When I was back in my much-loved Las Vegas a couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of going to Avenger’s S.T.A.T.I.O.N. This interactive exhibit is a Marvel Universe museum that uses cutting-edge technology to engage the audience and impart information about the characters we all know and love from the movies and comic books.
As we entered the space we were given a “training device”. This device was the size of a smartphone, with a camera, audio, and a touchscreen. It guided us through the display space. We were given recorded directions in the form of communications first from Maria Hill, SHIELD agent and later from Friday, Tony Starks A. I. Assistant. As we moved through the space, we were invited to supplement the information we found in the exhibition with videos that loaded onto our training device. As we did, the device would populate picture bubbles that signified advancement. Each room was dedicated to one character or group of characters from the Avengers films. Along with informative expositions, there were interactive stations where you could squeeze a bar like the Hulk and see how many PSIs you can exert or maneuver one of Iron Man’s suits through an obstacle course with just the use of your eye movements. There were replicas of the vehicles, costumes, weapons, and villains from the movies. Periodically you were prompted to take pictures of yourself interacting with the exhibit. These were recorded in the device and you were encouraged to make a “dossier” collage of your pics.
The interactive displays made this incredibly engaging for our whole party (ages 45, 27, 11, & 8) and the excitement of our communiques from our “guides” kept us moving and connecting with each other.
For each character dedicated room, there was a quiz on what you had learned on your training device. You gained achievements by completing all the tasks and there was a cumulative result at the end. Your grade was recorded and you could purchase it as a souvenir. The whole exhibit was an incredible example of gamification and the use of technology to enhance learning; a valuable example of the future of museums and entertainment (edutainment).