Ways to think about VR/360 for Writers


Discovering what virtual reality and 360 degree films  mean in a practical way is the key to writing your story using them.

Passive Immersive: 360 or Spherical Video, a story with a fixed duration where the user is immersed within a surround playback technology and also a passive viewer except for where they look. Can be live action or animated.

Virtual/Mixed/Augmented Reality/VR stories allow a user to affect the sequence or environment or point of view by their own actions taken, as designed by the creator. Can be live action or animated or a mix.

We’re moving from uni-directional storytelling – where I create and tell a story that is only consumed 1 way – to a more flexible concept, where I relate a story and you consume it the way you like. Interesting, right?

Jesse Damiani calls this the Builder-Participator Storytelling Paradigm, describing the person viewing the film or participating in the VR experience is actually telling the story as well. This makes sense, as when you’re immersed in something, you’re part of it, and that’s what this medium does.

Photo credit: Ryan McGuire CC0




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