When you’re not familiar with a place, you look around and spot new and interesting things. But the better you know a place, the less tempted you are to look around. That’s why I realized Cucalu: a new pair of eyes that make you looking anew at the everyday.
Cucalu is an interactive game on your smartphone. With Cucalu, you look for shapes in your environment. You start with circles. Once you’ve found one, you hold Cucalu in front of it and a picture is taken. Other players will see what and where you’ve captured thát circle. They reward your work with a golden or silver medal. The other way around, you praise what others see to sharpen your perspective. The second challenge is to not look on your phone.
Circles, squares and triangles
Cucalu contains missions on finding circles, squares and triangles. Each mission can bring another challenge: sometimes a clock ticks, and other times you’re bound to explore a specific area.
During my graduation year at the Royal Academy of Arts in The Netherlands, I came up with the idea for Cucalu. After spending time in the USA and Japan for work and study, I returned to my hometown feeling a little disappointed. Home wasn’t new and exciting anymore. I realized that spending a long time in a familiar environment holds you back from observing your environment with curiosity. At the same time I witnessed a huge swell in the use of smartphones in public spaces. Everywhere, people are glued to their screens. Discovery seems miles away when there’s a smartphone at hand. A pity, I thought.
I partnered up with a team of developers to realize Cucalu. We received a grant from the Dutch Gamefonds (Gaming Fund) and we worked really hard to make Cucalu.
By now people in over 30 countries are playing Cucalu. You can join and start exploring: download Cucalu in the App store and stay up to date at www.cuca.lu.