Today at EGX I got to get my hands on The Occupation, the upcoming title from White Paper Games. The Occupation is a first-person mystery game set in 1987. After an event leaves several people dead, this event is used as a catalyst to pass what is known as the Union Act, which deigns to threaten the civil liberties of the British people. How exactly this Union Act will affect the denizens of the British Isles is so far unknown, but that is a mystery that you, as a whistleblowing reporter, will have to uncover and blow wide open.
The Occupation plays akin to games like Dishonored and Deus Ex, in that there are multiple pathways through the game. There is no combat, however, instead you will have to rely on stealth and sneaky passages like vents and crawlspaces to navigate the buildings and offices you find yourself in. In the 30 minutes, I spent with the game I got to see the intro where you are contacted by a mysterious informant who tells you about the Union Act then I went skulking around some offices whilst on my way to meet some lady to discuss the Act. I wasted no time in finding secret passages and sneaking into restricted areas to root out as much information as I could. As it turns out I got so caught up in exploring I didn’t root out much at all. I didn’t see too much of what the game had to offer in terms of the story but got a good feel of the navigation and stealth elements which was quite fun. You can interact with and manipulate a lot of things around the environment as well as pick up a plethora of items, how many of these things actually have a use or are just there to be toyed with remains to be seen.
I only got to spend 30 minutes with the game but in the full game players will have 4 hours in which to unravel the mystery and try and stop the Union Act and that’s real time too, all-time in the game is 1:1, so an hour in real life is an hour in the game. After my time playing the game I got to chat with one of the developers, Pete, who gave me some more interesting information about the game. In addition to the real-time mechanic, there are a few in-game radio stations that play originally scored 80’s themed & classical music and these stations play in real time too. The Occupation is set in a fictional English town but it is also set in the same universe as White Papers Games’ previous title Ether One. During the course of the game, you will be contacted by a few different people with different agendas, one of them no doubt being the mysterious contact from the start of the game, and you can choose to work with either of them or none of them and just do your own thing. And lastly, it seems there may be some situations where you will have to make questionable decisions all in the name of the greater good but how those decisions will pan out, that’s up to you.
The Occupation is currently set for release on PC sometime in early 2018