Hide'n'Seek

This iPhone App is breathing new life into the all time kids favorite of playing hide an seek. This App converts the game into an urban adventure for adults and kids alike. Never has playing hide and seek be more fun than with Hide'n'Seek. Because now you have modern technology at hand to help you finding the player who is hiding.... but the same technology also helps the one who is hiding to see you coming. So he or she can find another place to hide in case the current hiding place gets a little too "hot".

Important: Hide'n'Seek works only on the iPhone 3G, 3GS and iPhone4!



What do you need to play Hide'n'Seek?
You need an iPhone 3G or 3GS. Sorry, Hide'n'Seek does not work with the iPhone 2G or iPod Touch because it utilizes GPS and needs an online connection for tracking purposes. If you own an iPhone 3GS you're all set! iPhone 3G users need a small compass to play Hide'n'Seek. Alternatively you can use a good old fashioned map.

How many players may participate?
Hide'n'Seek supports up to five players. One who hides and four who search. This is also the main difference to the original children's play, where several players are hiding and only one is searching. Note:At least two players are needed to play!
HOWEVER: Hide'n'Seek sports an unique Solitair mode in which it simulates a target a single player can then chase. This is great for training.

How to play?
Important: Bluetooth must be enabled! The players have to decide who is going to hide. This person now is the leader and has to start the game. This is done by touching the button labeled "Open a Game". All the other player have to touch the button labeled "Join a Game". The leader selects the number of players including him- / herself. The remaining players simply select a color and wait for the game invitation to arrive. The leader selects the game duration. Once this is done, the leader's device sends out invitations via Bluetooth. Once the message has been received on the other devices, a dialog will prompt for confirmation. The leader's device will count the confirmations and once the count matches the number of players entered at the beginning of the game, the device will switch into game mode. Now the leader has touch the display on the lower portion of the screen to start the game. This will send out a start command to all devices and start their countdown timers. Once the game is started the leader starts to run and hide.

Note 1: The above process uses Bluetooth. In rare occasions this does not work properly (no invitations are received or the start command does not reach all devices). In this case please verify that Bluetooth is enabled and try again.
Note 2: Hide'n'Seek needs a constant connection to the internet to work.
Note 3: Depending on the selected game duration the first update of the location display is delayed several minutes to give the leader a fair chance.
Note 4: The leader's location display updates more frequently than the ones of the seekers. This is by intention! Towards the end of the game updates on all devices occur more frequently than at the beginning.


The user interface

  1. Radar screen, shows the position of the other players. Five minutes before the end of the game it shows google maps. Touching the screen in radar mode toggles details on and off.
  2. Shows this help screen.
  3. Shows compass bearing. Only iPhone 3GS.
  4. Toggle switch for time and bearing display. Only for the players who seek.
  5. Multifunctional display. Shows time, bearing and status information.
  6. Range switch, selects the range of the radar display.
  7. Toggles compass on and off. Only iPhone 3GS.

Training Mode
Training mode is your very own personal trainer. In Training mode you can explore the various functions of the game and it is also useful if you want to improve your search skills.
In this mode Hide'n'Seek will create a random target and you will have to find it. A message will be displayed, if you are close enough to the target.
Game duration is fixed to 10 Minutes, the update interval is 30 seconds and your color icon is always green.
To start your training mode simply press the "Training" button at the beginning of the game.
Note 1: Training mode is for one player only!
Note 2: The target gets placed randomly. It might be in a tree, building or in the middle of a road! Always be careful when searching!

Setting player names
By default Hide'n'Seek uses the name of the iPhone device. This is the name you gave it during the activation phase in iTunes. If desired you may change the name in the Hide'n'Seek settings application which is accessed via the iPhone's Settings application on the home screen.

Setting the Units
Use the Hide'n'Seek settings application to switch from metric (m) to imperial (ft) units.

How does it work?
Hide'n'Seek utilizes the built in GPS (and compass on the iPhone 3GS) to track your location, the location of the other players and most importantly the location of the player who hides. To provide location data to all players, Hide'n'Seek stores the location data in a central database. It uses the unique iPhone ID to do so. No other personal data is stored in the database. The application periodically updates location data and requests location data of the other players. The data is then displayed on a "radar screen" as colored symbols.

Screenshot_map
Five minutes before the game ends the screen switches into google maps mode to provide one more chance to the players who are searching for the hideout.

Note 1: The locations are always displayed in reference to true north - see below for details.
Note 2: Because Hide'n'Seek relies on GPS playing inside buildings is not possible!
Note 3: If someone is hiding inside a building (unfair!) then only the last known location is displayed

How are locations displayed Your location is always in the centre of the "radar screen". The positions of the other players are shown as colored icons. The red icon represents the player who hides.

Note: Tapping the screen once will show the names and location data of the other players. The figure labeled "d" is the distance of the other players in relation to you and if height data is available the figure labeled "h" indicates the height above sea level. This comes in handy when someone is hiding in a high rise building (see above Note 3). Tapping the screen again will hide the details.

How to interprete locations
As stated above your location is always in the centre of the "radar screen". To relate the positions of the other players and especially the one of the person who is hiding, you have to align the iPhone with the north / south axis, facing north. iPhone 3GS: On an iPhone 3GS this is very easy: Just touch the "COMP" button to bring up a compass rose. Then turn yourself around until the compass rose's "N" and the "N mark of the "radar screen" align. The heading display on the right side will show 360 or 0. Touch the "COMP" button again to hide the compass. Now you see the player icons in relation to you own position. The distance rings on the screen show the approximate distance. Use the range buttons below the screen to zoom in and out. iPhone 3G: Because the iPhone 3G does not have an integrated compass you either have to use a separate compass and align the iPhone to it, or use streets and buildings or a map as an indication for the north direction (see examples below). Once you have established direction to North, use above description to identify player locations.
Examples

iPhone aligned to a map




iPhone aligned to a compass



A general note on GPS precision
Depending on the location where you are playing, GPS data might be more or less accurate. A deviation of up to 50m (164ft) may be experienced in cities with lots of high-rise buildings or in rainy weather. This is not a shortcoming of this App, but rather a problem of the GPS principle itself. Another problem is that the GPS data is randomly altered for non military users - hence the deviation of location data you may see, even though you have clear sky and you are not hiding in a forest. If you are interested in more details on the GPS click here.

Proximity Alert

To make up for the imprecision of the GPS, Hide'n'Seek sports a proximity feature! When you are in close proximity (10-20m / 32-64ft)
to the player who is hiding, then a dialog will pop up to notify you. This feature is using Bluetooth technology to detect the device of the hidden person.
Note: This notification works only for the seekers and not for the person under pursuit!



Perimeter Warning


If a player leaves the 1.000m (3.280ft) gaming zone then a perimeter warning will be shown. The perimeter is always calculated
from the starting point of the game and stretches 500m (1.640ft) into every direction. This means that if a player is farer away
from the starting point than 500m, the warning dialog will be shown. You may dismiss the dialog, but the alert message in the
bottom display will only disapear when you are inside the perimeter again.

Interruptions to game play
Receiving a phone call while playing Hide'n'Seek is not a problem. Once the call is finished the iPhone will switch back to the game. You may even switch off the iPhone using the button on top of the case. The App will continue to run in background and still transmit and receive location information. Pressing the Home button while playing is not advised! This will end the application and no more location information will be transmitted. This might be tempting for the person who is hiding, but it is considered unfair!

When Hide'n'Seek is restarted while a game is still on, then you are asked whether you want to rejoin the current game or start a new one.

Silent mode
When playing Hide'n'Seek it makes sense to set the iPhone into vibration mode, so that sounds emitted from the iPhone don't reveal your position. Hide'n'Seek will also trigger vibrations if important information is displayed on the screen.

Disclaimer
Do not attempt to operate the software while driving a car or operating heavy machinery. Always observe your surroundings and traffic when playing.
The creator of this software can not be held responsible for any damage which might arise from using this software.