Created by Riot Games, Valorant is a free-to-play first person shooter game who hosted their one of a kind event series in UAE after their huge success in Cairo. Within their main event, they also hosted a Escape Maze, Broadcasting Boot for local broadcasters, a dancing zone and so on.
Among all that, they also planned to setup a Laser Maze. Unfortunately, all the equipment’s to set up the Laser Maze were held up in Cairo’s customs. It was up to us to make a Laser Maze gaming room from scratch, but the catch was we had only 1 day to set it up.
With that in mind, we first needed a game plan. Starting from how many lasers we will require, where the sensors will be placed, how will they work, what kind of feedback will the player get once they touch the laser, and so on. We first started with purchasing all the tools and equipment’s needed from Greens Digital Electronics, which is situated in Deira as they have all the you need to DIY almost anything.
First we started with placements of all the Lasers and Light Dependent Sensors all around the room, and then we had to pull about 150 meters of cable within a 8x2 meter room. As the walls were already fixed, so we had very minimal space to pull our wires from, and doing this took the most amount of time, to the point that few of colleagues actually thought it would be impossible to make a laser maze within a day. By the time we were done wiring, it was close to 5 AM, the next day. We had to check each and every sensor and laser before we could continue hooking up everything together.
Using an Arduino Mega as the brain, we started coding for the laser maze from scratch. A custom circuit board was also build from scratch to house all the Sensor and Laser connections. We added 3 warning lights on top of the room which acts as a feedback mechanism to show when a player trips a laser sensor. These 3 warning lights were connected to a 4 channel relay module. As laser pathways cannot be viewed through the naked eye, a smoke machine was placed inside the room which helped to see the laser lights.
By about 8 AM, we were finally done. There was some testing and debugging to be done which took about 2 hours extra, but in the end we pulled it off. We delivered a working laser maze that was made from scratch on site in less than 24 hours, from planning till delivery. This was one of those times when Evolution pulled off one of the near impossible tasks, and we hope to give our all every single time.