Conspiracy for Good: transmedia storytelling

Transmedia project Conspiracy For Good goes live in London tomorrow. Peter Law explains more about transmedia storytelling and Augmented Reality Games and the opportunities for the book trade:

Publishers interested in digital possibilities for the book are probably thinking of telling stories across several media platforms, known as transmedia storytelling.

Conspiracy for Good is an enormous, well funded transmedia project (devised by Tim Kring - maker of the massively popular TV series 'Heroes'). It is being billed as a 'game changer' and from it publishers and their storytelling competitors could learn lessons about how stories can be told in the 21st century.

Conspiracy for Good is a game-storytelling hybrid. Specifically, it's an ARG (Alternative Reality Game - CFG creates a dramatically fictional experience using text, interactive theatre, video content, blog posts and participatory games.

This blurs the lines between fiction and reality, and compels the audience to become a part of a story with real world outcomes. Participants will become part of the plot development and will find the necessary tools and clues inside the story to move the narrative forward.

The day begins near the Tower of London with a boat-chase spectacle on the Thames. There will be clues on the streets of London. Participants will also get the chance to try out new Nokia X6 handsets, which will be used to pick up clues and help the Conspiracy For Good. You can view a trailer here The story continues online

One aim of Conspiracy for Good is to get people involved with, which is a digital initiative set up by Penguin/Pearson to help literacy organisations and charities which provide books to children.


Why should you be interested in transmedia storytelling?

could affect how readers expect to be told stories. For some the boundaries between books, games, websites etc will change or break down 

- your readers probably like playing games - recent research suggests 32% of UK population see themselves as gamers - The research found that gamers are not just men or young people 

- could be used to reinterpret or extend a book's world. Series of novels do this already, as do adaptations for film and TV

- books could be derived from popular transmedia projects, just as books are derived from successful films 

- could be used in the marketing of a book to attract and engage readers. Transmedia projects could also be used post publication to reward fans and early readers and extend the buzz around a book

- non-fiction publishers could also explore interactive and transmedia techniques to tell 'true' stories

- authors in the future will see opportunities to become game makers, just as film makers will may begin to tell their stories in print

- it may make new types of commercial partnership possible (eg Nokia here)

This is a project publishers ought to understand (even though transmedia storytelling will not suit all books and all readers). 

More information: Conspiracy for Good 

Saturday's event -

For event info contact:

Katy Beale -  

Peter Law -