I have a film idea... but I need help figuring out how to do it.

HeySiri Posts: 386 Just Starting Out*

Remember those Choose Your Own Adventure books? I loved them. Still do. Has anyone played any of the Lifeline games by Three Minute Games? I've played about three of them and they're a lot of fun. Just little text adventures but they manage to be emotionally gripping and creepy at the same time.

Okay now, well, imagine a choose your own adventure movie. I'm sure people do stuff like this but now I want to try my hand at one. I have an idea that would be fairly simple and is based on the premise of one of the Lifeline games: someone wakes up stranded on an alien world after their ship crashed. From there I'd write my own story, and the film would be mostly green screen and motion capture which would make things fairly easy. However, I'm not sure how to provide an interactive setting. Could this be done on YouTube? I'm really not sure...

Any ideas?


  • Triem23
    Triem23 Posts: 20,299 Power User

    Be warned, sir, what you're thinking of isn't one film, it's dozens. You'll have to very tightly plot your story variations and branch points. Lots of writing and filming (look up anything you can on production information for "Black Mirror Bandersnatch," which is exactly what you're trying to do."

    As far as execution goes, YouTube has limited functionality for interaction. You'll literally have to make a segment, then have it end at the branch point with two buttons (or however branches you have). The button redirects to the next selected video. This, btw, is the exact mechanism Bandersnatch used. 

    You'll want your "beginning episode" public, and all your branching scenes unlisted. 

  • HeySiri
    HeySiri Posts: 386 Just Starting Out*

    @Triem23 I’m aware it’s a LOT of filming and writing but I’m streamlining this a little by having it in one location: green screen! As for YouTube I’ll probably have to do that then.

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Posts: 20,299 Power User

    Honestly, any interactive media works the same basic way - a button linking to the next movie file. I used to do interactive DVDs, and the linking was always a pain... I did one DVD with a hidden video file that users had to go through a quiz of four questions with four answers, and answer correctly the first time, to access. The answers dumped to different video clips depending on correct/incorrect answers, and, of course, any incorrect answers dumped you into the "duplicate" tree that sent you to the main menu, while the correct path sent you to the hidden video. 

    Planning is key. Whether a quiz or interactive movie it's the same principle - buttons linking to new video files (and, for the DVD coding the next menu as the end action). 

    Tedious, but rewarding when it all works. 

    Side note: I cleverly hid the answers to the quiz in the text on the back of the DVD package, helpfully tagged as "What do W, X, Y, and, Z have in common? Watch and find out!"