There is nothing more that excites me than finding a positively unique and brilliant story from something. Be it music, books, movies, or often video games, I immediately respect and admire anyone who has the capacity to come up with a story that no only engages its reader but also makes them connect with the protagonist in such a way that they don’t at first realize it. I enjoy studying the uses of story-telling in various media so that I can better my own writing. Every time I watch a movie or play a game, I am subconsciously paying attention to the story-telling, character development, and world-building. And as of only a few weeks ago, I was introduced to an atmospheric dark indie game that proceeded to hook me in very little time; The Cat Lady.
The Cat Lady is a computer game created by Harvester Games, an indie company who released the game in late 2012. The game revolves around a suicidal woman, Susan Ashworth, who awakens in a strange field only to encounter the Queen of Maggots, who tasks her with defeating the Parasites. Oh, and she makes her immortal. The game features a main character with extremely low self-esteem who, as she encounters various horrors, gradually starts building it back. The game deals with very tough topics about suicide and death in general, but also includes a moral at the end of the game as well as multiple endings. It’s what I imagine “The Brave One” would have been if it had been a horror movie. The game has already attracted the attention of some of youtube’s best let’s players, including my favorite, HarshlyCritical, who’s playthrough can be found here.
Currently this game is trying to get a Green Light approval on the online game community, Steam, so that it can be available to more people. I am all for getting this game out there and sharing it with as many people as possible. So, I’ve included a link to the Steam Green Light trailer for you to watch as well as a link to the Steam Green Light site so that you can up-vote for this amazing game! Now, in addition to all of this wonderful stuff, I’ve also included four songs from The Cat Lady composed by MicAmic and will share with you what it is that I see from a writer’s point of view when I listen to them. Enjoy, guys!
Lily of the Valley: The man glued himself to the wall, feeling the cold rough surface against his hands. Far ahead of him, the figure walked, almost like a toy soldier. They walked to a silent rhythm, never turning their head, never slowing down. Under any normal circumstances, he’d stay as far away as he could from someone like this. But following this person… this thing, would be the only way to find the hideout. It would be the only way to sneak in and grab the book. And it would be the last crazy thing he’d do before he hightailed it out of the city. Rain had begun sprinkling, the sky turning dark and drab along with it. He kept as far back as he could, worried that one wrong sound or coming too close would cost him everything. This creature just kept walking, its suit catching the rain like mini stones, plunking on his shoulders, sleeves, and hat. Soon, they’d passed into a part of the city where the pedestrians around them thinned. He began to worry more about how obvious he was, worrying that this thing would turn at a moments notice and catch him in the act. He kept back further and proceeded with caution. The creature wound its way through the tight and narrow alleys of the city until coming to a central court surrounded by several stone enclosures. It rapped on one of the doors and was allowed inside by an invisible force. The man stood just around the corner. What was he going to do now? (This is a segment from Book 3 of The Monstrum Chronicles.)
Early Winter: The music box was the strangest gift she’d ever received, the tune that it played even stranger. When she opened the box, a little dancing figure would begin turning, its figure off balance so that it looked as though it was gyrating rather than pirouetting. Perhaps it was broken? It was an antique. The man at the shop had told her that it had a story that went along with it, something he’d written down long ago but had somehow misplaced. Why had he wanted her to take it though? Did he think he wasn’t ever going to sell it? From the sound of things, he’d kept it a very long time. Perhaps he was just being generous. Still, something about it seemed hauntingly familiar. She wondered where she’d seen this little trinket before… and when.
String: The last time he’d been to this cafe had been over a year ago. It had been the end of summer. There was a crispness in the air like an announcement that fall was on its way. The leaves had begun to yellow on many of the trees nearby and something about it made him very peaceful despite the many insecurities plaguing him then. He’d stopped into the cafe for a coffee and muffin. He’d spent the morning walking, further than he ever had from his apartment in the inner city. He’d walked nearly three blocks before ending up here. This place seemed just as good as any to rest, to spend the remainder of the day watching the world go by. He settled into a seat inside, clasped his hands together on the table around the warm mug and let the steam and rich aroma rise to greet his face as he stared out the big front window to the street. Sometimes there was nothing better than being an observer.
We’re All Dead Inside (So Sit Back And Relax): He stood in his private room, staring at the piano against the wall nearby. Memories of his past daunted him and pictures of his sisters face came up to the surface like bodies rising from the depths, cut from the weights that had held them down. He’d done everything he could in his power to keep them from clouding his head. He didn’t have time to let them mess with him. He had a job to do; he had things he’d been tasked with doing that if he didn’t do would most assuredly get him killed. Yet, he couldn’t make himself move. All he could do was stare at the black and white keys, and think about how he and his sister had played duets together as children in the house they’d grown up in in London. It was worlds away from where he was now. And a slowly growing part had begun to wish that things had never changed. He scowled as he looked down at the old sepia photograph he’d kept of he and his siblings. He stared harder at his sister’s face. It had been so hard to remember the others but hers… never. It stayed with him always. He wished it wouldn’t.
Next week on Inspiration Through Music, I’ll be choosing some songs from the hugely talented Fink, a trip-hop ambient musician that I’ve just recently discovered and completely fallen in love with! Stay tuned!