Operation Spy: an immersive interactive experience

Games Gateway – U.S. Mid Atlantic Region met at the Spy Museum last Monday evening, March 14 to play an immersive game experience called Operation Spy.  This serious game is a fully immersive experience that the Spy Museum describes as a live action spy adventure.  The mission/goal is to locate a missing nuclear trigger. The participants ( The Games Gateway Group) became Covert Spies who worked together with a Spy Museum guide to solve the problem in an hour. As media professionals, we did pretty well in the game and came away with a 4 out of 5 score. ( We were informed that groups can score much lower!)

Operation Spy has interactive sets that include a video surveillance room, an audio room for piecing together audio recordings, and an office set complete with a safe that need to be cracked.   Since it was a little bit different for me, it’s fair to say that I had a ball. I also thought that the group benefited from being able to discuss the experience of creating the game with the Director of Exhibitions and Programs, Anna Salfer. She provided us with the education perspective and goals of the game.

The development time for the game was over a year. They had roadblocks and challenges that all large scale projects typically develop. The challenges were solved admirably and the result is a successful experience. Member of the intelligence community are among those that have gone through the game and provided the Spy Museum with a thumbs up!

From an educational perspective the game provides the following:

  • Team building perspective
  • Problem solving skills
  • Creativity
  • Critical thinking skills.

One of the many possible functions for this game could be corporate training. It’s perfect for team building. I knew members of the Game Gateway as associates but we had not worked together until that evening.  We went our separate ways after the game but camaraderie was formed around the common mission of solving the problem is a short amount of time.  It is also useful for learners that follow the “Learn by Doing” model. There were visual and auditory cues in the game but  no reading.

Bravo! to the International Spy Museum for the creation of a very worth while educational, interactive experience.  Thanks to Games Gateway for putting it together!!