With a clear focus on finding distinctive approaches to new media content, Signal Space Lab expanded in 2016. Originally an audio studio, it opened an entirely new unit specialized in virtual (VR), augmented (AR) and mixed reality (XR).
Striving to innovate in a virtual space that is mostly populated by computer-generated images (CGI), the studio gained particular interest in pushing the boundaries of cinematography to find an alternative language in VR. The nature of developing in these non-conventional formats brought together a cohesive team of filmmakers, game designers and programmers to craft interactive concepts in live-action.
Being able to provide hyper-realistic aesthetics and intuitive interactions while creating dynamic stories were essential factors in developing a pioneering technique called Seamless Interactive Cinematic VR. This process combines non-linear storytelling, the detection of viewer ‘interest cues’ and the implementation of non-evident transitions, allowing for the creation of complex paths and branching narratives in live-action. The application of this technique has lead to the conception of strongly immersive experiences which react to the user’s will without them noticing.
In Signal Space Lab’s stories, the user is an active contributor to the narrative and not a mere observer, placing them in the heart of the action. This is evident in its productions such as ‘We Happy Few: Uncle Jack Live VR’, released in 2018 and in Afterlife, it’s recently released 30-minute three-part VR film.
In addition to the objective of creating a bridge between physical and digital toys, the studio has co-developed an AR game for kids called A Paper World. This game uses the art of origami folding to reveal interactive objects and worlds. Keeping true to its roots, Signal Space Lab still provides audio services to some of the biggest brands in the video games industry including Sid Meier’s Civilization series, We Happy Few, Lineage, Jurassic World, TMNT, Dungeons and Dragons, Barbie and Thomas and Friends among others.
However the studio is not limited to content creation, in 2018 it developed a camera movement system that uses cables and computer numerical control (CNC) to allow precise, smooth, and replicable movement of a 360 camera in a confined space, something that is extremely difficult with current systems.
Whether it’s practical, artistic, realistic or magical, Signal Space Lab finds the intersection between people, brands, sounds and technology to bring concepts to life.