ASK
Refresh Chuck E Cheese's retail space.

 
 

 

THE QUICK PITCH

 

 
 

CHALLENGE
Kids love going to Chuck E. Cheese's for the pizza and arcade games, but to parents Chuck is just a birthday destination - an occasional treat for the kids.

Chuck E Cheese's conducted a study estimating that the average kid wants to go to Chuck 11 times a year, but only makes it 3 times.

OBJECTIVE
Reposition Chuck as an everyday entertainment option for families to increase visits from 3 to 4 times a year.

KEY LEARNING
Parents have growing concerns over their kids sedentary behaviors (playing on an iPad vs outside).  It's caused families to favor play spaces that let their kids be active.

INSIGHT
For parents, the best thing about a trip to Chuck isn't the pizza or the games.  It's the workout.  There's no doubt in a parents mind that their kid has gotten their daily dose of exercise after a trip to the Cheese.

STRATEGY
Fuse movement and gameplay to show parents Chuck E Cheese's offers a physical play experience.

TARGET
The fun family member, who's always taking the kids on an adventure.

 
 

 

THE DEEP DIVE

 

 
 

CHALLENGE
Chuck E Cheese's offers a unique combination of family dining and entertainment options - from pizza to arcade games.  Chuck was one of the first family play spaces, but today parents have a lot of other options (see below).


Kids love trips to the Cheese, but to parents Chuck is just a birthday destination.  They're thinking of the play space as little as once a year, as an occasional treat for the kids.

Click to enlarge


Chuck conducted a study estimating the average kid wants to visit 11 times a year, but only makes it 3 times.


OBJECTIVE
Reposition the brand as an everyday entertainment option for families to increase visits from 3 to 4 times a year.

 
 

LEARNINGS
Concerns over kids physical health have caused parents to favor play spaces where their kids can be active and let their energy out:

 

Concerns over sedentary behavior - like entertaining on an iPad or TV - have made parents feel like they need to constantly monitor their kids activity. Parents feel guilty when they aren't keeping their kids moving



It's hard to recreate physical play experiences at home (you can't just put a jungle gym in your living room), so parents look outside the house for spaces that let their kids be active.

Chuck is a chaotic playground for parents, but there's no doubt in their minds their child has gotten their daily dose of exercise after spending the afternoon at Chuck E. Cheese's.




 
 

INSIGHT
For parents, the best thing about a trip to the Cheese isn't the pizza or the games.  It's the workout. 

OPPORTUNITY
Amplify the Cheese's physical play offerings.

  • Chuck is already getting credit for being a place to take your kids for their daily dose of exercise, but right now only 20% of the retail floor is dedicated to physical movement.
     
  • We can reposition Chuck in the play zone category.  There are a lot of popular zones to compete with, like Jumpology, but none offer the extensive amenities that Chuck already provides.
 
 

STRATEGY

Fuse movement and gameplay to show parents
chuck E. Cheese's offers a physical play experience.


 
 

TARGET
The fun family member.  

  • This could be mom, dad, a sibling, or a grandparent.
  • They're always taking the kids on an adventure and keeping them active, outside of the house.

Click through the slides to learn more about who they are and how we can reach them.

 
 

CREATIVE CONCEPT

Fuse movement + gameplay + storytelling to create layers within the play space


THE STORY

We knew physical movement was attractive to parents, but we needed to make Chuck fun for the kids.  We created a series of seasonal children's stories to serve as a new narrative for the retail experience, and to get kids curious before the store launches.  

 

The first book, Chuck and the Quest for the Golden Cheese, asks readers to help Chuck on his journey. Kids only get the first chapter and must go to their local Cheese to finish the story - and the game.

 

THE Retail EXPERIENCE

We then reimagined the retail floor to adapt with these changing narratives, while also integrating movement into every part of the design.  Here's how it all works:

 

VISUAL IDENTITY

Upon entering, families will be greeted with the new Chuck branding.  We animated the logo and dropped the 's' from Cheese's (it's hard for kids to pronounce).

Current logo

New logo

Animated logo

 

FLoors

On the first floor, kids are briefed on their mission to find a lost Chuck in the cheese forest.  They're given digital wristbands to track points and movement, then sent on their quest.

Click to play: Employees become a part of the story by taking on the role of Pizza Rangers

Multi-functional wristbands set up player profiles. They store personal information, send alerts and notifications, track movements, and collect data.

 

Kids are then free to explore the three game floors by collecting points to move through the story.  Different colored paths match the wristbands and the difficulty level of play.

Floor 1

Floor 2

Once reaching the third and final floor, kids have to help pull Chuck out of the cheese river.

Floor 3, final game

 

GAMES

Brand new games fill each floor.  All fuse digital screens with an element of physical movement.  The physical elements of the games will stay the same throughout every story, but digital elements will change to fit the new narrative.

Game with "balance" movement

Game with "hop" movement

Game with "row" movement

These core movements will become the physical element of each game:

The digital elements of each game (screens and surfaces) will be interactive:

 

prizes and pizza

After saving Chuck and finishing the game, families can explore prizes and take a pizza break.  When they're ready they can start a new mission.

Collectible prizes keep families coming back for more, like badges that represent each story

Dough Throw: the table-side app integrates gameplay into the ordering system

 

THE LAUNCH

Click to learn more about our flagship stores, rollout plan, and why this works.

 
 
 

METHODOLOGIES

Play-Along
Went to a local Chuck to watch kids play. We got in on the action ourselves, winning the mouse ears in the below pictures.

1-1 Interviews
Talked to parents and Chuck employees about how to build a better play space.

Social Listening
Crimson Hexagon, Simmons, Facebook Audience Insights

Research Studies
Chuck E Cheese's 10K, Mintel, Hoovers, Freakonomics podcast

 
 

 
 

WHAT I LOVED MOST ABOUT THIS CASE STUDY was

...being able to reunite with my first ever brand team. 

 

 
 
 


THE TEAM

Katherine Gannon, Strategy

Katherine Gannon, Strategy

Colleen Hiegel, Creative Brand Management

Colleen Hiegel, Creative Brand Management

Shawn Hurley, Experience Design

Shawn Hurley, Experience Design

 
 
Lizzy Hopkinson, Copywriting

Lizzy Hopkinson, Copywriting

Matt Klugman, Copywriting

Matt Klugman, Copywriting

Maria Kouninski, Art Direction

Maria Kouninski, Art Direction

Chris Lumain, Art Direction

Chris Lumain, Art Direction