July 7, 2020

Headliner: Novinews

Headliner: NoviNews

Hopefully the initial hyperbolic and angry social media posts has died down from the UK General Election now and we can talk about something more wholesome and less divisive...Fake News.
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by Badger Nimahson

Hopefully the initial hyperbolic and angry social media posts has died down from the UK General Election now and we can talk about something more wholesome and less divisive…Fake News.

OK, this might look like I am kicking the hornets nest here but Headliner: Novinews is a MUST PLAY game for anyone who posts about fake news or gets into arguments about it online.

Headliner: Novinews is a jarring and thought provoking game that not only makes you feel genuinely uncomfortable with the consequences of your in game decisions but will also have you looking at your social media in a different light.

Headliner: Novinews

Story

You are the new Headliner for Novinews, the national press in Novistan. Each day it is up to you to decide which headlines make the news and fill your quota.

Headliner Novinews is quite short has each play through only lasts for 14 days. Meaning it can be completed in around an hour or so. This isn’t really an issue because Headliner: Novinews is designed to be played over and over to see how different agendas change the timeline.

Currently, I have just completed my 10th play through and am still finding new events, fallout and reactions. Headliner: Novinews is one of the most beautifully crafted games I have ever come across.

Headliner: Novinews

Gameplay

Gameplay in Headliner: Novinews is extremely simple! Pick which headlines make the news that day then interact with people on your walk home. That is essentially the game play in a nutshell.

Where Headliner: Novinews is briliant is the walk home on a night. The news pieces you decided to put out have a massive effect on the world around you.

Have you been pushing a strong national security message? You now have fleets of drones and and swat teams on the streets. Pushing an anti immigration/nationalist agenda? The overheard conversations in the street are now openly racist.

It is jarring, unsettling and thought provoking how your choice of headlines can have massive, life changing impacts upon the world.

Headliner: Novinews

Graphics

Headliner: Novinews uses a mix of pixelated graphics whilst walking throughout the city that really brings a dystopian feel. Sometimes (dependant on your actions of course) walking through the city can really give you a suffocating sense of hopelessness. it is a testament to the developers how they manage to make events onscreen effect you deeply and personally.

Conversations with the handful of characters you interact with within the game use a graphic novel style artwork. Your choices in these dialogues have a profoundly affect on your relationships and can put in motion wildly differing results.

Headliner: Novinews

Final Thoughts

It has been a hell of a long time since I have played a game that has effected me so strongly emotionally and mentally. Even outside of the game I am looking at my personal Facebook and Twitter feeds in a different light.

The fact that my review copy of Headliner: Novinews arrived a few days before the UK general Election only served to really heighten the message and strengthen the impact of the different timelines.

Headliner: Novinews is not only a great game to play that I would recommend to most people I know it is absolutely perfect in every way.

The graphics fit the game to a tee. The soundtrack inflicts a deep sense of oppression and hopelessness. The game play is so simple that it allows the story and its impact stand front and centre.

There is absolute no aspect of Headliner: Novinews that I can criticise or feel needs upgrading. Unbound Creations have done an amazing job and left me with a burning desire to play the rest of the games in their library.

Headliner: Novinews is the easiest game I have ever had to score

Final Score – 10/10