William Volk (DBA Deep State Games)

is creating The Climate Trail, a game about a Climate Apocalyptic future




per month

About William Volk (DBA Deep State Games)

Tiring of debating climate change deniers online I decided to apply decades of game design experience to a climate-apocalypse game.

The Climate Trail is a "good, realistic, and sobering" free game about the post-apocalyptic world we face if we continue on our current path.

I’ve always believed that games can have social value. Chris Crawford’s 1985 classic game of geopolitical brinkmanship, “Balance of Power”, showed the futility of nuclear war.

The Climate Trail uses the play style of the most popular educational game ever released, The Oregon Trail (65 million copies sold). The tipping point we are now at with climate change inspired its creation.

I want to invoke the same feelings about our ever more likely Climate Apocalypse as “On The Beach” did for nuclear war. As the scientist in that film says:

“Who would ever have believed that human beings would be stupid enough to blow themselves off the face of the Earth?”

I simply can’t believe we’re stupid enough to cook ourselves off the face of the Earth. If I have achieved 1/10th of the emotional impact of“On The Beach” I will be happy with the effort.

Which leads to the question … why am I giving this game away?

When you think about it, a decent “Oregon Trail” gameplay game could make some income. One example, “The Organ Trail” (a game about fleeing zombies) did quite well. After-all “Oregon Trail” itself sold over 65 million copies.

But I’m not doing this to sell games. I want to create an emotional impact, weave in science information, and make a game that makes a difference. One of the cool side effects of the decision to release a REALLY FREE game is that good people are contributing to the effort (art, music, UI etc.) at minimal expense. Otherwise I couldn’t afford this level of production quality. It also makes it easier for climate advocates to spread the word about the game, since I’m not profiting from it.

I funded and produced The Climate Trail and have released it on Windows/Mac/Linux/iOS and Android.  The game is getting an amazing reception: http://TheClimateTrail.com

Here's a recent podcast interview with me about the game: https://climatechampions.podbean.com/e/william-volk-technical-producer-of-return-to-zork-and-the-developer-and-producer-of-the-climate-trail-episode-43/

But I want to do more.  More game characters, more science, more gameplay, voice overs etc.  Let's make this game change people's minds!

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