© 2018 Sowoke Entertainment Bureau, slavssyasowoke@gmail.com


Private Line is a narrative-focused magical realist adventure in alt-USSR set.

The first impression of our game is often related to Papers Please, as PL, like PP has main, reoccurring mechanic of text interaction as a gameplay basis and moral choices and totalitarian regime as a storyline focus. But Private Line is a game of another type.

It's not so much about finding the traitors and everyday boring work, but more about immersion into the life of ordinary USSR citizen, sometimes mixed with a feel of entering a slow dream. Does that sounds intriguing? Maybe disturbing?

A journey through the brutal 20th century Soviet modernism with your eyes closed. Inspired by Andrei Tarkovsky, Michel Foucault and Cardboard Computer.
The gameplay of Private Line focuses on storyline and both text and sound interaction mechanics. As a player, most time you have to listen through Sowoke Respublica citizens phone calls, becoming an observer of their life stories and seeking crimes through its context. Or even changing it.

However, it's not only about the text - there is a visual scenography carefully directed, allowing deeper immersion into the discussed events.

Some walking on the road to Bureau and back is included. Maybe you can even grab a beer in some bar on your way home.

What is the point of classical tragedy, of Racinian tragedy?

Its function — or at least one of its axes — is to constitute the underside of the ceremony, to show the ceremony in shreds, the moment when the sovereign, the possessor of public might, is gradually broken down into a man of passion, a man of anger, a man of vengeance, a man of love, incest, and so on.

In tragedy, the problem is whether or not starting from this decomposition of the sovereign into a man of pas­sion, the sovereign-king can be reborn and recomposed: the death and resurrection of the body of the king in the heart of the monarch.

Michel Foucault. "Society Must Be Defended"

It is therefore not the defeat that leads to the brutal and illegal establishment of a society based upon domi­nation, slavery, and servitude; it is what happens during the defeat, or even after the battle, even after the defeat, and in a way, indepen­dently of it.

It is fear, the renunciation of fear, and the renunciation of the risk of death.

It is this that introduces us into the order of sovereignty and into a juridical regime: that of absolute power.

Death is be­yond the reach of power, and power has a grip on it only in general, overall, or statistical terms.

Power has no control over death, but it can control mortality. And to that extent, it is only natural that death should now be privatized, and should become the most private thing of all.

In the right of sovereignty, death was the moment of the most obvious and most spectacular manifestation of the absolute power of the sovereign; death now becomes, in contrast, the moment when the individual escapes all power, falls back on himself and retreats, so to speak, into his own privacy. Power no longer recognizes death. Power literally ignores death.

Curtains are closed yet.
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We finally go into production stage and will post news every now and then. As indie developers, we're always interested in communication with audience and we listen carefully (yep, check your phone).

We'll also start our blog on this exact website soon. Stay tuned.
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