Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Exclusive Interview: Marjorie Liu's "Tiger Eye" Game A Reality!

Today, our pal Marjorie M. Liu and PassionFruit Games announce the debut of Tiger Eye: Curse of the Riddle Box, the romance casual* game that launches the dynamic new PassionFruit Games company and caters to gamers and genre fans jonesin' to get a little more interactive with their happily ever afters.

Liu’s right there with the rest of us on that last part. “Nothing can ever replace the power of words when telling a story,” she said yesterday in an exclusive interview. “But at the same time -- as a voracious reader myself -- I'm always hungry for new opportunities to experience the books I love, especially romance novels. Adapting ‘Tiger Eye’ into this new format gives readers -- and gamers -- a unique opportunity to engage with the story.“

But knowing Liu – and you’re well acquainted with her sweetness, intelligence and earnest nature pretty well by now – she’s not just handing off her novel to some “corporate types” and letting ‘em have their digital way with it. Marjorie’s involved every step of the way and even wrote the script for Tiger Eye: Curse of the Riddle Box (TE:COTRB), in which a woman with psychic abilities buys a riddle box in Beijing’s Dirt Market and opens it to find an ancient warrior bound to serve as a slave to the person who has opened the box. The action moves between China and the U.S.

” It's been incredibly fun! I've already played parts of the game, listened to the voice actors record lines from the book -- seen the art and storyboards. I believe this is a wonderful new world for romance fiction, and those who love it.”

PassionFruit Games Studio Director Melissa Heidrich believes there may be a lot of similarities between romance readers and casual gamers, since the majority of the latter are women aged 25 to 65. That correlation, says Heidrich, may make the market “ripe” for PassionFruit Games. “[It’s] surprising that there are currently so few romance casual games on the market. That’s why we’re excited to bring ‘Tiger Eye’ to life as interactive entertainment.”

Of that interactive love play, PassionFruit Games designer Mari Tokuda – who helped translate Liu’s book to game format – says, “[We] are giving players a chance to experience the romance through fun gameplay and sensual cut scenes that further the relationship. And of course, we'll have a sexy leading man heavily featured in the game. ”

Liu is jazzed about the creatives team working on TE: COTRB. "I'm very excited and grateful to be part of this wonderful team of people who are truly dedicated to romance novels, and who are bringing them to life for both readers and gamers."

While the folks at PassionFruit are making sure TE: COTRB follows a romance-novel storyline in which the main characters’
relationship deepens, don’t expect any hard-core sex scenes. TE:COTRB's about casual-gaming fun for anytime escapist play.

You can pre-order Tiger Eye: Curse of the Riddle Box in 2010, and some readers will even be chosen to test the game in beta. In the meantime, you can get more deets about it – and PassionFruit Games -- at PassionFruitGames.com.

Oh. While you're a-waiting, I suggest you scarf up "Tiger Eye" and the rest of Marjorie's Dirk & Steele reads. Follow 'em up with her NYX and Dark Wolverine comics, then move on to her paras. I know you'll read each/every one. For while you may be a casual gamer, there ain't no such animal as a casual Marjorie Liu fan. Least not round these parts.

Are you a gamer? What kind, and what's your poison? How much time to you spend playing vs reading romance? Which are your fave Liu titles?

*A casual game generally is defined as a non-violent game that can be played in drips and drabs, again and again and one which doesn’t have a "finite" ending.

Thursday: Gannon and PJ are back 12. 17 to celebrate the “magic” of the holidays with their best-girlfriends take on Janet Chapman’s “Highlander Christmas!”
Friday: RBTBs Holiday Exclusive Gift for You! Read Becke Martin’s sweet n’ just-a-teensy-bit-sexy short story, "Silver and Gold!" The promise of healing love when one least expects it – and a little boy’s Christmas expectations fulfilled in just the right way – reminds us that hope still can glitter in anyone’s heart at Christmastime.
Dec 24: Rocki St. Claire returns for her Annual Holiday Kick-Off! We love to spend a few moments before everything goes holiday haywire to wish each other happy, and to Win Prizes!

PLUS: Jan 4 Liz Maverick visits to talk “Crimson and Steam” her wicked-cool upcoming release. I glommed it recently and now have to read the rest of the series!
– and – A huge RBTB contest is on the way w/deets soon.


David B. said...

What a cool development for the romance genre. And congrats to Marjorie for being on the forefront of this trend.

Gaming has become such a force in media these days. Really interesting that it is going beyond the more traditional (and typically violent) subject matters.

Becke Davis said...

This is so cool! I love the illustration -- I always kind of like the "headless hero" with great arms!

I love that a game will focus on romance more than the usual mayhem, although I'm sure there will be plenty of action.

As to my favorite of Marjorie's books, that would probably be TIGER EYE. Loved that one!

Anonymous said...

This is so awesome to have a game developed from a romance novel :) I've just pre-ordered it, hehe

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Hi, Dave aka Male Perspective Guy. That's really interesting, your point about violence. I was reading up on "casual games," and it seems the term has morphed among gamers/creators to mean non-violent games, rather than it's more widely accepted use of games that are played casually. The article i read was funny, written by a young gaming co exec who was saying that new casual games needed to be designed for hard-core gamers who were finding their responsibilities piling up as they aged. So, like, casual games weren't just for their moms anymore. :)

I'm looking forward to this game and the action, too, Becke. If you remember, this hero, Hari, had a pretty rough past based on the varied owners of the magic box, some of them cruel and violent. And Marjorie's books always have the element of racing against time and really poorly behaved bad guys. I also love the Asian mysticism threaded through them as well.

Good for you, Ali! Let us know how you like it. I'm really interested in the download of the theme music and trailer.

Um, I've got to confess that I'm gonna need my son to explain how to play some of this, I think, if he's not too mortified. Maybe I can bribe him with Call of Duty or something equally horrid. :)

Monica Burns said...

OMG This was my first Marjorie Liu book and I LOVED it!! The puzzle box the scene in the small market. Tiger shapeshifter. It was my first shape shifter book too. I LOVED, LOVED this book (keeper shelf) and to see it's in game format!@!

I am a confirmed gamer. Baby and I play as much as we can when I'm not busy writing. We're still on the old PS2 and Nintendo, but we play RPGs that are fantasy based. We have YET to get through Lord of the Rings, even on easy mode. We're lousy at it, but have fun with it!! And I still love going back and playing my Xena RPG.

Becke Davis said...

I had read shifters, but nothing like this. Fabulous book. And, duh, I was so distracted by the bulging biceps, I didn't even realize the game was based on Tiger Eye. I couldn't read Michelle's headline because I'd been struck with Muscle Blindness!

Tiona said...

Hey, Bellas! What a great idea! I must admitt that I'm not a gamer and don't really have any interest in it, but this is definately a fun idea.
Becke, I'm with you. I was so distracted by those bulging biceps and how much bigger he is than her that at first I didn't even read the title of this blog, hehe.
The book 'Tiger Eye' is currently sitting in my TBR pile to be read. Since I'm currently between books, maybe I s hould go home and pick it up, hehe.

Myrin said...

I think it's so cool that Marjorie has a say in the making of that game. I always wonder hoe authors can endure the fact that they don't have many rights (or any?) when their books are made into - for example - movies. That alone would be reason for me not to agree to a screen adaption at all.

Michelle, I thought I again had a language problem when I didn't know what "casual games" meant - wonderful that you gave a definition. I didn't know there was even a term for that.

I'm not much of a gamer but I was addicted to Banjo Kazooie and Super Mario when I was little. They're very appropriate for children but today, observed with my wiser adult eye, cough, cough, they're quite violent, too. In a cute, childlike way, of course. I never really realized what my character actually did when he carried around bombs about to explode (with uber-sweet eyes and feet, I might add!) or jumped on some baddie to extinguish him. I became hooked again on my child games last summer but unfortunately can't afford to play atm because of lack of time. But it makes me feel really content somehow, as I was when I originally played them.

Myrin said...

Okay, now what's the "hoe" doin' in my comment, pu-leeze? Of course it should be "how"!!!

amy kennedy said...

Nothing ever surprizes me when it comes to Marjorie -- books, graphic novels, now gaming.

It is such a head slapper that, yeah! Of course I would want to play a game with romance in it.

Marjorie Liu said...

Everyone, thank you for the kind words! And thank you, too, Michelle, for such a wonderful post about the game. We're working hard to make it a wonderful (and romantic) experience.


OL'Dog Junya said...

Sensual incitement's affect to bring the body to a greater level of ennervation so that the subject can process the cognitions more efficiently. The pleasure is the icecream that cums with the cake?