A few posts ago, I talked about the ARG for the Haxan film Lovely Molly. However, it seems as though the current game was originally supposed to be much bigger and more indepth than its current version. According to ARGNet, “due to the film’s limited budget, plans for a full-fledged game fell through. The decision to abandon the film’s more immersive plans was a difficult one, so Lovely Molly‘s director Ed Sanchez edited together a video detailing the alternate reality game that could have been.”
This is very interesting in several ways. One, ARGs cost money. A lot of money. The fact that this film had to cancel its ARG due to budget can tell you that. It’s really unfortunate that all of these ideas were had for this game, and now they won’t come to fruition.
Secondly, and I think most important, this video that Sanchez edited together gives us a really rare insight into ARG production. I can tell you from an entire year of game design research that any kind of explanation or behind-the-scenes look at an ARG is extremely rare. In some cases this is good because the game is supposed to be all behind the scenes and not supposed to reveal itself to the players. On the other hand, this is really detrimental to those studying ARGs (*ahem*) because we have no follow up information on the games, just introduction information. Only major games are really ever really reported on, and even those have limited information.
The games that I can think of that had any kind of followup information was I Love Bees, which Jane McGonigal wrote about several times after its launch, The Beast, which Jane McGonigal wrote the article “This is Not a Game” (really awesome article, by the way), and a few YouTube videos were made about Why So Serious? and Perplex City.
So watch this video that Sanchez put together for a really rare glimpse of inside an ARG.