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Explore an Alternate Take on History with Ira

Ira

Scheduled for release in late 2017, the surreal indie adventure Ira will charge players with exploring a high-technology version of 1930s America.

As such, the game, which will be the debut effort from two-person team Ore Creative, inverts the expectations of retrofuturism by featuring a past world infused with speculative-fiction elements. Gameumentary recently had the chance to talk to Zachary Downer, the project’s designer, and uncovered a few tantalising details about the setting, visual style, and gameplay of the title.

According to Downer, Ira is set is set in an alternate version of America in which the technological revolution (similar to the digital revolution of current times) occurred much earlier due to a communication corporation gaining access to technologies that are “beyond their time.” Although the story will explore how this changed history, it focuses more on “the people who live and die in this alternate world.” Ore Creative will use the peculiar sociopolitical lens of their game to offer commentary on the state of the world in both the 1930s and the modern day.

The game is billed as a narrative adventure, apparently more in line with Telltale Games’s offerings than the seemingly more common first-person adventure style of gameplay that many indie studios adopt for this kind of game. Adventuring, engaging in dialogue, and making choices will form the bulk of gameplay, but Downer promises that the narrative style will not “spoon feed the player,” as the team does not want to “treat the player like the[y] are incompetent and can[‘]t figure things out on their own.”

Meanwhile, although the game seems to bear a similar visual style to Firewatch, as a result of the high levels of saturation, Downer insists that the two games are quite different in terms of the visual make-up. While Firewatch is entirely in 3D, Ira will use a blend of 2D and 3D environmental assets, using colour blending to smooth away any sense of visual dissonance.

Gameumentary’s interview goes into much more depth about the inspirations, story, and development processes of Ira, so be sure to check out the full piece if the above details have piqued your interest.

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