We were approached by MCCY’s digital agency, Tribal, to create and conceptualise an immersive experience that encourages collaboration between people of all walks of life, with elements of arts & culture.
We started off thinking about an engaging community installation that could involve everyone and anyone.
One of the many initial ideas was the ‘Mobike’ Banksy, inspired by memes of bikes being found in various states of duress. There’s a vandal in town and he’s creating visual sculptures using Mobikes. Your role is to get to the bottom of the issue; is he just a crook or simply creating conversations that Singapore needs? The Mobike Banksy is the hero we don’t deserve, creating calm out of the chaos with an underlying social commentary of society.
At this point, the brief changed and we were tasked to conceptualise an Escape Room experience. It took a month of proposals before we got everything locked down and ready for production.
Turns out, conceptualising an Escape Room isn’t as simple as it sounds. Besides creating an inclusive yet compelling storyline, every clue had to make sense to the story, be revealed in shocking (yet suitable for the faint-hearted) ways, and be relatively low maintenance for up to 12 games played a day.
Instead of booking out all the Escape Rooms in Singapore in the name of Market Research, we locked ourselves in the gallery, role-played, and didn’t let ourselves out till we cracked the code.
Surprisingly, only 29 pints of beer were massacred during the month long process along with 1 Britney moment.
We finally came up with the idea of Kult Museum - housing art from all over the world in a truck that moves around Singapore. The premise? Chris Chai’s artwork has been stolen, and it’s up to you to find it through a series of cryptic clues and tech elements.
Launch video by Tribal.
LOOK & FEEL
We wanted to communicate the idea of being different, yet coexisting harmoniously. No matter who we are or where we come from, we’re all just human beings, innit? Running with that idea, we took the diverse artwork of various styles and colours housed within Kult Museum and put them together as paper tears hiding beneath a larger mnemonic device.
THE MMNEMONIC DEVICE.
When you’ve solved the Escape Room mystery, a booming voice laments: It's amazing what you can achieve when you keep your eyes wide open and biases at bay. Always strive to see the beauty in everything and everyone.
This is accompanied by some seriously skkkurry eyeball projections on the ground.
The Grand Reveal, that’s usually accompanied by screaming.
Artwork by Shang Liang and animated by Nia Syazwani.
Well, that explains the eye motif. We’ve kept that as a consistent mnemonic device to remind ourselves, and everyone else of the moral of the mystery, and why we started this in the first place.
There you go, that’s the story of the look and feel. Everything else came easily after this through adaptations for the truck facade, digital screens, social media banners…
A TRUCK WAS BORN
After a month of production work, we couldn’t help but get emotional when the truck first drove in.
Tears were shed.
We quickly got everything built for the interior, with the help of our homies at Unicom Marketing.
Slowly, everything was coming together really quickly and we were ready for our rounds of experimental testing.
Over 2 weeks, friends and family were invited to participate in gameplay and give us user experience feedback before it opened to public. Changes were made, egos were slightly bruised, but we were ready for the media preview and public launch on 26 January.
A MONTH OF BLISSFUL ENTRAPMENT
Between 26 January - 17 February, the Escape Room truck roved from Plaza Singapura, to Raffles City, Hillion Mall and Our Tampines Hub and the team followed for late night move-ins and daytime shenanigans in the sweltering heat.
These fringe games were complementary to the Escape Room. In the Escape Room, you find out where Chris Chai’s painting has gone, while you find out who stole it in the fringe activities.
Spoiler alert. Chris did it.
First up, a motion reactive game. 4 people are required to run on the spot, which activates an animation on-screen of the thief bobbin up and down in a crowd of people. After about 15 seconds of running, 1 suspect is revealed.
Catch him if you can.
Second in line is an app-based game similar to Where’s Waldo. You are presented with 4 characters that you’ve to find on the crowded screen filled with strikingly similar characters. Once you’ve found them all, another suspect is revealed.
Keep your eyes peeled.
Next, a web based game that requires exactly 4 people playing at once. Scan a QR code and you’ll be led to play a memory card game. Each player has one portion of a bigger puzzle piece and once everyone has completed their part, the last suspect is revealed.
Remember, remember, the fifth of November.
At this point you have 3 suspects and their character descriptions at hand. Using all the information you have, you’re required to play an image matching game to form the face of who you think stole the painting. If you guessed Chris Chai, you win.
KULT MUSEUM ARTWORK
We had artwork from all around the world housed in the Escape Room.
A look at all the artwork featured.
For everyone who made it till the end, here are some videos Tribal got produced to promote the campaign.
Boss man, Raja, on collaboration.
Walkthrough of the experience.