Digital Dragon Boat Race

Collaborators:  Clay Howey, GAIT, BCIT, Mike Snelgrove, and Mike Blackstock, Ted Lau, Balistic Arts Media, Rodger Lea, Mobile Muse, and The Dragon Boat Festival, Vancouver, BC

In 2005, the Digital Dragon Boat Race (DDBR) was the first of its kind game experience in North America. It was a competitive REAL game played on foot using wireless technology to discover 6 locations significant to the Dragon Boat Festival´s history in Chinatown and area.   This game challenged teams to achieve the fastest time possible as they navigated a maze of clues leading them through a culturally amplified, treasure hunt.  Players or Teams (up to 4 people) with the fastest times collected clues and discovered locations in the mobile game which lead to the Big Screen Game playoffs at Science World on  June 18, 2005.

I worked with designers, writers and the game infrastructure team to finalize the game concept, prototype the game play, and oversee the final implementation.  Designed as a research project the goal of this work was to explore how mobile applications can enrich cultural experiences and build community by engaging people on the street and other public places.  The objectives of the project were to understand: 1) how play can be embedded into the design of mobile applications that educate and entertain; 2) how mobile technologies can extend the reach of cultural festivals; and 3) how technology may enhance place and community.

Image Source: Ted Lau, Balistic Arts Media