George Orwell’s Animal Farm is coming to video gaming this autumn
Today marks 75 years since George Orwell’s wildly influential literary novel Animal Farm was first published. Now a small collective of indie developers and the estate of George Orwell are proud to announce that the legendary work is set to make a fresh impact via the artistic format of the 21st Century: video gaming.
Animal Farm will be an adventure game that immerses players in Orwell’s story. By choosing which of the animals’ wishes they follow – and who is ignored or sidelined – gamers will influence the critical events that define the fate of the farm. Players must devise strategies to balance resources, defend the farm, and keep the animal population happy. With its evocative 1930s painterly graphics, Animal Farm puts the player at the centre of an allegorical revolution and enables them to experience firsthand the corrupting nature of power.
The indie developer collective consists of The Dairymen (Andy Payne founder of Just Flight, AppyNation and Imre Jele founder of Bossa Studios), and Nerial, the creators of the BAFTA-nominated Reigns series, who bring their unrivalled skills in streamlined and powerful storytelling to Animal Farm.
Imre Jele, Project Founder:
“Animal Farm is a literary masterpiece which uses deceptively simple language to accurately describe the downfall of communism from the dream of equality into totalitarian oppression. The fate of the farm was all too real for me growing up in totalitarian Hungary.
History seems to repeat itself. And once more, Orwell’s classic has become a painfully relevant warning as some Western democracies started using tools and language eerily similar to those of oppressive regimes of the past.
I’ve long wanted to explore how, through video gaming, we could design an experience which immerses the player in Orwell’s vision, and in Nerial we found the perfect partner to make this happen.“
Tamara Alliot, Founder, Nerial:
“When we got the opportunity to work with Imre, Andy and the estate of George Orwell to bring Animal Farm to a gaming audience we grabbed it with both hands and set out to make a game that truly honours Orwell’s parable. We were able to bring our genre experience to the project thanks to Reigns, and writer, Emily Short was excited to adapt the text and use her narrative design prowess. Emily has painstakingly studied Orwell’s text to ensure authenticity and verisimilitude.”
Bill Hamilton, literary executor to the estate of the late Sonia Brownwell Orwell:
“Works of art are great because they have universal meanings which resonate anew with every new generation. We are delighted to be working with passionate and creative makers of videogames at The Dairymen and are excited to see them shine a new light on Orwell’s perennial classic.”
The game will be narrated by Abubakar Salim who amongst other roles played Bayek in Assassin’s Creed: Origins. His performance was directed by Kate Saxon, who has worked on a series of high profile video games including Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture, Alien: Isolation, The Witcher 2 & 3 and others.