Merge Games has announced that a real-time riot simulation game titled RIOT: Civil Unrest will be launching between February 5 and February 7 on PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch. This upcoming game will place you at the heart of some of the world’s most recent confrontations across four campaigns and more than 30 scenarios. Some notable locations that will be included are Oakland in California, Egypt’s Tahrir Square, and Venezuela’s Caracas.
When you play the game, you will have a choice to make; Will you control the protestors, or will you take on the role of law enforcement. This choice is present, the developers state, as “an effort to portray a balanced view of each event.”
RIOT: Civil Unrest will feature pixel art graphics and was actually created based on the real-life experiences of Leonard Menchiari, the game’s artist and creator. He had attended the NO-TAV protests in northern Italy back in the summer of 2011, witnessing the actions of protestors and law enforcement alike as he did so. These actions are what led him to create the new game as he attempts to accurately answer what triggers the anger and aggression during riots. He also seeks to help people understand everything the police, who are typically outnumbered in these events, endure during such protests.
As you play a scenario, the game will give you a set of objectives to complete. How you do so, however, will be up to you, as you will have a wide variety of strategies and tactics to employ during your mission. Your performance will be rated, so while being aggressive may allow you to reach a successful outcome quickly, you may cause public opinion of you to greatly decrease. On the other hand, if you take a softer approach, you may actually gain the public’s favor, even if it takes a bit longer.
In terms of crowd behavior, it can feel realistic, thanks to every individual character having its own artificial intelligence. If you grab the PC version, you will also gain access to an editor, allowing you to create and share your own scenarios for others to enjoy. This editor will also already have additional scenarios which were created by the development team. These scenarios cover events like G20 in Hamburg, Gilets Jaunes in Paris, Shohada Square in Iran, and anti-G20 and anti-austerity riots in Buenos Aires.