Cartegram is a smartphone game that inspires you to look up, not down. Although you'll need Instagram (or another photo service to play) most of this live game will take place outside of a screen. Smartphones have given us the opportunity to create and share, but they also distract us from paying attention to our beautiful surroundings. Cartegram is a game that nudges you towards exploring the real world around you, while also contributing to a vast global collaboration.
- Season: The name of one edition of Cartegram.
- Stage: Individual assignment in a Season.
- Icon: Stickers used by players to mark an object or scene.
Players are tasked with finding loosely defined elements in their own surroundings. Upon finding the best possible example (in the player's opinion), an adhesive icon should be placed on an object and a photo should be taken that includes the icon somewhere in view, even if it's tiny. Each stage comes with one icon, so players should be thoughtful when choosing their spot. Upon completing a stage, an Instagram photo should be taken and tagged with #cartegram and the stage number so other players can compare their photos and compete with each other while finding the most creative way to complete each stage.
Examples of Stages
Specs + Responsibility
- Final notebooks will be approximately 3.5" wide by 5.5" tall.
- Icons (biodegradable stickers) will be approximately 2'' in diameter.
- All icons will be printed on compostable stickers that won't cause harm to the environment. Given that a huge component of Cartegram is sticking labels all over the world, it's important that no harmful chemicals dissolve into the ground, and that no private property is damaged by strong adhesives. The icons are designed to cleanly and quickly disappear while the snapshot in your mind (and on your phone) should be more permanent.
- Be safe. Don't go venturing into dangerous places. Don't do anything illegal. Don't put a sticker on something that will result in an old lady smacking you in the head with a rolling pin. Don't give the Cartegram community a bad name.
- The game is designed for adults. If you're buying Cartegram for your kids, please make sure they're supervised.
- The stickers degrade when exposed to moisture. So if you carry them in your sweaty pockets...well, don't.
Prototype and Cartegram's Future
10 versions of Cartegram were constructed by hand and mailed to close friends and connections around the world to test the game out and collect insights. Over the last two months, the stages have been refined to accommodate many different environments and copy has been tweaked to be as clear and concise as possible. Season 1 is 100% finalized (in terms of design), but your input would be greatly appreciated as work on Season 2 begins.
After this Kickstarter is over, Cartegram.com will launch as:
- 1) A leaderboard showing the best Cartegram photos (with prizes!)
- 2) Discussion board to share your latest adventures
- 3) A store that sells future Seasons and replacement icons
While the first few seasons of Cartegram will remain broad, the plan is to release themed versions including:
- Street Art
- Beer and Breweries
Why am I raising this money?
Printing custom paper goods doesn't work well in small quantities. This Kickstarter will help meet minimum printing thresholds AND build up demand for this game among early community members. If you're not ready to pledge right now, please sign up for the newsletter and keep up to date on the latest Cartegram news.
I know people are starting to experience fatigue from all the crowdfunding campaigns out there. I purposely made this project's budget small in the interest of achieving success with a small but passionate community. Whether you contribute enough to buy a game, or just pledge a dollar to show you care, your help is greatly appreciated. Here's a beer in your honor...
Please share Cartegram with people that enjoy...
- Urban Exploring
- Not sitting on their butts at home when the weather is nice outside
Risks and challenges
Creating custom paper products is a challenge because one must use established printing and assembly processes. While I have had several conversations with many printers, there's always a risk that mass production of Cartegram may result in tweaks to the final product.
Backup printers have been identified.
Multiple variations of the game have been designed to ensure printing is realistic within the budget set forth per item.
- (30 days)