The Return (again) of Firefly. Maybe he should have called it Phoenix??

17 Dec

We have done the impossible, and that makes us mighty. Firefly is back. -ish.

///Aside for the few people who don’t know what Firefly is: Firefly is one of the greatest TV shows ever made. It’s complex and hard to describe, but it’s sort of a western that takes place in space. It’s Han Solo with his own TV show, as well as a show about mercenaries and a legal prostitute who go on adventures in their spaceship. Also, there’s a girl with special powers but nobody knows why, or what she can do. It’s really funny, really dramatic, and occasionally sad. Fox cancelled it before the first season finished airing. Thus, there are only 13 episodes, and none of the plot is resolved. After the cancellation the fans complained a lot, and eventually got DVDs of the show (including un-aired episodes), which they showed to everybody (including me) and now Firefly has an ever-expanding fanbase. The movie Serenity (put out by Universal, not Fox) was a continuation of the show, but it condensed what would have been several seasons of plot into 2 hours, left the show without a few major plotlines, and without a few major characters. Since then, the show has been assumed dead. Fans have made a documentary about this, with interviews from the cast and crew as well as fans, called “Done The Impossible.
But you can’t stop the signal. We are just too beautiful to die. ///

Yes, our beloved show is returning, sort of. They’re apparently making a massive online multiplayer video game out of it. Shiny!

There’s no place I’d rather be?

I’m not sure this is a good idea. Maybe fans should just stick with making their own versions of the show like Into The Black. As much as I love to watch the show and movie, I’m not sure I want to pretend to be a character that actually lives in Malcolm Reynold’s world. Let’s be bad guys? The show focused on a specific crew of a specific ship. An online game like this can’t. The show had great dialogue, witty one-liners, funny situations, and mysterious slowly-unfolding plotlines. A game like this can’t really do any of that, and certainly not in the same way.

I can see three possibilities here:

1. The game takes place during the television show. The main characters may (or may not) appear as cameo appearances in the player’s adventures. The game would, I guess, be focused on collecting stuff and making a living… since there’s no war to speak of there wouldn’t be that much inherent conflict. Each player would just have to try and become a small little king of a small little hill.
Will this be fun? It’s a plan, but perhaps they’re not remembering some of the captain’s previous plans.

2. The game takes place before the show starts, during the war for Unification. Now there is at least an inherent conflict built in (like World of Warcraft). The only characters from the show that might (or might not) show up this way are, of course, Mal and Zoe. And even if they do show up, they might just kill you. Which is an interesting point for a game like this… player death. The world of Firefly has spaceships, but it’s more or less reality-based. In other words, death is final. It’s not-all-that-common among characters, and to accurately reflect that in a game is difficult if not impossible. Games like World of Warcraft have you keep your soul after you “die” and then let you go back to your body. If you actually died in the Firefly game, would it be fun (are we really too beautiful)? If you don’t actually die in the Firefly game, is it actually like Firefly?
Will this be fun? It could be a fun war game, but would it feel anything like Firefly? Would it benefit from being “based on” or “inspired by” Firefly? Why can’t we all just juggle ducks?

3. The game will take place after the events of Serenity. This one has, I think, a fair amount of potential, simply because there’s a lot of untapped story there. What happens after Mal broadcasts the secret of the Reavers?? That’s going to change their world something powerful. That changed world could be a great setting for a game like this, although it probably won’t feel like the show, because it’s not like the show. There would more than likely be some sort of war going on, or at least a rebellion to join. Mal and crew could be a reasonably public group at this point and could be incorporated into the game as leaders of that rebellion. What if you could buy Inara’s services? Would that be fun? Hot? Weird? What happens if you get enough money to buy Jayne? That would be an interesting day… (Although the player death issue still needs to be resolved.)
Will this be fun? It could be a mighty fine shindig. But I’m still not likely to attend.

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