Matt Duplessie, Founder, president and CEO (email)
5 Wits Productions plans to produce a walk-through adventure experience based on a wide array of classic science-fiction archetypes. Very few of the details have been nailed down, as the plot/script, the environments and architecture, and the guest activities and special effects are all as yet undefined.
Our hope is that you, as our design team, can produce fully functional alpha prototypes of select elements for this SCI-FI experience – whatever you think appropriate. The backstory and scenic surroundings necessary to support your choices are flexible – you can write them in as you see fit.
There are several categories of deliverables you might consider, including group challenges, simulations, and special effects. Some useful suggestions for how you think about these challenges are included in the attached notes.
Here are some general parameters we do know:
- The roughly 30-minute adventure takes place in a clean, slick, “futuristic” stage set comprised of 2 or 3 individual rooms totaling roughly 1,300 square feet, with a maximum (exterior) room height of 13 feet.
- The theme could range from outer space, to a dystopian future earth, to an alien planet – your ideas will help us make that decision!
- Group size will be 2-15 guests, and guests will range in age from 7 years old through senior citizens. We would recommend targeting young adults with your designs, being careful to design for the general public (not specifically an MIT audience).
- Each activity/puzzle should take 2-5 minutes to complete. Each group will spend no longer than 12 minutes in any one room.
- There’s no Guide with the guests, and no one continuously watching from the control room – your design needs to be fully automated.
- Every element must reset itself in 30 seconds or less after the group leaves the room. Puzzles which toggle states to achieve reset (or similar) are acceptable.
- There will be a master show control system which can provide and receive contact closure, analog (0-10V), RS-232, and/or DMX control signals. So your design need not have 100% of its control on board – anything you can make work with buttons triggered manually, for example, can be automated by having the master show controller essentially push those buttons at the appropriate moments.
- Durability of your design is a key concern.
- Quality of documentation is critical – your idea is not useful if it can’t be easily reproduced. Shop drawings, exploded views, BOMs, wiring diagrams, whatever is needed to explain the idea fully.
Room 35-307 has benches, a hot wire cutter, sanders,
drill presses, a small band saw, and computers. Supplies such as foam core
and blue foam will be kept in this room. This will be our primary work area. Remember to never work alone and to wear safety glasses. See the more complete set of shop rules. You will obtain the combinations for the room through a online registration process.
The facilities in the building 35 LMP shop are available during daytime hours, and with permission, you may also use equipment in the Pappalardo
lab so long as it does not conflict with 2.007. Morning is usually best.
Reading and media
The art of game design (MIT certificates required)
Elements of successful interactive challenges (.pdf)
Project introduction from the client (.pdf)
Videos from the client's project brief
Introduction to 5wits
Classes of gag types
Gag design guidelines (Watch All)
Involves many members of the group in a hands-on fashion
Works well at both minimum and maximum group sizes
Physically interactive - requires motion and interaction
Fits cleanly into the storyline theme
Simple - easy to understand... even if difficult to achieve
Plays off existing archetypes and foundational common knowledge
High "wow" factor - provides a cool visual gag opportunity
Offers repeat playability through variation
Possible to adjust difficulty
Clear point of completion, lots of visual and audible feedback
Lends itself to a timing mechanism
Cycle time predictable within a narrow range
Lends itself to robust construction
Operates without staff oversight
Mannequin pictures for
use in storyboards