After what felt like a century but was only a few days, I finally tried out my beta copy of "Night Terrors," an Augmented Reality Horror Survival Game (ARG).
What you see in the video above is what Novum Analytics expects the final product to be like. However, like any other game, this smartphone-based ARG has to be tested in different stages in order for the final product to become a reality.
With that in mind, I have not gotten my hands on a complete build. I did get to chase a fairy through the woods for a bit, though.
Testing It Out During the Day
Build 1: Stationary, optical tracking with augmented element. Element will move around player, approach and retreat in view. Works (and was built) for dark testing, but will work in light.
Nothing outside of the word "light" in the description of the 'Night Terrors' build I received encouraged me to use the device outdoors. It was out of curiosity and necessity. I wondered if it would work outside, and I had to borrow my friend's iPhone to use TestFlight.
Strolling through a park in Central Indiana, my friend and I loaded the game onto her phone and decided to see what the build offered. And that was a great example of why you should read what exactly you are testing before you test it. Part of me expected some of the map building to be in the build, but at least I got to check out some of the primary functions of the game.
After contributing to the startup of the Night Terrors, an Augmented Reality Game (ARG), I received a beta copy.
The issue is, it's only for iOS in its beta stage. I use Android.
Fret not, though, I have an iPhone I can use to begin testing the game before it's finally released. And I am going to do my best to share the experience with you. In all honesty, I'm probably a little too stoked for this. But perhaps, after you check it out, you will be too.
What's 'Night Terrors'?
While digging around the Interwebs to see what has been going on lately, I found a fairly intriguing website.
Before we get to the website, though, I thought I would share how Japan does the opening pitch:
Yes, you saw that right. You just watched Sadako from The Ring and Kayako from The Grudge face off in good ol' game of baseball.
Sh*t to Read
Now on to the main event. I felt the need to share this website, and it is the reason for this blog post to be quite honest. I am in no way affiliated with the website either; it's simply interesting.
If you have ever needed something to read while you're giving it your best go on the Porcelain John, then you should check out Poop Fiction. Select the length of time you think you'll need, and it generates a random story that should take about that amount of time to read.
While I don't recommend bringing your smart phone with you to the loo--but you are going to do it anyway--perhaps consider giving one of these stories a good read while you're at it. Also, the main argument against using your phone on the pot is that it might fall in. Almost everything in this world is covered in sh*t, donchaknow?
When it comes to the horror genre, there are a lot of buildings involved. If you think about it for a second, dozens of images will swirl through your mind. The hotel from The Shining. That one house from The Changeling.
Perhaps you know some of these places are real, or at least, based on real locations. But perhaps there are a few you didn't. For no real good reason other than I like this kind of stuff, I've compiled a list of 5 Famous Fictional Places Based on Real Places.
1. "Overlook Hotel"/Stanley hotel
What makes the Stanley Hotel different from other places on the list is the fact tourists and locals alike have continuously acknowledged paranormal activity for most of its existence.
Garret’s mother tumbled, her arms pointed straight at her son as if she was reaching out to him. Abrupt and anticlimactic, Garret’s mother joined her husband.
Read "No-Injury Policy" for free!
For the next 3 Fridays, head over to Amazon/Kindle and download yourself a free copy of "No-Injury Policy" the short story.
the free fridays
#1 April 8th
#2 April 15th
#3 April 22nd
"Day and Night"
originally published by Fashion for Collapse, 2010.
For awhile I think I’ll never wake. Every night, for as long as I can remember since Jen was taken away, I’ve ended up in the same town square. I’m never sure where exactly, but I know it might be somewhere in Lovington, the second-most crime-ridden town of Chase County. No lie there. They have less crime than Raven’s Crook, Chase County, but in my night terrors, it’s all the same. Something always lurks behind me, an ominous presence breathing down my neck.
I travel the flooded streets of this town with Jenn at my side, window-shopping in front of bakeries, pawnshops, and jewelry shops. The jewelry stores usually capture her attention, and consequently mine, but we both know it’s beyond our reach. For the most part, we can’t even afford the pawned off jewelry. But this evening feels different than the rest and closer to being reality.
This is the evening that I had a little to spare, so we bypass the bakeries and pawnshops. Instead, we enter the real deal: Ralph’s Jewelers, home of unique cut diamonds rings and pearl necklaces. Despite their commercial claim, they are almost the same as the other pawnshops, but there’s prestige to a jeweler, right?
A sterling silver anniversary pendant necklace is the item of desire, whether or not she knows it. I think it would be something nice for a change.
Soon, I find the necklace in my hand and I’m reading the inscription. I can’t make out the words. Even though they say you can’t feel physical pain in dreams, there’s not much written against real emotions.
“It’s beautiful,” Jen says before I notice the police officer in the far corner eyeballing his gun. Nothing seems suspicious about that, for some reason.
“Down!” the cop shouts, and in a retrospective slow-motion, I recall everyone slowly dropping down to their knees; hands over heads.
But not Jen. Not at first. Her instinct involved bravery. I flashback to the day I forgot about the grill.
Flames soared high, and the lovely fire department’s phone lines are unresponsive. “All circuits are busy,” that mysterious voice said to me. Really, the fire department?
To my surprise, Jen rushes out into the yard, ABC extinguisher in hand. Probably not the best technique, but she fights every flame to its dim death.
And now she wants to save everyone in the jewelry store. Some madman dressed as a cop waves his gun, and all at once, she forgets about everything else, even the closest person to her. And I do not mean me.
Thanks to the folks over at Wild Child Publishing, there is now a longer excerpt of Excluded available to read before you make the inevitable choice of downloading the entire horror novel for just $2.99.
Calling the excerpt longer is a bit of an understatement--it's the entire prologue. There are some fun behind-the-scenes facts about the prologue, but perhaps that is a story I will tell some other day. For now, please enjoy the new, longer snippet from Excluded:
An Excerpt from: Excluded.
Copyright © 2012 - 2016 C.M. Humphries
All rights reserved, Wild Child Publishing.
Raven's Crook, Chase County
Shimmering in the darkness, crystalline beads of rain cascaded down young Liddell Douglas’ black jacket and towards the murky, maroon puddle. He grunted as he fought to remove his father’s collector’s knife out of the other boy’s chest. Douglas watched the boy’s eyes roll backwards into their permanent position. One last expression crossed the boy’s face, one of surprise and confusion.
I’ve done no wrong, Liddell thought. Simply justice.
The boy was an oppressor and needed to be shown his place. Liddell couldn’t take it anymore; all the pushing, shoving, and stealing. The boy never left him alone. Liddell had a small stature, yet that was not the reason the boy picked on him. It was because his last name was Douglas. In Chase County, the name Douglas represented two things: power and fear. The boy had to prove himself every day at school in front of the other kids. “But now look at you,” Liddell said to the lifeless body.
Along the edge of the knife was the blood of his enemy. Liddell was warmed by a newfound sense of pride. He ripped the sleeve off of the boy’s shirt. Cloth in hand, he wiped the blood off of the knife. He enjoyed the majestic imagery of the knife coming clean by way of cloth and rain.
He looked towards the sky. In the near distance, sunlight broke through the dark cloud cover. He smiled. Liddell took one last glance at the boy before placing the knife in his jacket pocket. He sighed and then headed for home.
While Liddell wanted to be feared, there was always someone that made him timid. He feared not making it home in time before his father. Right after he tucked his father’s collector’s knife into his pocket, he sprinted off in the direction of his miserable home. Please, let him be at work. I can’t do this again. However, he knew his thoughts would never do him much good.
There was an off-chance that Liddell’s mother, Linda, would already be at home, but that didn’t really matter. She was the most absentminded woman he had ever known during his young life. She would be oblivious to whatever Liddell would do. Sometimes he wished Linda would pay more attention to him. Maybe, he would have never lost his mind if not for her lack of care. It was doubtful.
Hope she’s not home when he is, he thought. Not again, at least.
He lifted up his jacket sleeve and glanced down at his watch. Daddy dearest always followed a similar routine after work. He estimated Richard would be home in twenty minutes.
Liddell had a half-hour walk.
* * * *
While I reconstructed the website, I noticed quite a few of my stories were missing from the updated Library page (which makes me worry I still overlooked a few--let me know if I did). In order to retrieve the missing links, I Googled the stories. To my surprise, a result for a comment tied to the original What Do You Mean Transgressive Fiction? populated. Whether it was my dangerously addictive curiosity or some underlying vanity, I decided to follow the link and read the comment.
The comment simply informed me another website mentioned the post in an effort to define transgressive fiction as a genre. My first thought, which probably stemmed from that underlying vanity, was "That's kind of cool," but by the time I finished reading the blog post, I wasn't too sure.
The way the author defined transgressive fiction wasn't 100% inaccurate, but it focused heavily on ideas such as "pedophilia, incest, sadomasochism which leads to death," and never once touched on the subjects of "self-identity, inner-peace, or personal freedom."
In case you haven't noticed (or perhaps this is your first time here--in that case, welcome!), things are a little different around C.M. Humphries.com. Where there were improvements, there were sacrifices. What's here right now, might be gone to tomorrow. And, of course, there's still more to come tomorrow. Well, maybe not literally tomorrow.
MORE TO READ & MORE WAYS TO READ IT.
It feels like almost every week I am adding more content to the website, including free stories and excerpts. From the No-Injury Policy page to the C.M. Library, the site is chock-full of stuff to read. And now, I have included drop-down options on some of the stories, so you can read a snippet before deciding whether a story is for you.
"And the zombies starved"
A zombie craze that sweeps over the nation, and one man can't stand it anymore.
Back then, the police were overzealous and overabundant, and they didn’t care how or why your wife was unconscious in your bedroom. If you’d hurt her, the police would hurt you. So I ran.
STILL TO COME:
There is still more to come and improvements to be made.
Thanks for reading!
When Life Gives You Lemons, Write a Book or a Song, or Film a Movie or Something!
The Winter Blues
Free Stories Rock, Right?
And so it begins in . . .
From Wednesday, November 11th to Friday, November 13th, 2015, pick up an eBook of the short story "No-Injury Policy" (opens in new tab) from the collection of the same name for absolutely free. Zero dollars. Zilch.
There's no catch except for it has to be on Kindle. If you are reading this right now, you can read my story for free on Kindle. In fact, there are instructions on how to do so for just about any device right on my story's Amazon page!
So from 11-11 to midnight on Friday the 13th, pick up the main even of my short story collection No-Injury Policy.
As I continue to work on my upcoming novel in stories Ashland's Asylum, I struggle to decide what I want in the Asylum itself. There's a South Wing to the Asylum, in which some antiquated medical equipment hides. The Asylum big-wigs need to remove the equipment before Inspection Day [See Strife], but maybe not quite all of it.
I've constructed the a list of the Top 6 Insane Ways of Treating Insanity--in my whatever opinion--and perhaps some of you might enjoy helping me decide which pieces of equipment to include in the story ? Hey, hey?
FIRST PREVIEW OF ASHLAND'S ASYLUM
Fear, focus, and the future. C.M. Humphries talks about writing, horror, and whatever.