Here's an awesome way to play the old-school shooter Asteroids: by supporting up to eight players using Android phones as adhoc controllers. Players connect to a server and play the game via a first-person perspective--a monitor, TV or other device connected to the server shows the game in its original black/white 2D format, however all eight gamers are seen on-screen shooting asteroids and each other.
"The phones have a general purpose LANPad application on them that connects to the host and receives a 'surface' SWF," explained the project's designer, Grant Skinner. "This SWF dictates the mobile interaction, including sending and receiving data from the host, displaying a first person view on the game, and playing sounds that are specific to the player."
In the Vimeo video shown here, the android app provides a thrust button on the left and a shield button on the right. At the top of the screen, the app displays the player's current score and health status. While maneuvering through space in a first-perspective, players can also look up at the server's display to navigate through the asteroid field from a top-down perspective.
"This [project] has lead to the development of what I feel is a strong framework for creating public installations and experiences that will allow smart phone users (on multiple platforms) to connect in an adhoc fashion," Skinner said.
To see this multiplayer version of Asteroids in action, check out the video here.