Following a heavy production and filming schedule, we decided to simplify the plot to something more relatable and doable.

We’ve minimized the casting in the storyline but still holding main content of the plot.

However, we’ll still be shooting scenes of the character’s environments namely Home, School & Studio.

Updated plot

A new location of dance studio is added as the updated plot follows a student dancer in her everyday life. She seems popular and things look good on the surface. However, a darker side unfolds as the player navigates along.

We have started the filming and will be shooting as well as editing concurrently.

Premises: Home, School, Dance Studio

Additional POV

We have also incorporated a bonus play for users – to play in the point of view of her friend. The purpose behind this is to trigger some thoughts on what a player could have done to help their friend in retrospect.

Behind the scenes footage

Random weirdness (whenever Siew Hua secretly laughs at us)

When brainstorming for narratives that could work potentially as a good interactive, I focus on the aspect of Interactive Narratives that intrigues me the most: The branching of the story based on player’s choices, seeing how your choices matter and how you are the determinant on the outcome.

With that I came up with two entirely different areas of focus I could go to: Somatics and Mystery.


Ideation 1: Somatics 

This was inspired by a session touching on “Somatics” – understanding of human relationships “the body perceived from within” e.g. subtle yet systematic communication. I was spurred by building awareness of others around you, gaining empathy and intuition.

The focus is less on what is somatics, it is more on human interaction and picking up subtleties in communication e.g. regarding how one is feeling. Sometimes, when we interact with others, we might be oblivious to how they feel, our words and actions might affect others in ways we might not know as much.

Possible ways to execute:

  • Character(main or secondary) could be in a plight that we often don’t experience/know little about 
  • Garner real-life stories as source of inspiration – Several friends in healthcare industry talked about impacting others’ lives by the little things you do (this could perhaps be a way to raise awareness too)
  • Focus on the differences in interaction and how the different body language an mean differently – respond accordingly 
  • Response can mean alot of others, can make or break a person – may affect development of others – perhaps if you didn’t say this, this person would not feel this way etc. 
  • Ethics
  • Focus on the building on relationships – characters will need to be strong, relatable and one that audience can empathize with/feel sentimental towards
  • Possible headstart from local context: Excessively competitive environment, unable to keep up / Ageing population / Being left behind by society 

Ideation 2: Mystery

Vastly different from my other idea. Focus on Mystery/The Unknown/Thriller. Plunging the player into an situation where they do not know what to expect next, letting the player make careful decisions that determine survival/death.

Possible ways to execute:

  • Focus on Environmental Storytelling
  • Cryptic questions and clues
  • Bring in ethics? 
  • Possible headstart: Werewolf game http://www.playwerewolf.co/rules/ – This game is a well-known game, and no it will definitely not be a remake of this game. Instead some takeaways that could be good to think about – not knowing what is happening and why, fear of unknown, fear of being next, and how if this is real-life what would people do to ensure their own survival (reveal human nature)?
  • Inspiration: Until Dawn, The Room

Technicalities

Point-and-click adventure game/interactive movie – First-person perspective, puts you in the shoes of the character, helps you immerse more

Content:

  • Hopefully a simple yet layered narrative that can stick with the viewer, thoughtful
  • Branching narrative
  • Not in your face, subtle – hopefully with subtext

Medium:

  • 360 VR video (with choices)
  • Or just videos

Based on my previous idea of Somatics and Mystery, I decided to build on possible plot points that could help work out the narrative interaction. However, there are definitely changes from the previous ideas.

Building on Idea 1 – Somatics 

Plot point:

As stated in the previous post – I was spurred by building awareness of others around you, gaining empathy and intuition. I also had several ideas to execute: Character(main or secondary) could be in a plight that we often don’t experience/know little about Garner real-life stories as source of inspiration – Several friends in healthcare industry talked about impacting others’ lives by the little things you do (this could perhaps be a way to raise awareness too)

Therefore, I am inspired by real-life examples. Also, I wanted the element of the choices – and in real-life it usually comes from the “What-ifs”. Going by the idea of dreams, I read this wonderful article regarding how this man had a dream to be a pilot, but he gave it up to continue his father’s legacy in Nasi Lemak business: http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/piloting-a-nasi-lemak-business

He chose his family over his personal dream. What if he chose to follow his dream, what could have happened then, to his family and to himself? These possible life outcomes could be the branching narrative, a path explored whereby the protagonist did not choose but could have been. Definitely, there will be a mix of fiction and non-fiction, but the context stays grounded to reality.

Possible structure:

Act 1 – Establish his dream, his life where he juggles between helping out his father in the business plus study for his future dream career

Act 2 – Choice of the major dilemma – Family or his personal dream

Act 3 – Based on the choice made, the different life choices affect the life story vastly

To execute this, we will need to interview highlighted people and work closely with them to bring their story to life.

Intended takeaway from narrative: Feel empathetic to others, raise awareness and also help people understand others. Explore social stigma

Inspirations: High rise – Out the Window 

Interface: 360 VR Video, with various plot points that could cause branching narrative (Point and click)


Building on Idea 2 – Mystery

This would be a completely fictional, imaginative premise for the interactive narrative.

Possible structure could be a murder story – Starting from a normal setting, e.g. town/school then the sudden murder of a friend. As the main character, your choices can prevent it – revolve around how to go about save this friend. Resolution, good or bad based on the choices made.

The other structure could be more of a dark mystery story (The Unknown) and ideally to contain the element of playing mind games (e.g. plot twist). The classic structure could be escaping a room, survival depends on the choices again.

Inspirations: Gone Home, The Call of Cthulhu