Get A Clue
The Pink Panther is not new in the entertainment landscape, but neither is most of Austin, and many Austinites haven’t fully explored either. A new app merges the two familiar experiences with a twist, encouraging users to get out there and see their city or tour a new one, making stops along an “app-navigated outdoor adventure.”
Bounce, a travel app that makes similar activations, teamed up with MGM to create an itinerary through “popular destinations and local gems” in 10 U.S. cities, including Austin. An animated trailer declares that the Pink Panther diamond has been stolen, and users will solve the mystery while exploring their cities, with a series of clues related to each destination.
“The exciting thing about this interactive Bounce app experience is that decisions have consequences and sometimes you only have one chance, so you have to stay on your toes, pay attention and look beyond the obvious,” said Bounce founder and experience creator David House. “Not to mention, Bounce is designed to take you to areas of the city you may have hoped to see, locations you might want to return to later, or local hidden gems that deserve to be seen as well. … Discover the city you were hoping to see, not the version that you’re ‘supposed’ to see.”
The trailer previews pit stops in “local museums, parks, and cafes” with on-theme interactive elements, such as a choice to view security footage or interview a security guard. Clues are unlocked as places are visited, and since the real idea is to connect people with their surroundings, the app can be paused and restarted on the travelers’ own schedule.
The only other experience on Bounce is available in Philadelphia, as a self-paced Rocky tour that includes stops in Mickey’s gym, Adrian’s Restaurant, The Italian Market, and, of course, the “Rocky Steps.” The Rocky experience is modeled after a straightforward film tour, which makes sense for such an iconic localized theme. Since “The Pink Panther and the Case of the Missing Diamond” is designed to fit so many different cities, it seems to take a form most like geocaching, which operates on a similar mission to get users off the beaten path, using deductive reasoning.
The experience is designed to be equally enjoyed alone or in a group, includes in-app navigation, and covers both driving and walking distances. (A video tutorial mentions some locations “that require you to walk around a bit.”) Although the experience commits to the “travel” angle, it seems equally well suited for friends at home looking for a way to freshen up a local routine, or people playing tour guide in their own cities when friends and family visit.
Tickets ($34.99 per group) are available through the Bounce app, available on Apple’s App Store and Google Play. More information is available at experiencebounce.com.