“Carefully stylized and textured world, with razor-sharp typography. Effective combination of voiceover, motion and interactivity.” —juror Gabe Kean
“I found myself wanting to go through the whole experience. Brilliant storytelling for a car brand.” —juror Natalie Lam
Overview: “The Vanishing Game” is, at its core, a story written by author William Boyd. Layered with sensory details, photography, illustration, narration and reactive sound effects, Boyd’s words gain new life as a digital story. Those who visit the website can scroll through eight chapters of interactive content, toggling on or off the integrated videos and dynamic sound track to craft their ideal reading experience. Readers can even submit their own stories via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, which are then curated and displayed if users click keywords embedded throughout the story.
•The four-month production included a live-action shoot in Scotland and post-production of more than 400 assets, including web design and development.
•Y&R New York, the lead agency, came up with the concept. Tool, the live-action and digital production company, handled the execution of the content and the experience.
•The project boasts more than 90 minutes of content—600 videos, illustrations, photos and cinemagraphs.
Comments by Tool:
What was the purpose of the project? “Land Rover’s brand has traditionally skewed toward the luxury market. However, in the face of upcoming product launches, it needed to bolster its adventure brand and off-road credibility. We created a campaign designed to present that credibility with true authenticity through the unhindered words of an adventure novel brought to life.”
What software, back-end technology and programming languages were used? “‘The Vanishing Game’ was built using a combination of web standard technologies and a custom stack of development tools, some off the shelf, others written specially for this project. At its core, ‘The Vanishing Game’ is a modular single-page application built using HTML5 standards on the framework React.js, but that’s just a small part of the puzzle that made it possible. We used webpack, along with a series of custom-built scripts, to manage packaging the final site code and graphics, and we wrote a lot of fresh code to enable the responsive and flexible playback offered by the site. We used Sass as a CSS preprocessor to help organize all the site styles. Finally, we devised a lightweight cue-point system, managed via Google Docs, to coordinate the written text with the narrator and quickly handle edits to the audio track with teams on both coasts.”
Are there any other technical features you’d like to call attention to? “‘The Vanishing Game’ is tightly integrated with Tumblr. Every piece of content on the site is sharable and deep links visitors into the part of the story where that content appears. Additionally, we built a custom content management system using PHP that searches for certain hashtags and keywords to aggregate all of the user-generated content that’s on the site before it’s moderated and approved for use.”