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The Innovasion – A Pervasive Game for Liverpool

Something is terribly wrong at the Liverpool Biennial. Suspicious signs and mysterious codes appear from nowhere, and a sinister company is lurking in the shadows. But the good thing is Liverpool Biennial is asking the public to be part of it.

Participants can immerse themselves in a brand new world, find the trail, unravel the mystery, break the codes and help save the world. Creativity is under threat and this is only the beginning. Strange events and performances will be taking place throughout the city on Saturday 9 October, directed by leader, Hilary Westlake. The public is urged to come and join the resistance, be part of the movement, which will culminate in a deadly ‘finale’ somewhere in the city.

An alternate reality game (ARG) is an interactive narrative that uses the real world as a platform. The game takes the form of a treasure hunt and the outcome of the game can be influenced by the imagination and the perseverance of the participants. Alternate Reality Games have featured on TV in programmes such as Lost and Heroes or the Nine Inch Nails Year Zero album.

Innovasion - Were you fooled?

If you were in Liverpool City Centre on Saturday you would have seen some very strange things. Groups of people seeming to be speaking in codes, talking about clues and furiously flipping through Festival Guides. Official looking people dressed in red and black suits, hosting public conferences about how they can control your creativity. Dancing, singing, mock-kidnapping.

But if you were part of Innovasion you would have had a bit more of a notion what was going on. Our alternate reality game was played in streets by people who had booked a place. Hope Street Ltd. acted out a narrative, created by live gaming duo Karsten and Larson. The game started online, where fake websites, facebook pages, and twitter accounts were created. It seems we fooled quite a few people who thought these were real companies and groups. But it was all in good fun and gave the game a different, modern dimension.

Were you fooled? Fake accounts:

Creative Control (the baddies) : Twitter, Website, Facebook Wolf Crew (the goodies) : Blog, Stop Little Red Riding Hood Facebook, YouTube, Facebook

For a player’s perspective, read Mycroft Milverton’s blog entry on his experiences playing the game.

Innovasion on Flickr
The Hope Street Ltd. website


09 October 2010, 10AM-10PM