Retail Marketing News South Africa

Wild Space: The gamification of grocery shopping

South Africans weekly grocery shop has become a whole lot more fun with the launch of Wild Space, the country's first gamified grocery shopping experience.
Image supplied. Wild Space, South Africa’s first gamified grocery shopping experience, has launched
Image supplied. Wild Space, South Africa’s first gamified grocery shopping experience, has launched

“We are gamifying retail,” says Dave Pugh, digital marketing executive at RCL Foods, the company behind Wild Space.

He explains that Wild Space is not a marketing campaign, it is a new product. “It is a product that takes shoppers on a journey through unexplored galaxies in the search of new worlds, where shoppers can uncover a universe full of breathtaking planets, fascinating astral structures, and a vibrant ensemble of over 40 explorers.”

The power to unlock these cosmic treasures lies in the shoppers’ hands – or rather, their shopping cart.

“In this way we have brought the digital world into the real world,” says Pugh.

3 elements to the game

There are three elements to Wild Space, the game, the digital collectables, and then the last element the in-game wild bucks.

Pugh explains how it works, “To earn wild bucks, you scan your till slip from any retailer. You can also scan any QR code, such as a Snapscan QR code. The fun part is finding the QR Codes that have the big rewards.”

He says it is almost like a real-life treasure hunt and likens it to Pokémon Go. “You will be looking around, scanning things for rewards that will unlock elements in the game.”

Through these real-world activities, shoppers earn Wild Bucks, an in-game currency that allows them to generate resources, discover new planets and maximise the efficiency of their outpost.

All currency is mined in the real world (no need to load your credit card to purchase currency).


There are currently 45 3D-modelled collectables, and the characters have superpowers that add value to the game play. All the toys are digital, removing single-use plastic issues that come with traditional collectable toys.

For all brands

The app allows for collaboration with other brands for character and planet collectables as well as in-store activities in collaboration with retailers. One brand that has already collaborated is Ouma Rusks and is in the game as the Ouma Rusk Grannies. Pugh adds that while RCL Foods has its own brands the app is open to any brands that would like to be part of the game.

Ongoing development

There are ongoing developments and updates. “We are developing it in season, and it will only get better and better. He adds that they want the Wild Space community to help them build an amazing platform, even contributing ideas for a collectable could be launched in-app.


Because of global games privacy and content issues (which we have no control of) the brand developed its own platform so that it can control privacy and the content. You do not need an account to play. And there is off-line playability – once downloaded you don’t need to be connected to Wi-Fi or use data to play.

Wild Space is avaialbe from the Apple and the Play stores. Sign up for Wild Space here.

About Danette Breitenbach

Danette Breitenbach is a marketing & media editor at Previously she freelanced in the marketing and media sector, including for Bizcommunity. She was editor and publisher of AdVantage, the publication that served the marketing, media and advertising industry in southern Africa. She has worked extensively in print media, mainly B2B. She has a Masters in Financial Journalism from Wits.

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