Explore a beautiful, vast and ruined world riddled with unknown dangers and lost technologies. Inspired by nightmares and dreams alike.
Every so often, a project, whether it’s a book, a film, a videogame, or whatever, crosses my path and I can’t help but stop to stare. The first time I laid eyes on Hyper Light Drifter‘s protagonist, a nameless Drifter, lounging beside a pixel-perfect fire pit, I fell in love. When I read a description of the game’s ambitions, I knew it was true love. Hyper Light Drifter is a “2D Action RPG in the vein of the best 8-bit and 16-bit classics, with modernized mechanics and designs on a much grander scale.”
“Miyazaki films have taught me that beautiful animation and design add life to a world,” described Hyper Light Drifter Lead Designer, Alex Preston in the game’s Kickstarter campaign. “From characters to background elements, everything is lovingly crafted while I hum show-tunes and squint suspiciously at the flickering pixels until they perform as intended.
“I want it all to be as beautiful as possible, forging color with the dark and eerie wastes and intimidating landscapes.”
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Has death and destruction ever been so cherubic? These men of Westeros are another reason that I think Olly Moss deserves a spot on this year’s Hugo ballot.
Olly Moss is an English artist known for his inventive re-imaginings of famous movie posters, and his involvement with Campo Santo, a videogame development studio whose first game, Firewatch, was recently announced.
“This one was an enormous amount of fun. We’re got something for everyone in Rogues,” said George R.R. Martin of the anthology. “SF, mystery, historical fiction, epic fantasy, sword and sorcery, comedy, tragedy, crime stories, mainstream. And rogues, cads, scalawags, con men, thieves, and scoundrels of all descriptions. If you love Harry Flashman and Cugel the Clever, as I do, this is the book for you.
“If there’s any bloody justice, some of these stories will contend for awards.”
I’ll say one thing, and one thing only: the Table of Contents is a hell of a lot more impressive than that cover.
- George R.R. Martin “Everybody Loves a Rogue” (Introduction)
- Joe Abercrombie “Tough Times All Over”
- Gillian Flynn “What Do You Do?”
- Matthew Hughes “The Inn of the Seven Blessings”
- Joe R. Lansdale “Bent Twig”
- Michael Swanwick “Tawny Petticoats”
- David Ball “Provenance”
- Carrie Vaughn “The Roaring Twenties”
- Scott Lynch “A Year and a Day in Old Theradane”
- Bradley Denton “Bad Brass”
- Cherie Priest “Heavy Metal”
- Daniel Abraham “The Meaning of Love”
- Paul Cornell “A Better Way to Die”
- Steven Saylor “Ill Seen in Tyre”
- Garth Nix “A Cargo of Ivories”
- Walter Jon Williams “Diamonds From Tequila”
- Phyllis Eisenstein “The Caravan to Nowhere”
- Lisa Tuttle “The Curious Affair of the Dead Wives”
- Neil Gaiman “How the Marquis Got His Coat Back”
- Connie Willis “Now Showing”
- Patrick Rothfuss “The Lightning Tree”
- “The Rogue Prince, or, the King’s Brother” by George R.R. Martin
With the announcement of the release date for the anthology, Martin also teased fans with information about his own contribution, “The Rogue Prince, or, the King’s Brother.” “[It] will tell the story of the years leading up to the calamitious events of ‘The Princess and the Queen’ during the reign of King Viserys I Targaryen, with particular attention to the role played by the king’s brother, Prince Daemon, a rogue if there ever was one.” Stop salivating, Westeros fans.
Rogues, edited by George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois, is set for release on June 17th, 2014, as is available for preorder.
In 2013, Jared Shurin and Justin Landon published Speculative Fiction 2012, the first volume of a new anthology series aimed at collecting the best speculative fiction essays, commentaries, and reviews from around the internet. I was pleased to contribute my own essay on George R.R. Martin’s A Dance with Dragons.
This year, the editorial reins were handed to the wonderful Ana Grilo and Thea James, otherwise known as The Book Smugglers, who today have revealed the cover for Speculative Fiction 2013 and the list of contributors for the latest volume.
Speculative Fiction 2013 collects over fifty truly awesome pieces from all corners of speculative fiction fandom,” they said. “From book criticism to incisive commentary on important issues like sexual harassment at conventions; from feminist themes in summer blockbusters to life-changing video games; from the merits of grittiness and the downfalls of grimdark.”
And what would an anthology be without a foreword from someone fancy and fun? James and Grilo rounded up Seanan McGuire, she of many, many Hugo nominations, to introduce the volume. “Seanan is the author of the Toby Daye urban fantasy series, and, under pseudonym Mira Grant, the Newsflesh trilogy and Parasite. She’s also a Hugo Award-winning podcaster, and a prolific blogger – making her the perfect person to introduce this year’s edition of SpecFic,” described Grilo and James. Read More »
We all love a good twist-on-formula, right? We also love interesting artwork? Imgur user Seiji recently published these wonderful (faux-) Japanese woodblock printing-style illustrations of iconic scenes from George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire (or, Game of Thrones, to you of the boob tube generation.)
“I thought it would be interesting to draw a retelling of the [A Song of Ice and Fire] universe as if it took place in feudal-era Japan,” said Seiji. “These drawings are inspired by the Ukiyo-e style (traditional woodblock printing).”
If you’ve not read the book, or seen the first season of the HBO show, Game of Thrones, beware spoilers. You can view the rest of Seiji’s woodblock-style renditions here.