Not a Lot Going On in Sci-fi and Fantasy:
I spent a good 20 minutes today, plus a lot of time yesterday, wracking my brain for something to put on my blog, and it occurred to me that I just don’t have much to say.
Now, if you’re someone who knows me well, you’ll know that this is not an affliction I often suffer from. The problem is that this blog is intended to be devoted to all things science fiction and fantasy, and there just doesn’t seem to be much going on in those genres lately.
Sci-fi TV shows are getting cancelled left, right, and center. Sci-fi’s never really been known for providing break-out hits on TV, but lately, it seems to be suffering worse than ever. Of the shows I watch, only Sanctuary remains.
Even the great franchises of science fiction seem to be decaying. Star Trek has crashed and burned (creatively, if not financially) under JJ Abrams, Robert Orci, and Alex Kurtzman. Battlestar Galactica is slowly fading into twilight, with all its hopes pinned on the prequel Blood and Chrome. Yes, another prequel, right after the last prequel (Caprica) that had a much more creative concept and still only managed to last a season. Even the mighty Stargate franchise has crumbled following the cancellation of the woefully underestimated Stargate: Universe.
There are still good sci-fi and fantasy movies being made, but honestly, I can’t remember the last time one truly blew me away–probably The Dark Knight, and that was more psychological horror than sci-fi.
Even books don’t seem to offer much these days, though that may just be bad luck on my part. Still, whatever the reason, it’s been a very long time since I picked up a new book by an unfamiliar author and was impressed. It’s at the point now where I have a lot of trouble even finding the motivation to try new books.
Interestingly, the one medium where speculative fiction seems to be thriving both creatively and fiscally seems to video games. A lack of disposable income and my obsession with WoW mean I haven’t been able to experience all games have to offer, but I keep up with current events to know that sci-fi and fantasy games are thriving.
What do you think? Am I just closed-minded or missing out on the good speculative fiction that is out there? Or are we really in a drought?
Speaking of video games…
Blizzard Messes with Our Minds:
There is one little piece of news I do have to share. Blizzard has quite dramatically released a Warcraft screen shot. And that’s it. Just a screenshot.As you can see, we have three Ethereals in a shop in what looks like Stormwind. One is an arcane reforger, a service which already exists in WoW. But the others’ titles are more confusing.
Of course, this has sparked a completely absurd level of speculation from the fans. Some have even started making anagrams out of the NPCs’ names to prove their own pet conspiracy ideas. However, two theories have come to the forefront:
1: Ethereals are going to be a playable race. This is possible, though it is somewhat unlikely they’d be leaking info about the next expansion so soon, and they’re never going to add new races in a patch.
2: This is an indication that Blizzard with finally be adding some version of the “appearance tab” idea to World of Warcraft, a way to customize the appearance of one’s gear.
I’m inclined to believe option two, myself. It’s something that could be added in the next patch, and everyone’s been begging for it forever.
Plus, there’s a certain logic to the grouping of NPCs. Void storage = a place to store out of date gear. Transmogrifier = a way to give your new gear the models of your old gear in void storage. Arcane reforger = we already know is a way to customize the stats on your gear. Together, they make a full battery of gear customization options.
If nothing else, we have learned several interesting things from reading the thread on their official forums. 1: It takes nothing at all to set off a typhoon of rampant, tinfoil-wearing speculation. 2: A shockingly high number of people don’t know that an arcane reforger is something that’s been in the game for nearly a year. 3: Transmogrify is actually a real word. Who knew? 4: Blizzard takes way too much pleasure in screwing with us like this.