HBO Announces iOS App-Based TV Show 'Mosaic' With Branching Narrative and Multiple Endings

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HBO recently announced a new TV project in the works by director Steven Soderbergh called "Mosaic." The show will air as a six-part linear narrative in early 2018, but in addition to the traditional distribution, HBO is launching an app where viewers can watch the show, make decisions, and help shape the outcome of certain events (via The Verge).


The Mosaic iOS app will be available to download for free beginning in November, and it will let viewers choose what point of view they want to follow the story, effectively building their own experience from material written and directed by Ed Solomon and Soderbergh, respectively. According to HBO, each choice "builds upon one another," leading to different versions of the same scene, and different endings.


In January 2018, the linear version of Mosaic will air on HBO and the network said that this will allow viewers to compare their own version of the story with Soderbergh's narrative.
"MOSAIC is a branching narrative piece. While branching narratives have been around forever, technology now allows, I hope, for a more elegant, intuitive form of engagement than used to be possible. Also, we weren't reverse engineering the story to fit an existing piece of technology; the story was being created in lockstep with the technical team. The fluidity of that relationship made me feel comfortable because I wanted it to be a simple, intuitive experience. I didn't want moments where you are making a decision to feel like interruptions."
In both mediums, the show will star Sharon Stone, Garrett Hedlund, Beau Bridges, Paul Reubens, and others. The iOS app will include character profiles and various pieces of content -- like newspaper clippings and voice recordings -- that serve to deepen the show's story. The plot itself is largely being kept under wraps by HBO and Soderbergh, but is expected to have some murder mystery elements.

Article Link: HBO Announces iOS App-Based TV Show 'Mosaic' With Branching Narrative and Multiple Endings
 
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PG(Austin)

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I don't want to "build my own experience," or have to "work" when I watch TV.

Exactly what I was thinking...can't we just have ONE thing that isn't crowd sourced?? Hey I know...how about people who make TV productions for a living actually make a TV production, and without comments from the gallery.
 

earthTOmitchel

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I don't want to "build my own experience," or have to "work" when I watch TV.
Exactly what I was thinking...can't we just have ONE thing that isn't crowd sourced?? Hey I know...how about people who make TV productions for a living actually make a TV production, and without comments from the gallery.
You won't have to if you are interested in the show's premise. It's airing as a traditional, six-part series starting in January. The app is supplemental.
 
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sully54

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I feel like this was pitched to Apple at some point but they rejected it. Shame. This could have been their big break into television content.

Then again, something like this could only work with the influence of HBO.
 

mmm1345

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Exactly what I was thinking...can't we just have ONE thing that isn't crowd sourced?? Hey I know...how about people who make TV productions for a living actually make a TV production, and without comments from the gallery.
Well, I'd like my poop to be crowd sourced...
 

thisisnotmyname

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I don't want to "build my own experience," or have to "work" when I watch TV.
Exactly what I was thinking...can't we just have ONE thing that isn't crowd sourced?? Hey I know...how about people who make TV productions for a living actually make a TV production, and without comments from the gallery.
Depending on how it is done this could be great. If it's just a handful of fairly meaningless decision points and one ending change that's not interesting (although there are probably technical hurdles to going much further than that today). Creating an immersive experience that you feel like you are part of though could be the future of entertainment. I think at some point we'll see a merger of video games and traditional entertainment media that will allow the "viewer" to be a part of the story and interact with the characters and environment but without the challenges associated with games. If you've ever been to an immersive theater production I'm thinking something along those lines but probably with additional structure for those who want it.
 

earthTOmitchel

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Depending on how it is done this could be great. If it's just a handful of fairly meaningless decision points and one ending change that's not interesting (although there are probably technical hurdles to going much further than that today). Creating an immersive experience that you feel like you are part of though could be the future of entertainment. I think at some point we'll see a merger of video games and traditional entertainment media that will allow the "viewer" to be a part of the story and interact with the characters and environment but without the challenges associated with games. If you've ever been to an immersive theater production I'm thinking something along those lines but probably with additional structure for those who want it.
The promise of this kind of storytelling has been around in gaming for years, and is consistently disappointing (imo). There are exceptions, like Until Dawn a few years back.
 

thisisnotmyname

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The promise of this kind of storytelling has been around in gaming for years, and is consistently disappointing (imo). There are exceptions, like Until Dawn a few years back.
I don't think either camp can do it alone (although storytelling in gaming in general has vastly improved over time) and I don't think the technology is there yet either. Let's circle back in ten years and see where we are :)
 

earthTOmitchel

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I don't think either camp can do it alone (although storytelling in gaming in general has vastly improved over time) and I don't think the technology is there yet either. Let's circle back in ten years and see where we are :)
Exactly:) And I mean I don't want a game to have 1,000 different endings, I just want it to FEEL like it does, and that my ending is mine alone. But, obviously, like you said that's something we just can't reach yet. And Mosaic looks very interesting, but how many different variations (and how big are the variations) will there be when it's done? I like the experimentation of it at least.
 

DeepIn2U

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Cool. So like the Goosebumps books where you get to choose the next decision.
Viewer beware! You choose the scare!!!
:confused:

BOOO.

More like the original 'Choose Your Own Adventure' (79) books (predates Goosebumps '92 original run) yet with a bit of the story line such as the movie Memento.

really lookking forward to this.


Exactly what I was thinking...can't we just have ONE thing that isn't crowd sourced?? Hey I know...how about people who make TV productions for a living actually make a TV production, and without comments from the gallery.
Woah ... you mean you're not yet bored of just staring at any form of boob tube watching a story unfold and told to you? As a small child did you have books just simply read to you in a monatone voice, or with animated character voices and you read along aloud at certain passages when you begun to read?!
 

PG(Austin)

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Woah ... you mean you're not yet bored of just staring at any form of boob tube watching a story unfold and told to you? As a small child did you have books just simply read to you in a monatone voice, or with animated character voices and you read along aloud at certain passages when you begun to read?!
No not in a monotone voice, but my parents also didn't call up anyone asking how the story should end. It's a book...it has a story line set...beginning ...middle ...end before it's shipped. The way God intended.
 

DeepIn2U

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No not in a monotone voice, but my parents also didn't call up anyone asking how the story should end. It's a book...it has a story line set...beginning ...middle ...end before it's shipped. The way God intended.
I think you’re referring to the wrong book here since you’re focusing on a particular author mentioned so to speak;)

That one I’ve not yet finished and btw the it had a lot more than one author and the intention wasn’t specifically guided by god all the way through just to let you know ;)