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Ayala Museum launches interactive 8-bit tours around the Philippines

By Kara Santos Published May 19, 2021 2:49 pm

Ayala Museum is giving virtual tours an 8-bit twist in honor of International Museum Day, with live guided tours starting Friday (May 21) and self-guided tours following the day after until the end of the month.

In celebration of #IMD2021, Ayala Museum is launching a free interactive live virtual tour around the Philippines in search for what makes us “Filipino.”

The unique experience, in partnership with Globe, will let people experience traveling all over the archipelago, while encountering indigenous and ethnographic artifacts from the Ayala Museum collection along the way.

The virtual experience of the Ayala Museum collection provides “an opportunity to situate these objects in their places of origin, familiarizing the general public with the various ethnolinguistic groups represented in the collection and their material culture.”

“This isn’t just your regular zoom tour,” the museum’s official Twitter account shared on Monday, along with a sneak peek of the tour that resembles retro 8-bit RPGs like the original The Legend of Zelda or early Final Fantasy games.

Ayala Museum’s tour is held on Gather.Town, an online social platform that allows guests to interact with each other, control an avatar, and explore a 2D map—an experience reminiscent of playing classic 8-bit games during the ’90s. Ayala Museum has utilized this platform to map out 100-plus museum objects on the Philippine map.

Guests can sign-up here (http://bit.ly/IMD2021Reg) for a live and guided tour experience with an Ayala Museum staff on May 21 during the following time slots: 10AM-11AM, 1PM-2PM, 3PM-4PM, or 5PM-6PM. Each time slot is limited to only 15 visitors.

The virtual tour space will be free to roam for the public from May 22-30, 2021, allowing anyone interested to take a tour by themselves or with friends. No prior booking is required for the self-guided tour. The link will be open to everyone and available through Ayala Museum’s website starting May 22, Saturday. 

According to the site’s page, the platform can only accommodate 25 users at a time, so when it is full the first time, you can check again at another time.

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With the physical museum still closed due to COVID-19 restrictions and ongoing renovations, the creative approach aims to engage audiences in immersive tours around the Philippines and the museum’s collection.

Last year, Ayala Museum celebrated International Museum Day by hosting a free virtual museum tour in the popular gaming platform, Animal Crossing.

For more information and instructions, visit www.ayalamuseum.org/IMD2021 or contact Ayala Museum through any of their social media platforms.

(Images via Ayala Museum)