China Guess! A geoguessr-style geography game

Matthew McKeever
2 min readMar 26, 2023

I made a sort of combo wordle/geoguessr style game to help learn about the geography of China, both what things look like and more standard x is north of y facts. A further bonus is that you can learn some Chinese characters, maybe.

It is here.

(This is extremely untested and might just simply not work on other devices/in other locations. It works fine for me on desktop in Hong Kong (not on android), provided I click x on occasion. YMMV such that this may be useless for most. I don’t know.)

Take a virtual tour in China

Unlike geoguessr, you have to zoom in yourself to street view. The site will cycle through 20–30 of the biggest cities in China. My envisaged way of using it is that you’ll look around before trying to guess where you are. There’s a score but it’s not something I imagine people taking seriously (lower is better).

The distances are slightly off — Baidu uses a propriety coordinate system and while the details are out there I was too lazy to get them. This app would be much improved were there a way, given a place specified by coordinates, to get a street view of that place. My understanding of Baidu maps is that this isn’t possible. It seems to me that one can’t go from a Baidu Mercator projection (the large comma separated pair of numbers you’ll see in a url) to a given streetview (“panorama”, specified by “panoid”). It certainly seems to be the case that much streetviewing remains anchored to a given Baidu Mercator (as I understand it, it’s like if you were streetviewing LA having started in New York on google maps, New York would remain in the url on Baidu. So one can’t just drop down into streetview into say the heart of LA if one is viewing LA from above.. I think.)

Important point: it’ll ask you to log in but you don’t have to. Just close the overlaid window. If people like this I’ll make it nice. I think it only works on desktops unfortunately, and don’t think that is readily fixable. Let me know problems in case they’re fixable!