This is what dedication looks like. 

Some context:  Mitch Lucker, original singer of Suicide Silence, died in a motorcycle crash in late 2012.  A sad end to young singer who whose most famous song included the chorus “Live Life Hard.” 

Earlier in 2012, Randy Blythe, singer for Richmond, VA trash titans Lamb of God, on arrival in the Czech Republic was arrested on manslaughter charges.  The prosecution alleged that Blythe, years earlier on a previous tour, had shoved a fan off stage during a show, and that the fan’s injuries led to his death weeks later.  A substantial amount of bail was eventually posted and Blythe was able to leave the Czech Republic and return to the US.  Randy swore he would return for trial in early 2013.  He eventually did so and was acquitted.  The presence of the fan on stage was ruled to be more the fault of shoddy security than the band.  A tragic event in any case.   

But while out on bail, before his trial, Blythe kept playing.  One might think Blythe would want to avoid the violent (yet almost never fatal) shows his band is known for.  Quite the opposite.  In fact, while he was waiting for his trial, the surviving members of Suicide Silence hosted a memorial show for their dead frontman, with guest vocalists for each song.  Blythe agreed to do the song “You Only Live Once” with them.  That same song with the “Live Life Hard” chorus.

And did he just sing it from the stage to avoid any potential problems with the crowd?  No.  He went for it.  While deep in the crowd, toward the end of this video, he screams to the audience “Are you alive?” 

Absolutely.

(Find out about Blythe’s trial in the new documentary As the Palaces Burn)

Happy to say I’ll be doing a talk on horror games at the Cartoons on the Bay film/animation festival in Venice on April 11th (hey, that’s next week!).  The talk will cover the history of horror in game form, including our similarities to horror films, but also the many key ways we differ.  I’ll talk about the inspirations for The Suffering, and I’ll even throw in a few thoughts about modern simulation based survival experiences.  From the looks of the program, I’ll be the odd one out both talking about horror and games, but on the plus side… Venice!

Happy to say I’ll be doing a talk on horror games at the Cartoons on the Bay film/animation festival in Venice on April 11th (hey, that’s next week!).  The talk will cover the history of horror in game form, including our similarities to horror films, but also the many key ways we differ.  I’ll talk about the inspirations for The Suffering, and I’ll even throw in a few thoughts about modern simulation based survival experiences.  From the looks of the program, I’ll be the odd one out both talking about horror and games, but on the plus side… Venice!

French poster for ‘Sophie’s Choice’.

Not the kind of choice to put in your video games… Impossible choice = pointless. 

French poster for ‘Sophie’s Choice’.

Not the kind of choice to put in your video games… Impossible choice = pointless. 

Ah to have fantastic hair and play electromechanical pinball (I’m guessing in the early 1970s). 
Everything about this picture is cool.

Ah to have fantastic hair and play electromechanical pinball (I’m guessing in the early 1970s). 

Everything about this picture is cool.

Michigan - Wing House - Constructed in 1875  - Photo : Bill Dolak

Thanks to everyone who came out for our "Death to the Three-Act Structure!" talk at GDC Narrative Summit 2014.  Until I saw the pictures above, I didn’t realize just how full the room was.  And as it turned out, we ended up getting a good amount of coverage from the press. We also enjoyed a lively discussion with the many folks who came up and talked to us about it afterward.

If you want to see the slides, they’re here.

Thanks to everyone who helped us prepare the talk, including Jeremy Bernstein, Clara Fernandez, Sarah Furr, Deborah Hendersen, Steve Meretzky, Adam Murguia, Christina Norman, Nicola Piggott, Sarah Schutz, Jordan Thomas, Jing Wang, and Matthew Weise. 

And thanks to Tom Abernathy, my co-speaker - it’s always good to have a strong partner in crime when challenging conventional wisdom.

Photos courtesy the GDC Flickr account. 

We’re on at the Game Developer’s Conference Game Narrative Summit - this Monday the 17th, 3PM - “Death to the Three-Act Structure!” With my partner in crime Tom Abernathy.  We’ve practiced up, and I assure you, no one’s feelings will be spared.  

We’re on at the Game Developer’s Conference Game Narrative Summit - this Monday the 17th, 3PM - “Death to the Three-Act Structure!” With my partner in crime Tom Abernathy.  We’ve practiced up, and I assure you, no one’s feelings will be spared.  

As I’ve been taking the McKee Story seminar, it seems fitting to include some of the stunning landscapes from one of his favorite films, Tender Mercies. 

BioShock Comic cover by Robb Waters.

BioShock Comic cover by Robb Waters.