Author Archives: anninyn

About anninyn

Anninyn lives and works in the UK, though she writes in a world of her own. Raised on a steady diet of sci-fi, intellectualism and political thinking by hippies, she looks at modern life through a somewhat-...unique... lens. She is obsessed with the apocalypse, and can be reached at anninyn@incaseofsurvival.com for all apocalypse-based inquiries. She is working on her first novel. You can find out about her and her other work through her website http://cbblanchard.com/

Nineworlds Apocalypse!

Well, I’m back from NineWorlds Geekfest, and I can’t think of a group I’d rather survive the apocalypse with.

What a wonderful experience NineWorlds was.

My panels went brilliantly, the other panellists were interesting and had wonderful perspectives, and our audience was clever, invested and of course, absolutely wonderful. The Ragnarok! panel did reveal just how many people are willing to resort to cannibalism though…

Pictures were taken of me on the panels but they’ve not surfaced yet.

The Ragnarok! panel was quite nerve-wracking, what with being on stage in front of 200 people with actual experts and people like Laurie Penny. The Disability panel came to the conclusion that come the Apocalypse, we would win and be in charge, which was a nice change.

Speaking of Laurie Penny, she was wonderful on the Mad Max panel, which I am very glad I got into. The queue was huge, and the panel could probably have done with being in one of the larger rooms.

Oh and I found a few post-apocalyptic cosplays, one from a personal friend of mine – which comes first.

sian vault suit

She wore this wonderful Fallout Vault Suit. Amazing

Next is this wonderful Furiosa cosplay which is spot-on.

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And while not strictly post-apocalyptic, I’d feel wrong if I didn’t show you this amazing Tiny Tina costume.

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So I did end up knitting

Some time ago, back when we updated regularly, I promised I would learn to knit. Knitting, I proclaimed, was an excellent post-apocalyptic skill, and one that would also make me some post-apocalyptic money.

(not real world money. No-one is willing to pay what it’s worth).

Well, I learned. I’m at a reasonable level of skill now. I’ve made a jumper and a vest, and I can do lace and cables.  And I still maintain that knitting is an excellent post-apocalyptic skill to gain.

But tell you what. So are all the other fibrecrafts.

Spinning, with a drop spindle or a wheel. You can make your own yarn, out of pretty much any animal fibre. Even plant fibres

Drop spindle with wool

Drop spindle with wool (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

including nettles. Meaning as long as you have some sheep, maybe a goat or two, and some nettle patches around your compound, you won’t have to rely on your scavengers finding the last good wool. I can spin using a drop spindle and am slowly making less awful looking yarn.

Weaving. Faster than knitting, and creates different kinds of fabrics. Great, wonderful. Can’t do this yet, but I am looking into learning.

Crochet. Like knitting but done with a hook instead. Better for larger projects like blankets and stuff. I’m not any good at this, so I plan to befriend at least one crocheter so I can force them into post-apocalyptic blanket-based slavery.

See, currently my plan is to basically have a super-defended fabric and clothing store. Oh, it sounds silly, but remember how flimsy and useless modern clothing is made to be. It’ll tear, wear out, rot. And then I’ll be there. With lovely, season-appropriate, knitted or woven goods.

And I’ll take all your valuables in exchange, thanks.

So, if you want to survive, maybe learn to knit, or crochet, or weave, or spin, or any number of old-fashioned life skills that are now hobbies. I can’t promise anything, but if you’re quick by the time the apocalypse comes you could have a place with me.

 

The dangers of exhaustion

One of the biggest dangers to you come the post-apocalypse will be your own body and its needs. You are not a computer game character, or a movie character, able to go days, maybe weeks with only a morsel of food and an hour of sleep on a filthy mattress. You need more than that. And exhaustion may be your killer.

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I’m a Nineworlds panelist!

I can confirm that I will be speaking on not one, but TWO apocalyptic panels at Nineworlds Geekfest in London.

Nineworlds geekfest is a fan convention dedicated to inclusivity and accessibility, and I have been wanting to go since it started up, so this is a great thing for me to be doing.

On the saturday I will be talking about apocalyptic survival plans, and on the sunday I will be talking about disability in the post-apocalypse. Both subjects are of a great interest to me, and I look forward to discussing them with my other panelists and our audience.

If you’ve not got your Nineworlds tickets yet, you can order them here. It’s not just me you’ll get to see – the program hasn’t been released yet but I can promise a lot of fun stuff.

Hope to see you there!

Nineworlds runs from the 7-9th of August this year.

E3 Bethesda showcase did NOT answer the most important Fallout 4 questions.

Sure, the showcase told us a lot. Fallout 4 is in a lot of ways a completely different game from 3 and NV. The wasteland is wide and varied, the crafting has been completely overhauled to create a hopefully satisfying and robust experience, and I personally will have a chance to build my own post-apocalyptic settlement, which is basically all I’ve ever wanted to do since I was a small child.

Also, you get a super-cool pipboy – yes AN ACTUAL PIPBOY – if you preorder the special edition of Fallout4.

Oh, and Fallout 4 comes out nine days before my 30th birthday, so this is basically the best year ever.

But I was watching that showcase like a hawk, and unless I missed something our most important question about Fallout 4 was not answered.

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A slightly unhinged letter to Bethesda, regarding Fallout 4

Here are some random thoughts, theories, desires and wishes relating to Fallout 4, in no particular order.

  • OK, we get a dog right? The video shows a dog. If I don’t actually get a dog in game I will be sad.
  • Do we actually get to visit that house in the announcement video? It looks like it had some loot in it. I like loot.
  • OK, so, like, that flying ship. Do we get to fly it? Or is it cut scene set dressing or something? I want to fly it, or at least loot it.
  • Related to the dog, can the dog die? I won’t take it with me if the dog can die. In F03 I never took anyone but Fawkes because they were so fragile. I liked NV a lot more because if you are a wuss like me and play it on lower difficulties the followers don’t die they just pass out.
  • How robust is the looting? How much random wasteland crap can I fit into my backpack? Can I make the dog carry it all?
  • I really really want there to be a ton of easter eggs and references. Can you do that, Bethesda? Can you?
  • will you please stop putting shitty loot in high level locked rooms and safes. In like, all your games, forever.
  • If you haven’t already got the hint my main priorities are taking everything that’s not nailed down and having a dog friend.
  • It’s in Boston, yeah? I don’t know anything about Boston. Does Boston get snow? I think it does. WILL WE HAVE SNOW IS WHAT I AM ASKING I KINDA WANT RADIOACTIVE SNOW except I don’t because it sounds terrible for looting
  • please don’t fuck this up i love these games
  • FALLOUT 4 FALLOUT 4 FALLOUT 4 OMG
  • I am glad no-one was there to see me watching the video because I squealed and actually threw my arms up and cheered when we got to dun duuuh DUUUUH
  • LOOK, ok, I know it’s never gonna happen but I kind of want a fallout set in England and I have some good ideas to float if you want to hit me up
  • WHAT IS THE PLOT
  • can you please release a stripped-down version of the character generator on your website so that I can play with it a bit I don’t think you understand how important it is that I spend 2 hours creating the perfect character face for someone I will only see in VATS and killcams
  • RELEASE DATE PLEASE

  • dog

    DOOOOGGGG

Signed: a fan

FALLOUT 4! War, War never changes.

So, it’s time. No more hoaxing, no more lying, just this video.

Fallout 4 has been officially announced for next gen consoles and PC. We’ve been waiting for this for what seems like forever (7 years since Fallout 3, about 4 or 5 since New Vegas), and now we have actual confirmation from Bethesda.

My rule of ‘Don’t trust ANYTHING til you see it on Bethesda’s official sites’ paid off.

Now, we know very little about Fallout 4 from this time, but here’s what your writer has guessed from the video.

  • Fallout 4 is set in Boston, as fans previously speculated
  • The tech level is higher, with flying ships and awesome robots
  • Graphically, the design of a lot of the stuff is more similar to 1 and 2
  • You get a dog
  • DOG DOG DOG

Now, readers, why not guess wildly in the comments. It’s a safe place for all your theories, no matter how canon-unfriendly.

Just remember, keep your expectations a tiny bit lower than that. No game will EVER live up to the one in your head.

And from now on, this blog is All Fallout, All the time. Except when it’s not.

The Worst place for a Post-Apocalyptic Home

Post-apocalypse you’re going to need somewhere to live. You’ll want somewhere fairly secure, with access to land where you can grow food, and a lot of space for your growing community. But what you don’t want is one of these death traps.

 

Here are the worst places to try and build your new post-apocalyptic home.

 

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Why you should be listening to Miracle of Sound

Miracle of Sound is the brainchild of Gavin Dunne. Dunne writes songs about games. It sounds simple, and maybe a bit silly, but Gavin Dunne has the enviable ability to capture the emotional feel of a video game in his music while never outright borrowing the games music.

And yes, this counts as apocalyptic, because Miracle of Sound has done music for some of the best post-apocalyptic video games that there are.

This includes The Best of Us, a song for Naughty Dog‘s The Last of Us. The Best of Us is a slow-building, sad song that captures the bleakness and tragedy of the game.

He’s also covered Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas with Beauty Bleak, a song that for me, perfectly captures the Capital Wasteland

Wasteland Soul

And Take a Trip to Vegas, a song which includes cheeky little nods to the glitchiness of Fallout: New Vegas.

Other apocalyptic games he’s honored with a song include Metro Last Light and The Walking Dead


They aren’t just songs that gamers will love. They are songs that are excellent in their own right. And of course, if you are a gamer they have the added wonder of being brilliant songs about things you love.

You can buy Miracle of Sound albums from Bandcamp, and if you like the ones I’ve shown you, you totally should.

Review: The Girl with All The Gifts by M.R. Carey

The girl with all the giftsEveryone and their mother is reading The Girl With All The Gifts, and that is how it should be.

Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class.

When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite. But they don’t laugh.

Melanie is a very special girl.

 

It’s hard to review this without spoiling the various reveals. A smart reader will figure things out fairly early on in the book, but the discovery process is still part of it.

Enough to say that M.R. Carey has created a wonderful, unique take on a tired old concept. The Girl With All The Gifts is a heartbreaking novel, in places. The characters are real, and believable. Melanie herself is a lovely main character to spend time with.

We also spend time in the heads of the other characters. This could have spoiled the book, but Carey has the skill of writing genuinely different POV without ever confusing the reader.

The ending is right, and natural. It could never have ended any other way, but it still comes as a surprise. The whole way through The Girl With All The Gifts, we are asked to challenge our attitudes to humanity, and to ‘monsters’ and the ending makes it happen perfectly.

Read this book.

Mental Illness in the Post-Apocalypse

Panic-attack

Panic-attack (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hi there. I am a crazy person. My mental illness impacts every part of my life. Specifically, I am a person with severe depression and a panic disorder. It’s possible (undiagnosed, but confirmed as very likely by a psychiatrist) that I have Borderline Personality Disorder. I am medicated in order to control this, taking a regular dose of Citalopram, and I am in therapy.

Obviously, none of these things will be available to me post-apocalypse. This could be a problem.

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I Survived A Zombie Apocalypse

Zombie Walk in Edmonton

Zombie Walk in Edmonton (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

BBC Three are looking for applicants for a new reality show called I Survived a Zombie Apocalypse.

Zombie fanatics and fitness enthusiasts should apply to  zombies@tigeraspect.co.uk for an application form. Applicants must be able to attend auditions in the UK.

Now, personally, I think zombies are a little old now – overplayed. They’re the least likely apocalypse, and everyone has added them to everything in a cynical attempt to hit the zeitgeist. But, I may be alone in this opinion, as they still seem to be popular.

With that in mind, I can see I Survived A Zombie Apocalypse being much enjoyed by a lot of people (yes, of COURSE I’ll watch it and report on it for you lovely folk) and the people who take part may even gain a small amount of reality TV fame – names in the papers, speculation about their love life, that sort of thing.

BBC Three are yet to release details about what challenges you’ll have to face in I Survived a Zombie Apocalypse, but it’s bound to be the typical combination of physical challenges along with social challenges – living with a group of people you’ll find it easy to hate. So, good practice for the post-apocalypse, then.