HARLAN ELLISON'S "I HAVE NO MOUTH, AND I MUST SCREAM" AVAILABLE AS AN INTERACTIVE PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER ON CD-ROM
LOS ANGELES -- November 1, 1995 World-renowned author Harlan Ellison, who wrote the compelling short story "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream" has collaborated with multimedia software publisher Cyberdreams, Inc. to develop a CD-ROM adventure based on the 1967 work that has become one of the ten most reprinted short stories in the English language. The CD-ROM title, available November 17, will be distributed by MGM Interactive. Profound ethical dilemmas are woven into the fabric of the game, dealing with highly charged issues including courage, friendship, insanity, the horrors of rape, self-sacrifice and the dark rivers of human emotion that surge beneath the civilized surface in all of us. MGM Interactive has voluntarily placed a ratings label on the package alerting buyers that the title's harrowing psychological undercurrents may not be appropriate for everyone.
"I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream" features high-quality audio and nightmarish graphics, transporting players into the tortured souls of five humans trapped inside AM, the brutal super-computer that has destroyed all of humanity. For 109 years, AM has played games of psychological warfare, toying with its human captives. The five protagonists include Gorrister the suicidal loner, Benny the mutilated brute, Ellen the hysterical phobic, Nimdok the secretive sadist and Ted the cynical paranoid. AM has doomed them all. Each character is deeply scarred by a private history of emotional traumas, that emerge during the course of the adventure; their psychological and ethical choices will either help them overcome their personal demons and outwit the computer god that fills the center of the Earth, or drive them deeper into emotional instability and eternal hell. "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream" is not for the weak, timid or faint of heart.
Ellison, well-known for his acerbic manner, said, "At heart, I think video- and computer-games are about as necessary as an extra set of elbows. So, naturally, I will be asked why I would be doing this weird and troubling CD-ROM adventure that will honk off half the audience and terrify the other half. To which I respond: to honk off half the audience, and scare the hell out of the rest. It is my way of saying, `You wanna play rough, I'll show you rough! Not the cheap shot of arcade bangity-bang, the mindless repetition of lights and sounds, but the deeply upsetting `rough' of having to make unpleasant ethical choices, of having to be responsible not only for your own flaws and bad behavior, but for that of others. This is less a `game' than it is a grueling obstacle course for the soul."
"This CD-ROM adventure is controversial because it combines interactive entertainment with provocative psychological and ethical themes," said Ron Frankel, executive vice president and general manager of MGM Interactive. "For the very same reasons, it's also very compelling. Ellison fans and devotees of futuristic fiction and fantasy will be very attracted to its content."
"This adventure represents a breakthrough in the emerging medium of interactive storytelling," said Daniel Pelli, Cyberdreams' director of legal and business affairs. "Harlan Ellison's many hours of hands-on involvement and original prose created specially for his first venture into computer gaming provided Cyberdreams with a compelling storyline and highly textured characters, enabling us to create an interactive adventure richer than what anyone has experienced before on a PC. Additionally, Mr. Ellison, who has been nominated for a Grammy in the category of Spoken Word, recorded the voice of the malevolent god-computer, AM. Players will hear the voice of Ellison throughout `I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream.''
Harlan Ellison is one of the world's most celebrated contemporary authors. He has written more than 60 books and approximately 1700 short stories, film and television scripts, essays and reviews. His work has been translated into 26 languages and his television credits include scripts for episodes of "Star Trek," "The Outer Limits," "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour" and "The Return of the Twilight Zone." He has won more World Science Fiction Convention Hugo Awards (8-1/2) than any other living author. He is also the recipient of three Nebula Awards (Science Fiction Writers of America), three Bram Stoker Awards (Horror Writers of America), two Edgar Allan Poe Awards (Mystery Writers of America) and four Writers Guild of America Awards for Most Outstanding Teleplay. Additionally, Ellison is the winner of the World Fantasy Award, the British Fantasy Award and the Silver Pen of P.E.N. for journalism. In 1993 he was awarded the rare and coveted World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement Award, and his work was included in the Best American Short Stories. Well known as a social critic and cultural gadfly, Ellison has lectured at dozens of universities around the world, including Yale, Harvard, MIT, Caltech, the London School of Economics and The Sorbonne. He can be seen as a commentator every week on the USA Network's Sci-Fi Channel.
"I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream" will be available November 17 for PC and in early 1996 for Macintosh computers. The title carries an estimated street price of $49.99. For availability questions, call 1-800-586-2021. System requirements for the title are a 486 IBM or compatible multimedia computer with 4MB RAM, 66 MHz, CD-ROM drive, hard drive with 20MB available, a SVGA video card and MS-DOS.
Cyberdreams, Inc. specializes in producing action, science fiction, fantasy, role-playing and adventure interactive entertainment games for home computers and dedicated game systems.
MGM Interactive, a unit of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc., manages creative development and production of interactive products for a variety of multimedia platforms, as well as talent and developer relationships.