CopQuest: Bob's First Day project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound
$711 pledged of $20,000 goal
backers
By Evie Powell, Ph. D.
$711 pledged of $20,000 goal
backers

About

Update: New video shows speech in CopQuest (bottom of page)Update:  New Kickstarter Video (embedded in title image)

About CopQuest
About CopQuest

Verge of Brilliance LLC is a Seattle-based game company that’s working on a socially conscious video game about police brutality in America. In this game, we take real life accounts of police brutality and undue escalation and put those stories in a fictional video game for people to play through from the perspective of the cop. The goal is to create a safe space for healthy dialog on the subject to occur and hopefully inspire dialog that leads to positive change.

gathering information for a mission
gathering information for a mission

Our mission is to make a game that promotes thoughtful discussion on the issue of police brutality. We also seek to facilitate connections to initiatives that similarly seek to raise awareness and end police brutality in America.

too long; didn't read
too long; didn't read
    In case you read nothing else on this page, here is the project in a nutshell!  
  • It’s a game about police brutality in America 
  •  Game narrative is based on real incidents that have been reported in current events 
  •  Text-based adventure game with modern twist. 
  •  Features a language understanding model trained by many play-testers 
  •  We've built game art. The game has been featured as a museum exhibit in Seattle. 
  •  As it exists today, the game is too short. We want to make a bigger, better, and more polished version and release on many platforms.
Only the guilty get nervous like that...
Only the guilty get nervous like that...
Why is he running?!
Why is he running?!
Meet the team
Meet the team
Genre
Genre

CopQuest is heavily influenced by old school game play of text-based adventures like King's Quest (or my personal favorite, Peasant’s Quest) but our text parsing engine takes it a few steps further with our own natural language intent-model. This allows the game to understand many of the various natural forms of written communication people use while playing. As long as you type your commands in the form of instructions for Officer Bob, we are going to do all we can to make sure that Officer Bob understands you. We employ data analytics that run in the background of our game that track the many ways people try to communicate in-game so the more people play the better our model gets!

Your contributions
Your contributions

We are seeking funding for a feature length version of the game with this Kickstarter. A free exhibit-style version of the game is already available on our website. The problem is that the game is too small and barely touches on the potential depth and reach of our message.

We anticipate that meeting our goal will gain us an additional 2 to 3 months of extra development time so that we can make a longer game with more endings, more missions, more art, more music, and optimize the game to play nicely on mobile platforms. Stretch goals will all be centered on hitting a broader audience by deploying on more platforms and localizing to different languages. 

Budget for CopQuest
Budget for CopQuest
How To Play
How To Play

CopQuest is a text-based adventure game where the player makes use of an advanced text-parsing engine to interact with the observed game elements on the screen. The player controls the protagonist by commanding him to interact with his environment, for example, “try looking at the desk” or “speak with the chief”. The player assumes the role of Officer Bob Allegedly conscience, a rookie learning the ropes on his first day as a police officer.   (yes, his full name is Bob Allegedly)

Meet Officer Bob. He might be new but the system he works for is well established.
Meet Officer Bob. He might be new but the system he works for is well established.

We encourage people to try many ways of dealing with the problems, not just ways things have gone down in the media. 

Go Play the Game!
Go Play the Game!

  Do you want to play the demo of the game? Check it out! And please leave us comments. Let us know what you like and what you don’t! And please… please discuss the subject matter…with civility!

PLAY DEMO HERE - www.vergeofbrilliance.com/copquestgame 

How successful we are at reaching others with our message is up to you! Please donate to our kickstarter and share with as many people as you can so we can meet our stretch goals!
How successful we are at reaching others with our message is up to you! Please donate to our kickstarter and share with as many people as you can so we can meet our stretch goals!

Rewards

One of our many rewards includes a physical and/or digital copy of our game soundtrack!  Only available on Kickstarter!  Check out some of the music in our game below.
One of our many rewards includes a physical and/or digital copy of our game soundtrack! Only available on Kickstarter! Check out some of the music in our game below.
History - CopQuest and the team
History - CopQuest and the team

Early CopQuest

CopQuest was the brain-child of Havilah Farnsworth and Evie Powell upon the start of the 8bit History Game Jam that was organized by Maxwell Bennet and Seattle's Academy of Interactive Entertainment.  Impacted by recent reports of policing incidents in media, we were challenged to create a game themed around a global social issue. We felt compelled to make a game about what the underprivileged go through when dealing with law enforcement. 

Fueled initially by bafflement, despair, and outrage we started building a game that recreated many recent events that had been archived on YouTube.  We built our game doing our best to tell a complete story about what we saw happening around us, and what we found was deeply rooted in the fabric of law enforcement and society in general.  We delved and what we found was even more troubling than we initially considered. American law enforcement today is stuck, tied to a set of implicit biases, policies, and traditions that make it hard for good-hearted well-meaning people to make decisions that don’t end in escalation or violence. It’s not enough to just get the bad-apples out and to hold them accountable; we have to think bigger. Like our beloved Officer Bob, American cops are players in a much larger game. We can’t just change the players; we need to change the game.

Our Company 

Evie founded Verge of Brilliance in 2014 with one goal in mind: be brilliant. The company mission is simple but ambitious; use games to change people and use people to change games. 

The Verge of Brilliance team hard at work.
The Verge of Brilliance team hard at work.

We started our first year by learning our team and establishing our development pipeline. During our first year we developed several contract titles including 80’s Mania Wrestling, Escape From Clowntown, and Paper Goalie. Now confident that we have what it takes as a team to make high quality game experiences, we are now directing our focus on our own internal brilliance, working on games that truly exemplify what it means to be brilliant and change the world through games

Play the game and be brutal! I mean... he was probably up to no good anyway.
Play the game and be brutal! I mean... he was probably up to no good anyway.

 "The shooting of Walter Scott became available on YouTube the day before our scheduled game jam... We pulled up the video and watched it and, of course, there were many emotions that erupted in the office that day. We were ranting: outraged and baffled. We laughed. You know, laughing that incredulous laughter that really doesn't indicate humor as much as it indicates confusion and despair. We laughed at how overwhelming evidence had to be on the side of law enforcement before any kind of justice or accountability could be seen. We were then given the theme of our game jam event: social change." -Evie

CopQuest Intro Cut Scene

 project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound
 project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

Risks and challenges

Backers may find the youth of our game company concerning. Our core team, however, is very familiar with shipping game titles and software / hardware in general. Evie was on the team that shipped Xbox One and drove the release of several initial Xbox Speech features. Havilah, a member of 50 cubes studio before joining Verge, worked on Award Winning “Mall World” for Facebook.

As a team, we’ve worked on several contract projects in our short time as a company including 80’s Mania Wrestling (now available on iOS and Android) and “Escape From ClownTown” to be available November 2015 on iOS and Android.

Our team is committed to making brilliant games and getting them into the hands of as many players as possible. Games for social change are a space that traditional publishers and investors are unfamiliar with. Despite this, we haven't given up on giving this game and its message the attention it deserves. We know we can tell a good story and tell it in a way the reaches a lot of people, but we need your help to do so.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    ADVOCATE - Receive the BETA reward for backing early. Limited supply so act quickly!

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    ALLY - Free install of the final paid version of the game on iOS, Android, or Steam, or any console in which it was released due to meeting our goal or stretch goal.

    One of five collectable CopQuest digital wallpapers.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    13 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    FRIEND - Invite to December beta version of CopQuest for mobile. Available on iOS and Android.

    All five collectable CopQuest digital wallpapers

    Also includes ALLY

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    11 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    ACTIVIST - Family and Friends pack of the game on iOS, Android AND Steam (you choose combination of 5 codes for game downloads. You can gift these codes to whomever you want)

    Digital download of the CopQuest soundtrack.

    Also includes FRIEND

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    5 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    ALTRUIST - Physical and digital copy of the CopQuest soundtrack. Your name or company name added in the special thanks section of the games credits.

    *company name subject to approval.

    Also includes ACTIVIST

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Limited 2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    DEFENDER - Send us a picture of yourself and 5 things you say and we make you a character in the game.

    *picture and text subject to approval

    Also includes ALTRUIST

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $3,000 or more About $3,000

    CHAMPION - Creative Director, Evie Powell, will fly to a university location in the continental US of your choosing to speak on any of the following subjects:
    Games for Social Change, Making CopQuest, Workshop on making games, What I've learned about Police Brutality

    Other topics will be considered but are subject to approval.

    Also includes DEFENDER

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (30 days)