ATLAS @ Come Out & Play

In collaboration with Richie Rhombus and Jared Wood, LUDIKA introduced ATLAS at the Come Out & Play Festival in downtown San Francisco. After months of conceptual development, prototyping, and production, the designer trio was excited to find that the players LOVED IT! 

ATLAS is a chance-based urban navigation game, wherein players choose cards that send them in unexpected directions and alter their ways of interacting with their surroundings and fellow humans. The game invites players to create new and adventurous forms of navigating. Each game results in a co-created "map" that documents their collective journey. It's not unusual for ATLAS players to get lost in familiar territory, stumbling upon treasures always there but never noticed.

People were asking if they could buy a set or where they could order one. The most common feedback from players was that they didn't like having to choose between staying out in the urban wilderness to keep playing ATLAS, or return to the CO&P Festival so they wouldn't miss the rest of the games. The idea to have an all-day ATLAS SF event seemed to be a popular suggestion. Hmmm...

Chroma Craze Playtest - At the Birthday Party

What better time to test LUDIKA's newest creation than at Kate's birthday fiesta!

ChromaCraze invites players to strap on bizarre appendages, then use them to apply paint to the collaborative mural. Results were positive: A little paint in the hair, a lot of paint on the canvas, and all guests laughing their heads off. It was a last-minute addition to the party, so we went with appendages of the household and handmade variety. Next time, though, we will be strapping on totally wacky, artistically inspiring costume pieces curated to a given thematic or aesthetic. 


Weave Warp

A competitive weaving game? Well, of course!

Here are some prototypes using yarn, though the vision is to test various colorful yet durable materials that will withstand the outdoors so that a finished game may remain as a gazebo-like sculpture. Maybe we could even incorporate vine-type plants to wrap around the piece, and we could throw a picnic table underneath. Corporate courtyards... you know you want it!

Playtest 1

Playtest 1

Playtest 2

Playtest 2

Weave Warp is a competitive weaving game of speed, strategy, and art. Weave Warp adds some quick thinking to the fast fun of tag, but with a twist. Using boldly-colored weather-proof webbing (like the material used for backpack straps) as a strategic weapon, players race to score points by wrapping their own color around opponents posts. When play is complete, a beautiful canopy structure has been co-created, and becomes a colorful focal point and gathering spot. Weave Warp gives players a chance to engage in a sometimes chaotic, always hilarious collaboration that boosts the urban environment with something new - a  sculpture that conveys the unique aesthetic of the players’ actions, and invites connection, contemplation, and relaxation.

Mad Libs in Motion - at Autodesk

The Marketing team at Autodesk in San Francisco wanted to shake things up a bit... and shake they did! To meet management's goals of opening minds to fresh ideas and unifying the employees into a cohesive working group, LUDIKA designed "Mad Libs in Motion."

Mad Libs in Motion is a movement-based, add-on game, wherein each participant takes a turn being the "Director." The Director draws a card that prompts the creation of a new movement, group formation, or other element of choreography. The Director also is invited to choose a Qualifier card, which shapes the first element with descriptions like "slow as molasses," or "5 times fast." 

The Director performs his/her newly-created movement, and then the group copies it (while the Director makes any desired refinements). The music starts up again, and all players start the co-created choreography from the beginning, adding on the newest Director's addition. 

The result? An impromptu performance of a synchronized, whimsical dance that defies rules or expectations... co-created by a group of colleagues who arrived silently from their respective cubicles with stressed expressions, and walked out together as activated creatives still laughing while rubbing their jaws from smiling so much.

A 6-Month Course in the Art of Play

What if ten people in a class speak ten different languages? How do you find a common method of communication? One answer: Play!

For six months, Kate Spacek facilitated weekly "experiments" to explore what Play is and what it is not, what is required for people to enter a playful state of mind and body, and how perceptions of Play differ across cultures. 

Using games as a foundational tool to integrate art, movement, story-telling, sound, non-verbal communication, team challenges, and all sorts of spontaneity, the course content was a surprise to every student, every time. To find each student's own definitions and parameters of Play, occasionally the activities triggered some discomfort, which in itself was a powerful learning experience for all involved. And Kate pushed her own boundaries as well, making it a rule to add at least one newly-designed game or untested activity to the curricula each week.

Most frequently, classmates who entered the studio as strangers were crafting lunch plans together after class. Middle-aged men and women became teary-eyed, confessing they had not felt these sensations since childhood. Students entered as adults busy with the rigors of daily routine and walked out calm, liberated, and wide-eyed to the possibilities of creative potential around them and within them. 

HAPPY Bootcamp - Revisited

How fortunate! LUDIKA was invited again to facilitate an afternoon of Play at HAPPY Bootcamp, the brilliant creation of HAPPY: The Movie's producer, Eiji Han Shimizu. Rooted in practices of mindfulness, HAPPY Bootcamp gently and effectively invites participants to find their "happy" from within.

A genuine state of Play brings people to the present moment, letting go of concerns about their task list at the office or looking bad in front of others. Play and mindfulness go hand-in-hand.

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HAPPY Bootcamp!

With the Grand Jury Prize from the Amsterdam Film Festival and a slew of awards and accolades from international festivals and top film critics, HAPPY: The Movie has gone beyond a compelling documentary; HAPPY: The Movie is a movement. The film's producer invited LUDIKA's founder, Kate Spacek, to add some pizazz to his newest creation - HAPPY Bootcamp.


One small detail... none of the campers speak English. Another opportunity to reveal Play as a common language! This crew of shy yet kind and eager individuals opened slowly but surely to the freedom brought about by collaborative art and games. By the end of the day, our faces hurt from smiling.