In this game, censorship does not mean 'deleting your spiteful internet comments'

As a woman who writes articles about video games, I hear the word "censorship" a lot these days. To hear certain corners of the internet tell it, "censorship" supposedly means having discussions on the images we see in media, asking people to think about the language they use and the effect it achieves, doing any kind of media criticism, or moderating comments so that nobody can shit them up with frantic sealioning about how other people are being too sensitive to criticism.

Fortunately there's a game in the works about actual media censorship, as in a system wherein only government-approved or politically-advantageous speech is allowed and defiance solicits retaliation. The Westport Independent tasks players with deciding how, when and whether to strike out "offending" comment from the people's news, whether they'll work in step with the government agenda or attempt to subvert it, and who among their employed transcribers can be trusted to help.

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The game's still very early yet, but there's an alpha available for you to preview some of the intriguing systems. The Westport Independent has eloquently borrowed one of the best parts of its aesthetic-alike predecessor, oppressive border control sim Papers, Please: It's that element of having tools, papers and information splayed out across the intimate work space in front of you, all of it a pleasure to pull, sort and rifle. That pleasurable intimacy tends to reinforce the idea that your tiny decisions reverberate massively.

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We recently covered Holly Gramazio's work on a newsgame about the arbitrary (and basically sexist) list of acts banned in the UK's pornography. What other games about censorship have you enjoyed?

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