Netflix introduced the first installment in its interactive television initiative today, starting off with a children’s story, “Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale.”
The Verge reports that the episode “gives users more than a dozen decision points throughout its length, giving young viewers reason to rewatch it several times to explore the branching paths.”
The release will be followed by another interactive children’s show, “Buddy Thunderstruck,” due in July.
“For now, Netflix is calling its interactive episodes an experiment. But if its 99 million subscribers like them, the format could come to the service’s more popular shows — and help bring a new form of interactive storytelling into the mainstream,” The Verge reports.
Development has been overseen by Carla Engelbrecht Fisher, director of product innovation for Netflix, who explained the decision to begin with a foray into children’s television.
“Kids are already talking to the screen,” she said. “They’re touching every screen. They think everything is interactive.”
Initially, the interactive programs will be available on some modern smart TVs, game consoles, iOS devices and Roku devices, the report notes.
“Puss in Book” features a total of 13 choices, which create programs that vary in length from 18 minutes to 39 minutes.