Rewrite What You Know
by Arielle Filipe
What if everything you knew was unwritten?
Imagine the flow of time has reversed, and you looked back and there was nothing there. All the stories embedded in your mind shown in a whole new perspective... a rewriting of what you once knew as truth.
What if the last 2000 years were unwritten... Would you want to explore that alternate reality?
In December of 2014, I had my first glimpse into the creation of this alternate reality.
Being a student in the Interactive Digital Media program at the University of Toronto, I have the privilege of engaging with a close network and, taking part in projects that change the way we think, design, and innovate. As part of my program, I was presented the opportunity to work on an internship based in a unique production known as 2KYU, or “2000 years unwritten”. 2KYU is a production, led by Tamara and Kevin LeClair, veteran entrepreneurs from Oshawa, Ontario, which aims to create an alternate reality that “unwrites” these 2000 years.
The concept of an alternate reality, in itself, is what drew me into this project. As a student, a citizen, and a human being, I am aware that we become familiar with concepts, stories, and ideologies that are frequently presented to us. As a result, we may fail to question what it is that we know. The premise of this production challenges this mentality and encourages players to enlist in rewriting what they are familiar with. The narrative, challenges, and interaction of the alternate reality game created by 2KYU immerses the player and, encourages a new wave of thinking that can fundamentally change our perspectives of the world, ourselves, and history. Through this internship, I have the unique and exciting opportunity of taking part in leading this new wave.
Upon joining this project, through reading material and engaging in discussion for the first time, it was evident to me that 2KYU would create a whole new experience for not only its players but also, the developers. Although my presence within the production began post creation of the initial source material, KAIROS, I found myself trying to recreate the experience of the players and, engaging with the narrative in a way that imbued a sense of reflection and thought. Although this alternate reality was already presented to me, through the narrative and production plans, I find myself also taking part in further creating this reality by questioning my current perspectives.
This challenge of common perceptions is something I welcome and encourage, and I look forward to watching 2KYU grow into something that instills change in those who interact with the production. I extend my gratitude to the 2KYU founders for giving me the opportunity to engage in the development of this innovative production and am also excited for this opportunity to learn new skills alongside my fellow schoolmates.
If you would like to learn more about 2KYU, and challenge your reality, I encourage you to visit www.2kyu.com and take part in unwriting history with us.