Neurocracy

Solve a murder in a near future world
by diving into the Wikipedia of that world

Features

A world at your fingertips

Have you ever lost yourself in a Wikipedia rabbit hole? Imagine doing that for the Wikipedia of the year 2049. This is Neurocracy, an interactive narrative experience that offers an anthology of compelling sci-fi stories inside and between the hyperlinked articles of an online encyclopedia. It is both a crowdsourced alternate reality game and an epistolary hypertext novel, opening with a high-profile assassination that you must investigate and solve.

A world that builds over time

The story of Neurocracy is episodic and unfolds across ten consecutive days in the year 2049. Each episode represents a snapshot of a single day, with new articles uploaded (and existing ones updated) to simulate bouts of frantic editing that reflect the global fallout of the assassination. Each article offers a unique narrative thread to follow, detailing a person, organisation, technology, or event relevant to the story and themes of Neurocracy. You can even click Random article and dive in that way.

A world as realistic as it gets

In addition to the sense of realism conferred by the Wikipedia format, Neurocracy uses accurate science and sociopolitics to build the world of 2049. Exploring the fascinating and terrifying car crash of technology and humanity, Neurocracy depicts an all-too-near future where networked brain implants are as commonplace as smartphones and equally suited to mass surveillance. In this neurometric panopticon, your thoughts can betray you, but there are ways around that.

A world coming to your browser

Playing out entirely on a website with no download required, Neurocracy invites you to go it alone or join forces with others to piece together what has happened, and what is happening, in the world of 2049. Using the narrative power of your imagination, chase implications and interpretations by reading between the lines and arranging a story from a deeper pool of potential stories. Find clues, draw connections, compare notes, and ultimately solve a murder.

Press

Ambitious, confident writing -- part experimental game, part murder-mystery novella, part postmodern exploration of how we take in stories

The Guardian

A compelling exercise in collaborative, online sleuthing -- perfectly nails the feeling of losing yourself in a Wikipedia rabbit hole

Waypoint

A multifaceted mystery that cries out for a Pepe Silvia conspiracy board -- the project has cultivated a tight-knit community that eagerly shares theories

The Verge

A thrilling sci-fi page-turner where the page-turning has been replaced with hyperlinks -- a fascinating experiment in narrative design

Bit-Tech

Imagines the grim, bloodless Wikipedia of our surveillance-laden future -- if you're a writing-craft nerd, you’re going to have a field day

Kotaku

A game of theory-crafting, piecing together clues left behind in online breadcrumbs -- a lesson in media literacy you might not have realised you needed

ARGNet

A tale that explores many pressing contemporary issues -- blurs the line between fiction and reality, letting the latter determine the course of the former

NME

Familiar wiki tropes root Neurocracy in a recognisably real-world internet -- storytelling that straddles the present and the future

PC Gamer
Independent Games Festival finalist for Excellence in Narrative
Winner of the if:book UK New Media Writing Prize 2021

Play

The world of Neurocracy is explored through Omnipedia, a near-future successor to Wikipedia. The first episode takes place on October 1st 2049 and is available for free, allowing you to get a feel for Omnipedia, how it mirrors Wikipedia in form and function, and the murder mystery that drives Neurocracy’s many storylines.

The remaining nine episodes, each one corresponding to an in-universe day, push the storylines of Neurocracy forward to their revelations on October 10th 2049. To unlock all episodes, you can purchase a Neurocracy Season Pass for a one-time payment of £15.00. This will offer login access that opens up Omnipedia’s Revision history past the first episode.

Neurocracy’s ten episodes were initially released on a weekly basis during the summer of 2021, which enabled a community of players to crowdsource and discuss theories between episodes. These live theories then influenced the writing of each subsequent episode in a dialogue between Neurocracy’s developers and the community, not unlike a tabletop role-playing game.

This interactive element of Neurocracy can be revisited by joining our Discord server, which has episode-specific speculation channels to avoid information from later episodes seeping into earlier discussions. The conversations in those channels can be freely consulted and represent as much a record of Neurocracy’s worldbuilding as Omnipedia does.

In its present state, Neurocracy can be enjoyed in a number of ways. You can go episode by episode and solve the murder mystery, either on your own or with a group of fellow sleuths. You can spark fresh discussions in the Discord, which may influence upcoming content. The world of Neurocracy still holds many questions, marking the final episode no more an ending than it is a beginning.

Conceived by writer/designer Joannes Truyens and web developer Matei Stanca under the Playthroughline label, Neurocracy features visual direction and illustrations by Alice Duke in addition to a range of futurist stories from contributing writers Leigh Alexander, Io Black, Malka Older, Edward Smith, Axel Hassen Taiari, and Yudhanjaya Wijeratne.