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The Curfew, an interactive story about a dystopian UK, is now online

Illustration for article titled The Curfew, an interactive story about a dystopian UK, is now online

Looking to kill time with an old-school point-and-click adventure? Kieron Gillen, the comics writer behind Phonogram and the upcoming X-series Generation Hope, has penned a free interactive fiction game, The Curfew, which is set in an authoritarian Britain circa 2027.

Illustration for article titled The Curfew, an interactive story about a dystopian UK, is now online

The game, which was made by Channel 4 and Littleloud studio, takes place after a failed nuclear detonation in London brings the pro-security Shepherd Party into power. The Shepherd Party implements a nationwide curfew at 9 PM. Your character is on the run from the police for clandestine reasons and must take refuge in a safe house with other misfits. Here's the game's backstory in a mock informational film for the Shepherd Party and a character testimonial.

Overall, the game is nifty and has strains of Orwell and V for Vendetta that should appeal to fans of the UK dystopia genre. Also, the character acting occasionally veers towards the melodramatic, but I find such hamminess weirdly endearing. It brings back fond memories of old film footage games for the Sega CD, namely Night Trap.

[Via Bleeding Cool]

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So, if everyone except the police (and criminals) are locked in their homes from 9 PM to 6 AM, doesn't that mean the great British public (Evening, all) are losing 10 potentially productive hours?

We see curfews fairly often in dystopian fiction, and it always seems off to me, that that would, theoretically, imply that all the factories and shipyards and other sources of industry would be closed down for 10 hours every day. You'd think, especially on an island like Britain, that you'd want to get the most bang for your population, but dystopias rarely seem to really allow for a night shift.

Seems to me a little socialized industry could make a very efficient use of all 24 hours without sacrificing much of the "security" you get from the curfew. Government run commutes picking up the whole night shift in buses seems like a good way to handle it. Someone doesn't get on the GovBus, BB'll know about it and set about making sure that person isn't a threat.

Sure, you might wind up with a sort of classist system where it's much easier for the day shifters to find time for their errands in the couple hours they have between quittin' time and curfew time, whereas the night-shifters would be stuck grocery shopping and whatever else they have to do in whatever hours of daylight (pre-shift or post-shift, their choice) they can stay awake for. And the day shifters would probably have a much easier time sleeping at night when everyone's under curfew or at work than the night-shifters would have sleeping during the day when everyone's doing who knows what. Sure, the pale, groggy night-shifters walking around early in the morning or late in the evening would be pretty readily identifiable from the sun-exposed, well-rested people you'd see out and about during the day, but since when is a little class-resentment a bad thing in a dystopia?