Pongversation doesn't necessarily look like a fun game, but it has a curious concept: one paddle trying to seduce another by bouncing conversation topics to the female paddle on the other side -- essentially turning what would normally be a rival into someone you're pursuing.

David Turpin, who created this game for an intermediate game design course at USC with the help of Nick Alexander, explains the conversation idea:

"A conversation starts when the player selects one of the many words floating about the screen and 'hits' it over to the other side. If the other paddle catches it, 'she' will voice a clue as to whether she liked that word as a conversation topic. Then, 'she' will select a word on her side - a word she is interested in - and tap it over to you. A conversation has begun.

The player must then catch a word and find a word that pertains to the other paddle's interests. For example, if the paddle hits over the word 'microcomputer,' you can guess 'she' is interested in technology. Finding another word relating to technology is the player's best bet to creating a conversation that is interesting to the other paddle."

As you provide the other paddle with more and more conversation topics she likes, the dividing line that halves the screen will move toward her side, which makes more words available to you and signifies the other paddle "opening up to you, allowing for a somewhat more intimate conversation".

While picking out related topics is important to make sure the conversation doesn't become "unstable" and breaks apart is important, you also need to make sure you aim your swings so the other paddle will catch it -- if either you or your partner fail to catch a word, the conversation will "hit a wall" and force you to start over.

You can read more about Pongversation and download the Windows/Mac game for free here.