Defiance: From Small Screen To Other Small Screen

A man. Standing defiantly. Yesterday. In the future. Or something.

Alert! Alert! Words like “Transmedia” imminent! You have been warned! Ahem. Trion Worlds and SyFy have released a long video showing off their forthcoming game/tv hybrid thing Defiance, where the battles you fight might later appear on TV. It’s a bit like being a soldier, only there are aliens involved and Fox News will never try to make out that it’s in any way patriotic.

Here comes the video, and a few Things To Notice…

Things To Notice:

  • When aliens attack, the cast of Dexter will be our only hope
  • Trion staff will beat you in a staring contest any day.
  • SyFy’s cameramen apparently drink a lot of coffee.
  • As far as the setting goes, it’s going to be interesting to see how much crossover there can realistically be with a game set in San Francisco and a show set in St. Louis.
  • Everyone needs to give their characters the silliest names possible, just to force the actors to deliver lines like “My life was saved by Peesquirter54. He was amazing.
  • No word yet about whether other SyFy stars like the Megashark, Pirahnaconda and Mansquito will put in guest appearances… but we can hope.
  • You will never rock a scarf like the Director.
  • It’s aiming to be one of the best transmedia experiences ever, even better than CyberZone, Heaven and Hell Live and kids phoning up to play Magic Pockets on the 90s kids’ magazine programme “Motormouth”. And they do not promise that lightly!
  • The TV version looks a good deal more grounded than the fairly cartoony game footage.
  • Rift was good enough to give them the benefit of the doubt, right?
  • I’m still sad that The Lost Room never got a full series.


  1. Shortwave says:

    I kept skipping through the video to see gameplay, but kept landing on geeky faces.
    But this seems like an ambiguous project for sure. I love seeing new concepts and ideas always.
    Not really sure if this is something I could get into personally but I’ll be sure to give it a try.
    And who knows, maybe Peesquirter54 will still be available for use!

  2. kastanok says:

    Oh, Lost Room, you magnificent impossible trans-dimensional mystery. I was so hoping that was going to be a secret pilot. *Hugs her copy of House of Leaves*.

    • Richard Cobbett says:

      It wasn’t a secret pilot, it was openly aiming to be a full series, a bit like The 4400, only without giving away its entire mystery in the final episode. New protagonist every year, lots of switch-ups and new ways to play with the universe. It didn’t get the green light because the mini-series ratings weren’t good enough. People suck.

      (There was going to be a comic instead, but I don’t think it ever came out)

      • The First Door says:

        See, now I’m going to have to go watch it again because I have utterly forgotten how it ended. Not that it is a bad thing of course, as I did really enjoy it the first time!

    • Flakfizer says:

      I really liked it despite the strange way every supporting actor was excellent yet the two leads were dull as dishwater.

    • McDan says:

      I’ll match your house of leaves with my own! *points dramatically to the book next to him*
      Now I still think this is a really good idea and hope it works because I really want to see how they tie things happening in-game to the show.I just have this feeling that people who watch the show without knowing there’s also a game won’t get some of the stuff that happens or there won’t be enough of a crossover between the game and the show (people watching play it and vice versa). And there’s always a chance of them just cancelling it mid-season as they are wont to do over the pond there.

  3. gunny1993 says:

    Trion have impressed me enough with rift for me to be excited about this crazy ass concept, hope it goes well.

  4. Blaaaaaaag says:

    “Holy Grail of entertainment” seems like a pretty awful analogy for something you’re trying to sell… That says to me “we have no idea what this is, or if it’s even real, and we’ll certainly never realize our ambitions. Also, it may melt your face, and who’s Monty Python?”

    • Archipelagos says:

      And there was me thinking that the “Fourth Pillar of Storytelling” couldn’t be topped. Kudos Trion Worlds, kudos.

    • Premium User Badge

      particlese says:

      Indeed. Cool concept, but the video’s hyperbole really killed the interest the article sparked. Then the multiple simultaneous staring contests completely creeped me out. o_o

  5. Orija says:

    Man, that Rob Filla fella’s stare scares the shit out of me. I mean look at him in 3:40, just pause the video and fucking look at his diabolical mug and all that eyebrow twitching. I won’t be getting any sleep tonight, that’s for sure.

    • tomeoftom says:


    • felisc says:

      wow. indeed.

    • Phantoon says:


      Get that guy some thin eyebrows, stat! OR SOMETHING! I DON’T KNOW!

      I laughed but I’m honestly not sure if it was fear or amusment and my head hurts.

    • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

      He’s hip deep in the Uncanny Valley… And he’s not a special effect.

  6. tomeoftom says:


    • Archipelagos says:

      Didn’t that directing technique go out in the 70’s? They did the same thing with some of the developer diaries for The Secret World, the “Kung-Fu” line being the worst offender.

  7. Salix says:

    Wonder how its actually gonna work, since I’d assume the show’ll only be broadcast in america and the rest of the world will kinda lose out until someone sticks it on youtube.

  8. MadMatty says:

    oh lordy

  9. Didero says:

    “…intimate character drama…”
    Cue robot firing missiles.

  10. stiffkittin says:

    While the presentation was too heavy on the hyperbole, the idea of designing the two experiences in tandem is a promising one. As opposed to say tacking on a browser-based mmo 6 months after the release of a popular show.

    The cross-marketing and player/viewer investment from both media platforms may well pay off as well. At least enough for it to sustain itself, provided it’s not too ambitious at launch and allows for room to grow. Something like Firefall might be a good model to look to on that score.

  11. ucfalumknight says:

    So, can we blame Dave Howe for the crap on SciFi (I refuse to accept the other craptastic syfy)? Such amazingly original programming as Hollywood Collector and the super awfully bad Total Blackout. The only way to make that show better is have Jaleel White play Urkle. I miss Star Trek and X-files reruns…

  12. Jake Frisco says:


    Come on, now. That doesn’t inspire me at all. Plus anyone with two brain synapses to rub together would find the idea of fighting to save St. Louis laughable. Let the aliens have it!

    That said, Trion has a great track record with me when it comes to Rift. I will keep a heavily jaded eye on this one. *harrumph*

  13. optimusprimeminister says:

    Hah, I noticed the Dexter’s cast thing too before I read the “things to notice,” part of the article. Personally, I’m not excited for this in the least and won’t buy the game, or the watch the show. The promo video’s staff were super creepy and overexcited, which was entertaining, but its another scyfy channel show creation and very few of those are any good.

  14. SCdF says:

    Unfortunately I think this will fail hard, but I applaud the concept and their attempt at it.

  15. Phantoon says:

    You know what would actually work for this?

    Day Z.

  16. WittyUsername_01 says:

    Dont know if anyone has made this point yet but:

    “The events in the virtual world will affect events in the show”
    This most likely translates to:
    “At some point in the storyline of the game, there will be a plot twist, and then on a set episode of the show, we will show the effects of it.”

    I wanna see stuff players do of their own affect the show, not scripted, pre-decided shit. Like if EVE was a show, and when something like Burn Jita happens, they show the effects. Or just make a show that follows the events of EVE.

    • Blackcompany says:

      As a new EVE player who is slowly slogging his way through the tutorial missions – and so far loving it, even the part about losing an Atron Frigate out of carelessness – I applaud this idea. EVE: The Show: Based on events from The Game: Unscripted. Or some such nonsense.

      But yeah…that’s a sci fi show with drama.

      The only trouble is finding someone sufficiently evil to cast as Mittani, Leader of Goon.

    • jrodman says:

      Reality TV: PART 2. FANTASY!

  17. MadTinkerer says:

    Better than Cyberzone!?! That’s setting the bar pretty high!

  18. jhoson says:

    They say like they are the first to do a transmedia universe involving games into it. (A good example of Transmedia would be 24 hours, with books,tv series and others stuffs )

    Maybe they never heard of “Front Mission” séries!

    they have the games, books, graphic novels, radio dramas, movie and others stuffs.And all is connected, from the first manga (1994) prior to the first “Front Mission” (1995) till Front Mission 5. And that was not the end, they kept telling the stories by CellPhone games, called Front Mission2089 and 2082-II.

    And after that by Novels that are coming out yet, “dog life & dog style”.

    Its really a shame that only 3 games come out in english =\

    PS: Front Mission Evolved dont count in this.

  19. Kollega says:

    Somehow, i just fail to be excited over this. It just seems so… bland. An MMO + a TV show, two things i was never interested in and that they want to combine? Count me out… i just don’t feel that it can succeed, and even if it does, i’m still not going to be too interested.

  20. MaXimillion says:

    No staring eyes tag? Come on now.

  21. derella says:

    The game engine seems to look pretty?

  22. The First Door says:

    Random question, I know… but was that the lady off of Hustle?

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      I haven’t watched the trailer but if it features entire cast of Dexter then yes as she showed up in the 3rd series of that.

  23. golem09 says:

    The only time I got excited was when Vincent Van Gogh showed up

  24. Felixader says:

    I actually paid attention to what they were saying, that was until i reached around 4:35. Then i had to barf.

    I get that they need to advertise, but this part just is… awfull and all it leaves is a memory of anoyance.