Virtual Reality dramas…will they actual work?

screen-shot-2016-10-16-at-9-41-02-pmDrama in VR

VR drama is still in the experimental stage for the most part, but it’s starting to gain real traction in short format series. The real power of VR is it puts you directly into the scene. Wearing a headset and headphones leads the viewer to believe they are really there. In that situation it’s impossible not to be affected by what is happening around you and feel real empathy for characters.

In a VR drama, the viewer is engaged and responsible for keeping up with the action. As a director we block out and choreograph the scenes in such a way that the audience will intuitively follow the main action, similar to a live stage play. The ultimate goal of any project is to create a VR experience where you’re completely engaged and emotionally invested within the story.

Spatial audio cues play a large role in capturing and diverting attention to particular areas. For example, you may hear a sound behind you that prompts you to turn around. This is one way the director can control the viewer experience.

But what if the viewer is looking in the wrong place when the scene changes?

arnoldAdvancements in technology are happening daily. For example, certain platforms are supporting forced perspective whereby at certain points in the story, you re-orient the viewer to a particular part of a scene. Facebook now supports this and new aggregators are coming on board soon. This will help tremendously as some of the storytelling power will be given back to the director.

And VR lends itself to multiple viewing where the user can have a different experience each time.

Go in deep…

vr-dudeImmersion in a virtual reality experience is the perception that you, the participant, are physically there…wherever “there” may be. For us as virtual reality storytellers, the goal is to create such a high degree of immersion that users aren’t just caught up thinking, “This is a cool experience…” because they’re too busy participating in what’s happening around them. At peak immersion, audiences experience a real sense of presence – that feeling of actively participating rather than passively watching.

The ultimate potential of storytelling in VR is that we’ll be able to live out the stories that we could only previous read, listen to or watch. In virtual reality, you don’t have to imagine what it feels like — you feel it for yourself.  When you are a given person (or “with” them), rather than just watching them, you experience a greater degree of empathy. And that my friends is the power of VR.

Do you think this is the future of digital storytelling?

 

 

 

 

2 thoughts on “Virtual Reality dramas…will they actual work?

  1. Thabk you for the blog. Now I know more about VR. I can see from the from your desciprive blog that you are a great enthusiast of VR. I wonder if that technology will up the game for top performance acting or the opposite. If we are living the experience more intensly, will that
    diistract me to the point that I do not notice poor acting? Or the opposite, I would be a better judge because I will live the character experience. I recall the experience of 3D and certainly felt a perspective that was quite real to the storytelling. And that is nothing compared to VR. I think that VR could become popular with some age groups more than others. The type of movie seen on VR will also impact traction or not. Personally, there are times when I choose to see a movie and do not need to feel too close to the storytelling. In those instances, I have had enough with day to day real experience. Plus my imagination can wanter to truly feel the story and characters’ experience. Times will tell about uptake. Surely it will be popular with youth, as long as there is the right type of storytelling content for that medium

    • Technology is changing daily and my prediction is soon, everyone will own a set of glasses and be able to experience VR. I recently had a change to try some gaming on the Oculus and I was blown away. I believe people will become addicted to the experience and the appetite for new content will be never ending. It’s a bit more of a commitment than turning on the TV and passively watching, but trust me it’ll be worth the effort.

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