The Let's Play Archive

Blade Runner

by Scorchy

Part 1: Act I - Eye of the Tyger

Act I - Eye of the Tyger

Welcome to Blade Runner, a game about the dreams of robots and the inhumanity of man.

In Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, the story took place in San Francisco, 1992. Philip K. Dick wrote it in 1968, right in between the launch of Sputnik and the Apollo moon landing. I suppose having androids walking around and man colonizing other planets within the space of a quarter century wasn't too far fetched. By the time the film rolled around in 1982, they changed it to take place in Los Angeles, 2019.

In other news, the upcoming film adaptation of 1984 will be renamed 2056.

The game pretty sticks (almost too much so) to director Ridley Scott's art direction for the movie. In fact, the title scroll and some of the opening shots here are re-rendered mirrors of the movie sequences.

The film depicted the future Los Angeles as a bleak, pollution-filled dystopian hellscape populated by degenerates.

Oh, how wrong that turned out to be.

Runciter's Animals.

In many ways, the game actually sticks closer to the novel than the movie did; one of the aspects glossed over in the film was the symbolic importance of animals. Electric Sheep had a World War Terminus, a nuclear winter that eradicated most of the fauna on Earth; it was the moral responsibility for remaining humans to personally care for the surviving animals. Animal ownership became a class symbol; the more endangered your animal was, the higher your social standing. If you couldn't afford one, you had to buy a fake android pet, or you'd get your neighbours looking down their noses at you.

Deckard owned one of these, hence the title of the book.

She's 14, you jerks. Don't get any bright ideas.

Meet our main baddie, Clovis. He's got the goatee and trenchcoat thing going, which means he came from the era when kids still thought The Matrix was a pretty rad movie.

Oh, to be young again.

A second man in the shadows reaches for the tiger cage...

The problem with drafting a warrior-poet into the role of a main villain is that, well... I'm not sure the term 'warrior-poet' is suppose to be literal. Quoting William Blake while beating people up seems to cross the line from 'scary' to 'dorky'.

Still, if you want to read into it, The Tyger is a poem about a man questioning the will of God, his creator. He muses that the hand that created the lamb, an innocent creature, was the same hand that created the terrible and wrathful tiger:

When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

There's also a bit of imagery in the poem alluding the tiger to Prometheus, the Greek titan who stole fire from the Gods and brought it to mankind, and was subsequently tortured for it:

On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare sieze the fire?

Clovis, as we'll see, sees himself as this 'tiger', the one who dared to challenge his own creator.