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  • Writer's pictureTiago Massochin

Unveiling South America: The Genesis of Under Choices Game Development

Updated: Jun 14, 2023

Hello everyone. I'm thrilled to share with you another exciting week in the game development of Under Choices. This week, we took a significant step forward by developing a compelling game pitch based on our extensive research into the phenomenon of doomscrolling and its role in escalating extremism in Brazil.

Crowd at a protest against the government in Brazil with one person holding a sign with the Nazi swastika.
Nazi swastika in recent manifestation in Brazil

Conceptualizing Under Choices

Our research revealed a fascinating interplay between government manipulation and social media algorithms, leading to an amplification of sensationalist and often false narratives. This manipulation isn't a new phenomenon. It reminded us of the 1964 military dictatorship in Brazil, which used similar tactics to control public sentiment. This historical parallel led us to a thought-provoking question: What if South America were under the control of a totalitarian government today?

A banner with the game's logo and elements like a smartphone and several cartoon eyes.
Under Choices Pitch Banner

This question became the foundation for Under Choices, our strategy puzzle game set in an alternative reality. In this satirical world, the totalitarian government of USAR controls South America, and social media, especially LifeNote, is the primary source of information for the populace. As the player, you step into the shoes of Luta Lakraram, a government official responsible for deciding which posts get boosted on the social network. Each choice you make shapes the future of USAR.

Two yellow and green stars overlapping with the USAR logo at the top, forming a coat of arms.
USAR Coat of Arms

Pitching the Game

With a clear concept in mind, the challenge was to present this game pitch in a way that would not only pique interest but also inspire others to join the project. I focused on delivering a concise and engaging presentation, covering key aspects like gameplay, audience, platform, story, mechanics, and scope. As a graphic designer, I also put a lot of thought into the visual and auditory aspects of the presentation to create an immersive narrative experience right from the start.

The response was overwhelmingly positive. It was gratifying to see my peers express interest in the idea and offer to contribute to its creation.

Looking Ahead

Inspired by games like Papers, Please; Headliner: NoviNews; Mind Scanners and Not For Broadcast, Under Choices will tackle political issues in a satirical and humorous way. We aim to develop the game over a year with a team of five developers.

As a Brazilian, I find it incredibly exciting to work on a topic that combines elements of cyberpunk with Latin American culture. The journey so far has been fascinating, and I'm eager to see how the project evolves.

Stay tuned for more updates as we delve deeper into the development of Under Choices. Your feedback and engagement are invaluable to us, and we look forward to continuing this dialogue with you.

Signing off,

Zizo Mass

Under Choices Proposal
Download PDF • 623KB
Design Challenge presentation
Download PDF • 1.07MB


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