Sell Out Vault 8

A Blog about Villainy, Entertainment and Shameless Self Promotion.

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Valhalla2

Valhalla by Ari Bach-


The premier novel from the mastermind behind The Snail Factory has been published by Harmony Ink Press!

Valhalla-

Violet MacRae is one of the aimless millions crowding northern Scotland. In the year 2330, where war is obsolete and only brilliant minds are valued, she emerges into adulthood with more brawn than brains and a propensity for violence. People dismiss her as a relic, but world peace is more fragile than they know.

In Valhalla, a clandestine base hidden in an icy ravine, Violet connects with a group of outcasts just like her. There, she learns the skills she needs to keep the world safe from genetically enhanced criminals and traitors who threaten the first friends she’s ever known. She also meets Wulfgar Kray, a genius gang leader who knows her better than she knows herself and who would conquer the world to capture her.

Branded from childhood as a useless barbarian, Violet is about to learn the world needs her exactly as she is.

You can get your copy of the book from any of these fine sellers:
Barnes and Noble Nook
Barnes and Noble Paperback
Amazon Kindle
Amazon Paperback
Publisher eBook
Publisher Paperback

Pick up one and explore this futuristic world of humor, action, espionage and awesomeness! And be sure to check out Ari's blog Facts I Just Made Up, for even more fun and hilarity.

- False Prophet

Play Our Free Video Game!-


Twisty's Asylum Escapades, the 3D single-player, action/adventure video game, is now publicly available as a free open beta that you can download now. In it, you play as the Twisted Jenius mascot Twisty, and try to escape the bizarre mental asylum that you have been locked away within. As you can imagine, it features lots of dark, insane fun!

Since this is an open beta, it is not a final release and we will be updating and improving the game in the future. But we wanted to give you, our loyal legions, a chance to get your hands on it and to have some fun with it. I hope that you'll find it to be a very interesting experience and of course any feedback that you have is welcome and encouraged (we have a whole forum section for it).

The two overlords of Twisted Jenius have been working on this game for over 4 years now and we're quite proud of it. I'd also like to thank Gyps Fulvus for providing the game's eerie soundtrack. Definitely go check out more of his sinister selections.

I'm sure that I could sit here writing to you about the game all night, but I think you'd rather just go and play it!

- False Prophet

TAESiteLettering

Happy Halloween!-


In celebration of the most blatantly evil night of the year, I am pleased to announce that you will get your first chance to play the independent video game that the two overlords of Twisted Jenius have created. I'm of course referring to Twisty's Asylum Escapades, and the first version of the game will be publicly available on December 18.

The game will be released to everyone in the form of a free downloadable beta version. I'd like to point out the fact that this is a beta release means that the game is not entirely done, but it is close enough that we can finally show you what we've been working on and present a "soft release" for any fans of the site that are interested in getting their hands on it. Of course we will continue to improve and update the game well after we get out this first beta version, and we are very excited to see what you think. Prepare yourselves, Twisty is coming...

- False Prophet

partyhattwisty06

6th Anniversary and new episodes of the Snail Factory!-


Today is the 6th Anniversary of TwistedJenius.com! As part of the diabolical festivities, we are introducing a few changes to the site. The most significant of these are some improvements to our Welcome page, including a new interactive image menu.

But it doesn't stop there. Today also marks the triumphant return of the Snail Factory. The surreal, often dark and always hilarious webcomic is back for a second season. For those of you who are new to the factory, you may find that it goes well beyond your average webcomic, with a unique art style and ongoing plot, as well as the wickedly funny jokes contained within each episode. If you haven't read the first 85 so far, I suggest that you do. After all, you wouldn't want to get behind, would you?

Artist/author of the Snail Factory and friend of the site Ari Bach, has some great things in store for the comic, so you should definitely keep up with it. And for those of you who are already fans of the comic, be sure to come back and check it out each week; with new episodes going up every Monday!

- False Prophet

Invocations

Invocations-


Gyps Fulvus, a talented musician and friend of the site has just released Invocations; a follow-up to his 2010 CD Nocturnes For Nightmares. This newest work provides a harsher, more action oriented and intense listening experience than his previous album. It uses more guitars and faster song tempos; leading to a grittier, in-your-face style of sound.

Continuing with the Gyps Fulvus theme, this new offering is designed to guide the listener on an even deeper, darker journey into the unknown dimensions of the mind. It still contains elements of the kind of haunting atmosphere that we've come to expect from this artist.

Invocations contains 12 tracks, including a four part, 30 minute opus titled "Walpurgisnacht". Here is the track listing:

  1. Eclipse (Solar)
  2. Neurokinesis
  3. The Veil of Zorya
  4. Lascivious Malice
  5. Masochistic Foreplay
  6. A Call to Ishtar
  7. Eclipse (Lunar)
  8. Walpurgisnacht, I
  9. Walpurgisnacht, II
  10. Walpurgisnacht, III
  11. Walpurgisnacht, IV
  12. Empathy

Invocations is available at Amazon and iTunes to download, or you can grab yourself a physical copy of the CD at CDBABY.

Now even more music to perfectly spoil a good night's sleep!

- False Prophet

Being "Down to Earth"-


The phrase "down to earth" usually has a negative connotation for me. When someone suggests that being down to earth is a positive trait in others, what they are usually saying is that they don't like people who are too different, or even worse, too much better than they are. It's a condemnation of something that they perceive as being "alien" or being a threat to their general state of mediocrity. It means that you can't be perceived as being too creative, too successful or in any other way too different from the person who desires that down to earth quality. You can't be weirder or better than they are.

Similarly, I also don't like the phrase "don't forget where you came from"; or perhaps a better example is the version that is often used by celebrities and musicians "I don't forget where I came from". Statements like that kind of make you wonder, if the place that they came from was so good that they want to psychologically hold onto it like that, then why did they leave it in the first place? Why didn't they just stay in their old humble lives and forget about achieving success? And if they did desire something better, then why not completely discard "where they came from", in favor of a superior lifestyle that they created for themselves?

Of course the answer is simple, their old lives weren't that good, but that kind of reverence for mediocrity has become a social virtue and elitism is practically a crime. When a successful person claims that they haven't forgotten where they came from, it's a way of connecting with their humble past and essentially telling the mediocre majority that they're still one of them; at least in spirit. The sickening truth is that the masses (collectively) have a lot of social and cultural power, not much individual ability or even real ambition and a disproportionate sense of entitlement. This combination of factors has created an environment in which being too much better or even different than the average Joe is considered completely unacceptable.

Ironically, it's within many of the various rebellious or counter cultures that this type of thing is least tolerated. And exhibiting any kind of true superiority is the greatest taboo. Equality is the law of the land and it seems to be enforced by a disturbing percentage of the population.

It's important to note that this isn't about going around and claiming to be better than others. Often, if people just perceive you as being disconnected or otherwise unapproachable, they will assume that you must think that you are better than them, and this can be more disturbing to them than if you had just gone up to them and blatantly told them that you are superior. It's true that actions speak louder than words and the only thing worse than telling someone that you are in some way superior to them, is being able to show them by providing evidence of it. Many people will absolutely hate you for that.

It's really too bad that this kind of mediocrity is so encouraged. I can't help but think that holding the idea of "being down to earth" as a social virtue impedes a lot of creativity. To put it bluntly, most people who could be accurately described as being "very down to earth" are pretty dull (and people who are weird or significant in some way, by definition, are usually more interesting). Not to mention that this attitude limits many opportunities for injecting entertainment and showmanship into daily life.

Slogans like "down to earth", "don't forget where you came from" or even the classic "keeping it real", are often treated as positive ideas, but in reality they only help to encourage a boring and restrictive culture. Personally, I'd prefer to keep my life as awesomely unreal as possible.

- False Prophet

odd-fish

Odd-Fish-


Earlier this week, the webcomic Odd-Fish featured a guest strip by none other than the artist who is also responsible for Twisted Jenius's own regular webcomic, The Snail Factory.

Odd-Fish is an enjoyably strange online comic starring an Octopus named Lovecraft and a Puffer-fish named Howard. It also features many other undersea occupants, eccentric marine life and their entertaining and sometimes bizarre adventures. The comic's humor ranges from using very basic puns, to witty pop culture references, to surprisingly intelligent jokes pertaining to marine biology and even a fair bit of dark comedy (and you know how we like that!).

It's also worth noting that the art is pretty sharp looking as well. The comic's creator, NobbyNobody, does a pretty good job with everything and it has a reasonably good sized archives section for you to go through; and even a book. Go check it out! But watch out for the zebras.

- False Prophet

How Does Capitalism Lend Itself to Greed?-


"What kind of society isn't structured on greed? The problem of social organization is how to set up an arrangement under which greed will do the least harm; capitalism is that kind of a system."
      - Milton Friedman

We get a lot of people coming to this site searching for the answers to specific questions. One of the more recent questions that we got is "How does capitalism lend itself to greed?" I'll try to give you a relatively quick answer to this.

Most people harbor some level of greed within them, this is just human nature. And it's not a bad thing. In fact, greed can be a very productive tool. It's a positive emotion that helps to motivate people. It's certainly more positive than fear or pain, which is another means of motivating people (slavery). One aspect of capitalism is that it uses people's natural greed, ambition and desire for reward to promote progress. It's very much in sync with the way that humans tend to do things and it works with that human greed, instead of trying to repress it.

Unlike other economic systems such as communism, capitalism doesn't restrict how much money a person can potentially make, assuming that they have the ability and the desire to make it. Basically, capitalism allows people to have the option to exercise their greed. It rewards that kind of ambition and provides the possibility for someone to become wealthier or more successful than they already are. Naturally, many people try to take advantage of this opportunity that capitalism provides. You can call it being greedy, ambitious or just trying to improve one's lifestyle, but it all just comes down to wanting something better.

"Why despite evil associated with capitalism it is considered to be the best option?"

Though a bit oddly phrased, this is a related question that we got. First I will state that capitalism is not perfect and that there is no such thing as a perfect economic system; everything has flaws and drawbacks. But the reason that capitalism is considered the best option, is simply because it is.

Many of the people who go around condemning the "evils" of capitalism don't seem to understand the largely positive impact that it has had on society and human progress. As pointed out above, people are greedy by nature and they want rewards for their work. Capitalism provides them with that motivation and as a result, encourages them to put out the effort to innovate and keep pressing forward. If people can't make a larger amount of money or gain any greater level of success for their work, then they won't put in the effort to do it.

It's important to remember that the affects of capitalism are so widespread and all encompassing that it can be very difficult to see sometimes, but it affects everything and life would be much harder without it.

The Twentieth Century introduced an unprecedented level of progress in many fields of human endeavor and much of this has to do with capitalism. So many of the technological advances that we enjoy today, including the computer that you are reading this off of and the software that it is running, are all due to someone wanting to make a better life for themselves and therefore were willing to put in the time and effort it took to create a better product to sell to us. The same could be said for medical advances as well. The capitalist system and the social environment that it creates, is one of the contributing factors to people living longer and more comfortable lives.

And of course capitalism encourages competition among different businesses and by doing so, ultimately helps to provide better products for the rest of us. If someone thinks they have a better way of doing things that provides more value to the public, they're free to try it under a capitalist system. Their reward for putting in that time and effort is winning customers. If they weren't able to make money like that, then why would they bother to do it?

Capitalism provides plenty of room for people to succeed or fail based on their own abilities. It allows for the possibility for the poor to rise up and become wealthy. But this also means that not everyone will have an equal level of success and this seems to be many people's biggest problem with capitalism. The real issue that many of the critics of capitalism don't seem to want to confront is the simple fact that humans themselves are not equal. Not everyone can accomplish things or do things at the same level as others. This means that some people will naturally do better than others and capitalism reflects this inherent inequality. Trying to force equality on naturally unequal organisms (people) usually means that everyone suffers.

However, the interesting thing is that although some people have much greater success than others under a capitalist system, everyone tends to do better in general. For instance, here in the U.S., even many people who are classified as poor by the U.S. Census Bureau still have things like cars or trucks, satellite or cable TVs, refrigerators and air conditioning (not to mention "necessities" like running water and electricity). Though not perfect, when it comes to living a free, comfortable life, capitalism is the best option that we currently have.

- False Prophet

Valhalla

Valhalla eBook-


Valhalla, the premier novel by our very own Snail Factory creator Ari Bach, is now available as an eBook! It's truly an entertaining read and I highly recommend it. Here's a synopsis:

The year is 2230 and of the millions of people crowding northern Scotland, there are none so aimless as Violet MacRae. In a world where war has gone obsolete and only brilliant minds are valued, she's emerging into adulthood with more brawn than brains and a propensity for violence. People might dismiss her as a relic, but world peace is more fragile than they know. Only an underground of outcasts just like Violet keep it from falling apart. Valhalla is the story of her induction into that underground, where she'll learn the craft and face genetically enhanced criminals, traitors from within and more. A story of action and spycraft, futuristic settings and weaponry, romance and satirical wit; you should really read it!

The eBook is available through Amazon and Lulu. Go have a look!

- False Prophet

One_Hell_of_a_Christmas

One Hell of a Christmas! (Music)-


In keeping with our tradition of applying a dark bent to the holiday season, I'm going to recommend a festive seasonal soundtrack for those of you who are tired of the standard Christmas music that typically bombards us during this time of the year.

One Hell of a Christmas! Metal For the Yuletide Season Volume II is a new album that features 8 old time Christmas standards that have been ripped apart and re-done in a Heavy Metal fashion.

In addition, it also comes with two completely original tracks, including the delightfully wicked and highly enjoyable "Krampus!"; a song about everyone's favorite holiday devil of punishment. And it's about time that Krampus was given his due, Santa Claus and that Jesus fellow have been hogging all of the good tunes for way too long.

Tracklisting:

  1. I Saw Mommy Tickle Santa Claus
  2. Up on the Housetop
  3. Bah, Humbug! (original)
  4. White Christmas (Doom and Gloom edition)
  5. Winter Wonderland
  6. Sleigh Ride
  7. Krampus! (original)
  8. Twelve Days of Christmas
  9. Have Yourself a Very Naughty Christmas
  10. Auld Lang Syne

One Hell of a Christmas! Metal For the Yuletide Season Volume II is available for download on Amazon MP3 and iTunes. Yule get a kick out of it!

- False Prophet

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