Inner Monologue #2: The Sword of Deliverance

This entry comes after an epic showing at Alpha Omega Con – a Christian pop-culture and gaming convention in Southern California.

I wish I took more pictures of the event, but I had to go without any extra helpers, so pics were the last thing on my mind.

This blog isn’t about that, though. I wanted to show off some special story boarding artwork for a really awesome *surprise* component of Deliverance (None of it is final – it’s all as rough as can be for now while we tune it all!).

The primary purpose for writing this blog is thanks to one of our awesome fans named Hannah-Sue.

We met at Alpha Omega Con when she visited the Deliverance booth. She wasn’t a big gamer, but she was sharp as a tack with her question.

And it is the question and the answer that I wanted to share with you!

The Question

“What is the sword of Deliverance?”

This question needs a little bit more back-story, so that you understand why it was such a sharp question (pun not intended).

Hannah-Sue explained after hearing the pitch of the game that she had just recently finished a church service where the primary subject was “spiritual warfare” (An epic subject, Mr. Pastor out there, whoever you are!).

She explained that she was taught that the Bible was the Christian’s “sword,” the weapon that the Christian uses to fight spiritual battles.

So if this was a Christian game, what was the game’s “sword?”

My Answer

It was one of those moments where the Holy Spirit said, “Move over, Andrew… I’ll be doing the answering!”

I was up in my head, but my mouth was speaking. I don’t want to sound like I’m smarter than I am, but I will tell you that I wish I could have recorded the answer.

This is my attempt to recollect the answer for you all.

And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—”

– Ephesians 6:17-18

The answer is rooted in the verse above – the Christian’s weapons to battle the very real darkness that comes against them.

Swords, shields, or even guns and nuclear bombs for that matter, are of no use in a spiritual battle. You need to bring your spiritual weapons!

Swords, shields, or even guns and nuclear bombs for that matter, are of no use in a spiritual battle. You need to bring your spiritual weapons!

The verse above actually showcases TWO weapons – I refer to them as the sword and the bow.

 

The Sword

The sword is, as Ephesians says, the “word of God.”

“…the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God…”

Plainly, this means that the Bible is our sword. The words within the Bible have more than enough spiritual power to cut down evil spirits.

In medieval times, if you are ever caught in a battle without a sword, you were an easy target. You might have armor, but the only effective tactic you had is to run!

And you cannot run forever.

The words of the Bible are tied into the Prayer Cards (read more about Prayer Cards here) through thematic flavorful text that boosts the epic feel of each one of those cards. While you do not need to read these words, they are ever present, and ever powerful.

The verses upon the Prayer Cards are the sword of Deliverance.

The Bow

In addition to a sword, you must be equipped with the ability to fight at range!

Going back to medieval times, you trained with one of several weapons that could turn the tide at range: The javelin, the spear, the atlatl, the catapult, and the sling…

But none ever became as famous, nor was more effective at range as an arrow shot from a bow.

Many times in Ephesians 6:18, we miss the other weapon at our disposal: Prayer.

praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit…”

Prayer is our ranged weapon in the spiritual fight against the darkness. We must wield it in order to be effective for others our of reach, or for events that remain out of our view and out of our control.

“The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”

– James 5:16b

Another translation puts it this way:

“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”

We need to be effective and powerful with the use of our ranged weapon, the bow!

The Bow is mirrored in the prayer action of the game. For those of you that have played, you must fight the demons in front of you – you cannot win while demons are on the battlefield! However, the darkness that grows every round will slowly overtake you unless you pray against it.

The Storyboard

I am a big believer in doing things right if you’re going to do it at all, which is why the game trailer for Deliverance needs to blow me away.

I received a vision for a sweet epic intro to the game: A monologue by Michael, the Archangel lamenting the fall of Satan.

This game isn’t some light-hearted Christian family game. It’s dark, real, and deep. And people won’t get that until they see something that changes their perspective.

I will say that there have been many that recollect the old 1979 movie by the same name that features a very ill-fated river rafting trip, playing banjos, and other unfortunate events… sigh.

But after they hear the completed sound clip for the game (as some of you have if you attended Alpha Omega Con!)… They never mention it again, and they take the game in a completely new light.

It’s almost as if to subconsciously say, “Wow, I didn’t realize you were actually serious… This game sounds good!”

Thanks to God’s guidance, the story is as epic as any I have ever seen out there. I have one goal for this trailer: To rival the most epic World of Warcraft cinematic intros I have ever seen!

Except I have to do that on a budget of about 1/1000 the budget of the big guys.

Thankfully, we have a really beautiful and trendy new style – still art with moving details! So much more affordable than 3D animators 🙂

I’ve been working on this game for over two years now, and literally thousands of hours between myself (the gamer, developer, designer, and the visionary), Adam Glass (my graphic artist), Dan Maynard (my concept artist), and my wife (our art director and best play tester ever).

And we are closer than ever to seeing this vision come to reality.

Thanks for following along the journey! If you feel so inclined, please share this blog on social media with one of the buttons lurking near the top of this blog, and if you haven’t yet… be sure to join the e-mail list below for more awesome content!