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Young adults play hide-and-seek with modern technology twist

Hong Kong's first urban “cat-and-mouse” game took place at Kowloon Walled City Park on Oct 15, where 40 people engaged in an exciting chase through sharing satellite positioning.  

The game was created and initiated by the HKGo organization, a business that has organized more than 100 outdoor and indoor activities that participants pay to play.

The game is the company’s first outdoor game combined with modern techonology.

The game is a combination of hide-and-seek and tag with players divided into cats and mice. The cats hunt the mice and gain bracelets when a mouse is hit with an inflatable stick. The game is played until all the mice have been converted to cats. Players must stay within the boundary of the park. 

The cat with the most bracelets and the last surviving mouse are crowned kings. 

Players pay HK$48 to join the game and kings win HK$88 each.

The King of Mouse, Kevin Wong, on the right and The King of Cat, Kangpeng Liu, on the left, captured a total of 16 mouse players.

Players share their real-time positions with the satellite positioning function of Gaode Map, a map app. 

Bruce Shen, 28, one of the organizers, said the hide-and-seek aspect is not new, but adding the satellite positioning technology escalates the excitement and challenge level of the game.

Shen, also a founding member of the Hong Kong Science and Technology Association, and his business partner, Michael Hua, 29, studied information technology. They aspire to combine traditional games and outdoor activities with new information technologies to bring a fresher experience to young adults.

The real-time position of each player appears in the Gaode Map application.

“Seeing the cat only ten meters away from me on the map without knowing the exact spot was a nerve-wracking moment,” said Clara Chen, 23, a mouse player.

Yiqi Chan, 22, a cat player, united with other cats and discussed plans to catch mice. His partner distracted the mice from the front while he climbed up the hill from the back to chase mice.

“I felt everything was under my control when I watched the mouse icons moving,” said Chan. “For the first time I felt blood boiling in the hide-and-seek game.”

Cat and mouse also encourages people to exercise, players said.

“Workdays are always intense, and the dopamine from exercise will allow me to escape from the workday for a bit,” said player Crystal Tan, 23, who now works at TVB.

Players who found the activity through social media said the outdoor games enabled them to meet new people.

“Due to the development of online entertainment, people have become more isolated than before without enough offline contact with others,” said Chen. “The game awakened my childhood memories when I always played with my neighbors.”

The 40 players pose for a photo after the game, saying they planned to go to dinner together afterwards.

Shen said the game location was chosen in Kowloon Walled City due to its historical and cultural value. Films such as Stephen Chow's Kung Fu and Johnnie To's Dragon City Years were filmed here. It’s also a nod to the popular video game Stray with users playing a cat in the former Kowloon Walled City that was located where the park is now before it was demolished in 1994.

“I hope the players can feel this place during the game,” said Shen.

《The Young Reporter》

The Young Reporter (TYR) started as a newspaper in 1969. Today, it is published across multiple media platforms and updated constantly to bring the latest news and analyses to its readers.


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