Frequently Asked Questions
Controlling your movement around the world will work by simply tapping or clicking the area of the image you want to move to. Also there will be areas within the image which you can move into in order to investigate - if something interesting is seen, you'll see Jenks examine it and sometimes note it down or, if it's small enough and nobody will miss it, put it into his bag.
When you want to use an object you can scroll through the list of notes (which includes objects) and click one. If the object is of any use, you'll see Jenks use it.
When you meet a character, selecting one of the notes from the list shows Jenks asking the character what they know about that note, phrased in a unique way for each note. So clicking the note 'Kate's Death' would show Jenks asking something like 'What do you know about Kate Vine?' or if it's unknown whether the character knows about Kate or not, he'd phrase it something like 'Did you know Kate Vine?' The character then tells you what they know and their reply is split into bullet points, which are shown when you click that note again.
Now you have their replies, you can ask the character to confirm them. This would be a clip of Jenks saying something like 'You said you knew Kate well?' or 'You went to college with Kate, that right?' and the character replying 'Yes.' Characters just say 'yes' or 'no' to these confirmation questions, but as these are short clips there'll be quite a lot of versions shot, just to break it up and make it feel more natural. The reason for having this confirmation element is so that you can work through replies looking for a contradiction in a natural way, that keeps up the pace. I thought about just going through and picking pairs, but I think it'll feel much more natural and maintain the illusion better this way.
As soon as you pair two contradictory reply points sequentially, you'll then see a new clip of Jenks asking the character to explain themselves (and them replying). After that, new reply points will appear and old ones (the lies) will disappear.
Because the clips are unique to each character, Jenks can phrase the questions appropriately for that character, changing it subtly to fit what's known about them. Also if a character gives you sensitive information that they don't want certain other characters to know about, Jenks will honour that and either phrase the question delicately or not allow you to ask that character at all. For instance, if someone admits to having an affair and asks you not to tell their husband, Jenks honours the request. Usually.
It's been asked whether seeing the same video clips over and over as you move between locations will get repetitive. The answer is that repetition is only noticeable and relevant if you can identify something that repeats. So the trick is avoiding clips that contain elements you can 'lock on' to - the main give away being faces and expressions. Seeing Jenks' movements from behind, when shot properly, doesn't actually get repetitive, because not only does it become much more difficult to 'lock on' to the repetition, it also becomes irrelevant. I've tried this and it's true! It's a trick I'm using throughout the game - repetition is only noticeable if you can lock on to something that clearly repeats. I explain a related concept in the FAQ below.
So because you're mainly clicking either notes or reply points, which appear as short sentences, the graphics in Contradiction are almost entirely limited to clickable text. This means that a transparent overlay of text might be the best solution for 16:9 screens. I'll cross that bridge when I get to it...Last updated:
Dead time is when you're waiting at a location deciding which way to choose, or deciding what question to ask. Audio is looped and will continue throughout, but for the video, it depends where you are.
Locations are shown with nobody in shot, so in the case of interiors in buildings they'll be static shots. When you're outside you may see leaves moving on trees or water moving in a lake - in this case loops will be used. When in an interview situation, loops are used but the shot angles are designed to avoid seeing people's faces. About half of the items you collect are physical objects, so these will be shown, resting on Jenks' bag, while you're choosing the next question. The other half are notes, which will also be shown, written in Jenks' notebook, resting on his bag. Characters can be seen in these shots but out of focus. But it's unlikely, given the pace of the game, that you'll spend much time looking at these shots. The point of contradiction is that you'll be lining up questions in advance while the character is replying, so there'll be little dead time anyway.
This isn't a game in which you'll spend much time standing around wondering what to do. You'll generally be moving around or asking questions at a fair old speed.Last updated:
Contradiction has the potential for a series of games, but the first story centres around an unusual and controversial business training course called Atlas, set up by two cousins. Atlas claims to teach its students unique skills which enable them to become highly successful business men and women, capable of making vast sums of money. Every couple of months, Atlas hold an intensive, two-week training conference. However, during the last conference, Kate Vine, a bright and capable Atlas student, was found dead in a nearby lake. Although the initial investigation suggests it could have been death by misadventure, Jenks is assigned to investigate Atlas.
During the investigation, Jenks discovers that Atlas employ some controversial training techniques, which critics say border on mind control. All current leaders and students deny this and claim it's simply scaremongering by certain students who weren't up to the challenge the course presented. However, following more research, it appears that there was another group who used the same conference facilities as Atlas a few years ago, who were connected to another student death. This group, called Third Eye, were a secretive cult that appeared to have some sort of occultist agenda, with members practicing occultist rituals, their true purpose remaining concealed behind a strictly controlled secrecy policy. They abruptly disappeared following a campaign by locals to rid them from the village and to the best of anyone's knowledge have never returned.
However, what are the secret connections between Third Eye and Atlas? You'll have to wait and see - I'm not giving any more away!Last updated:
There are six featured characters, one detective and a number of incidental characters, both speaking and non-speaking. The crime is being investigated by Inspector Jenks, a quiet but imposing man, who looms over his suspects and intimidates them without effort.
Simon and girlfriend Emma met at college. Now post-graduates, Simon is working nights in a neighbouring village while Emma has started a PhD course.
Simon has a quiet arrogance that he hides with a polite manner. He has secretly come to think that by some sort of cosmic inevitability he is destined for stardom and great financial success, which tends to make his politeness seem false – as if he’s on the verge of saying ‘don’t you know who I am?!’ Simon attends the Atlas business course and has become almost obsessed with it, although – inevitably – he feels he is an undervalued student, who is capable of more. He knows more about Kate than he’s willing to admit, but feels no guilt and believes he is completely innocent. His relationship with Emma has the seeds of an abusive one, with controlling and domineering tendencies already starting to creep in.
In contrast to Simon, Emma is a quiet academic, who has returned to college to start a PhD course. She has many secrets and feels haunted and embarrassed by some of her past mistakes, making her conservative and cautious with her replies – even when there’s actually nothing to hide. She is constantly on the look out for hidden agendas and traps when she’s being questioned, but this is only emotional defensiveness, in part a result of her relationship with Simon. In fact when she’s forced into a confession, she’s relieved to feel unburdened. She knows Simon is bad for her and is seriously worried about what he might do if he found out about her past mistakes, even taking steps to protect herself.
James is a lodger at a farm owned by a bitter, divorced farmer, who leaves James well alone. James enjoys his own company and is seen as a loner by those who know him. His isolation has led to him becoming suspicious of virtually everybody he meets, especially Jenks. He’s condescending and cynical, but this is really a result of his isolation. James has developed a deep, semi-mystical philosophy, which has a surprisingly positive side – he believes strongly in social equality and wants to put the world right. But his isolation and lack of someone to talk to has turned him into a fully-fledged conspiracy theorist. It turns out that he knows little about Atlas, but he knows a lot about a cult called Third Eye who used to use the centre before Atlas and had an eerily similar agenda. James delights in telling you his conspiracy theories about Third Eye, capitalism and the demise of Western civilisation.
Of the two Atlas leaders, Paul is the straight man to Ryan’s comedian. He has a brilliant mind and a background in both science and psychology, but he’s essentially an introverted academic, under the thumb of both Ryan and his wife Rebecca. They call the shots and Paul jumps. In fact both have spotted and exploited Paul’s inherent submissiveness and indecisiveness. Paul’s only moment of madness was a very brief affair with a student on the course. Ever since, Paul has lived with the fear that Rebecca will one day discover what he did and do something drastic. The philosophy the three share leaves little room for forgiveness. Paul’s replies are guarded and he’s prone to stumbling over his words. He sweats at the slightest provocation. He views Jenks with both suspicion and fear.
Rebecca, Paul’s wife, runs the local pub, noted for its live music and drunken games. Rebecca and Paul have been together for ten years and their relationship is based on control and submission – Rebecca is in control, Paul’s in submission. In fact, Paul fears her wrath. Her replies are always clear and decisive, even when the truth is more ambiguous. Ambiguity isn’t something Rebecca appreciates, or, in truth, understands. She runs the pub with a military rule and has a voice loud enough to clear the place with a couple of words – ‘Everybody out!’ People do as she says. She is happy to talk to Jenks and wants the matter cleared up as soon as possible, and can be cynical of his questions if she fails to see their relevance.
Ryan is utterly in love with himself. He’s confident, aloof and naturally patronising, sometimes deliberately but often without realising it. Ryan has had a privileged life. He is privately educated and was given a financial kick start in business – and life – by his wealthy father. He has soared ever since, Atlas being just one in a line of business enterprises, each being successful enough to fund the next. He feels himself to be above moral norms, which he regards as nothing more than rules to keep the masses in check – the masses he doesn’t feel part of. He has created his own rules and morality, much of which has found its way into the ethos of the Atlas business course. He genuinely feels he is broadening students’ minds and freeing them from their unthinking, herd-like and morally conditioned past. He has little time for Jenks or the investigation, or, it would seem, Kate’s death.Last updated:
As long as it can be done cheaply enough, some other languages can be supported in subtitles. The range of languages will depend on costs, basically. But if you're able to offer a translation please let me know!Last updated:
I'm hoping to spend time on making this look as good as possible, which means finding the right locations, lighting them and set dressing them properly. Again this is one of the main reasons for seeking funding - HMI arc lights, location fees and props all cost money! Also please don't judge what it'll look like by the footage in the pitch video, that was shot with no lights and no set dressing, simply because I didn't have the funds to do it properly. This is a bit of a chicken and egg problem as you can see! However, there are ads and promos on my baggycat.com site that hopefully show what's possible with a bit of cash.Last updated:
Don't see the answer to your question? Ask the project creator directly.Ask a question