Immortality writer and director Sam Barlow is considering returning to a more traditional video game format, using 3D models to create an explorable world.
According to an interview with IGN, Barlow is pondering new directions for the studio’s future projects. Barlow’s past three projects–Her Story, Telling Lies, and Immortality–have all incorporated full motion video, tasking players with uncovering a story by watching video clips featuring real-world sets and actors. Before going independent with Her Story, and forming the studio Half Mermaid, Barlow worked on a variety of more traditional games, like Silent Hill: Shattered Memories and Serious Sam: Next Encounter.
In fact, Barlow says that during the development of Immortality, Half Mermaid did some pre-production for a 3D game. The work didn’t solidify into a concrete project or prototype, but it shows the interest was there in the studio. Barlow described the pitch as a “perfect smooch” between “a 3D character game” and “all of that Her Story, Immortality stuff.”
Barlow is also considering solidifying Half Mermaid’s relationship with television. Immortality was published on mobile by Netflix, which is making moves in the games space. He said, “I’d love to see [Netflix] inject some of these things that are currently unique to gaming. That is the expressivity, the exploration, the sense of it being alive… That sense of surprise and excitement is possible because the computer can hide things from you and can reveal things. I’d love to see [Netflix] do those things.”
Netflix’s Bandersnatch and HBO’s Mosaic highlights that some experimentation with format is happening in the television space, similar to what Barlow would like. But Barlow acknowledges that there is a struggle to get real big swings off the ground. He said, “Everyone’s like, ‘We’ll be number two. Someone will do it and then we’ll jump in and be number two.'”