Showup in SHOWUPIA
Showupia is an alternate-reality game for community organizing and political action in the real world. It blends the real with the virtual - players must explore the physical world to explore the game world. It is a civic engagement & education map app that rewards showing up at community and advocacy events, teaches face-to-face one-on-ones as the basis of power-building, and mobilizes through immersive and participatory storytelling.
Simply put, it’s “Pokemon Go Change the World”.
It's not good yet, we need to know how it feels and what breaks when you start to use it.
More Features Coming Soon
(Teams, Virtual and Real Shops, what else should we add?)
The modern world lacks opportunities for meaningful narrative-building, face-to-face connection, and community ownership. Amidst this feeling that "reality is broken", people increasingly have turned to games for direction and meaning-making. Games may be dismissed as niche or "not serious", but the global market for gaming is now larger than both movies and music combined (and continues to grow). And the political obsession with always being inauthentically self-serious only further alienates disaffected communities and maintains collective apathy. The best path to big structural change is a simultaneously playful, collaborative, and intentional ecosystem for bringing online activation into real life engagement.
Showupia is the first iteration of this ecosystem. It gives direction in taking ownership of the real world and making meaningful connections again. But it also creates a community-owned map of the real world - a framework for young artists and activists to explore with agency while learning the rules of community organizing, political advocacy, and our (sometimes ugly) political system.
How the game actually works:
Much like Pokemon Go, Showupia is a map with animated characters at specific locations. Players move around the game world by moving around in the real world. Our alternate-reality backstory is a virtual country called Showupia where all the big tech companies have merged into one monopoly: TrustBigTech. This new mega-corporation has corrupted and taken over the government. It then uses its power to corrupt the people of Showupia and suck their eyeballs into their phones. People begin to lose their humanity and turn into "Sheeple".
Players of the game must explore their communities to find and wake up the aimless Sheeple, capture corrupted Politicians, and use these pocket Politicians to pass new laws that will build the infrastructure of a more Delicious Democracy. These three game goals provide the framework for helping people get more physically active, more present at power-building events and opportunities, and more ownership by building infrastructure onto their game map.
The final game mechanic is the system for building your Power level: you get more Power (and thus input and moderator abilities in the game) the more one-on-one conversations you have with other players face to face. Showupia received seed funding from Voqal and has a proof of concept in alpha-testing phase. It will generate revenue through in-game purchases, merchandise, digital fundraising, and business sponsoring locations on the map.