Spike Ball is a project that I started during the proposals for the Maker Faire Rome 2015.
Before the concept I had many other own concepts to choose from, but I found Spike Ball project a new level for myself. Mostly to get better in development and do something with my interests; mechanical, hardware, software and making people feel odd with my projects.
Project: Spike Ball, Maker Faire 2015
My Role: Game designer / Programmer / Hardware / Production
Why Spike Ball?
The Spike Ball concept came to me when I walked outside in the park near my house. During the walk I saw a chestnut tree with big spiky things hanging in there. So after my figment in my head I thought isn’t it cool to make something where layers are unfolding and the treasure is inside, but the path to the core is very difficult to take. Just try opening a chestnut with those spikes, “It’s hard, I can tell you!”.
I sketched multiple ways to get a nice folding ball, iterating on the chestnut, and I came up with a kind of present inside a folding ball made of wood and spikes attached on the outside. Now I had some problems with “how the *” am I getting that mechanism to work. So I looked at umbrellas, not the thing what i was looking for, but it was a big inspiration for the solution of folding and unfolding Spike Ball.
After many experiments (with motors which can or couldn’t pull the Spike Ball) I finally came to the perfect mechanism of Spike Ball. Cotton ropes and a cordless drill. Next of my list: The code, it was easy to make, because I wanted a small game element on the outer shell to get to the inner core. Conductive paint is a pretty material and works fine, so I implemented on the outer shell for the game element (touching paint is breaking the code).