Even though I never participate in a race, that doesn’t mean I’m not delighted whenever anyone asks me to come out and play! So when the creators of Streetquest invited me to try out their free running app, I didn’t play hard to get.
The rise of the running app
More and more running apps are coming onto the market to make running more interesting and more fun for those who need something extra to keep them going. Personally I’m a big fan of the Zombies, Run! app. I loved running around a post-apocalyptic world and getting chased by zombies.
How does Streetquest work?
Once you have installed the application on your smart phone you choose a fraction to become a part of: Earth, Fire, Water, Air. For every completed Event or Quest, and every started distance you’ll gather points, for yourself, but also for your fraction, and the City you live in.
Streetquest: events and quests
Streetquest offers events and quest. Quests, you can do whenever you want to, at any time of day. But events are being held at certain dates and time. Tonight, for example, there’s an event called ‘Painting’ at eight o’clock. And around eight thirty you can participate in ‘Collecting’.
Quest: Follow the rabbit
Follow the rabbit uses GPS. You push the start button, and a map of your living area appears on your smart phone screen. Somewhere in that area there’s a rabbit, and it’s your job to find it. Once you’ve located the rabbit on the map, you walk or run towards it, and as soon as you reach it, the rabbit goes ‘poof’. But then you have scored some points. And that’s what it’s all about: scoring!
To be able to write this review I tried this quest with my eleven year old son. However that stupid rabbit had holed itself up in a fenced off area, so we couldn’t get to it. In the end we did manage to catch it, but the fact that the app doesn’t concern itself with natural boundaries makes this quest a bit difficult.
Quest: Monster Attack
After catching our rabbit, we played the quest Monster Attack on our way back. You start out with three lives, and this game uses GPS too. It was cold, and the wind was chilly, so I insisted on heading in the direction of our warm and comfortable home. Unfortunately all the monsters stood there, and soon we had lost two of our lives. If you want to play this game the right way, you should head in a different direction whenever you see monsters!
When you participate in the event Painting you color the area you run in. For all intents and purposes you are the brush! And wherever you go, there you paint. So let’s say your color is red: then everywhere you run, the map of your area becomes the color red. The real fun starts when there’s another runner out there who’s also painting: then you can paint all of hís territory. That’ll teach him!
Unfortunately it’s quite lonely out here in the sticks and I seem to be the only one painting my area red.
What else does Streetquest have to offer?
Besides Painting, Follow the Rabbit and Monster Attack you can set traps for other runners, or simply collect points by choosing the quest ‘Just Run’. When I take my kids to school, I do so running, and I sometimes turn on Streetquest to get more points. The more points the higher your level, the more quests and events you can choose from. To set traps you need to be level 4, and I’m just at level 1.
Streetquest: suggestions for improvement
- Streetquest still has some hiccups. Several times the app just crashed on me, and I didn’t get my points!
- But the biggest problem is the fact that you have to watch your screen to play the games. And that makes Streetquest a bit risky as a runner. Because you have to watch traffic and where you’re going, and if you’re trying to get that rabbit by looking at your screen, you risk getting into an accident. It’s a great motivational tool, but you have to watch where you’re going! That’s what the guys of the Zombies, Run! App got just right: you only have to lísten to play their game.
- To make Streetquest more suitable for runners they should add more auditory elements. Like ‘The rabbit is to your right’ or ‘The monsters are right ahead of you’. That way it’s much safer to play.
- What I personally would like to see added is the opportunity to find other runners in your area. Right now I can’t tell if there are any other runners around here who play Streetquest too.
Streetquest: great potential
Aside from this I do like Streetquest. The idea of doing battle with other runners is great fun. And I also like the idea of building a new runner’s community.
Wanna play Streetquest?
Right now it’s still in beta and free: you can download it at http://www.street-quest.com/