Sphery Racer

A futuristic fitness game for the ExerCube

The product cover image of the game Sphery Racer.

Sphery Racer is a futuristic fitness game for the ExerCube, providing an optimal workout experience with the Dual Flow, where the game matches training difficulty to the physical and mental performance of its players.

In an interdisciplinary cooperation with sport scientists and game researchers of the startup Sphery AG, the game is developed exclusively for Sphery's ExerCube, a fitness room where the game is projected on the walls. The software is tracking the player's performance with motion sensors and a heart rate tracker. The game then matches difficulty, complexity, speed, and sound to the performance during the workout, based on Sphery's elaborated Dual Flow training algorithm. This ensures an optimal training for body and mind, not too challenging but not to easy either.

Ingame, the players are driving along a racetrack on a hoverboard, through a holographic underwater world. Along the track are various obstacles, where the players have to perform the appropriate workout moves. The moves are selected to provide a holistic functional training and vary by chosen difficulty level. As long as the players are doing the movement correctly, difficulty and speed of the race track will increase. If mistakes happen, the game will decrease the difficulty and complexity, but will not punish the players for it. This is so engaging that after the game, players usually have lost track of how much time has passed, and how vigorous their workout was.

Sphery Racer is the second project, where we are working with Sphery CEO Anna Martin-Niedecken. The former R&D project Plunder Planet, which was located at the Zurich University of the Arts focused on the research-based development of an adaptive fitness game setting for children and young adolescents.

The Sphery Racer is currently in a demo phase, where a lot of people can play it and provide feedback, on which we iterate in fast cycles. Among other locations and opportunities, the game will be shown on the Gamescom 2018. More demo events will be listed on http://sphery.ch/news. If you are interested, don’t hesitate to sign up at Sphery for a training session!

Publications

  1. Martin-Niedecken, A.L. & Götz, U. (2017). Go with the Dual Flow: Evaluating the Psychophysiological Adaptive Fitness Game Environment Plunder Planet - M. Alcañiz et al. (Eds.): Serious Games, LNCS 10622, Proceedings of the Joint Conference on Serious Games (JCSG '17), pp. 32-43, Springer International Publishing. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-70111-0_4

  2. Martin-Niedecken, A.L. & Götz, U. (2016): Design and Evaluation of a dynamically adaptive Fitness Game Environment for Children and Young Adolescents. - In: Proceedings of the ACM SIGCHI Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play (CHI PLAY '16), pp 205-212, ACM: New York, NY, USA. ISBN 978-1-4503-4458-6. DOI: 10.1145/2968120.2987720.