Google Halloween Doodle pits wizard cat against ghosts

Google Doodles started out as artistic ways to celebrate certain occasions and birthdays. But as web technologies advanced, some doodles turned into interactive content, a.k.a. games. This Halloween, Google deigned to inject some cuteness into the usually scary but sometimes fun celebration, by making a game that tasked a wizard cat into vanquishing ghastly foes. All by waving its wand, which means swiping with your mouse or, better yet, with your fingers on a screen.

The mechanics of the game is pretty simple. Each ghost that advances towards the wizard cat in the center of the screen has one or more symbols on its head. To exorcise the ghost, you must draw the symbols as fast as you can before they reach you. Sounds simple? Try "casting" a 7 to 8 symbol-spell on a mini-boss while 4 other minions try to make their way towards you.

Google explains in a post the inspiration and design process for the game, and why they opted to turn the tables around and make the black cat the hero of the day. Various ideas were proposed for the gameplay, involving more sophisticated rules but equally sophisticated graphics.

In the end, however, simplicity and a race against time made for a better and more addictive winning formula. To some extent, the small "postmortem" gives a glimpse into the process of game development, which budding game designers and developers might want to munch on.

Considering the way the game is played, it is best experienced on a device with a touch screen. On mobile, the Doodle is guaranteed to work with Chrome, while Firefox will also work on tablets. Even better if you happen to have a stylus or Apple Pencil, as you would then really feel like a wizard.

SOURCE: Google