Saturday, 20 October 2018

AWARD WINNERS!


We won an award!

In case you didn’t see us shouting about it all over social media: Off Grid won the Indiecator Award at Sweden Game Conference!

It came with the giant cheque of our dreams (literally - a HUGE check!) and a very pretty bouquet of flowers!  Rich was in Sweden speaking and demoing the game, and was the lucky one to receive the award on behalf of the team. We might have to stage reinactments next week so that all of us can feel the glory of being handed a giant cheque! 
Rich recieving the Indiecator Award for Off Grid at Sweden Game Conference last night!
Rich recieving the Indiecator Award for Off Grid at Sweden Game Conference!
All of us still have huge grins on our faces today.  Thanks Sweden Game Conference - you've totally made our week!

Concept art, anyone?

We want to give you a little look at the beginning of Off Grid's visual style and whet your appetite for the 'Making Of' book!

Off Grid was destined to be low poly from the start. It’s an aesthetic style that we like and that is achievable for an indie team.

Here’s one of our first low poly environment tests:
An early low poly environment test for Off Grid
An early low poly environment test for Off Grid
Another view of the early low poly environment test.
Another view of the early low poly environment test.
We also knew from the get-go that we wanted to create a world where data was visualised and tangible. Not immediately visible with the naked eye, but with the help of augmented-reality glasses.

This is was our first pass at what a 'data view' layer might look like:
An early concept of how 'data view' might appear.
An early concept of how 'data view' might appear.
We knew we were getting somewhere when we hit on this idea of using stealth mechanics to 'hide' your data.

Next up was working out what the overarching objectives were for the meta game. We wanted to create a dark, dull, dystopian near future, that could be liberated with a new free internet (free as in open, not as in cost). This led to thinking through what the liberating of zones or areas of the world with 'mesh network nodes’ might look like.
Here's one of our first imaginings of what completing a level by installing a mesh network node might look like.
Here's one of our first imaginings of what completing a level by installing a mesh network node might look like.

It's fun to look back and see how far the game has come, what has carried on, continued through, or has been left behind.  

If you like this sort of thing, there will be copious amounts of concept art, sketches, notes, photos, and loads of other behind-the-scenes exclusive content in the official 'The Making Of Off Grid' book! 

Secure your own copy by backing at the NAMESPACE reward level or above!  If you've already backed, remember you can easily up your pledge, too!

Funding update:

WE ARE 70% FUNDED!  

Yesss!  What a relief it is to say that!  We've been steadily climbing the £14k mountain this week, and it's possible we have hit refresh more times than we care to admit over the past few days. 

We have had the best time sharing Off Grid with the world through this campaign so far.  Nineteen days remain!  A LOT can happen in 19 days.

If you have yet to back, please do! If you’re thinking about backing, please do! If you keep meaning to tell your friends to back, please do!

THANK YOU, BACKERS!



The Off Grid Team

p.s. If you're near London on today, go check out Inside Intel!  It's a very cool contemporary art exhibition with the theme of surveillance running through it, put on by the Centre for Investigative Journalism.  It's FREE, and open all of Saturday. 

If you haven’t already - be sure to wishlist Off Grid on Steam - each wishlist makes a big difference to us, and we really appreciate your support!

Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Almost 70% funded in 7 days!

We’ve been Kickstarting for a week and we’re ALMOST 70% funded!  Nearly 70% in seven days is absolutely astounding. Thank you all SO much!

It’s been excellent to hear from backers and hugely exciting to get feedback from those of you that have played the demo.  We’ve gotten our first Let’s Plays, and overall, we are feeling pretty good about week one!

Now for week two! 

There’s a few fun things going on this week - Rich is Sweden for the Sweden Games Conference. The conference theme is ‘Games and Politics: Reflections on power, play & changing perspectives'... and we fit the bill!   Rich was invited to speak AND Off Grid was selected to be on the show floor as part of Indiecator - a showcase dedicated to indie games!



If you’re in London - Off Grid is also on show as part of Inside Intel - an exhibition of contemporary artworks, design objects and digital assets brought together to investigate the confusion sewn by an increasingly partisan media, sinister new technologies and the culture of official secrecy and widespread surveillance. The exhibition forms part of the 2018 Centre for Investigative Journalism’s Logan Symposium: Conspiracy.  If the theme of our game is what’s piqued your interest - go check it out as it looks seriously cool!  Plus it’s free!



We want to keep momentum for the campaign going - and we need you to help.  Please continue to share, share, share.  Remember, it’s an all-or-nothing campaign, so we must hit our target in order to recieve the funding and fulfil the rewards.  Keep on sharing, shouting, and spreading the word for us!    

Thanks again for an incredible first week, backers!  

The Off Grid Team

P.S.  Have you joined our Discord?  Check it out:  http://discordapp.com/invite/NDEVwBJ

If you haven’t already - be sure to wishlist Off Grid on Steam - each wishlist makes a big difference to us, and we really appreciate your support!

Friday, 12 October 2018

What makes Off Grid unique?!



What a week this has been: a huuuuuge thanks to you all!  We’re nearly 60% funded - and THAT is a great way to go into the weekend.

In case you missed it, Rich did a little stream yesterday from the back of an LA cab - it is full of big gushy thank yous to everyone! The video isn’t top quality, but the heartfelt thanks definitely are.

He’s out there as he’s a speaker at IndieCade today! He’s talking about modding, digital activism, and why as a game developer, you probably have less to say about a subject than your audience does.
 
So without further ado: let’s talk about what makes Off Grid so unique!   



Off Grid is first and foremost a fun yet challenging hacking game that opens a dialogue about the real world issues of data privacy, information security, and the mass surveillance state that surrounds us all. It has a compelling narrative and a sweet father-daughter relationship at its core.

It’s played with a controller, and we promise, no previous hacking knowledge is required. ;)
But if you wish to take it further, there’s so much more to it!

Replay & Community Input  

We want Off Grid to continue on as a piece of work that the community can shape along with us in order to make it everything it can be. It is an open stealth game with multiple solutions to levels and a complex AI, creating missions that are fun to play through many times over.

PLUS, the game is extensively moddable and the speed and ease with which players and modders can turn around a level means that interesting content and stories should be produced at a speed and scale that will outstrip anything we could dream of as an indie development team!

This is something we want to expand on here...

The 'South Park' of Hacking Games  

Off Grid has dark humour at its centre, and the state of this crazy googling, Orwellian hot mess of a world we live in is ripe for modders to exploit humorous interpretations. Off Grid is much like South Park in that important themes are wrapped up in tongue-in-cheek humour. Like South Park’s speedy turnaround of episodes to approach topical issues, Off Grid’s modding tools make it possible to produce a new level in a matter of days in order to ape news and current events.

The incredible importance and relevance of the issues around hacking and data privacy in everyday life mean that there is a mine of inspiration available for topical mods to be created and for streamers to play and comment on.



In the video above, we took a real life vulnerability and made it as a mod in the game to prove the tools could used to tell stories of real life hacks.  In this instance, we took Scott Helme's talk from Steelcon16 about the vulnerabilities of the Nissan Leaf, and made a hackable car that carried the same weakness:  a publicly displayed VIN was used to access the app that controls the car's aircon, battery, locks, and could get the car's location data.

The possibilities are endless!  We look forward to the game being released and seeing the first official mods come back. 

If this sounds up your street and you have yet you back Off Grid, please consider doing so now!  We’d love to have you as a backer.

To all of you that have backed and/or shared this campaign so far: we can’t say thank you enough - it’s been an absolutely incredible few days!

THANK YOU!

The Off Grid Team

P.S. Don’t forget: please share this, retweet us, post the link wherever you hang out online, and tell your friends! THANK YOU!

If you haven’t already - be sure to wishlist Off Grid on Steam - each wishlist makes a big difference to us, and we really appreciate your support!

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

OFF GRID IS OVER 50% FUNDED IN 24 HOURS!


WOW.  You backers gave us a seriously wild ride yesterday:  35% funded in 5 hours, 40% funded in 7 hours, AND THEN we hit the 50% mark within 21 hours!   

It feels seriously good to be 50% funded within the first 24 hours of the campaign!  Your enthusiasm and support has blown us away.  THANK YOU!



For this first update, we wanted to give you a little background on the inspiration for Off Grid.  As you might be aware, it’s been in the works for quite some time! 

The game was initially inspired when Rich heard Eben Moglen speak about net neutrality and data privacy at the INET conference in 2011.  It struck a cord, and the seed for Off Grid was planted. 

Soon after, Rich teamed up with Pontus, and together they built the first prototype of Off Grid.  The goal was to get people thinking about data.  The root notion was to try and physicalize it -  to make data into something manipulable, something that people would be able to go and play with and see as a thing you can walk around.

But the concept was still a little out there:  this was early 2013, before Snowden and NSA revelations.  

Fast forward to June 2013, and the first ever public unveiling of Off Grid (in a livestreamed interview at Etoo London) just happened to fall nearly 64 years to the day after the publishing of George Orwell's book, 1984, and the same week that Edward Snowden made his first leak.

And all of a sudden, it clicked.

Prior to the first revelations, it was a struggle to explain to anyone why what we were doing with Off Grid was important or would be interesting.  Then, almost overnight, Snowden gave everyone the vocabulary to talk about it.  People understood.

Now, years on, the revelations have just kept rolling, and everyone is much more aware of the issues surrounding data privacy and mass surveillance.    

It is the perfect time for a game like Off Grid:  people are tuned into the effects of data mining and the impact that bad laws around digital rights have on real life. Help us get Off Grid funded, and THEN help us shape the game so we can all try to picture a less dystopian digital tomorrow.

Let’s keep the momentum going - tell your friends!!


THANK YOU! 

The Off Grid Team 

P.S. If you want to chat to us a bit more informally, we regularly hang out in our studio discord - we’d love to see you in there!  Join us:  https://discordapp.com/invite/NDEVwBJ


If you haven’t already - be sure to wishlist Off Grid on Steam - each wishlist makes a big difference to us, and we really appreciate your support!

Tuesday, 9 October 2018

OFF GRID IS LIVE ON KICKSTARTER!

The moment we've all been waiting for:  Off Grid is now LIVE ON KICKSTARTER!

That means you now have the opportunity to:

-PLAY A FREE DEMO OF OFF GRID
-Secure your copy from as little as £8 (the SUPER EARLY BIRD deal is a steal!)
-Get your name or handle in the game
-Help shape the game via our FIRST ACCESS program (back at the PENTESTER level)
-Snag some official OFF GRID merch!



We are SO excited to bring you Off Grid!   To play the demo, visit the kickstarter campaign page and follow the link to the demo!

Help us make noise! 

Here's all the links you need: 


Website: http://offgridthegame.com/

DevBlog:  https://offgridthegame.blogspot.com/

Steam:  https://store.steampowered.com/app/526720/Off_Grid/

Kickstarter:  http://offgridthegame.com/kickstarter


Tweet suggestions: 


Support OFF GRID:  A game about data privacy and mass surveillance.

Launching on #kickstarter today with playable demo!
http://offgridthegame.com/kickstarter
#offgridthegame

OFF GRID: A stealth hacking adventure where data is your most powerful weapon.
LIVE ON KICKSTARTER TODAY!
http://offgridthegame.com/kickstarter
#offgridthegame

Hack like you have to.  Game the system.  Don't get caught - your daughter needs you.
Support @OffGridTheGame on Kickstarter TODAY!  LIVE AT 4PM BST!
http://offgridthegame.com/kickstarter
#offgridthegame



Thank you!

The Off Grid Team

If you haven’t already - be sure to
wishlist Off Grid on Steam - each wishlist makes a big difference to us, and we really appreciate your support!