- Caitlin Fisher (Canada)
Created in the Unity game engine and using the Vuforia augmented reality plug-in, 200 Castles is designed to be viewed on an iPad. It is an interactive, augmented reality piece, a series of small stories set in both the domestic spaces of a castle and in the spaces of memory. It is a story about time, longing, and magical spaces – the co-existence of multiple decades and stories in this same castle. The viewer unlocks the story by using the iPad as a magic looking glass to look at a series of photos and texts (‘trackables’ – features the camera on the ipad is tracking). When the iPad’s camera ‘sees’ the images, the augmented reality technology overlays a small digital scene – a game world castle that can be rotated to turn day into night. A series of small coloured lights and photographs signal hotspots that the user can touch on their screen to hear the narrator’s voice, or read from their diaries, leading them to an encounter with a series stories about rules and life in the castle that are regretful, touching and, at first, ordinary, especially considering the extraordinary space of the miniature world of the castle that can actually be held in your hands, and the God’s eye view of reader. As the reader ‘unlocks’ the secrets behind more of the pictures and words, new, increasingly fantastical stories, grounded in the same spaces of the castle, emerge and the characters themselves change in both almost imperceptible and drastic ways.