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Overview of Transmedia in ARGs and Storytelling
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Overview of Transmedia in ARGs and Storytelling


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A brief introduction / overview of transmedia usage in Alternate Reality Games (ARGs) and Storytelling. Educationally-focused. Given as a presentation for the ARG Academy …

A brief introduction / overview of transmedia usage in Alternate Reality Games (ARGs) and Storytelling. Educationally-focused. Given as a presentation for the ARG Academy [] Monday May 14, 2012.

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  • 1. Quick Overview: Transmedia Multi- platform usage in ARGs & StorytellingCatherine H Flippen @CatFlippen
  • 2. What is transmedia?• Multi-platform, multi-format• Engaging content, permeates daily life• Incorporates current technologies WITH traditional outlets (online vs. real world)• Positions audience as “players” – collaborators, not just consumers (Web 2.0) – Players have “roles and goals”• Dispersed elements of the story• Borderless, multiple entry points
  • 3. Transmedia looks like… Digital / Virtual Authentic / Real Life• Audio • Print material – Radio − Podcast – Flyers − Newpapers• Video – Posters − Narrative – YouTube − Viral video • Cold drops• Social Media – Items left in specific locations to – Twitter − Blogs − Facebook be found by players – Email − Even Craigslist! • NPCs & Actors• Mobile – Can share with digital – Texting − Voicemail − Apps – People who play characters, participate directly• Virtual worlds with players• Location-based Services • Hidden objects – Foursquare − Geotagging – I.E. Item baked into a cake or• Websites note folded in a ballpoint pen – Consumables (info, narrative) • Live events – Contributables (forums, chats) – Gatherings, meet-ups,
  • 4. What transmedia is NOT• Use of technology for technology’s sake• Random incorporation of things not linked to story whatsoever• Viral video – Some transmedia can be viral video, but not all viral video is transmedia
  • 5. Why transmedia?• Engagement – relevant – compelling• Crowd aggregator – fanbase / fandom – new participants• Collective intelligence – knowledge circulation – hunters and gatherers
  • 6. Potential problems• Complex organization of many materials – Could result in mismatched information or lack of cohesiveness – Need either single-leadership or tight group like-minded of creators• Believable-ness – Real vs. unreal / ethical concerns • Wired article: • TINAG [ This Is Not A Game ] – Which is worse: Being too real or not real enough?
  • 7. Examples: Lost & Heroes • Featured: – a novel “written” by a character (Lost) and an online comic book (Heroes) – websites for fictional entities in the show (Heroes/Lost) – series of mobisodes (Lost) and webisodes (Heroes) – interaction (hunter/gatherer) via online community (Heroes/Lost)
  • 8. Example: Why So Serious? • Go here: • ARG based on the Joker • Drew 10+ million participants • Via webpages, mobile, interactive games, print, e-mail, events and video. • Even included cakes with baked-in phone that players picked up from bakeries!
  • 9. Example: Nokia’s “Conspiracy for Good” • London-based, summer of 2010 • Players downloaded mobile game to join a mission to work with the group “Conspiracy for Good” – Fictional company based on realistic ideas • Mobile game led to websites, more info • Also included in a span of a few months: – Four live events with actors as game characters – Participants used Nokia phones’ augmented reality capabilities to help them play • Over 4,000 players join
  • 10. Resources• Henry Jenkins: • Gary Hayes: – USC Professor, – Exec Producer for former MIT prof ABC Multiplatform TV – Notable academic – AR and ARG info in the field – Immersive, networked – “Convergence worlds (including Culture” MUVES) – – –
  • 11. on Transmedia Your Life is a• by Samwell Creative Transmedia Experience• • Robert Pratton • CEO at Transmedia Storytelling, Ltd. • • Slideshares: – Getting Started: – Platform Selection:
  • 12. The Black Helix• Crowdsourced ARG• Goal: First crowdsourced ARG fiction novel to be published
  • 13. 404 907 3753