2007 The Couran Cove Enigma

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Created by Gary Hayes & Jackie Turnure © 2007

Introduction

A Mixed-Media, Cross-Reality Game “Couran Cove Enigma” at the start of LAMP VII: Story of the Future Game on South Stradbroke Island Nov 6-12 2007. “Welcome to the Hall of Revelations. It’s exactly 1000 years in the future. Couran Cove lies completely under water and there isn’t a single sign of life. An ancient stone tablet in the shape of a pyramid lies on the sea bed, engraved with 21 cryptic symbols. What do the symbols reveal about what happened here? And how were the people who lived here responsible for this devastating situation?”

Purpose

To demonstrate by doing the following (slightly different goals to the last one):

▪  Freeform vs structured play design (eg: how teams may dissolve as tasks become more ‘wisdom of the crowds’

▪  Game navigation and triggers as in or out of story

▪  Team bonding

▪  New form of mixed reality and locative play

▪  Collaboration play

▪  To introduce the story of a place through forensic game play

▪  Creative writing, ie constructing a story from fragments and game play itself

▪  Role play

Simple Step-through

Over arching story – a message from the future warning of our impending doom, floods, warming. Message from a girl originally kidnapped and taken forward in time by aliens.

(t) together (s) separate

1. RW (t): The year 3000, the eco-catastrophe

2. RW (s): Bike to location – redeem

3. VW (s): Graveyard ancestor – redeem

4. RW (s): Descendent actor – redeem

5. VW (t): Specific team character, artefacts and other characters – redeem

6. VW (t): Major flood (countdown to flood) – get into canoes, all head towards the ‘large rune thing’

7. VW (t): A large monolith – reveals something portentious and a cipher for the pyramid matrix

8. RW (t): Back to matrix, use cipher to reveal a message from future leads them to time capsule

9. RW (t): Time capsule contains photo and letter of “The One”, instructions to show card to the barperson

10.          RW (t): Go to real barman for drinks and receive final instruction

11.          RW (s): Trade cards, create story and pres at dinner

Instructions

STEP 1: INTRODUCTION/TEAMS

Music plays as Jackie sets the scene:

“Welcome to the Hall of Revelations. It’s exactly 1000 years in the future. Couran Cove lies completely under water and there isn’t a single sign of life. An ancient stone tablet in the shape of a pyramid lies on the sea bed, engraved with 21 cryptic symbols. What do the symbols reveal about what happened here? And how were the people who lived here responsible for this devastating situation?”

Black screen fades up to pyramid on screen, with a countdown that starts from 60:00.

“We have been able to obtain this photograph of the tablet and have shown it to a leading archeologist. She has suggested to us that these symbols conceal a cryptic message about the people who lived here in the past. They hold the key to what happened here.

Luckily for us, today is a very special day. A wrinkle in time will allow us to explore Couran Cove during different times to talk to the inhabitants and uncover all 21 symbols. But we have to be quick, the time portal is only open for the next 60 minutes!

You will need to work together in teams to find the 21 symbols and their associated stories to solve the mystery of what happened here. To begin, please take a number and assemble outside”

Participants take a ticket that reads:

“Bike Number #”

STEP 2: ENVIRONMENT CARDS

Participants go outside to the bike area and find four numbered groups of six bikes. Attached to one of the bikes is the inventory bag with the following instructions:

“You are the XXX team. Each of you needs to choose one of the following roles, and wear the rrelevant role sticker: The Navigator – you are in charge of navigation, use the map and lead the way The Notary – you are responsible for logging all that you find, use the notepad and pen The Communciator – you are the voice of the team, you are responsible for any interactions The Collector – you are the keeper of the cards, a very important role The Archeologist – you are in charge of digging up treasures, use your torch if it gets dark The Treasurer – you are in charge of any gold coins you find, consider wisely how you spend them

Your first task is to make your way to the XXX area and look for an environment card. X marks the spot and remember – cryptic clue here ???

The teams make their way to the relevant area and find their environment card. On the back is a post it that reads:

“The time travel machine is ready to transport you. Return to the Hall of Revelations and look for the time travel machine marked XXX. And hurry! The portal is only open for a moment.”

Alternative if can’t be at the cliff in SL because of barriers:

“The time travel machine is ready to transport you. Return to the Hall of Revelations and look for the time travel machine marked XXX. There you will find a foggy cemetery. Find the name of the person on the back of your environment card and click on it. They have something for you. But hurry! The portal is only open for a moment.”

STEP 3: SL ANCESTORS

Participants find their designated computers (time machines) where they are already logged in as one of GH’s avatars. They start off on the cliff and clicking on a sentinel gives them the following notecard:

“Make your way along the cliff path to the cemetery where you will find the grave of the person mentioned on your environment card. He/she has something to tell you. But make haste. The ancient ones don’t like to be kept waiting!”

The participants find the grave and once they click on the right one, receive the following notecard:

“I feel very connected to this place but my time here was difficult. But my efforts weren’t in vain. I have a long lineage and one of my descendents works in the resort. His/her name is XXXX and you will find her/him in the XXX. Go now and ask him/her “relevant question TBD.”

STEP 4: DESCENDENT ACTORS

Participants find the descendent and ask them a question about their ancestor. The actor gives them some information, a character card, and some gold coins.

For example: For Jess Noonuckle

“I come from a long line of Goenpul people. My grandmother tells the story that she was the first girl in our family to have all her fingers. My ancestors had the custom of removing two joints of the little fingers of the girls. But it was only the girls. I don’t know why.”

He/she instructs them to return to their time machines and look for XXX – he/she lives in the XXX hut, a post it note on the back of the card also reads:

“Return to your time machines and use the canoe to find XXX at the lagoon. His/her real name is XXX and you will find her/him in the XXX hut. Ask him/her about the “relevent question” TBD. But hurry, a storm is fast approaching”

STEP 5: SL AVATARS

Canoe sign reads:

“Right click and select ride”

Participants get into a canoe and paddle over to the huts where they find the relevant character. They chat with the character who tells something strange is happening, strange objects seem to be stripping the land of the stories. He/she tells them to find the nine symbols before all the stories are disappear! They will act as their “spirit guide” and accompany them. (Need to write this as bullet points for each mentor avatar) The real card is “manifested” and handed to the Collector by the mentor. NB Need to put character names in stories***

STEP 6: SL ARTEFACTS

Participants walk around looking for nine artefacts that produce notecards (character card text). In addition they might click on gold coins which the team mentors must take note of and redeem for real ones. Once all the artefacts have been found the land floods to knee level and the avatar guides tell the team to go to the lodge.

STEP 7: FLOOD/MONOLITH

Participants make their way to the Lodge guided by their mentor avatars. There they encounter a chatbot barman, who makes the following chitchat, referring to the monolith:

“Who put that bloody great thing there, that’s what I want to know” “First it didn’t rain for 20 years, not it hasn’t stopped for 20” “A horse, an irish man and a duck walked into a bar and the barman said, what is this, some kind of joke?” “Someone tried to climb it once. Didn’t get very far. Broke an arm and both legs in the process” “Lovely weather, innit” “Psst. You know what rain plus hot temps equals, don’t ya? Yep, malaria” “Dunno what those lights are. Seems to be sucking stuff in. Maybe it’s one of those black hole things.”

Flood rises to the level of the canoe and the mentor avatars suggest they take the canoe (if they haven’t thought of it themselves). They padde over to the monolith on which is revealed:

“She is The One. b:d is the key to finding her”

The countdown for the pyramid now is at 0 and the team must assemble in front of the pyramid.

STEP 8: PYRAMID UNLOCKING

Participants stand in front of the pyramid which now has an unlocking ritual written next to it which reads something along the lines of:

“In a circle 4 must stand

Men and women holding hands

Around them 8, on the ground

Chant this note RA!, in a round,

Of the remaining 4 place each card

On the reader, and concentrate hard

To see where the archeologists will go

All four to find what she did know

About the disaster that befell us here

Now begin at once, her message is near!

Participants chant etc and bring their cards up to the “card reader” and as they do each symbol unlocks to reveal a letter underneath. Music builds until all the letters are revealed, with an additional note:

“The monolith is the key. My message awaits you. Decipher this and send your four to find the time capsule and bring it back here!” Or is this better as a note inside the time capsule? Bring me back to the group etc – it is clear from the chant that the archeologists are supposed to go, not everyone, but we need them to come back. TBD

Here is the code for underneath the pyramid. The phrase is “find me inside the chapel” which skewed from b:d will read as “hkpf og kpukfg vjg ejcrgn”.

The layout of the letter on the pyramid will be:

h kp fog kpuk fgvjg ejcrgn

The teams then crack the code and the archeologists go and look for the time capsule. They bring it back and, hand out the cards and then read out the following:

“Greetings, my fair friends. It has been many thousands of moons since I walked amongst you, but I have been watching. Please take heed – the storms are coming, and the blued eyed one are waiting for the right moment. There is one amongst you who can help. Take my card to the barperson and he/she has something for you. But hurry, time is running out!”

STEP 9: BARPERSON

Participants show their “one” cards to the barman and get a round of drinks that includes a kinder surprise instruction that reads:

“Congratulations, you have made it this far! Now you have one more task to do. Sit down with your team and write your story of the Couran Cove Enigma. It must be no more than 3 minutes long and should be in the form of a first person monologue. Use your character cards to help you, and use your gold coins to purchase cards from other teams or to buy props from the props vendor. The only rule – you must use “The One” somewhere in your story. Be creative – the best team wins a prize! You have until dessert to come up with your story and may the best story win!”

COURAN COVE ENIGMA GAME CARDS

ENVIRONMENT CARDS (4) (with name of ancestor for next step italicised)

Card #1 – Indigenous Team sent to Rainforest

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Gold

Name: Rainforest

Ancient

“I am rich and plentiful, being home to the Cabbage Palm, Lillipilli, Tree Fern and the Golden Wallaby. My aboriginal friend, Oodgeroo Noonuckle told me that the local people ground fern root into a flour to make a type of damper. Bandicoots, lizards, and echidnas were also eaten by my indigenous friends who lived here in harmony with me.

Card #2 – Pioneer Team sent to Museum

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Red

Name: Dunes

Ancient

“I am fragile and ever changing, a victim of the salt-laden winds and the ocean. But the biggest impact has been the arrival of the white man. In 1892 the Cambus Wallace, piloted by Captain James Turner, shipwrecked and its load of dynamite exploded. It weakened my narrow spit and led to the devastating breakthrough which occurred four years later”.

Card #3 – Couran Team sent to Eco Lodges

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Green

Name: Bush

Ancient

“Life has been hard for those who try to live amongst me. Some say I am inhospitable but I like to think of myself as resilient. In 1948 after his crops failed for the fifth year in a row Bob Latter gave up 30 years of toil and left. You can see his crumbling house foundations and old Mango trees in the Couran Cove Chapel”.

Card #4 – Tomorrow Team sent to Helipad

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Blue

Name: Broadwater

Ancient

“My waters were once abundant in sea life. Eric Bone told us that dugongs, dolphins, loggerhead turtles and humpback whales were plentiful and the inhabitants fished for food. But those days are long gone. Ever since 2070 when They came and stripped us bare”.

ACTOR CARDS (4)

Card #5 – Indigenous Team sent to Female Worker

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Gold

Name: Jess Noonuckle

1981 –

“I come from a long line of Goenpul people. My grandmother tells the story that she was the first girl in our family to have all her fingers. My ancestors had the custom of removing two joints of the little fingers of the girls. But it was only the girls. I don’t know why.”

Card #6 – Pioneer Team sent to Male Worker

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Red

Name: David Turner

1977 –

“My Great Great Grandpa was one of four Roman Catholic missionaries who came in 1831 to convert the local aboriginees. He loved it here and stayed on after the others left but by 1847 he wrote to the police, desperate to get out. I don’t know what changed but he had to get out, he was terrified and in fear for his life.”

Card #7- Couran Team sent to Female Worker

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Green

Name: Sam Latter

1975 –

“I haven’t been working here that long but I do know there was a bit of a cover up. It was trapped in the lagoon, a big bloody brute of a thing, and they had to get it out by chasing it on jet skis. Of course no-one talks about it. We don’t want any JAWS type publicity, do we?”

Card #8 – Tomorrow Team sent to Male Worker

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Blue

Name: TJ Bone

1978 –

“It was only a simple procedure – day surgery and it really doesn’t bother me. The People communicate to me directly through the chip. I can’t say too much other than we need to prepare. And soon, they’re going to be here in 2011.”

SL AVATAR CHARACTER CARDS (4)

Card #9 – Indigenous Team sent to The Mangrove Hut on the Lagoon Edge

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Gold

Name: Mannoo

40,000BC –

“I am Mannoo, the ancient protector of all the plants and animals of the Goombumerri tribe. Look for my face in the night sky. I am there watching over all living creatures. Let this be a warning to anyone who doesn’t respect the ways of the ancestors.”

Card #10 – Pioneer Team sent to Circle of Rocks Hut on the Lagoon Edge

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Red

Name: William Edwardson

1809 – 1872

“My name is William Edwardson. Oysters are so plentiful here we gather them by the schooner loads. We burn them for lime to make cement and mighty fine lime it is too. Some of our builders prefer live oysters as they claim to give the lime more body, but I’m not sure I agree. In any case there are enough oysters here for one man to make a small fortune”.

Card #11 – Couran Team sent to Tropical Forest Hut on the Lagoon

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Green

Name: Athena Tolhurst

1895 – 1977

“My name is Athena Tollhurst and I purchased a small farm block here in Couran in 1924. People around here may know me by my stage name, Athena Palace. That’s the name I use when I tour as a magician and healer. I’m famous now for curing people’s ills but the question is whether or not I can cure my own.”

Card #12 – Tomorrow Team sent to Coastal Hut on the Wild Sea

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Blue

Name: Miranda Spry

2020 – 2082

“Miranda Spry here. It’s 2082 and the Avian Flu has now almost completely decimated the world. Couran Cove is one of the few places where people can live. Being an island helps and with the immense security system we have in place, it means we’ve been able to keep it at bay. But it’s only a matter of time before a carrier sneaks in.”

ADDITIONAL SL CHARACTER CARDS (9)

Card #13 – Located on a Tree in the Rainforest

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Gold

Name: Graham Dillon

1910 – 1983

“I am Graham Dillon, a local elder and I can tell you lots about this place. Many of the trees still show the marks of our people. There’s a forest red gum near Couran that bears the scar where a huge slab of wood was cut out to make one of our canoes”.

Card #14 – Located on Rocks at the Surf Beach

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Red

Name: Robert Longhurst

1857 – 1935

“My name is Robert Longhurst. The Mystery – now there was a tragedy. She was shipwrecked in 1897 right off the beach here. They had a lifeboat on board but it was locked and no-one had the key. Many lives were lost that night, there were tens of bodies washed up on the sand.”

Card #15 – Located on a Gondola Under the Lagoon

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Green

Name: Bruce Shaw

1951 –

“Bruce Shaw here. In 1980 I asked council for permission to run a funeral business here on Couran. I was proposing to build a vault under the sea and carry mourners across to the island by Gondola. For some reason council denied me permission. They don’t appreciate big ideas, our council”.

Card #16 – Located on the Rocks at the Base of the Cliff

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Blue

Name: Janie Longhurst

2933 – 3005

“My name is Janie Longhurst. I’ve always been fascinated by rocks, and I guess it was the summer of 2963 when I found the remains. It certainly gave me my fifteen minutes of fame but in some ways I wished I’d never found them. They were obviously trying to protect themselves from some kind of attack. But from who, or what?”

Card #17 – Located somewhere on the beach

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Red

Name: Medou Tiki

1847 – 1929

“One day a group of black men arrived on the beach. They were Kanakas, Pacific Islanders kidnapped to work as slaves in the cane fields. They’d escaped and made their way here by canoe. A “nigger hunt” was launched and they put ‘em all in the Nerang Lock-Up. But one of ’em, Medou Tiki managed to get away. I dunno what happened to him”.

Card #18 – Located in one of the Huts

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Blue

Name: Madeline Martin

2058 – 3007

“My name is Madeline Martin and I’m Eloise’s mother. We always knew Eloise was special. When she went missing we thought it must have been someone we knew. How else would they be able to break through our security system? But when I saw the NASA pictures I knew it was something entirely different. I wish they’d bring her back. We miss her so much.”

Card #19 – Located on the Water’s Edge Near the Crocodile

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Green

Name: Rodney Eaton

1925 – 2004

“My name’s Rodney Eaton. It was 1963 and the place was over run with feral cattle. The local crocs loved it, they would feed on the calves and they were becoming a real problem as well, especially after they took the Hage boy. So I hunted down all the cattle and the crocs and made a killing selling them for pet food.”

Card #20 – Located On a Dolphin Swimming About

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Red

Name: Harold Hage

1889 – 1901

“I’m Harold Hage. Dad said there used to be heaps of fish. The old black fella says it’s cause we fish outside the bay. He says his people would wait until the fish were inside the bay so the young fish would learn the way. He also said they also used dolphins to herd the fish into shore. I would have liked to see that!”

Card #21 – Located Somewhere cool!

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Blue

Name: Jennifer Shaw

2080 – 3007

“My name is Jennifer Shaw. Last night I saw the lights again. They were flashing in a circle, about 30 metres above the trees. Dad thinks I’m seeing things, he reckons it’s the sickness making me see weird stuff. But I know it wasn’t a hallucination. I reckon it’s someone come to help.”

THE ONE CHARACTER CARD (1 x 4 copies)

Card #22 – Located in the Time Capsule in the Chapel

Symbol: TBD

Colour: Blue

Name: Eloise Martin

2088 –

“My name is Eloise Martin but they call me The One. I was taken from my family by the People in 2094. Though I have been treated well I find eternal life tiresome. But the things I have seen – planets born and die, species rise and fall. I have seen the devastating destruction of the human race and I beg you to do something before it is too late. Don’t trust those with Eyes of Blue!”

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