Tag: Jan Libby

Recap: DIYDays Fireside Chat with Jan Libby and Steve Peters

DIYDaysFreshly triumphant from their most recent transmedia projects, Steve Peters of No Mimes Media and Jan Libby, recently of Levi’s G.O. IV Fortune campaign, took the stage at DIYDays LA to talk about their experiences designing Alternate Reality Games.

Steve and Jan began as players in the emerging genre that we call ARGs. Both made the transition from player to puppetmaster through their work on independent games, which led to careers for each of them in the newborn industry of transmedia entertainment. And both acknowledge that their roots in the player side of these games and experiences now inform their choices as designers. “Sure, we do this for money,” Jan said, “but our hearts are indie.” Whether they are designing an ARG for a client or for an indie game, they consider not only the story and its characters, the protagonists and antagonists, but also the audience. Jan views the audience as a character, one that will interact and possibly shape the story as it plays out.

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Catching Up with Jan Libby

Jan_Libby.jpgWhen we last spoke with Jan Libby in episode 35 of the ARG Netcast, she gave us exclusive news about two projects: a television show that she successfully pitched to a production company, and a new game of her own that she planned to launch sometime this winter. Fans of her last two games, “Sammeeeees” and its sequel, “The Wrath of Johnson“, have been watching and waiting for the first sign of Jan’s latest work.

Curious about the effect of the Writer’s Guild of America strike on Jan’s television project, I emailed her to ask about the strike and how things were going. Her cheerful reply gave me some information that I’m thrilled to be able to pass along. The television show has been put on hold due to the strike. However, just before the strike, Jan also pitched her alternate reality idea to the same production company, and, “…they loved it,” Jan said. “And because the web is not yet under the rule of the WGA, I can still launch this project without crossing any picket lines.” With the backing of the production company, Jan also notes that the project and its story world can expand beyond the plans she originally laid out.

Describing her next alternate reality project as “more experimental” and set in a different world from Sammeeeees, Jan revealed that the story “deals with time, space, and memory.”

“It is very interactive but designed so that you don’t have to interact to enjoy the ride,” she says.

We can expect to see the launch sometime in early spring of 2008, so keep your eyes open for whatever surprises Jan has in store for us because spring is just around the corner!

Image courtesy of the LGPedia.

Launching Into ’08: New Games and New Beginnings

newyear.jpgAs our planet careens into yet another lap around the Sun, puppetmasters are waiting gleefully in their lairs, cackling behind their respective curtains, fingers poised to hit the big red LAUNCH button at the stroke of midnight on January 1, 2008. All around the world, ARG players will be clinging to their F5 buttons or obsessively checking their email for the new year’s first hint of activity in the world of chaotic fiction. January’s schedule is crowded with launches, relaunches, and continuations of new and ongoing games and experiences.  We’d like to give you a quick peek at what’s in store for you in 2008.

The Lost Experience – Relaunching 12/31/07
A press release on the ABC media website declared that on December 31, Oceanic Airlines would be resuming flights service to several cities. Contact your travel agent now!

What is this Game? – Launching 1/1/08
What is this Game?, an ARG and contest promoting What is this Movie? by Staff of the Magi Productions, begins on 1-1-2008 at midnight. Players may register here to participate (must be 18 or older by January 1, 2008). According to Magi’s press release, “What is this Game requires player interaction, quick thinking, puzzle solving skills, countless hours of dedication, and in the end a journey to the Grand Prize.”

Last Halloween, QU13E rose from the grave. A few members of unFiction began exchanging emails and receiving clues from QU13E’s shadowy inhabitants. After solving a puzzle in the source code of the QU13E website, players noted that 1/1/08 was set to be the launch day of this mysterious game.

The Dark Knight
Who knows what the Joker’s next prank will be? This time, it might be PIE! The next phase of The Dark Knight kicks off early in the new year, so keep your eyes peeled and your forks at the ready.

ZOMG! 1-18-08 is less than three weeks away! Avid followers of Cloverfield’s viral marketing will finally get to experience the Cloverfield monster on the big screen.

Eldritch Errors: Book 3
What lies ahead for the Sentries and the Dreamers in a post-Scream world? No exact date has been hinted at for the opening of Book 3, but players speculate that new activity on Eldritch Errors will begin sometime in the new year.

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Sammeeeees PM Looks a Little Lonely

Recently, ARGNet learned that Jan Libby, solo PM of the popular indie game Sammeeeees, has joined the Lonelygirl15 team. She began by writing a recent Lonelygirl video, “Sing With Me,” and it sounds like we will be seeing a lot more of her work in the future.

“In addition to writing videos, Jan is also taking a leadership role in implementing more puzzles and interactivity into our show. We are thrilled to be working with her,” says Greg Goodfried, an executive producer for the series.

Jan herself adds, “I have found my eternal song with LG15! 😉 Seriously, Greg, Mesh, Miles, and Amanda make the collaboration process so much fun. I’m having a blast — although this ‘no curtain’ PM stuff will take some getting used to.”

We congratulate both parties on what we hope will be an exciting and productive relationship on both sides of the curtain, and look forward to seeing what’s in store for LG15! We would also like to congratulate the team on their recent Webby award — a well-deserved accolade for this engaging series.

Catch up on the Lonelygirl15 series at YouTube, or discuss the announcement at Unfiction.

ARGFest 2007 Panel I: Developing an ARG

ARGFest attendees were privileged to be able to sit in on — and participate in — dialogues between many of the field’s leading developers during the panel discussions held on March 3rd. The first of these panels, Developing An ARG, consisted of Adam Brackin (Fundi Technologies — Deus City), Brian Clark (GMD Studios — Art of the Heist, Who Is Benjamin Stove), Adrian Hon (Mind Candy Design — Perplex City), Evan Jones (Xenophile Media/Stitch Media — Regenesis, Ocular Effect), Jan Libby (Sammeeeees), and Dave Szulborski (Chasing the Wish, Urban Hunt). Unfiction’s Sean Stacey (a.k.a. SpaceBass) moderated the discussion.

As one might expect from such a gathering of alternate reality gaming’s better-known puppetmasters, the discussion was packed with information and insights from behind the curtain (although Brian Clark’s frequent wryly humorous interjections kept it entertaining as well as informative).

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