Archive for March, 2011


Thursday, March 17th, 2011

See? It took a while but we got here. At last, new content! In truth, my comeback article for this week was supposed to be a lighthearted look at an outrageous Japanese B movie from the mid 60’s called Frankenstein Conquers The World. But then the earthquake that has recently hit Tokyo put me on the fence about featuring the article… I nearly decided that it still would be a fitting tribute to Japan, to their unique culture and movies, but now there’s the problem with radioactivity and, unfortunately, this was a prominent feature in my pick. I quickly dismissed the article as inappropriate for now.

Instead of choosing another Japanese movie I decided to forget about tributes to avoid any misunderstandings. I will say this: what happened in Japan is absolutely terrible and has been a huge blow for the entire planet. Such punishing tragedies are almost unthinkable; we’re talking about an entire country here, an entire culture that has been stopped in its tracks. It was shocking then to see how a huge of portion of the web world has been following this tragedy with morbid fascination. From companies taking advantage of the situation, celebrities mocking the Japanese to religious zealots claiming they deserved it, humanity has reacted in a pathetic way. Think twice before deciding those people are in the minority.

There’s been much talk against nuclear power as well and its consequences, which are obviously devastating. I believe it’s hypocritical to say this; not when most of us depend so much on power. Cars, computers, TVs, stereos, planes, more technology… Our fast-paced world demands this today. Unless we’re willing to shut down entire industries, we must rely on nuclear power or vast quantities of oil, which in the long run can be just as bad as radiation.

So, the current circumstances made me think quite a bit about the issue of technology and I found myself coming back to J.G. Ballard and his views on the technological landscape. Yes, as if it wasn’t obvious by now, I do like the man. The question perhaps is this: is technology a problem and, if so, what can we do about it? To answer this question, we must first understand our relationship with technology. This was my line of thinking, so I decided to do a little experiment for the first major update in the last four months (yikes): I selected Crash to do a combined writing on the movie and book, exploring their meaning. The resulting text drifted away however and tried to fit the concept of Crash into our modern society, so it’s definitely very experimental for the Slightly Deranged standards. It might be a bunch of nonsense or not, that’s up to you for decide.

Overall, I think the article is a fitting analysis: following the unfortunate and terrible tragedy in Japan, society is struggling to decide what do to about the nuclear power. Hint: nuclear power is not the problem; the demand for it is.

In a less somber mood, the writing is also fitting in a way because this week was David Cronenberg’s birthday. Even thought the adaptation of Ballard’s novel was a hit and miss, we wish David a very (belated) happy birthday. As a bonus, I have uploaded a rare TV short by the BBC not even listed in IMDB, featuring J.G. Ballard himself before the Crash novel was even written. It was filmed in 1971 and it’s a must-see.

Hope you enjoy the read!

I Have Returned For The 4.0.37e50th. Time

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Yes, I’m still here. Yes, I do care about you. No, I’m not dying but thank you for asking. It has been a while indeed… past November to be exact since the blog is in hiatus. From the next paragraph and below I’ll be explaining the reason why behind this silence, and what to look forward within the upcoming weeks, but if you couldn’t care less and only want the good stuff (e.g., scantily clad women and tentacled creatures) let me assure you that we’ll be right back at those in just a few days.

So, I know that many of you are craving for more Asylum news; if my mailbox is any indication, hundreds of you (OK, maybe tens). The reason why the blog has been quiet is simply because we have been working non-stop on the project since before the Holidays. And I mean that: even Santa helped us to test an upcoming demo. It certainly paid off as we’ve progressed a huge deal these past few months. We’re already testing a build of the game (with actual people, that is) and most of them have been honestly floored by the detail and lifelike atmosphere. It’s so downright unnerving to walk around the Hanwell Institute. Granted, we have the occasional naysayer who goes “meh” but we promptly spanked him. Needless to say, he won’t say “meh” anymore… He probably won’t say a thing ever again.

Anyway, we have made progress on all fronts really, not just Asylum. So much in fact that we will be disclosing news about our current three projects very soon. Except this time “soon” doesn’t mean “within the next eight months” but really soon enough. I promise. You are bound to love at least one of our upcoming announcements; unless you only care for scantily clad women, in which case I redirect you to the first paragraph of this post.

Back to the blog: I’ll be catching up with all sorts of belated material starting the next week. A look back at the highlights of 2010 game-wise and movie-wise, a review of the incredibly good FMV adventure Darkstar, your usual affair of extremely rare movies and games, and of course the Asylum Developer’s Diary: Unrated!, in which I will be disclosing all kinds of groovy secrets about our upcoming flagship game at Senscape. Here’s the proof; the first in-game screenshot ever released:

Yes, that’s 1920×1080 pixels. And wait till you see it in motion!

Stay tuned for more, and thank you for the patience!