The Quiet Year – Preordering
13/10/2012 Design Diary, Promotion 0 Comments
There’s a project that I’ve been working on since January of 2011. Maybe it existed as a scrap idea in my journals before that, but it’s January 2011 that I really began working and thinking about it in earnest.
January is always a hard month for me. I experience a lot of sadness and self-doubt in Winter. My approach to managing those feelings that year was to spend the time traveling, ensuring that I was surrounded by a varied cast of friends and didn’t have the space to feel lonely. So community and place and seasons were all in the forefront of my mind.
The game that was born then is called The Quiet Year. It’s a game about the struggles of a community, after the collapse of civilization. Play revolves around a map that gets more detailed through play. There’s a deck of cards that represent the weeks in a year, and playing the game involves moving through that year. It’s a game with strained communication and hard choices. I think it’s really fun and beautiful.
Someone once said that ‘indie publishers’ often design games to work through issues or ideas in their heads. This is certainly true of me. The Quiet Year is a reflection on what’s beautiful about communities, how communities can destroy themselves, how we are limited by seasons but never lose our agency to them, and how we are intrinsically tied to our surroundings. It incorporates both the good and the bad with regards to my experiences working with nonprofits and other organizations.
If you’re looking for a post-apocalyptic game that’s not about war or violence, but is instead about community and recovery, then I strongly urge you to check it out. There’s a preorder campaign up on IndieGoGo for it, which ends at the end of October.