I can’t make any promises, but I’m going to try my best to not ‘nerd out’ in this blog … Who am I kidding, let’s do this!
So, transmedia narratives. What is that?
Ever heard of Star Wars? Lightsabers, Jedis’, The Dark Side and the whole ‘I am your father’ shebang? It’s the highly popular movie series with two trilogies and a third trilogy set in the making about fights in outer space in a galaxy far far away… Only, it is not simply a movie series is it? What about the game Lego Star Wars? Or the T.V series The Clone Wars? That, in its simplest form, is what transmedia narratives basically are.
Transmedia storytelling is the process in which multiple stories are told through multiple media platforms- through this, a wider range of audience and response can be achieved. It can also allow a form of connection between the audience members. Each platform of the story that is created forms its own standalone storyline that contributes to a larger narrative. For example, the Walking Dead; the T.V series story takes a similar appeal to the graphic novels it is based off of, but some aspects are different; and both novel and show are contrastingly different to the plot of Telltale Games’ app and Xbox game ‘The Walking Dead’- which features new characters, a new plot and more interactivity and reaction from the audience through the decisions of the players affecting the gameplay and storyline.
But they are still based in the same world as the show and novel ‘The Walking Dead’! This, in its entirety, is the basis of transmedia storytelling- audience participation and multiple stories on multiple platforms that ultimately form a larger story.
T.V Show poster (left) and Game poster (Above)
Now, let’s talk about Pokémon- in case you’re unsure what that actually is, Pokémon is a highly popular Japanese Nintendo game series for children through to young adults where they catch, train and breed ‘Pokémon’- creatures that you can use to battle other competitors both in-game or online. In case you still have no idea what I’m talking about … Pikachu- you’re bound to know Pikachu yeah? That’s a Pokémon.
Anyways, Pokémon has branched out onto a variety of media platforms, extending past the Nintendo DS: there are Pokémon movies, T.V. shows, battle cards … Even Youtuber duo Smosh have made a series of videos titled ‘If Pokémon were real’. Each possess their own individual stories and characters, yet focus on the same world. A notable platform about Pokémon currently, is their latest addition ‘Pokémon Go’. Pokémon Go is a new app audience members can download onto their Apple or Android product and gain a ‘real life experience’ of the traditional Pokémon games, where they ‘find’ Pokémon out in the world and ‘catch’ them via their device.
Pokémon Go is a prime example of transmedia storytelling and how it is a fully participatory occurrence between audience individuals. Through this notion of downloading the game onto your phones and incorporating it into your surroundings, audiences can actively participate with the media platform and gain a new experience and perspective on the original DS series.
That’s all for this post, talk to you soon!
For more information on transmedia narratives and Pokémon Go, check out these sites:
Check out for one of Smosh’s videos and more!
‘Pokemon in real life’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e1h5TzdTq0o