by Kate Moody | Stornaway Communications Assistant, February 2023
The Wonder Twins used Stornaway.io to create an interactive documentary, “Life Is…”, breaking the fourth wall by taking on the role of the main characters of award winning indie game, ‘Life Is Strange’, to investigate what makes it so compelling.
“Stornaway.io made the post production of “Life Is…” very easy-going and enjoyable.”
Chloe (25), is a director, writer and editor and Max (21) is a cinematographer, co-writer and editor. Together, they make The Wonder Twins. “We’re extremely passionate filmmakers and artists mostly focusing on making live-action recreations of games. We fell in love with interactive storytelling through the Life Is Strange series (hence the documentary) and we love all things trippy, surrealistic and philosophical!”
Bringing you into the story: Creating interactive documentaries for video game fandoms to experience more of the story
In 2022, Max and Chloe used Stornaway.io to create an interactive documentary, exploring fourth wall breaks, and the phenomenon of award winning indie game, ‘Life is Strange’. With both of them being fans of the game, they used their passion to reach wider audiences and use both the fanbase and the actresses of the original project to enhance their production.
“We were particularly inspired by some of the documentary modules at our university.”
Chloe had been asked to make a documentary for one of her university projects, but didn’t want to take the typical linear route of storytelling, so instead turned to their love of ‘Life is Strange’
“Due to our massive love of the Life Is Strange series and building our career around the genre, we decided to produce a documentary about what makes our beloved series so special. The interactive twist was implemented to match the mechanics of the original game as well as to broaden our knowledge of interactive filmmaking since this is a topic that’s very fascinating to us.”
Chloe found Stornaway.io while doing research for a professional article for university, entitled “The Evolution and Revolution of interactive storytelling”. From this, they became extremely eager to try out Stornaway.io
“[Stornaway] definitely made the post production of “Life Is…” very easy-going and enjoyable […] Although I’m excited to keep learning more about interactive film/storytelling it’s so nice that I can put together such kickass projects without being particularly knowledgeable in the area of programming.”
The project allows players to choose different story paths, exploring different avenues to understand the phenomenon of ‘Life is Strange’. You can choose between speaking to fans of the game, Campsanis (the composer for the music in the game), Hannah Telle (an actress from the game) or Rhianna DeVries (another actress from the game). These different paths allow the player to further explore how the game was made and why it eventually evolved to be so popular.
“Stornaway makes it so easy to export the project onto YouTube to reach a wider audience.”
Chloe and Max have had an amazing response to the project, with many fans of ‘Life is Strange’ enjoying The Wonder Twins’ expansion of the game’s world and characters.
“The response has been so lovely! Our audience is having so much fun playing “Life Is…”. We’ve received a lot of comments saying that this project is very original and well-made. We honestly couldn’t be happier! The Stornaway player has also been working great for everyone too!”
The Wonder Twins have published “Life is…” on both Stornaway.io and on YouTube, which has allowed the project to reach a wider audience and, most importantly, ‘Life is Strange’ fandom.
“We definitely love the fact that Stornaway makes it so easy to export the project onto YouTube to reach a wider audience. Though so far we’ve been sharing the direct Stornaway player link with our viewers because the “gameplay” is definitely way smoother, faster and more neat-looking than the end screens on Youtube.”
The Wonder Twins used Stornaway’s innovative publishing features to carry their project from Stornaway onto YouTube. This gave them access to YouTube’s audience of 2billion users, ultimately giving them a further platform to reach the ‘Life is Strange’ fandom. Stornaway uses simple clean authoring tools, which allows for a smoother post-production process. In The Wonder Twins’ case, it allowed them to take their existing project and move it on to other platforms with ease and simplicity.
The next steps for The Wonder Twins
The Wonder Twins are now working on a sequel, entitled “Hope Circle”, which they have started a Crowdfunder for. “Troubled teenager (name hidden) ends up entangled in a limbo state- of- being, forced to face her deepest inner conflicts alone.”