Last year StoryFutures Academy and InGAME held the Immersive Game Lab, an initiative to support the next generation of immersive, narrative-led videogames by aiding both writers and developers. Today, the winning project has been announced, a virtual reality (VR) title called Duality.
Duality is a collaborative effort between Cecile Emeke, an artist and filmmaker from London, and Biome Collective, a digital art and videogame studio based in Dundee. The project is: “set in the world of a young British black woman who discovers her everyday actions begin to affect a timeline that spans across time and space,” explains the synopsis.
“This collaboration is a fantastic opportunity for Biome Collective to push the medium of games by focusing on narrative and the voice of the unrepresented. Our audience is global and diverse and we need to reflect this through our games,” said Malath Abbas from Biome Collective in a statement.
“I’m looking forward to the opportunity to further expand my practice of storytelling into VR/AR and explore the potentialities of these mediums,” said Emeke.
Winning the Immersive Game Lab means the creators receive a £50,000 GBP commission. This goes towards a 12-week development period alongside user testing, audience insight and commercialisation support from InGAME to bring the idea to life. Duality will then be showcased at a UK videogame event, although when that will take place is still uncertain.
“As we hoped it would, the Immersive Game Lab & Commission has unearthed some brilliant talent and fantastic new collaborations, and Cecile and Biome’s project is a great example of this. With a unique take on what an immersive game might be – and on the audiences they are built for – we can’t wait to see this virtual project become reality,” added Becky Gregory-Clarke, Head of Immersive, StoryFutures Academy.
There were two runner-ups from the Immersive Game Lab, Kaya Could Fly, a VR exploration title by Zoe Thorogood who teamed up with Pocket Sized Hands. And AR-audio narrative puzzle The Maze by Adam Butcher who was also paired with Biome Collective.
As more initiatives like the Immersive Game Lab continue to support the UK’s XR industry, VRFocus will keep you updated.