The Curiosity Shop is a game of playful commerce that debuted at the 2013 Come Out & Play Festival. We created a store that ran on tickets: every player was given 5 free to start, and could use them to buy Missions, Gambles, and Secrets to earn more.

With the tickets they earned players could purchase unusual packages labeled only with titles like Love, Beauty, and History, keeping whatever was inside. The goal of the game was to earn enough to purchase one of the mysterious “red tag” items, costing hundreds and hundreds of tickets.

By combining an accessible progress loop with a rich layer of secrets and interconnected systems, The Curiosity Shop offered a game – and shopping – experience unlike anything our “customers” had seen before. Players quickly developed advanced strategies; sharing information, pooling resources, and even setting up black markets for in-game goods.