It’s no secret that many other forms of visual media gather inspiration from video games, with varying levels of success; as more and more video games come close to cinematic quality in visuals and storylines, gaming taking cues back from other media appears to be the new form of flattery as well. But a team of developers in the UK have taken an intriguing approach to this partnership by developing two independent projects in tandem. And while tie-in projects have been around almost as long as video games have, rarely do they involve a game and a novel.
RedBedlam Ltd., a development studio based out of the UK, has teamed with Scottish novelist Christopher Brookmyre, on the aptly-named Bedlam, the title of both Brookmyre’s upcoming novel and an original first-person shooter released on Steam. In the novel and game, both of which will be penned by Brookmyre, a regular everyman will find himself thrust into the world of video games, but not in a heroic aspect – his design makes him a common enemy. To escape his fate of being common “cannon fodder,” the protagonist will traverse various worlds ranging from an ’80s arcade platformer to the glossy immersive experiences of today, to find the answers to how he got there, how to get out… and who or what is behind the mysterious organization pursuing him known as Integrity.
“A lot of my writing has been inspired by video games and it has always been a big part of my life. When the guys at RedBedlam got in touch to see if I was interested in creating a game with them, I jumped at the chance and have since been consistently thrilled to see my own literary worlds visualized so accurately,” said Christopher Brookmyre, whose previous works include the critically-acclaimed Quite One Ugly Morning and All Fun and Games Until Someone Loses an Eye. “Bedlam is a tribute to gaming in all its forms and the part it has played in all our lives – as well as being a top quality FPS adventure in itself. I look forward to seeing more of these fantastic characters and worlds fully realized and I think people are going to really enjoy what we’ve put together.”
High praise travels both ways, with RedBedlam singing the praises of the Tartan Noir author, including RedBedlam’s marketing director and self-proclaimed Brookmyre fan Nick Witcher. “We’re hugely excited to be working with him on this unique project. With such a talented mind behind the invention of the game world and writing the game itself, it’s going to be a tremendous title that surfaces in 2014.”
Bedlam, the novel, will hit real and virtual bookstore shelves January 21, 2014; Bedlam, the game, will surface on Steam shortly thereafter in summer. Christopher Brookmyre’s other works can be found at his website, www.brookmyre.co.uk.