Orwell: Ignorance Is Strength launches final episode

The third and final episode of dystopian surveillance game Orwell: Ignorance Is Strength launched today, completing the follow-up to 2016’s Orwell: Keeping an Eye On You. As before, this series puts players in charge of an oppressive state’s wide-ranging surveillance software to pry into people’s lives, investigate them and their connections, and try to figure out what’s going on – and what you want the official record to say is going on. Ah, what the hey, I’m sure you’ll end up with your head in a box of rats either way, may as well try to do something nice for someone, yeah?

Our John reviewed the first episode and it all went downhill from him after rejecting the game’s premise:

“The silly takes the form of the Orwell system, a means of government spying where they give day-one recruits access to unimaginably powerful spying equipment (just knowing someone’s email address means you can immediately read their incoming and outgoing mail, for instance), but those same recruits have no access to Google. Your handler, meanwhile, isn’t allowed access to all these materials, but only the information you send her. The rationale that the first game used was something to do with prevention of invasions of privacy by government officials. Like I say, silly. As you try to find connections between people involved in potentially anti-government situations, you unearth websites and blogs and faux-Twitter accounts (‘Blabber’, here), but only by stumbling upon references to them in the previous item. It’s a bizarre and nonsensical way to go about investigating an individual, but not nearly as daft as the means by which you communicate your discoveries.”

It’s just a game; you should really just relax. But while John isn’t so keen on this, I’ve heard other people digging season 2. What say you, privacy-pryers?

Oh! If you don’t mind a little technonense in your surveillance, you might enjoy the short free puzzle game Photobomb. I’m still surprised no one has jacked that ace idea for a bigger game.

Orwell: Ignorance Is Strength is out now for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It costs £7.19/€9.99/$9.99 on Steam and GOG. That gets you the whole season.

5 Comments

  1. TrenchFoot says:

    From John’s take it looks like following Twitter discussion about Russia is funnier.

  2. parsley says:

    I know John said “There’s a decent chance that the elements introduced in Chapters 2 and 3 (March 8th and 22nd) will elaborate this into something far more gripping and involved” — what’s the verdict? Does anyone think those chapters DID? I liked the first game, but not enough to go ending-hunting, and I’m curious about this one.

  3. pookie191 says:

    Finally released the last chapter.. awesome I’ll sit down and play the game now

  4. Premium User Badge

    subdog says:

    I really enjoyed chapter 1. The mission had compelling stakes- find a missing secret agent, all of the important data chunks seemed reasonably justified, and the story made sense.

    In episode 2, it all fell apart. The mission literally becomes “destroy two innocent people before a guy posts a mean blog about the president”. Important datachunks are buried under a sea of banal nonsense (it is absolutely critical that you investigate a Magic the Gathering tournament), “there’s a clue here” flags randomly never clear, and important plot points and identities get spoiled before you ever actually uncover them. And on top of that, you’re given a timer that counts down with each pointless clue you find.

    I don’t have high hopes for episode 3, but maybe they’ll turn it around.

  5. Gennuy_T_ says:

    The second episode is weak, yes. But I still very much enjoy this game. Very unique and fun. Please keep doing this game. If possible, please combine Orwell Keep an eye on you with Orwell Ignorance is strength. Many feature in the second game i want to see in the first game as well

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