Much like Hollywood, video games have become franchises that cross over a variety of media. Homefront and Crysis 2 both have comic books and novels out and the game makers are exploring television and film extensions for these properties.
of the script for our short, City of Refuge teaser we’ll be shooting in the next couple of weeks. This will accompany an investment pitch as we interview potential investors for the feature film and entire transmedia franchise. It ended up being more ambitious than originally planned - and by ambitious I mean three times as long - but I think it’ll be more powerful. I’m excited to see it put to film.
according to Henry Jenkins in this article posted on Technology Review. Despite the potential, Jenkins cites a major obstacle to being able to fully transmediate characters,
Each industry sector has specialized talent, but the conglomerates lack a common language or vision to unify them. The current structure is hierarchical: film units set licensing limits on what can be done in games based on their properties. At the same time, film producers don’t know the game market very well or respect those genre elements which made something like Tomb Raider successful. We need a new model for co-creation-rather than adaptation-of content that crosses media.
At One 3 Productions, our screenwriters, music producers, ARG creators, comic writers and game designers all help create and shape the universe from inception, which gives us a huge advantage in being able to maximize the mediums and develop connections and callbacks that increase the experience for the audience.
“The day that a screenwriter, game writer, playwright and any other relevant parties sit together and work out a unified story at the very start of the process - that is where, a real transmedia experience is born.”—Columns of Creation
Simon Staffans wrote this article on how to motivate a transmedia audience. In a nutshell, he says:
You must not guide them too much, or the feeling of autonomy will be lost. It’s a tricky task, to leave enough openness for everyone to find something “new”, and to be able to make their own way through your story and your world, and make their own stuff there; too much and you have no control (which might be what you desire), too little and you will have obedient people following your instructions (if there are any people left for you to instruct, that is)
You must not make mysterious content that no one will ever master, or they will never get the feeling of being competent in your story world. Instead, perhaps, leave areas where audience members can become masters; masters of what they themselves have created within the ramifications of your story, or masters at guiding other audience members in understanding the intricate fabric of the story and the world.
Finally, you must not build a story where the participation of the audience has no meaning for anything, where their actions or lack of actions has no impact and it simply does not matter what they do or not. Neither can you build a story world that has no purpose in itself, or there will be no reason for anyone to engage in it.
“One of the roles of a transmedia creator is to develop the storyworld of a property, to ensure that it is big enough and rich enough to sustain stories across media, and to ensure that it has a consistent theme and tone.”—Lucas J.W. Johnson