World Rally Championship Interactive

31 10 2007

Originally spotted in NMA, but their site is packed with reg and subscription walls, so here’s the story from another source:, currently a subscription site, will be relaunched on 1 January as a free website, following the acquisition of the commercial rights by N.One, the digital arm of North One TV, which produces the site’s TV content.

The new site will be heavily promoted on TV and feature more than 200 hours of on-board and rally footage filmed by North One TV. will also launch gaming applications for PC, mobile and consoles. N.One is in talks to merge WRC data and virtual mapping with its gaming engines to allow users to race on actual rally courses.

I’m pretty sure Evolution Studios, and hence now Sony, still have the rights to WRC. Thanks to Evolution’s WRC work done before MotorStorm, there’s already a community in games, and, as it stands, seems to have one too. I wonder how well they’ll merge?

1 Avatar to rule them all

12 10 2007

Linden Labs and IBM are teaming up to create open standards for virtual worlds, which should allow movement between multiple environments by a single avatar:

At the Virtual Worlds Conference and Expo at San Jose, Calif., the two companies are announcing plans to develop open standards that will allow avatars to roam from one virtual community to the next. The goal is let a person create a digital alter-ego that can travel to many virtual worlds, keeping the same name, look and even digital currency.

It’s an idea that’s been talked about a lot; I’m glad someone’s getting on with having a go at it. Will it use SL avatars by default, or a new model entirely? Personally I’d be glad to see new ones; SL’s defaults have always been a bit lumpy and awkward.

The companies speak of “a truly interoperable 3D Internet.” Think of it as passports for avatars. So that pink-headed cutie you made for Second Life can also take up residence in, The Lounge, Virtual Laguna Beach and Entropia, for example.

…assuming the other companies involved all sign up for the open standards idea. It would be nice if they did, but there would be a cost to them all in doing so. Worth it, I’d say, though: barrelling through VLB with your SL wings and furry outfit could be quite a laugh.

Fictional Media

12 10 2007

Fictional Media have released more details about the mysterious Soho Project

What’s Your Soho?

Fictional Media, in association with the London Games Festival Fringe, bring you an entirely new concept in cross-media gaming.

The Soho Project is a make-your-own reality game taking place online and on the streets of Soho. Register your own Fictional Identity, join a team and then…

GET REAL – complete reality-based missions – the harder the better.

GET FILMED – film your own missions, film other teams, get other teams to film you. The more you film the more you score.

GET SEEN – Upload your videos to YouTube and spread the word – your success depends on the size of your audience…

Winners will feature in a pilot `It’s Your Soho!’ shot on 27 October and screened to major media commissioning editors.

Make your virtual Soho!

Play/Time Lab

2 10 2007

Frank Boyd is running the Play/Time Lab at the London Games Festival Next month. It has a very broad remit, but the most precise way of referring to it would be “ARG workshop”. Here’s more on what it’s about, with a link to the application form at the end. The deadline for applications is 9:00am on October 8th:

Over four days between October 22nd and 26th, twenty creative professionals artists, writers, developers and producers from backgrounds in theatre, video-games, animation, web design, tv and radio – will collaborate and compete to develop original ideas for new games across a range of platforms.

The Play/Time Lab will comprise a blend of masterclass, presentations, workshop, screenings and of course, play. Participants will have a unique opportunity to explore and experiment with game forms and digitally mediated play; working as individuals and in teams they will also brainstorm, develop and prototype ideas for new ones.

Play/Time will focus on new forms of interactive narrative, location based games, social and casual games, games that involve live events and performance, augmented or alternate reality games, games with emotional depth, games that appeal to non-gamers.

Specifc themes for the Lab are the relationship between gameplay and narrative, formats which permit user contributions of narrative and character, the design of games with mobile and location based elements which exist alongside a broadcast component.

The Lab will feature presentations from from commissioners and developers from broadcasters, developers and publishers including the BBC, Channel 4, Electronic Arts, and 02, as well as games designers, writers and artists like Blast Theory, The Mustard Corporation and XPT.

Participants in Play/Time will also take part in and contribute to a specially commissioned augmented reality game, The Soho Project, being developed by for the London Games Festival by the Fictional Media Company.

There are still places available; if you would like to be considered for one, please complete the online application from at by 9:00am on October 8th.