let’s just hope they do a better job than the movie

game developer shiny entertainment is bringing to life the first installment of one of my favorite trilogies of all time: the golden compass from phillip pullman’s his dark materials

rather than reading the books, i had the pleasure of listening to the unabridged recordings while i was driving across country on the 2001 microsoft mobile experience user group tour (wow, that was a lifetime ago).  the back to back experience of working through all three books allowed the powerful message to hit squarely home.  these are not children’s books, they don’t even fit the young adult categorization they’ve received.  i’m not saying that a kid couldn’t grasp the ideas in these books – but by not shelving them in general fiction my guess is a lot of adult readers have missed out.

the movie version of book one is slated for this december with nicole kidman and daniel craig in the lead adult roles and newcomer dakota blue richards (what is it with child actresses and the name dakota).  from what i’ve read and heard this movie deviates far and wide from the novel and is likely to piss off a bunch of fans of the book.  i have several friends who are flat out refusing to go see it.  i’m up for giving it a chance because the little i’ve seen in previews looks stunning.  i’ve been known to turn the sound down on horrible films and just enjoy the view (ultraviolet anyone).

so the brings us o the game.  from the excerpt below it looks like the jury is out and we’re likely to find ourselves somewhere in the middle…

GL: Is the game more in line with the book or the movie of The Golden Compass?

DB: Specific gameplay areas are intended to be extensions
of The Golden Compass screenplay adaptation while other areas expand
upon interaction in environments that are only in the book.  There are
a few places in these additions where we take slight liberties to
provide a solid “game environment” but first and foremost we tried to
keep with the locations from the book and its screenplay. Our goal is
to have the look and visual feel in line with New Line’s production and
also produce gameplay and narrative immersion that makes the books such
a huge success.

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