WHO KILLED THE CAT
Project Area / Thesis Project
Content / AR Interactive Installation,
Roles /user research, visual + UX design,
Tools/Photoshop, Illustrator Unity3D,
Who killed the Cat is an interactive video game based on the augmented reality which can be played in a real gallery space. This is a murder mystery which happened in a strange and a little scary room. The story is about, choice, desire and the two sides of human nature. These themes are symbolically represented as the victim and the scene of the crime.
An interactive game is different from other traditional media. Creating a good interaction between the user and the virtual world is a primary consideration. Like in Sleep No More, even through participants cannot interfere with the story and destiny of a character, they can go very deep in the story based on all the scenes in this hotel: open any closet and read books and documents you want; I personally found medical record from madhouse and the sign alone; Books are real antiques; Some letters are even the complementary to the plot development.
Inspired by Sleep No More’s McKittrick Hotel, I created a bedroom and set up some details inside: a cup, goblet, book, newspaper and so on. All the information and clues are separately hidden these objects in. Unlike Sleep No More, my objects do not show the clues unless you look at them through a digital camera. It seems to give participants a kind of supernatural power to see through all the physical objects and enable them to watch the story nonlinearly. People may not know all the details, but they can deduce the whole story based on known clues and information.
Her Story uses a nonlinear way to tell the story as well. It is a suspense movie game that users can play as an investigator and see an old computer database from a police system. There is a video recording of a case in a nonlinear timeline. People can step closer to the truth through these fragmented video clues.
This game gives me a lot of inspiration. Since the topic of my thesis is about murder as well, I learned how to leave clues, create suspense and how to set up the clues as video clips. For example, there are three videos related to the keyword goblet, one shows a girl’s hand with a ring choosing a cup instead of a goblet, the second video shows a hand without a ring poisoning a goblet. I think participants in my project will know what happened next. Why was she poisoning and what’s the meaning of the ring. Finally the third video(directly related to keyword cup) shows will show that someone drinks the cup of tea. I used a synonyms way that lets users become detectives uncovering the truth as they investigate the story.
This story based on the Schrodinger’s Cat, "Before opening the box, the cat is both dead and alive.” This theory can represent both parallel worlds and human nature who has both angel and evil. If the audience is care enough, they will find there are two characters existed in two different parallel worlds. They fight and murdered each other, like human always feel struggling when facing a choice. The cat stands for human’s desire and the whole room is a symbol of human nature which always exists two different dimensional people.
Story Flow Chart
Physical furniture made
Inspired by geometrical sculpture and interstellar, I decided to build all the objects in cube style. The desk will be a cube, the cup will be the cube and even washer is a cube in my Augmented Reality bedroom. Next, I drew digital illustration for every object and furniture and white are still my main colors. Aroma, clock, cat toy and even bed, I designed all these illustration and finish them in Photoshop cc and Illustration cc.
Instead of Aramaic and wood, I found the best solution for the material was cardboard, the cheapest but the most convenient way to build my objects. For example, I just bought two sizes of cardboard boxes, 6*6inch for cup and newspaper and 8*8 inch for the goblet, aroma, cat toy and so on. With the different size of cardboard boxes, I didn’t need to think about how to create a box shape because they were already there.
Open in One Art Space Gallery
Since I need to build a bedroom in the gallery, creating this space presents a huge challenge. I got an exhibition space in the corner of the floor. There are two closest doors on the side wall. Therefore, I had to reconstruct the whole structure in order to hang on my wallpaper and create the bedroom space.
Set up in the Gallery Space
I thought PVC pipe and vertical nail could work. PVC pipe is a kind of very light material and easy to install. There are many different connectors that offer more possibilities to structure the space. Firstly, I tried to use vertical nail to hold the PVC pipe, a kind of long needle that can hold vertically on the wall. I thought it was available to put a pipe on it that can attach the wallpaper from the pipe. But the vertical nails are too short to cover the door handles for the left wall when wallpaper attached to it. Besides, it was not stable if only use two nails to hold 10 ft pipe. Later I came up with a new idea, instead of using a nail, the metal flange was more stable to hold the pipe on the wall or the floor. But it still needed a connector that connected the PVC pipe and iron flange. Finally, I found 3/4” mental connector in Home Depot that can connect with my 3/4” PVC pipe.