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The Westport Independent is a censorship simulator about the last weeks on an independent newspaper which is to be dismantled according to a new government bill. You play an editor in charge of choosing what will be printed in the paper, making sure that the content is nice and proper according to the government guidelines. With rebellions against the government rising slowly amongst the public, whose truth will you print?

It’s an interesting concept, that plays a little like Papers Please, with the whole game played from a desk.  You’re charged with sorting out which facts get reported from stories or even if the stories get printed at all, with your choices directly influencing how much the governments loyalists suspect you and how the public views the rebels.  Ultimately these decisions affect the ending of the game, and the future of your country.

The prototype was made for Ludlum GameJam #29, so it’s pretty short, with a full playthough taking less than 5 minutes, but it’s an interesting concept and certainly makes you think about your decisions.  A full version is now in the works which will feature a fully fleshed out management options such as balancing the books and bribing officials, as well as an overhauled graphics engine and higher resolution visuals (while still retaining its distinct pixel art look).

Play the prototype, Free

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    So, is “narrative heavy paperwork simulator” going to become a genre now? Because, that could be interesting…
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