© The Trustees of the British Museum (2011). All rights reserved.

Created by: Marcel Bruyn

About the game:
The Queensland Museum & Sciencentre in Brisbane Australia has produced a mobile game for the British Museum’s travelling exhibition Mummy: Secrets of the Tomb. The game has topped the ARIS charts as the most played game and has been used by a number of visiting school groups and adult visitors alike. In the game, players take on the role of an Ancient Egyptian priest, a fictional nephew of the Nesperennub, whose mummified body is the key artifact of the exhibition. Two plots help players connect with the artifacts and history: (1) you must prove that you are worthy to serve in the temple; and (2) you are near death and must ensure you are fully prepared to survive the journey to the afterlife.

Year 7 students from St Luke’s, Capalaba, playing the game in the exhibitionScreenshots from Queensland Museum Mummy game.

Engagement with Exhibit:
The game addresses the Queensland Museum’s policy on Lifelong Learning and a strategic objective: to produce and deliver a program of compelling experiences that connect with a variety of visitors and appeals to different learning styles.

The reward system in the game seemed to be especially motivating for students. One student said, “I think it made my visit better. I was a better priest than my friend, I got more points”. Observations of student groups also indicated enhanced learning and engagement. A student said “It was fun. It helped me learn more about religion and life in Ancient Egypt.” Teachers also noted how the game added to their students’ experience. One teacher said, “I  noticed that our students spent a lot more time in the exhibition, looking at the objects and reading the text than the other school groups who were there. They also spent a lot of time discussing concepts of Egyptian beliefs, as they argued which answer was the correct choice, or which object needed to be collected to help the priest reach the Afterlife.” The teacher also stated that the game was “useful in reviewing and reflecting on our visit back at school”.

The positive outcome of this trial has encouraged Queensland Museum learning staff to seek further opportunities in which AR technology can be used to generate engaging experiences that facilitate engagement with the museum’s collection and stories.