Tonight Jordan and I headed down (for the first time, might I add!) to Evergreen Brickworks – the location of ByoLogyc’s safe house.
But why are we here?
ByoLogyc is a Toronto-based leader in the field of lifestyle biotechnology. They are hugely successful in their field and have been growing rapidly. Underneath their success, there is tension amongst staff members and an online hacker group called EXE targeted ByoLogyc. EXE has been leaking confidential information from inside ByoLogyc, hounding them with disruptive attacks, and generally plotting their destruction. In May, EXE hackers gained access to ByoLogyc internal systems and managed to corrupt the plans for a new drug called ByoRenew. ByoLogyc released the drug a few months later causing an emergency and small evacuation of those sampling the drug. Shortly after, ByoLogyc also confirmed the outbreak of a newly discovered virus. They warn the public through a press release and Nuit Blanche installation, offering their assurances that the effects are negligible.
I can’t share too much about the event or else it will ruin it for any other participants, but I’ll tell you what I can. We caught the shuttle at Broadview Station and were briefed on the current situation on our way to Brickworks. When we arrived, the simulation was in full swing. We went through medical processing, were given samples of ByoLogyc’s new batch of ByoRenew, and screened by medical personnel. You even go so far as to take (empty) capsules they give you!
Your role depends on your ticket type. We had the “adventure” tickets which meant we were members of the general population going to the ByoLogyc Safe House to seek refuge from the viral outbreak. Then we were assigned to the IT department (totally at random, but awesome!). We spent some time protecting ByoLogyc’s network from attacks!
There were probably at least 8-10 other groups at the safe house, all with their own goals of spying on other groups, infiltrating other groups, sabotage, etc. I don’t really know what they were doing because we never found out! We all had specific tasks to complete, relationships to build, and things to learn. At the end, all of the groups came together to protect their own interests in a HUGE event. I can’t tell you what happened there, because it would just ruin the fun.
What I can say, is that the experience was pretty amazing. You can tell this has taken months of planning and a lot goes into each simulation. The group leaders do a terrific job and never break character throughout the whole simulation. You can’t even make smalltalk with them before the event starts because technically it has started as soon as you walk through the door and they are already in character.
One problem I had was that if you weren’t familiar with the background story you might be a bit lost at first. If you read my RSVP post about the event you’re probably good, but it doesn’t hurt to know a little more too by exploring the websites for ByoLogyc, and hacker group EXE. Also: pay attention to everything during the simulation! It is as involved as you make it. Noone can force you to participate, but you will have a far better time if you do. We had the opportunity to become even more immersed by spying on our own group, but my oncoming cold meant I just wanted to sit back and watch for the most part. I already regret it!
What I don’t understand is why this is over after tonight?
There are only two shows left today at 6:30 and 9:30pm.
There are still tickets available, and trust me, this is not to be missed!!
I have a discount code for $10 off tickets – use the “ARTSWORKER10” code when you buy your tickets!
Blogger tip: At the end of the world, take a good bathroom selfie. It may be the only thing you’re remembered by.