YonderBeyond

An elegant fusion of pop-up paper architecture and AR for an in-home storytelling experience.

Silhouettes in an upstairs window. Raised voices. Shattered glass and a piercing scream. A body hits the curb at the foot of an Art Deco building in downtown Los Angeles.

Welcome to The Vega Hotel and one of many mysteries held within its paper walls. An episodic noir mystery that unveils itself through mobile device-led AR animation, manifested within a beautiful paper building. This is just one of many structures and tales YonderBeyond has planned for this exciting new platform.

This voyeuristic storytelling experience enables users to explore a dynamic dollhouse in their own homes. The narrative progresses via an immersive soundscape, beautiful rooms and characters materialise. Light gamification will give users agency to unlock different routes through the story with the swipe of a finger, spin of the device or touch of the building using app-based or gesture-tracked interaction.

Storeys of stories in the heart of the city.

Walkthrough video – 2020

Intended audience

This immersive experience is intended for fans of immersive theatre, interactive experiences and collectors of curious.

By combining a collectable, keepsake book with a mobile app, new audiences have an accessible route to exploring how AR and their interactions can drive a story forward, whilst enjoying this new platform for immersive storytelling in their own home.

Creator’s statement

As a maker of location-based immersive entertainment, I have witnessed how tactile touch-points anchor audiences in worlds that previously only existed in their imagination. They act as talisman to physically tether you through those ‘pinch yourself’ moments, reminding you that that this is magic manifested, not a dream.

Such tools can be challenging to access and scale. Now more than ever, there is a space to enhance in-home digital offerings and this product will hybridise the satisfaction of interaction with a physical object with an immersive digital layer to provide an exciting new dimension to storytelling.

Technical summary

The experience will be built in Unity 3D using AR kit for iPhone 12 pro or equivalent for ToF compatible devices to ensure the most robust and flexible approach to animation and interaction. The final book is purchased online and will provide a code to the associated app. The first episode comes with the book and subsequent episodes or stories can be purchased in-app.

Project team details

  • Sheena Patel – Founder and Creative Lead
  • Sugar Creative – Innovation and Animation
  • Rob Morgan – Narrative Designer

MVP:

  • Conovo Technologies – Tech Lead
  • Smadar Krampf – Product Manager
  • Joseph Cullen – Writer
  • Matt Farthing – Sound Design and Video Producer
  • Francesca Tesei – Model Maker

Team profile

YonderBeyond is founded by Sheena Patel, who has co-created and produced award winning location-based experiences. By utilising established production techniques in innovative ways, she has developed live-gaming experiences that have hosted thousands of players, including Time Run and a playable episode of the TV series Sherlock.

Taking the knowledge of what energises audiences in the physical realm and working with experts across narrative, architecture, animation, programming and composing, YonderBeyond will harness the power of technology and other immersive tools to deliver the most compelling story in the most satisfying way, creating a new and exciting medium for storytelling.

Past work

  • 2020 – Wallace & Gromit: The Big Fix Up
  • 2020 – Dr. Seuss’s ABC—An Amazing AR Alphabet!
  • 2019 – Sherlock: The Game is Now
  • 2019 – A Fisherman’s Tale
  • 2016 – Time Run 2013 – Wonderbook: Book of Potions
  • 2012 – Wonderbook: Book of Spells