Google gets in game of Internet age storytelling

January 16, 2014
A Google employee demonstrates playing a video on a phone and transferring it to a television during a Google special event on July 24, 2013 in San Francisco, California

The Google lab behind augmented reality game "Ingress" is teaming with HarperCollins Publishers and top author James Frey for an Internet age adventure in storytelling.

Niantic Labs announced Wednesday that it will create a mobile augmented reality game as part of an "Endgame" multimedia project meshing together digital novellas, YouTube videos, social media, search results and a trilogy of young adult novels.

Twentieth Century Fox has picked up the film rights.

The project centers on a trilogy by authors James Frey and Nils Johnson-Shelton. The first book, "Endgame: The Calling," will be published on October 7, according to HarperCollins.

"This is a spectacular story that embodies the future of publishing—great content, interactivity and a multimedia experience," HarperCollins chief executive Brian Murray said in a statement.

Clues and riddles for solving interactive puzzles will be sprinkled throughout each Endgame book. Gold will be on display in a bulletproof glass case, the key to which can be found by solving the puzzle in the first book in the series, according to HarperCollins.

Claiming of the prize will be streamed live at Google-owned online video venue YouTube.

Endgame will be released simultaneously around the world in more than 30 languages, according to HarperCollins.

"We're doing something really amazing, really new, something readers are going to love," Frey said.

"The whole project is a dream come true, and as far as I'm concerned, October can't come soon enough."

Frey is writing the script for the first film, which will be produced by Temple Hill's Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen, producers behind the Twilight Saga series of films.

"Endgame is an innovative omni-platform endeavor, and we at 20th Century Fox are thrilled and committed to work with HarperCollins, and Google Niantic Labs to bring James Frey's groundbreaking franchise to audiences around the world," said 20th Century Fox production president Emma Watts.

Niantic Labs is developing a location-based, game that marries video games and the physical world. The game is expected to launch for play on Android and Apple-powered mobile devices late this year.

Six Endgame novellas will be available exclusively at the Google Play store as e-books.

"James has a great vision for telling stories in an integrated way across books, film, social media and mobile games," said Niantic Labs vice president of product John Hanke.

"We are delighted to bring our technology and expertise to bear on a project that is helping to define the future of entertainment."

Explore further: Scribd, HarperCollins offer e-book subscriptions

Related Stories

Google's startup brings sightseeing app to Glass (Update)

August 21, 2013

Google Glass, a spectacle-like computing device drawing lots of attention, can serve as an automated tour guide with the help of a new application from a little-known startup hatched within the Internet's most powerful company.

YouTube, Disney teaming up

November 8, 2011

YouTube and The Walt Disney Co. announced on Monday they are teaming up to produce an original video series and feature "family-friendly" Disney programming on the popular video-sharing site.

Recommended for you

Forget oil, Russia goes crazy for cryptocurrency

August 16, 2017

Standing in a warehouse in a Moscow suburb, Dmitry Marinichev tries to speak over the deafening hum of hundreds of computers stacked on shelves hard at work mining for crypto money.

Researchers clarify mystery about proposed battery material

August 15, 2017

Battery researchers agree that one of the most promising possibilities for future battery technology is the lithium-air (or lithium-oxygen) battery, which could provide three times as much power for a given weight as today's ...

Signs of distracted driving—pounding heart, sweaty nose

August 15, 2017

Distracted driving—texting or absent-mindedness—claims thousands of lives a year. Researchers from the University of Houston and the Texas A&M Transportation Institute have produced an extensive dataset examining how ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.