Publication date of the original Japanese article: 2021-11-12 17:49 (JST)
Translated by. Ryuki Ishii
It appears that Red Candle Games’ controversial Taiwanese horror game Devotion is getting a movie adaptation. Acclaimed producer Lieh Lee has recently established a new production studio and announced the company’s production plans, including the aforementioned Devotion. It will be directed by John Hsu, who worked on the 2019 film Detention, which was also a movie adaptation of a Red Candle Games’ title. Lee, too, was involved in the project as a producer. The local press udn遊戲角落 reports.
Devotion is a first-person horror game that depicts the life of a Taiwanese family shadowed by religious belief. Players will explore a nightmarish 80s Taiwan apartment complex, as they witness the demise of a once-happy family. The game itself was well-received by users when it launched in February 2019, but its availability on Steam ended just one week after its release.
The game contained a poster that referenced Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, as “Winnie the Pooh” and ridiculed said politician. This became a huge controversy at the time, and Devotion was censored in China. Devotion‘s Steam page was review bombed by Chinese users and the game’s availability ended shortly after. The offending asset was soon removed, and Red Candle Games apologized, but the damage was already done. They lost their publishers, and the game went dark for a year and a half.
In December of 2020, Red Candle Games announced that they will re-release the game on GOG.com, but GOG decided to cancel it just three hours later by claiming, “After receiving many messages from gamers, we have decided not to list the game in our store.” It wasn’t until March of this year that the studio finally managed to bring the game back by opening their own online store called Red Candle E-Shop. The game and the studio have certainly had their share of ups and downs, to say the least.
Red Candle Games’ previous title Detention was turned into a movie in 2019 (it was not released in mainland China) and a Netflix original series in 2020. And now, Devotion is getting a movie adaptation as well. The movie version of Detention was well-received and became a box office hit (2019’s number one hit film in Taiwan), so it’ll be interesting to see how the new film will turn out, and how the depressing, yet shocking, story of the original will be adapted.