FUO: A ‘Firefly’-Inspired MMORPG

I have some great news for Firefly fans everyone. The ‘verse lives on. DarkCryo has kicked off an IndieGoGo campaign to help fund the creation of a Firefly-inspired MMORPG. Now, I’ve never allowed myself to get into an MMORPG before, partly because I have a strange aversion to games that require you to level up (Just let me fight the damn thing now! I don’t want to sit around killing low-level creatures all day just to advance in the game!), and partly because I know that eventually it would consume way too much of my time, but I have no doubt in my mind that I will dive wholeheartedly into FUO if it manages to get made.

130208-fuo2The coolest thing about this IndieGoGo campaign is that the perks for contributing are awesome. Just $10 gets you a digital download of the Alpha release, guaranteed reserved seating to future Beta release, and a lifetime of play with zero monthly or annual subscription fees. For TEN DOLLARS. I contributed. I hope you will too. It’s also cool that it’s a fixed funding campaign, which means if they don’t reach their goal (at the time of this writing, they’re only at $6,708 of the needed $135,000, with 42 days left in the campaign), then you get to keep your pledged fundage. So what is there to lose? Nothing! And an amazing game to gain!

130208-fuo

The important thing about this project is that it is Firefly-inspired, not an official Firefly MMORPG, which means that DarkCryo is avoiding any direct references to actual places or people in Firefly, but instead creating a universe that feels like the ‘verse. This is actually an incredible asset to the game, not only because it keeps them out of the mirky waters of copyright law, but also because it gives the game’s creators the freedom to develop as they like, to create a whole new world (queue Aladdin music) for Browncoats to explore. When you think about it, this is definitely the next best step for Firefly. The ‘verse is extremely well-suited to an adaptation into the video game format especially because of its ability to house a seemingly infinite number of stories and worlds and adventures. The show was cut off so early that it was only able to plant the seed of the ‘verse in our hearts and minds, and now it’s time for it to grow into a massive(ly multiplayer), fully realized online universe.

So what do you think? Are you as excited about this as I am? Are you going to chip in and help this thing get made?

FUO: Why you should care about this Indie MMORPG
Scormus @ Pthppt!

130208-article-fuo“Today I’d like to talk a bit about FUO, the upcoming MMORPG from DarkCryo. I’ve talked a bit lately about this Indie MMORPG on my podcast “Massive Failure”, mostly about the controversy that rose up about it recently, due to some shoddy reporting from another gaming blog. Regardless, during those shows I referred to FUO as “Firefly Universe Online”, and I was in error to do so.”

Read More >

Changing the Game in Video Game Adaptation

Seeing as the video game industry has become so massive, with such hits as Activision’s Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, which grossed $1 billion in 15 days in December, and Modern Warfare, which sold $400 million in a single day in 2011, why is it that film adaptations of video games are so often flops? Especially in the wake of the dismal Silent Hill: Revelation, it seems that the studios producing such adaptations really need to rethink their approach.

Some of the only successful such adaptations include Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and the Resident Evil franchise, so perhaps the film industry should take notes from their example. In the article below, Resident Evil producer Jeremy Bolt, for example, said “When we developed the first screenplay, director Paul W.S. Anderson flew to Tokyo and spent a great deal of time with the game creators. We listened to their comments and respected their positions and that of the fans as much as we could. We see that as part of the success.”

So is that the key? True collaboration between the video game studio and the Hollywood studio? Well it’s certainly a start. It’s true that the video game creators know their fans much more intimately than the big-wigs in Hollywood. Ubisoft is taking this approach by putting together a complete package before proposing their projects to the studios, specifically by signing A-list stars (Michael Fassbender is slated to star in and produce Assassin’s Creed, and Tom Hardy is already attached to Splinter Cell).

But Prince of Persia showed that having A-list actors isn’t enough, as it failed to connect to audiences even with Jake Gyllenhaal as the star, and other recognizable actors such as Ben Kingsley and Alfred Molina in supporting roles. There must be more to it than that – in my opinion, the weakness of these adaptations is primarily in the story. There is a delicate balance between pandering to the preexisting fans of the video game and being accessible to a new, wider audience, and the best way to appeal to both is through a story that is new and exciting for the fans that can also stand alone as a solid movie in its own right. If you ask me, the producers of these adaptations need to put more stock in their screenwriters.

What do you think would make film adaptations of video games more successful? Are there any video games you’re dying to see made into movies?

Why Video Game Companies Are Taking More Control Over Their Movies
Tatiana Siegel @ The Hollywood Reporter

130118-videogamearticle

From books to plays to theme park rides, Hollywood has a long history of transforming successful intellectual properties into box-office hits.

But when it comes to video games, the track record is surprisingly dismal. Despite sales figures that have made film executives drool — Activision’s Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 grossed $1 billion in 15 days in December, and Modern Warfaresold $400 million in a single day in 2011 — only one film based on a video game, 2001’s Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, has ever crossed the $100 million threshold domestically ($131 million).

Read More >