The Line was just released on the Oculus Quest today, and it is a really sweet, immersive story that won the Best VR Immersive Experience for Interactive Content award at The Venice Film Festival 2019. The original version I saw in Venice used controllers, but the Quest release uses the hand tracking features in a really simple, but effective way.
The Line uses a tabletop diorama to tell the story of breaking out of routines, and it uses repetition of pushing buttons, pulling levers, and turning knobs to build up to some more complex interactions later. But these interactions serve to gate the flow of the story, rather than to express any agency that has any consequence to the story. It’s a simple, but effective way of engaging the viewer into the story, but also to recreate the types of embodied routines and cycles that are represented within the story.
Overall, it’s a really sweet story that shows the power of immersive storytelling, and I’m looking forward to seeing more content from the film festival circuit make it’s way onto the Quest distribution platforms.
I had a chance to talk to director Ricardo Laganaro at the Venice Film Festival back on August 29, 2019 to unpack their experiential design process, how they worked with dancers inspired them to use elevation as a form of narrative contrast, and how they’ve embedded aspects of Brazilian cultural heritage within this piece.
I highly recommend checking out “The Line” as it’s a short and sweet story, but also for the innovations of using hand tracking to help tell a story. It’s a great showcase piece to be able to evangelize to people the power of the virtual reality medium.
LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE OF THE VOICES OF VR PODCAST
This is a listener-supported podcast through the Voices of VR Patreon.