After the sudden rise and immediate fall of the flash mob, a more profound phenomenon in urban areas has set its roots: urban gaming.
The urban experience games pop-up all around the world in metropolitan regions (where else?). Most of them are just fun, others make a statement or show a profound fascination towards our social realm and public space. The event ‘Capture the Flag’ is played in two teams and is organised in Toronto by Newmindspace. The teams have to capture the flag of the other team that’s hidden at a secret place in the city.
The urban shopping cart race called ‘Idiotarod’ started in San Francisco. Teams have to dress-up and race around the streets with a cart. Idiotarods have taken place in Seattle, Los Angeles, New York City, Phoenix, Chicago, and Washington, D.C., though the original race was founded in San Francisco in 1994 as the ‘Urban Idiotarod’.
On their website the New York City organisers write: “The Iditarod is the famous long-distance race in which yelping dogs tow a sled across Alaska. The Idiotarod is pretty much the same thing, except that instead of dogs, it’s people, instead of sleds, it’s shopping carts, and instead of Alaska it’s New York City.”