Using the same game play as the Mini-Getaway game played in Stockholm from last year (Monterosa, the same digital agency is behind both), New Balance has launched a augmented reality game in New York City dubbed the Urban Dash. Each week day New Balance will release 20 virtual batons (10 on the weekend) at various locations throughout the boroughs of New York City. The batons are released sometime between 9am and 5pm, with the exact time revealed on the New Balance Twitter and Facebook pages.
After players download the app and register they are ready to play. Players then use the Google Map within the app to locate the virtual batons, then get within 100 feet of the baton in order to claim it. Once they have claimed the baton they must get to the NBNY store at 150 5th Avenue to claim their prize.
But it would be no fun if it was that simple, other players can steal the baton once they get within 100 feet of current owner. I’m not sure what prevents unscrupulous players hanging around near the HBNY store and simply swiping virtual batons as people approach. It would be interesting to see a ‘safe zone’ several blocks around the store to help minimize this. If you lose connectivity or power to your mobile phone you have effectively dropped the baton and others can grab it at the last location it was connected at.
Players receive a special pair of NBNY exclusive shoes for their first win and a $75 NBNY gift card for their second and third baton wins. The player with the most baton wins by the end of the game on September 10 is eligible to win a special gold baton worth approximately USD $20,000.
This is a pretty solid initiative, the baton fits in well with the serious runners that make up New Balance’s customers.
The New Balance Urban Dash app is available in the US iTunes store.