Balboa Park is the home of an interactive cellphone game called Giskin Anomaly. Started in November 2010, the game lets visitors to Balboa Park follow in the footsteps of Drake and Pandora, two amateur sleuths. While listening to their intensely personal stories interwoven with key points in the park, players get to live moments from World War II, when San Diego was undergoing great upheaval. The experience touches on the Japanese-American internment, the “Rosie The Riveter” transformation of women’s rights, and the Mexican-American fight for rights as well as experiences about the war.
In the alternate reality created in the game, Pandora and Drake use an Anomaly Detector to discover thoughts from the past that have become embedded in the Balboa Park landscape. The park has now launched a contest to uncover what that device might look like. The inventors who submit Anomaly Detectors with the most elegant engineering and advanced technological design will win cash and prizes valuing more than $1,000, including tickets to Gaslight Gathering, Southern California’s first dedicated Steampunk and Victoriana convention.
For more information about this contest, visit www.balboapark.org/info/steampunk. But hurry! You only have until April 8 to submit your design!