Netflix is including an interactive ‘Minecraft’ story to its lineup, denies entry into gaming – TechCrunch

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Netflix denies a report that it’s getting into the gaming market, however says it’s increasing its lineup to incorporate a brand new game-related, “interactive” narrative sequence known as “Minecraft: Story Mode.” The brand new sequence would be the newest addition to its rising assortment of interactive tales, which embrace kid-friendly titles like “Stretch Armstrong: The Breakout,” “Puss in E book: Trapped in an Epic Story,” and “Buddy Thunderstruck: The Perhaps Pile.”

In line with a current report from TechRadar, Netflix is partnering with Telltale Video games to convey recreation experiences to its TV service, beginning with a Minecraft recreation.

Netflix is now clarifying that it’s not a “recreation,” precisely, it’s an interactive story.

The corporate introduced a yr in the past it will start experimenting with a brand new approach to stream video, via “select your personal journey”-style tales that enable viewers to select what occurs subsequent. This permits for a similar story to have a number of variations.

It’s the form of factor that will have by no means been potential via conventional linear TV, however is enabled via an internet platform like Netflix. The tales might additionally make for a promoting level for households with youthful kids, by way of being a differentiating characteristic for its service.

The corporate confirms that “Minecraft: Story Mode” is a licensed 5-episode interactive narrative sequence that can be coming to its service this fall, in partnership with Telltale. The gaming writer Telltale Video games already affords “Minecraft: Story Mode” throughout different platforms, together with Steam, recreation consoles, Google Play and the App Retailer.

Whereas Telltale and others contemplate “Minecraft: Story Mode” to be a sort of recreation, Netflix doesn’t. It’s a story you’re employed your approach via, much like the others, it believes. (The story does happen within the Minecraft universe, nonetheless.)

“We don’t have any plans to get into gaming,” a Netflix spokesperson mentioned, in response to TechRadar’s report. “There’s a broad spectrum of leisure obtainable right this moment. Video games have turn into more and more cinematic, however we view this as interactive narrative storytelling on our service,” they defined.

In the meantime, the opposite gaming mission TechRadar had uncovered – a recreation associated to the Netflix hit “Stranger Issues” – is one thing that can launch in Telltale’s platform at a later date, Netflix says. It’s not a recreation coming to Netflix’s service, and is as a substitute a part of Netflix’s ongoing advertising and marketing and title promotion efforts.

The corporate already has a Stranger Issues recreation right this moment, and infrequently promotes its reveals in different methods on cell. For instance, it launched a standalone “Orange is the New Black” app again in 2014, and when it was selling the brand new season of “Arrested Growth,” it launched a “FakeBlock” app.

“Stranger Issues” lends itself extra to a cell gaming format, although. And Netflix does use video video games to drive consciousness of its model and content material.

As the corporate said in a current job posting for a Supervisor of Interactive Licensing:

We’re pursuing video video games as a result of we consider it’ll drive significant present consciousness/buzz and permit followers to “play” our hottest content material. We would like the interactive class to assist promote our titles in order that they turn into a part of the zeitgeist for longer intervals of time and we need to use video games as a advertising and marketing tactic to seize demand and delight our member neighborhood.

After all, interactive tales do blur the road between video games and narrative storytelling – one thing that’s a more recent pattern throughout on-line platforms today. For instance, considered one of Apple’s Design Award winners this yr was a part-story, part-game known as “Florence,” which concerned each narrative components and interactive options.

To what extent these work as nicely on Netflix’s platform as they do on smartphones nonetheless stays to be seen, provided that the format remains to be new to streaming companies. Time will inform if it’s well worth the continued funding, of if Netflix’s experimentation will sooner or later conclude.

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