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Serious Game in WWII Exhibition at Fredrikstad Museum

"Agent Askeladden" at Fredrikstad Museum: A serious game experience for the World War II exhibition. Solve challenges and learn about the history of the war.

Three young soldiers are searching for a clue in a basement. They are on a secret mission for Agent Askeladden, a serious game experience at Fredrikstad Museum in Norway.

I am excited to announce the production of “Agent Askeladden,” a serious game experience that we have created for Fredrikstad Museum’s upcoming exhibition “Operation Polar Bear VI: World War II in Østfold 1939-1945.”

The game, aimed at younger audiences, puts players in the role of secret agents on a mission to collect information and complete challenges throughout the exhibition and learn about World War II events. By incorporating hidden rooms and locations, as well as advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence and touch screens, we have created a truly engaging game experience.

We look forward to seeing the response from visitors when the exhibition opens on February 8th, 2023.

Incorporating Hidden Rooms and Secrets for Serious Game

Incorporating Hidden Rooms and Secrets for Serious Game
The image depicts a secret headquarters from World War II that was created using Midjourney.

From the start of the design process, we carefully incorporated hidden rooms and locations into the exhibition’s structure. These hidden spaces are an integral part of the game experience, allowing players to uncover new challenges and secrets as they explore the museum.

The game is integrated throughout the exhibition, creating a seamless and immersive experience for players. Our careful planning and design have resulted in a unique and engaging game experience at Fredrikstad Museum.

The game uses the museum as the playing field, allowing players to explore and solve puzzles to progress through the game. Players will communicate with a fictional “London headquarters” to receive new assignments and updates.

A Family-Friendly Experience

One of the key goals of “Agent Askeladden” is to provide an activity for the whole family to enjoy together. In order to achieve this, the team had many discussions on how to create a game that would not require players to spend excessive time on their phones. As a museum, we want visitors to engage with and interact with each other, rather than spending all their time on their phones.

To achieve this, we designed the game to be played primarily in the exhibition itself, with players using the physical space to solve challenges and puzzles. We also included a range of tools and activities that do not require the use of a phone, such as Cipher Wheels, radio receiver and UV flashlights to keep players engaged and interacting with each.

We have also included instructions on how to use Morse code, allowing players to communicate with London headquarters in a covert manner.

Enhancing the Game Experience with Technology

Touch screens will be available throughout the exhibition to allow players to communicate with “London headquarters” and receive mission updates. These technologies will enhance the game experience and make it more immersive and engaging for players.

The Benefits of a Serious Game for a Museum

The use of serious games in a museum setting has many advantages. They provide a fun and engaging way for visitors to learn about the exhibits and topics covered.
They encourage exploration and discovery, and they make the museum experience more interactive and immersive.

We can include a range of tools and resources in a Serious Game. These tools allow players to not only solve challenges and puzzles in the game, but also learn about encryption and the technology used during World War II, such as Enigma machines. This information is not only interesting from a historical perspective, but it also helps players understand the importance of secure communication in the modern world.

A Jewish family is shown hiding and waiting for further instructions as they are guided to safety in Sweden to escape deportation. Photo created using Midjourney.
A Jewish family is shown hiding and waiting for further instructions as they are guided to safety in Sweden to escape deportation. Photo created using Midjourney.

Serious games can be used to present difficult or sensitive topics in a engaging and interactive way. For example, a museum might use a serious game to help visitors learn about the deportation of Jews during World War II. In the game “Agent Askeladden” players take on the role of a secret agent, who must help a Jewish family escape from deportation by guiding them to safety in Sweden.

This type of game can provide a unique and immersive learning experience, allowing players to engage with the topic on a deeper level and better understand the challenges and experiences of those who were affected by the events of the war.

In addition to making the exhibition more engaging and interactive, “Agent Askeladden” is an excellent way for younger visitors to learn about events that affected Norwegians during World War II. The game encourages players to look more closely at the objects on display and think more deeply about their significance.

Low Maintenance for the museum but still Enjoyable for Visitors

One of the key challenges in creating “Agent Askeladden” was to design a game that would be low maintenance and enjoyable without requiring a lot of assistance from museum staff. Our highest priority was to provide a fun and engaging experience for our visitors without adding additional workload to our staff.

To achieve this, we carefully designed the game to be self-guided and easy to navigate. Players are provided with clear instructions and goals, as well as a range of tools and resources to help them solve the challenges and puzzles they encounter.

Artificial Intelligence

We will be using Artificial Intelligence tools such as MidJourney and Dall-e to generate the visuals for the game interface and overall game experience. These tools will enable us to create high-quality graphics and animations, adding a new level of realism and excitement to the game.

The Fredrikstad Museum’s upcoming exhibition is accompanied by three large immersive video installation for the upcoming exhibition on Østfold during the war period of 1939-1945.

I wrote about the process of installing the projectors in a blog post called: Exhibition with a massive interactive video surface from two Optoma DLP projectors

Three Young Soldiers Are Searching For A Clue In A Basement. They Are On A Secret Mission For Agent Askeladden, A Serious Game Experience At Fredrikstad Museum In Norway.
A Team Of Allied Agents Stands Ready, United In Their Mission To Bring Justice.
Three Agent Askeladden Operatives Stand Ready, Poised To Infiltrate Their Target.
This Is Where The Illegal Newspapers Are Made.
Game UX
Game UX
A WWII Army Officer, Checks The Identification Papers Of A Civilian At A Check Point In Østfold.
Game Assets For Agent Askeladden: Nazi German Writing A Secret Message From Inside A Bunker.
A Parashoot Drop In The Deep Forests Of Norway.
A Suitcase Filled With Fake IDs And Passports.
A Young Boy Is Holding A Book Featuring An Image Of A Tug Boat And Its Captain.
Incorporating Hidden Rooms And Secrets For Serious Game
A Jewish Family Is Shown Hiding And Waiting For Further Instructions As They Are Guided To Safety In Sweden To Escape Deportation. Photo Created Using Midjourney.

Disclaimer: This blog post was created with the assistance of an Artificial Intelligence (AI) tool. The AI was utilized for enhancing the content, optimizing it for SEO, and providing creative insights. Readers are encouraged to consider this as they engage with the content.

Kjartan Abel is a sound designer, music composer, and immersive installation artist, known for his explorations at the intersection of technology and creativity. A seasoned museum nerd, AI enthusiast and tech enthusiast, Kjartan adeptly melds digital innovation with traditional media. His artistry extends to tinkering with Raspberry Pi, crafting unique experiences that resonate in today's tech-driven culture, often exploring the dimensions of space and time. With an MFA in Fine Art Media from The Slade School of Fine Art and a BA (Hons) in Fine Art from Kingston University, Kjartan’s blog offers a window into his multidisciplinary approach and his journey through the evolving landscape of New Media.

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