Steve Peters

Experience Design

Mysterious Letter (or How to Do a Rabbithole Right)

IMG_0205.JPGReturned from Beaumont sur Mer to find a golden envelope waiting for me at the office. Inside was a very mysterious letter (at right). According to the letterhead, it’s from the Sky Remains Detective Agency! Text as follows:

Warning: inter-dimensional leakage alert!

Dear ‘X’,

The Sky Remains Sixth Dimension Detective Agency is looking for new recruits. Not that we’ve been following you around or anything but we think you might be a suitable candidate.

Although we have been investigating the Sixth Dimension for many decades, we still know almost nothing about it. Strangely enough, it is this very air of mystery that our best agenst find most attractive! For bright people, this seems like a very silly way for them to spend their spare time. However, if there is one thing about the Sixth Dimension that we are sure of, it is that it is entirely comprised of spare time.

If you are willing, you can make this letter your point of entry to The Sky Remains. You may of course decide to recycle it or turn it into a nice paper aero plane; hoever, if you choose to investigate further you will begin a little journey that may well turn into a large adventure. You won’t get hurt and it won’t cost you anythingbut you may have to change your shoes.

You will want to investigate us first of course. As a sign of our good will we have privately placed some highly confidential evidence here, which we would like you to look into:

You may also call this telephone number to hear your secret message. We’re not making money from your call. It’s just a tip off: Telephone 07826047441

Once you have heard your message, if you are at all curious, we will be waiting for you on the other side.

Yours truly,

The Sky Remains.

Director, Poliakov (Ms.)

I like this a lot, for the following reasons: there’s a clear call to action, it’s low pressure, and best of all, has a sense of humor and seems fun. All in all a nice hook. Most importantly, it’s not immediately presenting itself with some sort of puzzle to go further. This is a mistake a lot of would-be PMs make. They send out something mysterious and puzzly that makes no sense, and the call to action is “solve this puzzle before you can even begin to get an idea what this is all about.” Hmm, that usually doesn’t work so well, as you’re asking players to immediately invest time and energy into something totally unknown.

In this case, there’s a very low barrier to entry. Call a phone number, follow a link. Plus the promise that I may have to change my shoes. I won’t spoil it for you to tell you what awaits you on the other side. :)

Nicely done!

ETA: Oh, i forgot! I also got a very cool sticker book. Have no clue what the stickers mean, yet. But I’ll try to post some pics.