An Interactive Political Thriller – Interview with the Developer of The Occupation

You may have heard of White Paper Games; they’re a small England-based game studio responsible for the adventure Ether One, which was a gorgeous first person game about restoring the memories of a dementia patient. In their new game, The Occupation, you play as a journalist and whistleblower in England during the 1980s; in the wake of a terrorist attack, a new law- The Union Act- has been drafted, and it seems as though it will curtail the civil liberties of the population in exchange for a measure of safety. As a journalist, it’s your job to report on it- what will be your narrative? That’s for you to decide in The Occupation; the game runs in real-time, meaning that whether you sit still or you’re actively involved in the game, the world of the game will just continue to move around you- characters will interact and do things, and what you do with them will affect the game’s outcome.

I had the opportunity to talk with Pete Bottomley, lead developer of The Occupation and co-founder of White Paper Games; embedded above is a twenty minute version of our interview with Mr. Bottomley; an extended version of the interview is currently being edited- keep an eye out for it if you’d like a more in-depth version of our conversation. The thing that he told me about his upcoming game that excited me the most is the way that it’ll handle politics- instead of telling players what to think about the events and legislature that they’re reporting on, The Occupation will simply present the information to players and let them form their own ideas.

What do you think of The Occupation? Are you looking forward to playing it? Would you like to see more games tackle politics in this way? Sound off below or hit us up and follow @1RuleBeCool on Twitter for more game news, previews and interviews.

UPDATE: The long version of our interview is now available:

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