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One of the major components of Wizh.NET, LOBster Games’ platform for interactive storytelling, is ISENG. ISENG is an extensible device and platform independent format for sharing interactive stories.
One idea we’ve been contemplating is using ISENG as a basis for cross-medium storytelling. Imagine that you read an interactive story in your favorite reading application but then decide that you want to take a more hands-on approach to exploring the story. As such, you play the next few chapters of the story you were reading in a first-person RPG instead.
After you’ve explored those chapters, you flick open your story reader and continue reading from where you left off, with the choice you made in the game affecting how the rest of the story goes.
This is exactly what we’ve accomplished with our first prototype of a Crawley/Wizh.NET cross medium story. In the prototype, we wrote a very basic, single section story in Wizh.NET and then exported that story to ISENG before importing it into Crawley. We could then follow the same story either on Wizh.NET or in Crawley.
This approach to storytelling represents a huge evolution in our opinion. With this approach, stories are no longer bound to mediums; you don’t have to read your next book, you can instead play it as an RPG or as a first-person shooter, depending on the type of story.
What’s more, you can swap back and forth, reading one chapter, playing the next, and jumping back into reading move later.