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The Letter - Real time and Story time.

We created a branching Facebook story to accompany the launch of our website. It was a first for us and we learned much as we slowly developed it. The story unfolds through a series of Facebook messages asking for helpwith increasingly weird situations.

The messages are sent in real time. The player gets the experience of interacting with a friend who slowly reveals the full scariness of a situation they can’t get out of.

The choice points and decisions points were strategically placed to take the player into different problems, different emotions and ultimately entirely different outcomes. We slowly and painstakingly assembled the separate storylines beginning from a single premise - the arrival of a letter with a mysterious code inside.

The full diagram of branches and messages is a thing of beauty, an abstract representation of the choices that lie behind the telling of any story.

When we tested the game, we found that the players loved the idea that the story was built up through Facebook messages asking for help with tricky decisions.

They sent us parodies of the decision points, for instance asking for help over food choices in restaurants they were in. We realised that this approach to storytelling is an offer to play, not just an invitation to enter a story. The boundaries between the story and real life were blurred through the use of Facebook as our medium, and the players responded gleefully to this.

Please play the story yourselves and find out how many different paths you can take. Also - feel free to send us messages that play with the content in any way you see fit!


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