Thursday, 1 September 2016

A game I could play

I've just had a rather good idea. It's a daily game that will get me on my feet and walking briskly around the village. This will make me a bit fitter, and help me lose a little weight.

I was thinking of Pokemon, and all those youngsters walking around in search of new monsters to catch. It sparked an idea for an exercise game that would have a time element to it.

This is how it works. (I'm still at the planning stage, but I should be trying out the beta version within 24 hours!)

First, I identify 36 places in and around the village, each with a unique identifying number, and give them a score based on how roughly far they are from my front door. For instance:

11 Exercise machines in the park - score 5 points
12 Bowling Club - score 5
13 Postbox - score 5
14 Nursing Home - score 5
21 Pub A - score 10
22 Village Hall - score 10
23 Library - score 10
24 Garden of Remembrance - score 10
31 Parish church - score 15
32 Pub B - score 15
33 Supermarket - score 15
34 Post Office - score 15
35 Bank - score 15
36 Delicatessen - score 15
41 Doctor's surgery - score 20
42 Pub C - score 20
43 Garage - score 20
44 Station - score 20
45 Railway bridge - score 20
46 School gates - score 20
51 Crossroads - score 25
52 Tennis Club - score 25
61 Pub D - score 30
62 Filling station - score 30
63 Garden centre - score 30
64 Windmill - score 30

Second, I make up a list of six places to visit on foot, each selected by rolling a dice twice. Supposing I roll a 4 and then a 3. That gives '43' which is the number for the Garage, and that becomes one of my objectives. And so on, until I have six places to walk to.

Third, I decide the most efficient order in which to visit them. I must plan my best route carefully, because to get maximum points I must go to all of them, and return home, inside a time limit. Let's say that I am going to these following six places, arranged by me into this order:

12 Bowling Club (the first place to walk to) - 5 points
22 Village Hall - 10
34 Post Office - 15
51 Crossroads - 25
43 Garage - 20
23 Library (the last place) - 10
Total possible score: 85

Fourth, I work out the time allowed in order to get a full score. This (in minutes) is: the total score for the six places, halved, and then rounded down to the nearest 5 points. The points for the six selections above total 85. Half of that is 42.5, which when rounded down becomes 40 minutes. So, if I visit them all and return to my home within 40 minutes then I score the full 85 points.

But I lose 10 points for each five minutes over the time allowed. Let's suppose it takes me 60 minutes to walk to every place and get home. That's 20 minutes over my time limit, and my penalty is therefore 40 points. My net score is only 45.

I could make it a requirement that any score below 50 makes it mandatory to select a further six places and complete another walk later in the day. Thus an 'easy' walk in the morning, with all the places very close to home, will in any case score less than 50, and will automatically prompt another (hopefully more demanding) walk later on that same day. And a longer walk tackled at too leisurely a pace will also tend to score under 50, prompting another - hopefully brisker - walk in the afternoon.

All this encourages fast walking.

I could also build in a reward for securing full points on a long walk. Let's say any walk that scores at least 100 points. The reward could be some treat not often enjoyed, though naturally nothing that would impinge on the salutary physical effect of the walk!

Now what shall I call this game? Pokepoints? Point-to-Point? Walko?

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