Significance Of This Work
Significance Of This Thesis
This work is significant because it helps people.
There are three main reasons this work is significant.
The first has already been stated in the statement of the problem. This work is groundwork for future efforts in performative or adaptive mediums and audience experience driven storytelling.
The second is the clear and immediate value - this work gives 360 filmmakers an analytical toolset for critiquing their films. It is more than just a 'what to do', but a 'how this works', and - I believe - is far more helpful than simple guidelines. There may not be that many easy answers held in here, but after reading this, one should be prepared to not just make 360 videos better, but critique, analyze, and discuss 360 videos more intelligently.
The third stems from this analytical toolset, but in the broader sense. Perhaps the most significant element of this thesis, I personally believe, is in how it provides storytellers with an analytical framework for understanding, critiquing, dissecting, and iterating immersive stories.
We can't craft stories if we don't know how they work. This work provides creators of any modestly interactive medium with the ability to begin thinking on terms that may prove more useful for developing stories than mere narratology, and more useful than a guess-and-check-and-playtest approach.
We can't move a medium forward, or develop a more nuanced skill set, without understanding how the choices we make affect the final product.
The next significant value is an important one. This work provides an analytical framework; it presents the perspective of experience-driven storytelling. This perspective allows filmmakers, interactive fiction and RPG writers, VR developers, video game designers, dungeon masters, and creators of all types to talk about this space. By starting with storytelling fundamentals, I have drawn connecting threads and worked from a perspective that is beneficial for understanding storytelling in not just the immersive space, but any space where the audience experience is important. It let's different creators with different types of audience-experience stories learn from one another.
Many of the lines drawn between these mediums are arbitrary, and a lot of conflicts and arbitrary opinions have stemmed through over significance of these dividing lines. Heated discussions around what just is and isn't a video game, for example. I hope to move past all that with a perspective shift.
Lastly, this work helps one understand the mechanisms of storytelling as they work for viewers, readers, and more. Much of the advice here for immersive storytelling is applicable to any type of storytelling; we always have audience experiences to contend with. It never hurts to have another lens through which one can analyze their craft, and iterate with.