A game about Censorship, Corruption and Newspapers
The Westport Independent is a censorship simulator taking place in a post-war country, governed by the recently elected Loyalist Party. As the editor of one of the last independent newspapers in the country, your job is to remove and edit the content of your paper, affecting the people’s opinion of both the rebels and the Loyalist government. With an increase of rebel activity and an ever watching government breathing down your neck, whose truth will you print?
- Change the content and meaning of your articles by censoring them to your liking. While you can’t lie, you don’t have to tell the whole truth either.
- Employees with fleshed out character, who will not only react to your actions, but also discuss them with other colleagues.
- Receive letters and messages from public figures, rebel leaders, employees and other characters affected by your actions.
- Adaptive stories where your actions affect the opinions of the people, which affects what happens in the city, which in turn affects the stories you receive.
Awards and recognition
- Biggest surprise at The MIX GDC 2015, IGN
- Part of "Three Cool Surprises From PAX 2015", from Kotaku
- Part of "The Very Best Indie Games of GDC 2015", from Gameinformer
- The Best of GDC 2015, 148 apps
This update is signed with Apple’s latest signing certificate. No new features are included.
Ratings and ReviewsSee All
Thought-provoking to the end, The Westport Independent explores the power of the press by putting you in charge of a fictional newspaper. Amid a tense political climate, a propaganda-pushing government wants you to censor articles as they hit your desk—changing headlines and removing incriminating details. After deciding how to handle each story, you assign it to a transcriber, determine the marketing budget and what makes the front page, and then observe the impact of your choices. Before long, you’re weighing your moral duty to report the truth with how it’ll affect sales, employee happiness, even potential lawsuits. We found the whole process absolutely riveting.
Good Game, But Very Short
Let me get this out of the way: this game is phenomenal. It has a great art style, and great music. But it has a few flaws. First, it doesn't really feel like the choices you make impact the story. I played through this twice, and I got the same ending both times, which leads me to believe that the choices you make in this game don't matter. Second, it's an interactive story, not a game. This "game" tells the story of the rise of the Loyalist Party, and has little to do with the newspapers. You choose what to leave in and what to take out, but the story moves on in the same direction, unless you screw things up along the way. Thirdly, this game is too short. I played this twice, and got about an hour playing time out of it in total. That is a little short for a $5 game. Maybe they will add more stuff, to make this game with buying. I know it is developed by very few people, and that has limits, but a couple more things would have been nice. An endless mode, a longer story, just so it feels like I didn't waste $5 on a short game.
My advice: wait until this game has a few more features, or is possibly a little cheaper, then experience it for yourselves.
Unclear Objectives and Play
I love indie games so I don't regret buying, and the game is fun. However, I have realized after playing through many times that I'm not actually doing anything. At least, it feels like I'm not. There are no visible consequences for my actions other than the government arresting a reporter of mine here and there to teach me a lesson.
I have tried many different play styles, from towing the government line fully (editing out all mentions of rebels, saving government face, and hiding public immorality) to being the shining beacon of rebellion, but I still can't figure out how to "win." I assumed the point was to get all districts ritcheously angry, but alas. It seems impossible no matter what ai publish or redact or how I market my paper.
I do recommend this game though because it's good for killing time, it's relaxed, and I like dystopian narratives.
- Coffee Stain Publishing AB
- 71.4 MB
Requires iOS 6.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.
- Age Rating
- Infrequent/Mild Profanity or Crude Humor
- Infrequent/Mild Mature/Suggestive Themes
- © 2016 Coffee Stain Studios
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