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Diabolical Plots is a Sci-fi/Fantasy zine that covers virtually every media related to the genre from books to movies to video games. This site also features regular content related to the craft of writing. Take a look around!

31 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

We Are Multiple Man

What superpower would you choose?  Most classical superpowers are awesome for combat, but not all that practical in day-to-day activities.  Super strength?  Guess who’s going to get asked to help everyone move.  Fireballs–handy in limited context, maybe, but modern life doesn’t require a lot of fire-lighting on a day to day basis.  Metal claws–wouldn’t need to hold pocket knives but you could never get through airport security.

For my everyday life, I would definitely pick the power of Jamie Madsen, aka Multiple Man.  Jamie has the ability to create perfect duplicates of himself, each of which is intelligent and has free will.  There’s some limit to the amount of how much he can split, but the limit is quite high–something like 50 when he was in X-Factor and more as he masters his power.

29 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Anime Review: m3: the dark metal

m3Don’t let the fact there is a mecha in the opening credits fool you. m3: the dark metal is more of a drama than an action show, and it’s one of those series where what you see in the beginning doesn’t indicate anything about where you’ll be by the end.

At first glance m3 is rather by the book. An eclectic group of high schoolers are brought together in a special class to learn how to pilot the latest technological advance, a combat vehicle called a MA-Vess that is capable of exploring the mysterious Lightless Realm that is slowly swallowing the city they live in. But the story takes a much darker turn than the norm.

27 October 2014 ~ 1 Comment

Interview: Betsy Wollheim

625529_576885235658092_918951020_nBetsy Wollheim has an advantage unique in speculative fiction book publishing. She is owner, editor, and publisher of DAW and it is a private company. She recently won her first Hugo for Best Editor. She tells Diabolical Plots what she wants and doesn’t want from authors.

24 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Game Review: Depression Quest

DepressionQuestThe goal of this game is twofold: firstly, we want to illustrate as clearly as possible what depression is like, so that it may be better understood by people without depression. Hopefully this can be something to spread awareness and fight against the social stigma and misunderstandings that depression sufferers face. Secondly, our hope is that in presenting as real a simulation of depression as possible, other sufferers will come to know that they aren’t alone, and hopefully derive some measure of comfort from that.

22 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Game Review: Gone Home

gonehomeGone Home is a first person story exploration game released by The Fullbright Company (which has now been rebranded to be simply called “Fullbright” in August 2013.

2014-10-08_00004June 7th, 1995. 1:15am You’ve been traveling Europe for a year. While you were gone your family inherited a house from your weird Uncle Oscar and your parents and younger sister Sam have moved in. You arrive at the new house, expecting a warm welcome from you family, but no one’s there. Why?

20 October 2014 ~ 1 Comment

Movie Review: Her

Back in April I reviewed the Ray Bradbury Award nominees for the years as their deadline for nomination approached–I reviewed all the ones I could get my hands on, but there was one movie that wasn’t yet released on DVD–titled “Her” written and directed by Spike Jonze.

The movie takes place in 2025 in a world that’s very recognizable, but with some differences–holograms being commonplace and artificial intelligence has advanced to stages we haven’t reached yet. The protagonist is Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) who writes heartfelt letters on behalf of complete strangers for hire. He has just upgraded his personal operating system–which is more than just an OS in the way that we use the phrase and more of a personal assistant. He chooses for the OS to have a female voice (voiced by Scarlett Johanssen) and she names herself Samantha. He hits it off with Samantha and soon their relationship becomes more than just user-computer. Theodore is lonely, having little personal contact with anyone and clinging to the threads of an estranged marriage which he has been stalling on signing the divorce papers to end. He does have one friend Amy (Amy Adams) who is also struggling with her relationship.

17 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Game Review: Actual Sunshine

written by David Steffen A ctual Sunshine is an RPG-styled story of depression released by Will O’Neill in April 2014.  It follows the life of young single overweight professional who is struggling with depression.  He lives alone, is unsatisfied at his corporate job.  Every day is a struggle, trying to get through the day of work, […]

15 October 2014 ~ 1 Comment

GAME REVIEW: Papers, Please

2014-09-26_00001This is just another one of those games about immigration documentation processing. Exciting, right? Actually, hear me out. I was skeptical, too, but the game came highly recommended. The game is billed as a “dystopian document thriller”.

13 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Interview: Eric Laster

Eric LasterEric Laster is a YA author, former ghost writer, and orphan/homeless advocate. Welfy Q. Deederhoth: Meat Purveyor, World Savior is the first of a trilogy.

10 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Game Theory in Writing Part 3: Why Money Should Always Flow to the Writer

This is the second article in a series considering the applications of game theory on writing. Game Theory is the study of strategic decision making. I won’t get into the mathematics of it, just high level concepts. The first article in the series discussed differentiating between goals and milestones. The second article in the series discussed ways for writers to keep score on their submissions that will encourage them to reach their goals.