Born (GC5EG96) — by team SOKO Gänseliesel (Hatti1971 & TobiO79)
Location: Göttingen, Germany – N 51° 34.319 E 009° 56.308
Difficulty/Terrain Rating: D5 / T4
Why this is Geocache of the Week:
“Born” is a real-time adventure geocache, one of several such caches in Germany. The cache page (which is in German) sets the scene for this adventure (all a hypothetical scenario): The Federal Criminal Police Office has learned that a bombing is imminent in the city of Göttingen. Special Unit “Gänseliesel” has been summoned to begin the investigation. Chief Commissioner Schönbeck has been appointed to lead the unit. So far, the investigation has revealed that the bombs have been placed in Göttingen and are already on a countdown. The clock is ticking.
This D5/T4 geocache cannot be found alone. In fact, you’ll need 10-20 geocachers split into three teams in order to have a chance of finding it. One team stays at “Headquarters”: a location of their choosing, preferably filled with snacks. The other two teams are sent to 45 different locations around the city. At every location there’s a countdown, and all three teams are given a question/puzzle to solve.
According to the cache owners, “The teams in the city have to use the public transport to get to the locations in time and answer questions about historical or famous places in Göttingen. The team in the headquarter must deal with encryption, picture analysis, internet-research, maps and bus-timetables.”
If all three teams solve their puzzles and submit their answers before the clock runs out, they continue on to the next task. This continues until the investigation is concluded and Göttingen is saved when the bomb is diffused. In total, each team is working non-stop for five hours. The moving teams will cover about 45 km throughout the evening, and eventually reach the center of the city. The CO says, “At the end, all three teams get to know where the geocache is hidden and move together to sign the logbook. Some teams even bring a bottle of sparkling wine to celebrate the successful search.”
The T4 rating is well-earned. That’s all we’ll say here, but check out the photos below for more about this amazing cache.
What the Cache Owner has to say:
How often are the teams unable to “defuse the bomb” in time?“If your team starts the hunt for the geocache BORN, you never know if you are succsessfull. If one team is not able to reach the destination in the timelimit, the team in the headquarter cannot give the right answer. The investigation stops and the team must start another time. There ist always a tense between physical effort and moments of happiness on the one side and disappointment if you fail a task. Even though the geocache is difficult D5, some teams get it on the first attempt. Every second teams has to start a second time from a backup-point and only a few teams fail more often.”
How long did it take you to develop this cache?“The idea was created in Summer ’14. First we both made a list of locations in Göttingen that are interesting, then Hatti and I spend two days on bikes in Göttingen to visit all this places and take photos of the question-to-answer-stations. Then i took a bus map and planned two routes with basecamp that touch a lot of the interesting places. Meanwhile I develloped the homepage with all the functions you need to play this timed cache and manage teams and so on…
The biggest part of work was to invent a story to connect the 26 chapters of the cache and find 3 x 26 tasks to occupy the three groups. When all was done we two played both outside-routes in realtime to check if the calculated times are ok to get to know what the cache will look like for the teams. The last step was a beta-test with a little group of geocachers to test the complete cache. On January the first, the cache was published. I think the cache was surely over 50 hours of planning, phoning, riding in Göttingen…”
Is there anything you would like to say to the Geocaching community?“We love to invite you to come to Göttingen to find BORN or our brand-new spin-off ALERT (GC5RRQF). We want you to have a gread time and wish you that you are doing the great experience what it’s like when teamwork succeeds. We have read all the amazing logs on our geocaches and thank for every feedback. Göttingen is an interesting city and you can discover it from a completely different side, if you hurry through the streets with the ticking clock in your neck. It was a hard job to concept our two geocaches, but the feedback from the community is great.” (By Alex)