That Day We Left - A narrative game about the refugee crisis
That Day We Left - A narrative game about the refugee crisis
That Day We Left is a game inspired by the recent Syrian crisis, aiming to portray the terrible journey of immigrants and refugees.
That Day We Left is a game inspired by the recent Syrian crisis, aiming to portray the terrible journey of immigrants and refugees. Read more
That Day We Left is a 3D adventure game that focuses on meaningful choices and immersive narrative. The game aims to provide a realistic picture of the political and humanitarian issue that is the refugee crisis – from a refugee’s point of view.
Combined with resource management akin to survival games, That Day We Left offers a healthy balance of gameplay and storytelling. We’re on Kickstarter because we need your help to create a better game and fully flesh out its concept.
To assure the greatest degree of realism, we base the events that happen in the game on actual situations found in stories reported by refugees. Due to the nature of the topic, we want to present the human aspect of the crisis and depict characters that are fleshed out and believable.
The game allows the player to experience the journey from a refugee’s perspective. You will assume the role of Rashid, the head of a family escaping the horrors of war to seek refuge in Europe. A journey of fears and dreams, regrets and hopes, a devastating experience of pain which often ends in premature death. How far will you go to assure the safety of your family and yourself?
Please note that due to the project’s themes and nature we decided to devote part of our profits from That Day We Left to charity. Our project is indepedent and we have funded its development ourselves until now, but we feel that donating a part of our profits is the right thing to do. We’re currently in contact with several non-profit organizations and searching for the best option.
- Realistic portrayal of a journey of a group of refugees.
- Highly believable and fleshed-out characters.
- Meaningful choices that challenge your resolve.
- Survival-style resource management combined with adventure gameplay.
- Neutral representation of the crisis that refuses to preach or take sides.
Release date: May 2017
Platforms: Windows, Mac
Languages: English, Italian
Realistic portrayal of a journey of a group of refugees
Our main focus is to merge different stories together in order to create a compelling experience capable of delivering a meaningful narrative and constituting a reliable source of information concerning the fate of the refugees.
The player will assume the role of Rashid, the head of his family, and will have to lead a group of people from their home country, ravaged by civil war, to a new home in Europe. We will present the whole journey, starting from the early phases in which the player will have to gather money and supplies, then progressing through all the steps necessary to reach the European continent, enter a foreign country and obtain asylum.
Highly believable and fleshed-out characters
That Day We Left is a game about the human side of the crisis, which necessitates believable and fleshed out characters. Humans are, by definition, a mix of different qualities, and our cast won’t be an exception. To create a believable context and give meaning to the player’s choices, we need interesting characters whose motives are sensible and whose personalities are complex.
We believe that this is the best way to do justice to the issue of the refugees and deliver a satisfying experience. In fact, we think that it’s the only way that will allow us to tell a story without getting involved in matters of politics.
One of the most interesting features in the game will be the character evolution of the family members. The player's actions and choices will not only lead to seeing them injured, sick or dying, but the journey itself will also deeply affect their psyche, distinctly altering their personalities and philosophies. Be careful, because their physical well-being will not be enough if they end up completely shattered on the inside.
Meaningful choices that challenge your resolve
As stated above, giving proper meaning to the player’s decisions is one of our design pillars. Placing choices in a game is not that hard, but framing them within a coherent context and assuring their real impact is quite challenging.
We found a lot of material to work with, and we crafted the story with the specific aim of representing both the hardships of the journey, and the behavior that can be born out of the desperation that accompanies it. The player will experience a slow descent into despair, as the family’s survival will be harder to guarantee with each passing day. This framework will force the player to take hard decisions and walk through a moral grey zone that no longer offers a clear distinction between good and evil.
Survival-style resource management combined with adventure gameplay
That Day We Left is a narrative game, but this doesn’t mean that the player’s agency will be limited to reading endless dialogue. We’ve designed a complex and interesting gameplay layer to support the experience and made sure it merged smoothly with the narrative. The player will not only be able to explore levels and interact with them in a way similar to most graphic adventures, there will also be a survival-style resource management system with profound influence on the entire storyline.
Neutral representation of the crisis that refuses to preach or take sides
That Day We Left is not a game about politics. We won’t represent the refugees as invaders or heroes, we will present them as desperate people fleeing from their country, leaving it to the player to draw her/his own conclusions about the subject matter.
Our characters are neither saints nor villains, just people. And as we all know, a dualistic ethical approach is not enough to fully describe someone. A person is not good or evil. A person is a complex set of emotions, aims, memories and qualities. The player will find characters she/he could gladly befriend in real life, as well as scumbags she/he will only despise, although most of it will depend on the player’s own ethical and political views. But that’s ok, this is how things work for our kind. We do believe in relativism and that is why we aim to shape our story from a neutral point of view.
The TeamInner Void Interactive is an Italian based indie game development studio founded in 2014 by passionate and avid gamers who wanted to create games with a strong emphasis on “choice”.
Our first game, ICY, is a story driven RPG in which the player has to take hard decisions in a post-apocalyptic world. The process of completing and commercially releasing our first game has taught us a lot and has positioned us to improve on all elements of the process for our future projects. This, in conjunction with adding talented new members to our team, has enabled us to undertake this ambitious new project -That Day We Left.
We hope not only to create a compelling game experience, but also an educational and emotional journey with real world implications. Our objective for the game is to help raise awareness about a real and relevant issue and allow the gaming community to become better informed on this topic through an innovative and immersive experience. We believe that video games are a great medium to address serious and relevant issues, and we hope to convey our message in an impactful, sensible, and tasteful way.
Our team is composed of 10 full time professionals and 5 freelancers:
- Nathan Piperno: Game Designer, Writer.
- Fabio Distefano: Writer, QA.
- Mirko Failoni: Lead Artist, 2D Artist.
- Daniel Sohlman: Marketing and PR Guy.
- Giacomo Caneschi: 3D Lead Artist.
- Enrico Cempanari: Producer, Programmer.
- Saverio Di Lazzaro: Programmer.
- Maciej Bogucki: Writer, Editor.
- Veronica Barsotti Magnani: 3D Artist.
- Felix Ostwald: 3D Artist.
- Francesco Della Ragione: 3D Artist.
- Ariel Vittori: UI Designer.
- Gianluca Chiarappa: Producer.
- Edoardo Severo: Composer.
- Luigi Di Guida: Composer.
We have prepared a lot of interesting rewards for you, trying to avoid trivial items and focusing on getting something meaningful for all backers. That's why we are not going to provide more than a single physical edition, as we want it to be something special, and not just a simple DVD box. Here is a detailed list with a full description of all rewards:
- Digital edition: the digital edition of the game includes the game (either on Steam or using a DRM-free solution), its manual and a set of wallpapers. Also, the backer’s name will be featured in the game’s credits.
- Digital Soundtrack: the digital soundtrack of the game both in MP3 and Flac.
- Digital Artbook: the digital artbook of the game in PDF format, full of artwork and concepts from the game and its development process.
- Digital Beta: the possibility of accessing the game’s closed beta phase, in which we will gather feedback and improve the final experience thanks to our backers.
- Physical Edition: the game’s DVD, the physical soundtrack and the physical manual, everything packaged in a wonderful 3-section DVD-pack in order to give you something special for your contribution. Also, any Physical Edition backer will receive the digital contents in order to play the game on its release.
- Deluxe Physical Edition: the same Physical Edition described above, but with all the digital contents up to the Beta tier.
- Personal 3D model in the game: it’s easy! You send us a photo of yourself, and we turn you into a refugee or a volunteer and put you in the game, according to the tier you’ve selected. (NOTE: we reserve the right to change anything not appropriate to the game or its themes.)
- Personal level in the game: you will design a level with us that will appear in the final game and will be visited by Rashid’s family. (NOTE: we reserve the right to change anything not appropriate to the game or its themes.)
What about the shipping? We will ship anywhere in the world for 10 €, while shipping in Italy will cost us only 5 €. Kickstarter will automatically handle the shipping costs when you select a physical tier.
We’ve been developing That Day We Left for months and we feel ready to present it on Kickstarter. Kickstarter is an incredible platform where our project can gather support, feedback and more resources for development. With your help, we can create a better game in all its aspects: even a single month of extended development can be crucial to dramatically improve That Day We Left.
We will also be able to directly communicate with all our backers and find out what they think about the game while it is under development, allowing us to gather precious feedback that will help us shape a more compelling experience. Direct feedback from real gamers is extremely important, as it gives us an impression of what different people expect from the game and lets us make sure that we’re doing everything right.
The more awareness we can raise, the more people will be able to help us. The bigger the community we can create, the better the game will be.
Risks and challenges
Developing That Day We Left won't be easy, but, thanks to our experience and the new people that have joined our team, we know how to deliver it. We’ve already worked on a game, ICY, which was funded on Indiegogo, and we managed to release it with only a single month of delay.
We have already done a lot of work on That Day We Left, and the risk of never seeing its release is very much non-existent. The real challenge for us is to deliver the best game we can. To do so, we’ll need to work hard to go beyond the boundaries of a simple game with a “nice story”, and instead aim to give you a compelling and satisfying experience.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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