Inspired by the largest intelligence leak in US history.
Top Secret is a curious game currently in development by UK designer James Long. An email based work of interactive fiction, the player is employed by the NSA to investigate a mystery connected to the real world leak of confidential documents by Edward Snowden. The game will include actual messages sent by Snowden to journalists and an investigation of the methods used to cover their tracks.
Played out in real-time over a period of many days using an email client, players will target characters for surveillance, follow leads, and decipher messages in a non-linear, branching narrative. The game proceeds based on the player's replies to message, with choices said to have significant consequences and the developer claiming that a single playthrough will only expose a fraction of the total content. As an option, Top Secret will even support PGP encryption for an added level of realism.
A playable demo has been made available through the developer's website.
A Kickstarter campaign to finish development is well underway, and currently has a bit more than half of its $12,421 goal collected with 24 days remaining. Access to the completed game (and a digital DRM-free copy for offline, local play on PCs and Mac) is offered with a pledge of $8, while higher pledge amounts will be rewarded with early version access and opportunities to contribute content to the game.
If funded, Top Secret is planned to release in May 2016.