Friday, May 6, 2016

Flash Fiction Friday - Messages to the Dev Team

It's Flash Fiction Friday!!

This is about art, about adaptation. A quick throwaway, painted with perhaps too broad a brush but fun to write nonetheless.

Adaptations are interesting. The best take the source-material and create something new which couldn't exist without both the original AND the input of the new creator. The worst... well, the worst ignore the source material entirely, save as window dressing.

With so many of the new content created in the 20th century - from Superman to Gandalf to Mickey Mouse - locked up in what appears to be indefinite copyright we'll continue to look to the past for inspiration.

From: GameBoss (
Subject: Re: Hamlet Playtest


Just got through the first part. Nice job so far! There are a few things we need to tweak before we think about going live.

1) I'm a third of the way in, and he hasn't said "To be, or not to be". We need to include this! Without it, it won't feel like "Hamlet" -- it may as well be just any FPS. Maybe it can be a kiss-off line? He can just say "not to be" when he offs someone?

2) We want this to feel literary. Do you think the "Something is rotten" voiceover at the beginning fits the tone we're looking for?

3) The ghost scene needs to be more interactive. Maybe the player has to fight the ghost to get it to tell him its secret? We can't just hand out plot points for free, especially at the start. Interactivity!


From: GameBoss (
Subject: Re: Re: Hamlet Playtest


Thanks for the continued hard work. And yes, I know it's just you. But we need to think like a company, right? So DevTeam messages go to the DevTeam group - no matter how many or how little people that is. Fake it til we make it, right?

I didn't realize that about the "something rotten" line. You think it's as famous as the "Not to be" thing? We definitely need to use that one more. Let 'em know they're playing Hamlet!

Anyway, we need to talk about Ophelia. There's no vavoom there, if you know what I mean. I've been reading up on this, and do you know that "nunnery" can mean "whorehouse" as well as "convent"? What if we go for a sexy-nun look for her? And unlock sexier options as the game moves on.

Also her boobs should be bigger.

Good job, DevTeam!


From: GameBoss (
Subject: Ophelia


Awesome job with the Ophelia redesign. We might want to work on a nude skin for her too. Maybe a super-high-level reward for a flawless win or something. Or purchased extra content. We'll see.

Speaking of rewards, we need to talk about the ending. It's way to hard. Even with the "godmode" code I die every time. Laertes always taps me with the poisoned sword (nice touch!) and I can never heal enough to not die. Maybe nerf the poison a bit?

You did a great job with the castle setting. I like all the fog.


From:GameBoss (
Subject: Re: re: Ophelia


No, that won't work at all. I like thinking out of the box, but no choice but to die at the end? That's too much a downer. This is Hamlet, one of the greatest works in the English language. The player should feel good about himself after he finishes it, not sad and depressed.

Maybe that skull from the graveyard scene can do something. It seems we spent lots of time introducing it and then it just vanishes. Maybe when Laertes is about to stab you the skull flashes and the killing blow is redirected to Horatio. That way the skull stands for the people around him who died to make Hamlet who he is. Symbolism. That's what makes this literary. Symbolism.

Good work with all this. I think we're making real art.

The gaming community will soon have the Hamlet they've always deserved.


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