Xbox.com had piles of cool content stored up since the launch of the first Xbox – lots of adverts, game demos and freebies that needed a suitable home to live. Xbox tasked AKQA to come up with an interface idea to house all this great content and that would wow a demanding gaming audience who had ‘seen it all before’.
I decided on a simple interface inspired by a domestic rodent problem I was having at the time. From my local pet shop I purchased a real-life rat for a day. I built glass fronted run and got lots of footage of him exploring his little shack. In Flash we synced up the physical movements of the rat to the users hand-held mouse movements. The end result was a very unique rat-controlled interface where our furry friend sniffed around, hit buttons and helped you choose content. It was something our tough-to-please Xbox fans absolutely loved and shared.