Kiddy & Co
Children and teenagers living in the 14th district of Vienna
How and why did the practice start? How has it been developed since?
Kiddy & Co is a youth organisation based in Vienna. It runs two youth centres and a mobile outreach program in the 14th district of the city. In 2016 the youth workers of Kiddy & Co were fascinated by the popularity of augmented reality games like “Pokemon Go” among their target audience. They had the idea to develop their own simplified version of a location based game. The game was named “KiddyMon” and was played the first time in March 2017. The game time is about 6-7 hours.
In 2018 the youth workers of Kiddy & Co created an updated version called “KiddyMon Royal”, which was played on a Friday afternoon in April 2018.
In the location based game youth workers transform into KiddyMon-Characters that hide in different public parks in the district. The kids that want to play the game have to form groups. Each group needs to be equipped with a smartphone and receives a set of GPS-coordinates after registering for the game. With the GPS-coordinates the groups are able to find the whereabouts of the KiddyMons. After finding a KiddyMon the young people have to start a conversation about a certain topic and master small challenges. The name of the KiddyMon character gives a hint about the topics it likes to talk about (eg: “App Eater”). After mastering the challenges the kids get small rewards. The team that finds most of the KiddyMons and answers most questions correctly wins a prize at the end of the day.
The youth workers obtained very positive feedback from the young participants. The young players especially liked to search for the hidden KiddyMons and to solve of the different riddles. The younger audience liked the creative drawing workshops, were the kids could draw their own KiddyMon character.
One Week after the event the team had a debriefing about the game, which was very positive. What became obvious during the game, was that the original “PokeMon Go” game is not that popular among teenagers anymore. Therefore it is likely that the Kiddy&Co team will adapt the game in future versions.
At the beginning of the summer program, the game is a good opportunity for the Kiddy & Co team, to show their places of activity to the young target audience. The game is a playful way to explore different public places for all participants. The general media topic of the game enables to talk about media related issues with the target audience. For the Kiddy&Co team it is very fascinating to get to know the media usage and skills of their target audience. This information helps them to plan new activities.
Website of Kiddy&Co: http://www.kidsline.at/
Photos of the KiddyMon activity: http://www.kidsline.at/de/fotos/2018.php?cat_id=120