The video game Pong is the great grand-father of most video games over the past 50 years, and many games are derived from Pong. The original was created by Nolan Bushnell, and was inspired by an electronic tennis he had played on a computer in 1964 while attending college.
I created Blindfold Pong last year, and it works by moving your phone left and right, trying to keep the ball sound in the center of your head. As the ball gets closer, if its sound is centered between your ears, the ball will hit your paddle and bounce to your opponent. I enhanced Blindfold Pong into Blindfold Breakout and Blindfold Air Hockey, and then took it in a new direction – Blindfold Juggling.
How are these games the same? Breakout is just Pong with bricks that make noise when you hit them. Air Hockey is the same as Pong, except you can make the puck go faster and angle it more based on where your paddle hits the puck, and the sounds are different. Juggle is the same as Pong, but instead of things moving horizontally across a table, the ball moves up and down.
Blindfold Juggle started out very easily, by juggling balls, where each ball had a different sound. The testers said that was too boring, so I switched from balls to animals, like horses, cows and birds, and the goal of the game was to keep all of the animals in the air at once.
To make it more challenging, one tester suggested making the lighter animals, like a canary, be tossed higher than a heavy animal, like a whale. Another suggested letting you choose which animals you want to toss, and a third tester asked for changing the gravity. Now you can toss cows, horses and frogs on the Earth, the Moon, or Jupiter (or any of the other planets).
The final step in changing Pong to Juggle was to let you flick your wrist to toss the animal, instead of simply lining up the paddle with the falling animal. When the animal is really close, you hear a ding-ding sound, and then you flick your wrist to toss the animal back to the sky. The faster you flick, the higher the animal goes.
Grade school teachers tell me that they use Blindfold Juggle to demonstrate the concept of planets having different gravity.