StoryPlay is a tool for creating and experience location-based narratives. The tool is currently under development for Android devices. Future expansions include an iPhone version and a web-based authoring environment.
Photo by Yannis Kondilis ©
The StoryPlay app for Android can use the user’s context and the phone’s features to deliver a rich interactive experience in story narration. The reader can follow the story’s plot development by arriving in predefined places and interact with a rich multimedia content delivered in his phone. Decisions can be made to alter the story’s flow of events, or even the story’s ending
A StoryPlay user can follow a story by reading chapters in predefined locations or time. Thus, his environment can be imposed by the story in order to deliver a more compelling narrative experience. His surroundings can be directly described or indirectly implied as “movie-theater props” in the story setting, enriching the experience. The multimedia content delivered by the device and the user interaction can furthermore acute that experience.
The user can download a StoryPlay and immediately begin to dive in the experience. The author has provided certain chapters with location or time restrictions according to the environment he would like to set up. Thus, he provides a quest for the reader. The user can easily find the location he must be in with the supplied map screen and the directions to get there with Google map integration. As he unfolds the story he could either read the chapter or listen to an audio narrative. In critical events media content can be supplied in the form of sounds, dialogs, or images. In later development, the user can interact with the device sensors, scan QR codes or take pictures of the environment to advance the story. Choice resolution will be added or puzzle solving in the form of mini-games.
Work in progress
StoryPlay is currently under developement. Features that will be considered for later development are adventure style story telling with character assumption, multi-player story interaction and co-op, inventory usage, quest completion, comment and rating integration, marketplace.
Under implementation are
- User choice for alternative plot paths
- QR code scanning
- G-sensor integration
- Camera integration
- Community integration for rating and commenting
The author can use all the tools provided, both the rich multimedia interaction with the device and the use of the surroundings in his story to thin the barrier of reality and fiction and produce a rich narration. A character creation pattern for the reader to connect to, can be easily made. Choices and mystery solving puzzles and quests as described by the story will keep the reader deeply involved.
Authoring platform usage
A creative author can use the authoring platform to prepare his story for use by the app in the supported platforms. There he can arrange his content (text, media) and describe events for user interaction. He can use restrictions as predefined goals for the reader to achieve, in order to set the scene as described in his story, taking advantage of the surroundings to transcend from reality to fiction.
Stories that can be easily adapted to StoryPlays™ include narratives with rich location description, “shadowy” mystery novels, “treasure-hunt” adventures, as well as tourist tours in monuments, museums or even cities. Your imagination can lead to new frontiers and make use of the tools provided to develop new ways of story-telling.