Perfect Storms Interactive
Perfect Storms is a six part documentary series on History that recounts rare times when human forces and the natural world collide with disastrous results that change the world forever. Perfect Storms Interactive is a digital extension to the series that allows users to re-create three of these disasters using a rich mix of photo real CG, clever design and playful interactions.
Secret Location was tasked with creating all the Visual Effects (CGI) elements as well as the Branding Package for the series along with the large scale Online Experience from scratch – as one fully converged piece. This unique opportunity meant we could create and control the entire visual aesthetic for the TV show, delivering to fans the most exciting elements from the series seamlessly on the site. As a result, our CGI and Interactive teams were able to work closely together to ensure consistency of brand and amazing final products.
The key – the agency’s team was brought on early in the development and aligning process as well as for frequent management meetings with the series producers and broadcasters from pre-production to project completion. This collaborative approach allowed for outstanding results.
To create the photo real 3D animation for the series Secret Location utilized their full Animation team who were able to use our varied strengths to work together to re-create cities from across history and geography; exhilarating VFX for disasters from tsunamis and mudslides to a rare fire tornado; crowd simulation of epic military battles and artful composition to bring all these elements together to create complete and fully realized shots.
For Perfect Storms Interactive they created narrative driven interactive activities which engage and inform the audience on history’s Perfect Storms. These activities are seamlessly launched from the same visuals and animation seen on TV. Fans are able to learn more and to experience the disasters on a deeper and participatory level by lining up the various elements that led to the events using a series of simple but elegant mouse movements. The use of assets created to the high standards of broadcast, allowed us to take the site to the next visual level, including completely merging the viewing experience on air and user experience online.
In order to pre-market the show and larger digital experience, they created an additional campaign in advance of the launch of the main site as a tease to the series. This experience allowed users to visit a ‘fire tornado’ onto an address of their choosing through an interactive video that updated based on user input and Google Maps API.
The unprecedented opportunity to work simultaneously on a TV series and its digital extension allowed us to create a flawlessly consistent brand for two projects that perfectly complement each other.
The Perfect Storms broadcast series enjoyed strong ratings that continued to rise throughout the run of the series. Users spent, on average, well over four minutes on Perfect Storms Interactive and the site has an extremely low bounce rate.