C.C.A.A.

Porta Praetoria C.C.A.A. is a location-based app for Smartphones that introduces users to the Roman roots of Cologne with the help of a playful approach to Augmented-Reality Gaming. With the project, my research groups HisToGo (2015-17) and EPPSA (2016-19) at TH Köln aim at developing a novel multiplayer approach to teaching history on site.

The project is currently in a first technical protoyping phase where we are testing multiplayer dynamics and and a layered learning-playing model.

On 06, Mar 2017 | In

Phone Home

A game for two players whose goal is to navigate an invisible maze to find and reconnect with each other.

The game takes place on a touch-responsive glass wall with no visual indicators. The paths, walls and obstacles of the invisible maze can be explored only by the specific sound and vibration frequency that is triggered when approaching an object or colliding with it by touch.

Phone Home received an honorable mention at AMaze 2017.
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On 29, Nov 2016 | In

Moskito Beat

Moskito Beat is a story world centered around a frog named Flup who one day discovers that his favorite food also stars a the perfect musical instrument …

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European Youth Event 2016European Youth Event 2016

On 22, May 2016 | In

European Youth Event 2016

As part of our work with Games for Change Europe, Simon Bachelier, Carmen Johann and I were invited by the European Parliament to develop a series of games related activities for the European Youth Event 2016 (EYE) that took place on May 20 and 21 at the Parliament in Strasbourg.

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Notgames Fest (2011-2015)Notgames Fest (2011-2015)

On 20, Aug 2013 | In

Notgames Fest (2011-2015)

The Notgames Fest trilogy was an exhibition in 2011, 2013 and 2015  about not-so-gamey but playful interactive media. In collaboration with the Belgium-based game studio Tale of Tales, the Cologne Game Lab is the host of the bi-annual event.

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Voodoo – Break The SpellVoodoo – Break The SpellVoodoo – Break The Spell

On 25, Jan 2013 | In

Voodoo – Break The Spell

Having organized the annual Global Game Jam at the Cologne Game Lab for the past three years, I finally broke the spell and managed to participate in the fourth and recent jam for the very first time.

As my teammates and I were still running the event, we knew we had to get the game done within approximately 24 hours instead of the common 48. – Fortunately Carmen, Guido and I have a couple of things in common that makes collaboration so extremely fun: It`s the love for improvisation paired with a little bit of megalomania.

I had brought the ‘MaKey MaKey kit’ which is basically a usb adaptor that enables you to replace your avarage keyboard and mouse with a custom interface. By simply connecting any electrically conductive object to the makeymakey board, a person who is connected to earth can initiate any action in any computer program by touching the object and hence closing the electric circuit.

As this year’s theme was a human heartbeat we instantly though about creating the interface as a reference to a defibrillator but when we actually tested the device with a series of random jump and run games, we got fascinated be the power of collaborating and navigating by simply touching each other. This impression was verified when we invited other jammers to play with the interface. The immediate feeling of being part of a conspiracy, a magic circle of friends came up even when we just told the group to navigate through a word document.

The game just naturally evolved out of this first open experiment. The magic circle and hence the gameplay mechanic became vital for the story.

Play the game online


After a long and hard worklife life in the magic business the recently retired voodoo puppet “O” has been scrapped and left alone in the mystery woods. Help setting “O” free from his inanimated state. Use the power of collaboration and combine your characteristics with those of your teammates to support “O” on his way through the woods. Love, curiosity, doubt and fear are the main forces that will support the retired voodoo puppet to find a new life.

The game is intended to be played without your standard interface but with the power of holding hands in a real life magic circle. The connection between offline player interaction and navigation in the digital space is achieved by a special interface we constructed by using the MaKey MaKey kit. To navigate in the game, the players have to time and combine their powers by holding and releasing hands in a chain of action.

The game is fully functional with your standard arrow keys  in single player mode but we highly recommend to get yourself a MaKey MaKey kit and play Voodoo together with your friends. Below, you can find a mini-manual how I to build the interface and we are happy to hear about your experiences and ideas how to further develop the game.


Carmen Johann: Game Design, Character Design, Animation
Guido Göbbels: Game Design, Game Art, Level Design, Programming
Katharina Tillmanns: Game Design, Interface Design, Sound Design

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