Dear Insane Children,
I hope everyone is enjoying a wonderful Golden Week even if you aren’t in China or Japan where these holidays a major thing. It’s estimated that somewhere around 500 million people in China will travel during this period of time and it marks one of the largest mass movements of humans at any point during the history of our planet. As everything in China is shut down for the holiday it makes sense to get away for a little R&R which is why Yan and I are currently in Krabi, Thailand enjoying time with friends, prepping SV Chaos for the upcoming sailing season, and making plans for Pirate Jam 2019.
Meanwhile Omri’s been busy drawing tentacles and thinking about Origin Story things. He says…
I figured that Shadow-Alice is more than just a representation of Alice, she’s also a trickster that wants to destroy, manipulate and create Chaos, on purpose. I thought about playing with shadows and black colors but it doesn’t click in my mind.
If she is met with people in wonderland and being confused by the inhabitants of Wonderland as Alice she should look like the actual real Alice. i thought it could be cool to have her looking like in the Original game with the Omega and odd symbols on the apron. the Omega is also the Last letter which can be translated to the Last thing Alice does- is to destroy her shadow self and consume her, hence wearing the necklace.
I thought that the tentacles should come from somewhere, it makes sense that if This queen eventually rules the whole of wonderland, it makes sense style-wise to have her kinda looking like the real queen in the original game.
The questions that rose while designing her is IF she looks like Alice and lies and destroys people, should she look like other people too? For Patreons:
Should she look like Lizzie sometimes and interact with Alice?
Should she look like Hatter? His head is represented in the final boss of AMA
Should she look modest like v1 or disturbing like v2?
I think She represents the sickness, Lizzie represents the Fire and Trauma, Hatter- the Actual Wonderland and Alice obviously as herself. Parents, Alice’s Survivor’s guilt and helplessness.
Tell me what you think, i’d love some feedback on this, hope you like it.
Lots to think about here. And there are several elements of what he’s presented here which I really LOVE. First, the overall idea of Shadow Alice is really growing on me and I do think it contains the best visual representation of the direction we’re going with Alice’s overall Quest and ultimate Goal.
Second, the idea Shadow Alice wears the Omega Necklace makes a lot of sense. We might also suggest our little Alice starts with the “A” necklace (for Alpha or the beginning) very early in the story and then see this transformed into the Chaos Symbol for the duration of the game. At the point where Alice integrates her shadow self she’s reached her goal and we’d see the necklace transform into the Omega (ending).
For Omri’s other questions regarding Shadow Alice representing other characters… I think we have to move forward into the story of “American McGee’s Alice” and look at the meaning of the representations in that game. Each character Alice encountered was meant to represent an emotion stemming from the fire which she’d not yet dealt with. I think this idea still works in relation to the “integration of shadow self and overcoming over PTSD” narrative we’re building into Asylum.
Suffering from, coping with, and overcoming PTSD doesn’t “end” with a cure, sudden fanfare, prize ceremony, and moving on with one’s life. The treatment and “cure” are an ongoing process which can take years. Some argue there is no ultimate cure but that management of the symptoms can improve a person’s relationship with the trauma to the point of integration such that a new normal is achieved.
In the early stages a person can be so incapacitated by trauma that they feel numb and emotionless. Meaning and hope are stripped from reality. In this state one can barely eat or sleep – so confronting powerful emotions like guilt, anger, sadness… forget about it.
We therefore have three distinct phases emerging for the Alice trilogy.
1. Alice: Asylum – Trauma resulting from the loss of her family incapacitates Alice and lands her in the asylum. She fights against the trauma (PTSD) in order to find a new normal, integrate her shadow, and emerge on the other side transformed into a new, more powerful, more aware person.
2. AMA – With a new sense of self and a collection of hard-earned abilities, Alice fights against individual representations of the emotions resulting from the loss of her family. Characters she encounters represent guild, anger, sadness, etc. This is the final taming of her mental landscape which allows her to turn her attention to the world outside.
3. Madness Returns – Alice confronts the monsters of the real world. She employs her psychological powers to investigate and reveal real world events leading up to and beyond the fire… ending in a confrontation with her physical antagonist. This merges Alice’s physical and psychological domains / powers.
But what do YOU think? As you see this new narrative emerging and you think about it in the context of your experience with the first two games how does all of this sound to you? Are we on track? Is this doing an honor to the established character and her story? Let us know in the comments below!
Of this “Lizzie Level” Omri says…
There are 2 Large ruling kingdoms in the Peaceful wonderland, Cards and Chess, in both realms The Good Queen of hears and the Good Red Chess queen rule, Peacefully.
Lizzie appears like some sort of ripple in space and slowly sucks in the two kingdoms and burns everything she touches (Hence Lava Theme in the first game) This creates SOME of the chaos. Alice doesn’t really defeat Lizzie- Eventually, somehow, Shadow-Alice Does AND as well the two queens. In that way Shadow Alice becomes the new queen and Ruler of Whole of wonderland. which basically should be the end game. Shadow Alice Turns into the red queen we see in the original game. She originally has 3 heads and i think i’ll do a design of her with 3 heads as well And Tentacles.
I’m still trying to wrap my head around this one but that’s a good thing. What do you think of Omri’s suggestions for casting Lizzie in this role?
For sure we need to revisit the Card Guard and Chess realms. And we also need to figure out the “Queen Conundrum” – as in, which queen is “our” queen and how did she get to be that way?
Again, thoughts and comments below!
I’m heading back to Shanghai tomorrow and we’ll be getting back into the normal swing of things. Lots to do… another livestream next week for sure! And we need to think about our next Patreon Goal and unlocking those embroidered patches. Should be seeing more production samples of those plus the first samples of the White Rabbit Collectable Plush.
Lastly… be sure to head over and check out the progress being made on the Asylum Wiki. Tons of updates and content flowing in there now. A big Thank You to Magus and our other community supporters who are helping to improve and maintain that site!
From Thailand with Aaaarg,