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Media convergence has led content creators to produce narratives that stretch across platforms, known as Transmedia. A Transmedia narrative titled Dark Awakening was created using three different platforms: A short film, an interactive short story, and a text based role playing game. All of these share overlapping themes, characters, and settings. Each narrative platform was designed to be taken and understood on its own, or viewed in conjunction with the others. A study of audience response to the Transmedia experience of Dark Awakening has been planned. The conditions for the study include the order in which the media are consumed, and previous exposure to the media types will serve as a moderator. The participants will be randomly assigned either one, two, or all three of the narrative media types and then asked about their reactions to the created narrative world. We expect that exposure to a narrative unfolding across multiple platforms will result in greater narrative transportation, which in turn will lead to increased understanding, cognitive engagement, emotional reaction, and enjoyment within the viewer. We anticipate that a greater degree of attention will be required than traditionally has been found, and that identification/empathy with characters will moderate impacts.

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Dark Awakening: Transmedia and Narrative Transportation

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