Wellcome Collection, a free destination for the incurably curious in London, features exhibitions and events exploring the connections between medicine, life and art. A key exhibition in the 2010/11 calendar was High Society, a show exploring the history of recreational drugs in our society and culture, from ancient Egyptian poppy tinctures, through Victorian cocaine eyedrops, to 1960s psychedelic light shows.
Preloaded were asked to create a game with broad appeal, encouraging people to find out more about the Opium Wars, a very dubious period of Britain’s imperial history. Wellcome Collection’s core remit is public engagement, so the broader ambition was to use the reach of a game to increase awareness of their brand with a game as appealing and complex as the exhibition itself.
Collaborating with the Wellcome team, Preloaded created High Tea, an online game developed to focus on the opium and tea trade between Britain and China and the events directly preceding the historic Opium Wars.