An earlier version of this article was first posted on Randy White’s blog.
Several of our recent articles have discussed that to prosper in the future, community-based entertainment, including family entertainment centers, will need to use digital technology to fuse the real and virtual worlds by embracing the Multiverse. The Multiverse, with its eight-realm matrix of the real world, virtual world and time offers a framework to offer 24/7 convergent entertainment experiences by extending the guest experience by both time and place from the real world into the virtual world.
In the FEC arena, Chuck E. Cheese’s deserves kudos for the first convergent experience of extending the gameroom redemption ticket experience into the virtual world. They recently did an e-mail blast as well as put a link on their website advertising their revamped birthday parties using their new Ticket Blasters that offered a chance to win redemption tickets by playing a virtual version of the Ticket Blaster. You play the virtual ticket blaster game, and while you wait for it to tally up your score and give you a certificate to redeem the tickets at your local Chuck E. Cheese’s, a message plays about their birthday parties showing the real world Ticket Blaster experience. Once a kid wins the tickets on the Internet, can you image the nagging her parents will get to take her to the local store to collect a prize. Clever, very clever.
To learn more about the Multiverse, check out this presentation by Joe Pine.
As the telegraph annihilated the distance and time of information, so the Internet annihilates the distance and time of experience.