Ever wanted to solve a murder mystery firsthand? Then get ready to bust out your VR goggles.
ABC Family is using virtual reality for the first time to promote its new sci-fi crime drama “Stitchers,” which premieres on the network this Tuesday. The show’s Android app, aptly called Stitchers: Hack The Case, invites users to explore the memories of a murder victim through spheric VR video sequences in order to find clues and eventually solve the crime.
SEE MORE: TV Review: “Stitchers”
The app isn’t exclusively built for VR and can be explored without a VR viewer as well. “Our strategy was to make the app as inclusive as possible so that you get a great experience whether or not you use the virtual reality viewers,” said ABC Family’s social media manager, Larry Del Santo.
ABC Family is also giving away custom-branded viewers based on Google’s Cardboard technology that have been manufactured by San Francisco-based Dodo. “We felt that Dodo case is very simple to put together with little or no directions at all.,” said DelSanto. “We were also happy with how much we were able to customize the case.”
Even users that do have a VR viewer won’t be able to experience the entire app in virtual reality. VR sequences are just one part of the experience, often followed by quizzes and other elements that require the use of the touch screen, forcing users to switch back and forth between their headset and regular smartphone use.
ABC Family used Kyle Harris, the actor who plays one of the investigators on the show, to guide users through these transitions, and Del Santo argued that switching between VR and real world fits perfectly with the theme of the show, which has investigators temporarily tap into the memory of the deceased to solve their cases.