Bristol, UK-based prodco Aardman is working with a consortium of British companies, including video gamemakers Potato, Sugar Creative, Tiny Rebel Games, to bring the characters from Wallace & Gromit to a new immersive, multi-user augmented-reality experience.
The experience will be promoted by a multi-month campaign leading into its release launch 2020.
Chosen by UK Research and Innovation as part of the Audience of the Future program, the video game companies received several million dollars in the form of a research and development grant to explore the new immersive experience and then reached out to Aardman to include its characters. The project also has research support from the University of South Wales.
There are not a lot of details on what form the AR will take will take, but it is confirmed that it will use narrative storytelling to allow users to follow the well-known characters. It could combine AR, mixed reality and haptics (interactive touching) with live theatrical production, websites, social media and even comic books, according to Tiny Rebel Games.
This new program follows Aardman’s co-founders announcement that they were transferring the company to its 140 employees so that they could retire and it would remain independent. The majority of the prodco’s shares were transferred into a trust, and its senior management team continues to serve in their current roles while also forming an executive board.
AR continues to be a hot topic for the kids industry with LEGO launching several apps that tie in its physical toys with app gameplay, Nickelodeon working on an AR sitcom and Samsung even launching an AR toothbrush experience.