I could see this being done as a research project using a wireless sensor network and a white and red light installed in each dorm room. The wireless sensors form a network and use a topology algorithm to arrange themselves into a grid of pixels. After that, it’s a simple matter of programming a snake game.
The biggest problem, off the top of my head is just latency. That could be solved by simply playing back a recording instead of playing the game in real-time (assuming it was too problematic to play in real time).
looks real; this is the kind of stuff engineers do for entertainment, because while it isn’t easy, it’s infinitely easier for engineering students to do stuff like this as opposed to trying to interact with the opposite sex…
When I lived in San Diego I had security codes for the First National Bank building. I would walk with my girlfriend on Coronado island and turn lights on or off on different floors from my cell. She would go: “Who rule barter town?” each time the lights went off. Pretty weird, I know, just a game we were playing… I grew up in the mean time and she’s my wife now.
Just chiming in with the “It is likely real” crowd. This has been done a few times – among others, the Chaos Computer Club did a huge installation of office-light-games a few years back in Germany, doing Pong, Tetris, Snake, I think some others, as well as some pretty trippy synchronized arty animations on them put to music.