In Mole-a-Whack, the mole whacks you. A blaring “Nomnomnomnom” sounds every time the players hit the button. But the big pink noodle hovers above, taking away points each time it makes contact. The noodle is controlled by a spectator, and though it seems very dramatic, the players hardly notice the contact.
The concept originated, says AJ Almaguer, with a Maker Faire brainstorm, and was built by TechHive studio, from the Lawrence Hall of Science. This is their third Maker Faire — previous projects included a BikeSim virtual reality system and a giant Makey Makey — and they had been pondering games and ways to make a real life arcade. The result: A game, programmed in Scratch, where a noodle hits players as they try to press a home-made button.
Thanks to the foil-and-cardboard buttons, which players must assemble, the participants get to go through a building and testing phase, and get familiar with connecting a circuit, says Almaguer. Then, they get whacked.