Floor 13, classic DOS-era political conspiracy game, gets a timely update

Originally published at: Floor 13, classic DOS-era political conspiracy game, gets a timely update | Boing Boing

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Um, aren’t we living this daily? I think…

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I actually used to do temp work for DEFRA (which does Agriculture, fisheries, etc.) and it was EXACTLY like Le Carre, but shit (he was fucking bang-on about the nuts & bolts of the machineries of the state, no matter which bit you’re in). There were ‘desks’ - Livestock (where I worked) dealt with the deeply tedious process of checking cow’s passports as farmers rotated them round fields in order to gain subsidies, in a thinly-disguised version of carousel fraud, and the much more exciting Recipes, where they had the details of every edible consumer product in the UK kept in big safes. There was even a Registry dept. where ex-cops and military types in ludicrous uniforms were the Keepers Of The Files and you’d sign order chits and they’d solemnly crank the handles of the movable stacks to find your weird paperwork and deliver it to you on a miniature tea trolley. I had to sign the official secrets act and everything. The lifers who worked there were fucking strange.

I also used to take lots of drugs in the toilets.

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The original’s bleak greyness and unsettling bureaucratic euphemisms for some exceedingly unpleasant undercover work made for a creepy vibe that just increased when the conspiratorial “game within a game” started ramping up.

I wonder how much of this atmosphere will survive an update to modern(ish) graphics. And perhaps they’ll have modified the most annoying feature of the original- its luck-based gameplay, where if the wrong events happened in a row, then there’s no way out, and your employment is brought to a swift close.

As for his other game, Conflict, that one was most notable as an example of “saying the quiet bits out loud” in its setting and plot, rather than anything in its gameplay.

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Agreed - the original was a deeply-disturbing little affair. I was wondering if I had dreamt it because I didn’t know anyone else who ever played it.

So hello fellow conspirator!

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Room 101, the torture chamber in George Orwell's 1984, was named after a conference room at the BBC where Orwell would have to sit through tortuously boring meetings

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I actually used to do temp work for DEFRA (which does Agriculture, fisheries, etc.) and it was EXACTLY like Le Carre, but shit

That makes sense, given that George Smiley himself chairs the “Fishing Rights Committee” in his golden years according to Le Carre.

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As a fan of the original I was excited to see this, but sadly most of the Steam reviews (even from other DOS gaming fans) are very poor. Looks as if the remake has missed the mark…

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