'Ulysses' will be adapted as a virtual reality video game

Filmmaker Eoghan Kidney says he hopes his video game will allow users to gain a new appreciation of the James Joyce novel.

'Ulysses' is by James Joyce.

James Joyce’s novel “Ulysses” is becoming a video game. 

Eoghan Kidney says he’s planning to create a virtual reality video game that will allow the player to go through the novel’s events as one of the book’s characters. Kidney is crowdfunding the project, titled “In Ulysses,” via the website Fund it. In his statement, Kidney, a filmmaker, focuses on the character of Stephen Dedalus of the section of the book titled “Proteus.”

“'Ulysses' is great – well, at least that's what we're told,” Kidney wrote on his Fund it page. “Like me, I'm guessing that most readers are put off by Stephen Dedalus's almost impenetrable stream of consciousness in the first three chapters. Finding your way through these first few chapters might require a little outside assistance, but once unpacked they prove to be a great primer to discovering what makes Ulysses such a special book. This project will provide a new way to experience these chapters and hopefully offer a fresh gateway to new readers." 

As Kidney explains, “As a user of ‘In Ulysses’ walks along a virtual Sandymount Strand, the book will be read to them – they will hear Stephen's thoughts as they are written – but these thoughts will then be illustrated around the user in real-time using textual annotations, images and links.”

Kidney has met his initial goal of 4,000 pounds and, according to his statement on the website, this will enable him to buy equipment, hire an actor for voice-over, and work on the illustrations for a section of the “Proteus” chapter. He hopes to go beyond the “Proteus” section as well. 

“This will be a prototype version for a larger project, with future versions exploring the experience of the book's very own Leopold Bloom,” he wrote.

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