Black Marker

Okay, so we're a censor for an intelligence agency, tasked with drawing a black marker over any objectional words or phrases in documents before they get either released or relegated to the archives. The challenge is in figuring out which phrases to black out, since blacking out everything will lead to people thinking the agency has something to hide.

There's an undo function, which makes this whole thing almost too easy, especially as each job is followed by an evaluation telling us if we missed something or not. Then again, it's short enough that playing through the entirety of the game is no great trial.

I'm reminded of Simon Christiansen's "Alethicorp" from 2014. But where "Alethicorp" dealt with subversion and cloak-and-dagger shenanigans, "Black Marker" plays it all straight. Do a good job and get a pat on the back. In fact, if we've done a good enough job on the earlier documents, our status in the agency is high enough that we can just forget about doing anything at all with the highly sensitive final document. Maybe this really is too easy.

I keep wondering if there's a way to walk a fine balance, maintaining our position while subverting our work. Anything to make this feel like a story with some sort of real conflict affecting the player character. By far the most interesting document to meddle with was the first one, which could elicit a variety of responses further down the line depending on which phrases we blacked out and which we left behind. I don't think any of the other documents had any similar ramifications on the story as that one.

For breakfast: cornflakes and milk. There's supposed to be a decoder ring at the bottom of the box, but in the end ... it's still straightforward cornflakes and milk.