Art Treachery (Category: Creative / Artistic)

Name of Submitter(s): Janus Druz

Organisation: Headmade Games

This is my entry British Library Labs Crowdsourcing Game Jam. The goal was to make a game that helps to crowdsource the collection of metadata about the digitised historical images of the British Library. At the same time it should be fun to play.
In Art Treachery the player is given the mission to find a image that fits two criteria. One of the criteria is a tag (which can not be reliably verified by the game) and the other a randomly generated year (which is assigned by the game, hence can be reliably verified). The player sees immediately if the image matches the tag but can not see the year it was made. To reveal the year he must get close to the image and scan it. By tracking which images the player looks at and scans the game tags the images.
Mission: Find art with people on it from the years 1914 to 1954.
The player will ignore all images that have no people on it. So the game tags all images that the player passes but doesn't scan as "NOT People". Each image the player scans will be tagged as "People".
URL for Entry:


Twitter: @HeadmadeGames

Job Title: Game Developer

Background of Submitter:

I am a hobbyist game developer and have no publications, other than the game itself.

Problem / Challenge Space:

There is a vast number of historical images from the British Library but very little is known about it's contents. Automated analysis provides very unreliable results so the idea is to crowdsource the metadata collection.
The problem is that tagging images is slow and tedious work. The question is how do you motivate people to tag as many images as accurately and often as possible?

Approach / Methodology:

Statistical analysis of the gathered player data is necessary to identify the usefulness of player data.
To retrieve the images a REST API and other web technology was used.
I worked in an agile manner and used libraries that allow the game to run on many platforms, ranging from mobile devices to desktop PCs. I share my source code on Github.

Extent of showcasing BL Digital Content:

I used a selection from the British Library Digital Image and Maps Collections. While the game currently only uses a static set of images, it could be extended to utilize the full Flicker library

Impact of Project:

The project is in it's infancy (first version was released on 11th September), thus the impact remains to be seen.

Issues / Challenges faced during project(s):

The biggest challenge was to make metadata collection fun. I tackled the problem by wrapping it into a game. i tried to make the game as responsive and as engaging as possible