'Endgame' blends print, film, gaming, and a global treasure huntSubmitted by jrd3820 on Mon, 07/28/2014 - 13:36
Google is helping James Frey build a multimedia sci-fi juggernaut
By Adi Robertson on July 28, 2014 11:55 am
On October 7th, author James Frey will release a novel about the apocalypse. It will hold an elaborate code, directing readers towards a key hidden somewhere in the real world. That key will open a case containing $500,000 in gold.
This is the premise of Endgame: The Calling, which is not so much a book as a sweeping attempt at a story that will colonize all conceivable media. Fox is developing a movie concurrently, and Google's Niantic Labs, responsible for alternate-reality game Ingress, is making a new game based on the plot. A D&D dungeon master has been conscripted to maintain social media accounts for the characters, which he has done for the past year. Two more books are coming. And around it all is a scavenger hunt based on cryptic numbers, coordinates, and other details hidden in the book.
"There's so much possible in today's world that people don't do," says Frey in an interview at San Diego Comic Con. "You know, the idea that Twitter can be part of a book, or a search result can be part of a book, and a game can be a part of a book. A book can be more than what's on the page. It can take you out into the real world; it can take you out into the digital world." After coming up with the idea, Frey cold-called Google to see if the company would be interested in partnering on a game. Google agreed to a meeting, sending members of the team behind Ingress, its first foray into gaming.
Twelve ancient cultures were chosen millennia ago to represent humanity in Endgame, a global game that will decide the fate of humankind. Endgame has always been a possibility, but never a reality…until now. Twelve meteorites have just struck Earth, each meteorite containing a message for a Player who has been trained for this moment. At stake for the Players: saving their bloodline, as well as the fate of the world. And only one can win.
Endgame is real. Endgame is now. Endgame has begun.
Google Niantic is building a mobile location-based augmented reality videogame inextricably tied to the books and mythology, a major prize will be tied to a puzzle in each book, and Twentieth Century Fox has bought the movie rights.
The idea of an interactive game within a book made me think of Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
In the year 2044, reality is an ugly place. The only time teenage Wade Watts really feels alive is when he's jacked into the virtual utopia known as the OASIS. Wade's devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world's digital confines—puzzles that are based on their creator's obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them.But when Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade's going to survive, he'll have to win—and confront the real world he's always been so desperate to escape.