I am currently developing a cross-media design kit, comprised of over 100 cards, a book, and website with updated examples and exercises. It is for:
Who is this book for?
Creative Directors, Showrunners
Interactive Writers, Screenwriters
Game Designers, Level Designers
UX, Interaction, & Service Designers
Creative Producers who want to understand the aesthetic ramifications of development, production, distribution, and marketing decisions
Educators teaching any of the above
What can you do with this book?
Brainstorm and iterate during development
Analyse your own or others’ projects
Critically reflect during development, production or post-release
Reconsider art, industry, and practice
How to use this book and project
In this book, I take you through every technique you may consider when creating a cross-media project. I provide a description of the technique, reference key related readings, refer to related techniques, name examples, discuss when you may use the technique and complications.
On the website, there is a ‘transmedia design report’ where you can answer questions about your project and get an immediate free assessment of what transmedia techniques are recommended for your project. You will also find examples of projects and exercises for using the cards, updated by myself and fellow creatives and educators.
On the cards, you will find the name of each technique and an illustration. Use these with the exercises on the website, and the book if you like, to develop your own projects and analyse existing ones.
For my Forward Slash Story residential, I created a card game that is a hack of Situation Lab’s ‘The Thing from the Future‘ and Near Future Laboratory’s ‘Design Fiction Product Design Work Kit‘. These card sets are focused on brainstorming objects for the future, looking at the object, time, mood of use, state of contextual development, and so on. For the F/S residential, I wanted to shift the focus towards a possible writer’s room in the future, and also use more of their storytelling skills. I wanted to facilitate fantastical stories about use rather than emphasising a certain time and context. So the variables I included are object, design prompt, use feeling, and people involved. I wrote the objects so they include ones that can be in a studio, along with the people (from writers to cleaners).
The exercise has worked fine at both F/S and at my Digital Writers’ Room events, producing quite entertaining stories about weird objects but importantly unusual studio scenarios. There is the problem of instruction delivery needing to be refined, and I find there is a tension between the goals of ideating objects versus ideating situations. It is the latter I’m after and so I’m still tweaking it.