“No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?” ― George Orwell, Animal Farm
London, United Kingdom, 2nd November 2020 — As the world awaits the results of this week’s US election, Indie Development Collective The Dairymen and Nerial – creators of the BAFTA-nominated Reigns series – today announced that their game, George Orwell’s Animal Farm, is coming to PC and Mobile on December 10th.
August marked seventy-five years since the novel was published in 1945, and still today, Orwell’s subtle yet razor-sharp commentary on the corrupting nature of power arguably remains as fresh and relevant as ever.
Animal Farm – which enjoys the full endorsement of the Orwell Estate – will be a narrative, choice-based adventure game that puts the player at the centre of an allegorical revolution. By choosing which of the animals’ wishes they follow – and who is ignored or sidelined – gamers will influence the critical events that define the fate of the farm. Players must devise strategies to balance resources, defend the farm, and keep the animal population happy.
Imre Jele, Project Founder:
“I have long wanted to explore how, through video gaming, we could design an experience which immerses the player in Orwell’s vision. As the project has come to fruition in 2020 it has felt increasingly vital to bring Orwell’s study of inequity, power and control to a new audience. As I watch world events unfold – Brexit, Trump, Putin, Orban, Erdogan – and see numerous leaders use tactics from the populist, nationalist playbook: it sometimes feels like Animal Farm is not fiction, but reality.“
Emily Short, Writer:
“Animal Farm tends to be remembered for how its powerful characters destroy the truth through gaslighting, hypocrisy, corruption and greed – all distressingly recognisable to people living through the political events of 2020. But the book also says a lot about why altruistic characters support horrible outcomes, and how values like hard work, cooperation, and loyalty can be warped in obedience to unsound goals. Video games are powerful at telling stories about systems and enabling ‘what if?’ questions. My goal was to capture Orwell’s very relevant observations in a form that players can explore.”
Key features of George Orwell’s Animal Farm video game are:
Pick Your Own Adventure
- Cultivate, subvert, or sacrifice the different animals who live on Manor Farm and see their different political strategies play out.
- Guide Manor Farm through seven years of Animalism. Can the player avoid its manipulation and the descent into decadence?
- Manage the affairs and feelings of Manor Farm’s animals as the fortunes of the farm evolve.
- Fill your handbook with information about each animal and log events.
Strategically manage the resources and defence of Manor Farm
- Rally against the two-legged enemy: human beings.
- Prepare for battle by building the Farm’s defences and increasing resources production, including building the Windmill.
- Idyllic springs, sweet summers, golden autumns and bitter winters must all be navigated in each passing year as Animalism marches on.
Multiple Endings and unlockable achievements
- Choose your political machinations: Surveillance, Reeducation or Bloodbaths.
- Reach up to 6 destinies and find 8 different endings.
- Complete all 48 achievements in the Farm’s handbook.
- Bring in new creatures to the Republic of Animals, and open up new possibilities for the direction of the Farm.
The game will be narrated by Abubakar Salim who amongst other roles played Bayek in Assassin’s Creed: Origins. His performance was directed by Kate Saxon, who has worked on a series of high profile video games including Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture, Alien: Isolation, The Witcher 2 & 3 and others.
The indie developer collective consists of The Dairymen (Andy Payne founder of Just Flight, AppyNation and Imre Jele founder of Bossa Studios), and Nerial, the creators of the BAFTA-nominated Reigns series, who bring their unrivalled skills in streamlined and powerful storytelling to Animal Farm.
About The Dairymen
The Dairymen consists of The Dairymen (Andy Payne founder of Just Flight, AppyNation and Imre Jele founder of Bossa Studios), and is an anagram of Andy and Imre. The two-person team was founded to make Animal Farm into a videogame for our times and introduce the novel and George Orwell to new generations of fans.
Nerial, best known for the Reigns series of games, is an award-winning indie game studio founded by Francois Alliot in 2013. Nerial makes deep narrative experiences with simple game mechanics. All art has been created by Helen O’Dell, with code by Ludwik Bacmaga. The team is working with Emily Short, known for her interactive fiction, narrative design, and conversation modelling. Emily is currently the Creative Director at Failbetter Games. The original music is composed by Murugan Thiruchelvam.
About George Orwell’s Animal Farm
George Orwell’s fable of revolutionary farm animals – the steadfast horses Boxer and Clover, the opportunistic pigs Snowball and Napoleon, and the deafening choir of sheep – who overthrow their elitist human master only to find themselves subject to a new authority, is one of the most famous warnings ever written.
Rejected by such eminent publishing figures as Victor Gollancz, Jonathan Cape and T.S. Eliot due to its daringly open criticism of Stalin, Animal Farm was published to great acclaim by Martin Secker and Warburg on 17 August 1945. One reviewer wrote ‘In a hundred years’ time perhaps Animal Farm … may simply be a fairy story: today it is a fairy story with a good deal of point.’
Seventy-five years since its first publication, Orwell’s immortal satire remains an unparalleled masterpiece and more relevant than ever.