Brainstorming and interactive typography

Posted on May 25, 2010 in Film & animation, UX

interactive typography moodboard

We just got out of a very long (3 hours) but very productive brainstorming session for Call of C’Thulhu. We’ve decided to focus on bringing our story together in a storybook kind of style, all in a Necronomicon style of book. We’re focusing on breaking the motion piece into four different pages, with a layout that resembles something similar to the original Alice in Wonderland book. The first spread would include the starting scenes at the main gate as we follow Joseph up to the apartment door. The second takes place in the professor’s living room, and the third in his office. The last would include the scene where Joseph runs out of the office to …… (c’mon, really, did you think I was going to tell you the ending?!)

Similar to the hyped but flopped (or at least not living up to my expectations) Alice in Wonderland book for the iPad, the user will be able to flip through and turn the pages as if it was a real physical page. Unlike a physical book, the text will leave its static line and move to follow or repel (we haven’t decided yet) the touchpoints on the screen. The characters of the text will magically collect around the screen and in a flurry of magical particles and text, the underlying motion piece in a Sweeney Todd style will erupt out of the mix.

Within each of the motion pieces, we’ll have three different interactive components that the user will have to prod around for on their own and can interact with. We want to make it as intuitive as possible and leave it up to the user to figure out what elements are interactive, kind of like the game Windosill. Without giving away all of our secrets, three of the underlying themes seen throughout the story are bugs with tentacle like legs and feelers, worn out faces and souls, and bringing light to some of the chants traditionally associated with the story. Of course, if it’s the first time you’ve ever encountered the story, and you just want to watch it all from start to finish, you’ll be able to do that too.

The part that I’m the most excited about is actually the transitions from the storybook page to the playback of the motion piece. On first glance, the page will look like a regular paper copy of a storybook, only with a bit of old style charm, complete with a fancy dropcap and other embellishments on the page. But as soon as the iPad begins to tilt, or the user touches the screen, the characters will move. They’ll jump around the screen, either being drawn to the touch points on the screen or being repelled from them. The user will be able to play with the particles and smoosh them around the screen to create a bit of a magical soup where the motion piece will expand to utilize more of the available screen, and emerge from the deep magical depths to continue the story. Anyone who knows me, knows I have a thing for typography. I’m glad that we were able to incorporate and base typography both visually and with interactions. Check back in a few days; I hope to have a test done by week’s end.

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