It wouldn’t be Monday without a hangover and a pervading sense of existential dismay. Or, you know, some QNA! Humans are totally versatile like that. We’ve survived seemingly insurmountable odds, endured tumultuous circumstance and the often spiteful vagaries of fate, and managed to invent extraordinary things like remote controls and styrofoam in the middle of much worse than Mondays. We can do this.
I’ll go first.
Richard Morgan’s Altered Carbon. It’s the first of a series of three novels and also in the works for TV, apparently, but I’m focussing more on the context than the plot specifics. Basically, it’s a dystopian cyperpunk noir future, and the technology to digitise and backup consciousness is the big hot thing. People don’t die anymore, they simply replace their bodies – or “sleeves” now, because the process is about as humdrum as getting dressed in the morning. Protagonist Takeshi Kovacs is a former Envoy, a sort of interstellar black ops supersoldier, who’s hired to solve a murder.
Maybe it’s because I actually wish that the 1997 Westwood Studios Blade Runner game would get a sequel, but a game set in Altered Carbon‘s universe would also have a respawn system that’s consistent with its own narrative events. That’s got to make for some very unconventional design opportunities.