About this project
Introducing Safari Central, the first ever game based on real wildlife data. Track the movements of wild elephants, pangolins, lemurs, grizzlies, and other animals in your own city, see them come to life in your phone through augmented reality, and help their preservation in the wild by playing the game. Supporting our Kickstarter lets us create 8 more real animals for the game and directly support 8 more conservation organizations in the process. All leading to a grand urban adventure in your city. Be part of a radical new movement to make wildlife conservation ferociously fun.
What you are funding
Your contribution directly funds the creation of additional augmented reality animals that are the foundation for the game, each lovingly re-created based on a real individual in the wild.
While the full game will be ready next summer, we will bring these animals to you in augmented reality much sooner, so you can experience them right away.
Each animal we create adds to the richness and experience of the game and introduces a new conservation project that is linked to that animal.
There's some cool videos below that show what we mean. But first, why are we doing this?
We need millions of wildlife addicts...now
In the past 40 years, the world has lost over 50% of its wildlife. Everyone loves animals, yet you can feel powerless to turn the tide. At the same time, there are dedicated people battling habitat loss, wildlife trafficking, human/wildlife conflict, climate change, and much more. But their work needs a lot more attention and funding to survive and stand any chance of making a difference.
At Internet of Elephants, our mission is to make that happen by connecting millions of people with individual animals in the wild through social games. We believe that conservation can be fun for everyone. Even if people think about wildlife for just 5 minutes a day, it would change the way conservation is supported forever.
Watch our TED talk where we asked the question, "What if we could make wildlife part of daily life?"
Meet our first beneficiaries
All the animals in Safari Central are real, walking around somewhere in the wild with their families and their own life story. Here are the first animals that will be featured in the game.
Rockstar's scales make her the most trafficked animal in the world. Ethyl needs more room to roam. Lola needs protection from poachers. Atiaia needs her forest to remain in tact. Beby is at risk from lemur traps. And Mweturia keeps getting into trouble from his crop raiding.
That is why we are currently working with some incredible wildlife conservation partners, such as Chicago Zoological Society/Brookfield Zoo, Space for Giants, Conservation International, Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Tswalu Foundation, World Elephant Centre, WWF-Brazil, and more. Each of them work on projects specifically for the animals above and they provide us the animal data and expertise for our games so that we can connect people to their work.
Your contribution makes it possible for us all to celebrate these animals by bringing them to closer to you.
The first game to use real animal data to bring wildlife to you
Safari Central combines location-based gameplay, augmented reality and animal tracking data into an incredible and unique gaming experience. Think Pokemon Go, but with real animals that move based on their tracked movements in the wild, not where we tell them to.
Track real wild animals in your own neighborhood
The game fills our cities and towns with animals, all of which can be discovered in augmented reality on your phone. They each move just as they do in the wild, but teleported to the player’s own environment. How do we make sure the animals move like in real life? With data!
The first game to use real wildlife data
Safari Central is the world’s first game to be based entirely on real tracking data, which is gathered by a network of wildlife experts all over the world. Raff, our animal behaviorist and data scientist, takes this raw data, analyzes it, and maps it onto urban centers around the world, like Chicago. Take a look at what we mean.
And check out one of our award winning data visualization stories about two lion sisters in Kenya, exactly the type of stories we want to bring to life through Safari Central.
Go on an urban safari
Our players experience a new world which is augmented by clues to find these animals in their town. Everywhere they look are new signs of animal life, like footprints, disturbances, and even piles of dung - and they track the animal following these signs. Players not only have a total blast exploring their city... they’ll soon discover the fantastic animals themselves.
Each animal has unique characteristics that make them easier or harder to find. A tamandua (an anteater), for instance, doesn’t move very far, so you might spot him every day. Others like the frigate bird travel long distances, and only visit for a couple of hours. You could be the only one that sees it for weeks!
Deepen your connection to the animal
When players spot the animals, they start to build their virtual connection with them. In-game purchases unlock amazing features like deeper data access, city kits, access to wildlife experts and customized gameplay in your neighborhood. Through the purchases the player financially contributes to the animal's welfare.
Our progress so far
We’ve already done a lot on our own steam, like create a lo-fi tech demo which lets you do fun things like this with ‘Amelie’, the augmented reality elephant.
Now we’re building out 6 high quality 3D animations and augmented reality of the characters you met above. They each take a lot of skill, effort, and love to create. Here’s a sneak peak at how Lola the rhino comes to life.
First we create a model of her.
Then we animate her.
Then we bring her to your phone in augmented reality.
The more animals we can introduce, the better the game becomes, and the more projects we can support. Our aim is to have at least 20 animals in the full game that is released in 2018.
That’s where you come in. Every dollar you contribute will go into the creation of additional animals. We need to get to 20 for the game to really come to life. We’ll release another limited functionality "Preview app" every 2-3 months to introduce more of these animals to you until the full game is ready next year. The first one is coming in August!
Your participation catalyzes a change in the way conservation is supported and you’ll also get access to our Preview apps as they come out. We also have some super cool rewards to say thank you for making our game possible. They are all totally unique and are sure to satisfy the wildlife, data, or gaming geek in you.
What if we raise more than our goal?
Our funding goal is $80,000, which will enable us to create 8 augmented reality animals. With stretch goals, we can make a lot more, eventually reaching our goal of 20 unique animals for the game.
Each backer gets to vote on which animals we make next. Our personal wish list includes a Snow Leopard from the Himalayas, a Grevy's Zebra from Kenya, a Giant Anteater or Tamandua from South America, an Orangutan from Borneo, a Western Lowland Gorilla from the Congo, a Polar Bear from the Arctic, a Himalayan Griffon Vulture from Nepal, a Wolf from North America, a Western Wild Dog from Senegal, a Giant Sable from Angola, a Poison Dart Frog from Costa Rica, a Caribou from Alaska, a Spectacled Bear from Peru, a Crocodile from South Africa, a Saurus Crane from India, a Siberian Tiger from Russia, a Siberian Lynx from Spain, a Fur Seal from Antarctica, an Emperor Penguin from Antarctica and a Sea Turtle from Oman. There are so many possibilities. Help us decide.
About the team
Internet of Elephants brings together a unique mix of animal lovers, tech experts, gaming geeks, and business minds all for the purpose of supporting wildlife.
Wow! You made it all the way to the bottom. Trunks up. We hope you're ready to pick your reward and join the herd. But either way, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know what you think. Thanks for reading. And now.....
Risks and challenges
We already have the team and talent to build the game and the 20 augmented reality animals that we are seeking to fund through the campaign. The risks for meeting the objectives of the crowdfunding campaign are therefore limited.
In the context of the full game, the biggest risk in developing and introducing a game to the market is that the market doesn’t know about it or they know about it and don’t want to play it. While online games is a lucrative market with over 2 billion people worldwide playing them, it’s also ultra-competitive. As a startup, this means we need to have a strong distribution strategy to be successful. We’re currently working on creating partnerships directly with cities such as Chicago to create campaigns that bring the entire city together to benefit both global as well as local nature. Because our game has the added benefit of social benefit, we can get support from city institutions and corporates to promote the game in ways that other games won’t be able to do.
If this crowdfunding effort is successful, that will take us a long way in being able to bring a lot more animals to life in augmented reality. But there is still a lot more to do in order to create the full game and for that we will still need to raise financing. We think the previews that we are creating that demonstrate state of the art augmented reality capability coupled with real engagement benefits for our conservation partners will strengthen our case with future investors and donors that we can be both a social and commercial success. That’s why this next step that we’re taking is so critical.
Creating state of the art augmented reality products is exciting, but augmented reality is no longer new, and we need to have a great team to stay ahead of the game. That’s why we have people like Jake Manion leading up all our product development and partner with one of the best game developers in the world in Little Chicken.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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