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Videogame: What remains by Iodine Dynamics

Text by CLOT Magazine

Iodine Dynamics is a collective of artists, hackers, and musicians interested in developing works for a broad audience and in relation to pressing societal issues. Iodine Dynamics includes Arnaud Guillon, Chun Lee, Dustin Long, Aymeric Mansoux and Marloes de Valk.

What Remains is an 8-bit interactive fiction and adventure video game about environmental issues, manipulating public opinion and whistleblowing. It is distributed on recycled video game cartridges for the original 1985 NES. The game story is based on two-year-long research seeking to identify several strategies used to delay industry regulation and manipulate public opinion during the 80s.

More specifically, it explores ways to show the strategies used by the oil and tobacco industry to spread false information and doubt, influencing public opinion to delay new regulations to protect the public and the environment. These same strategies are still used today by industries and governments, creating a huge obstacle to effectively acting on the threat of global warming.

The game is developed for the original NES hardware. The ROM is available on as pay-what-you-want/can (including gratis) and is fully playable in most NES emulators. The source code and the tools created for the game’s development were published soon after the game release. A limited run of 80 recycled cartridges is being produced by reusing and repurposing original components, in line with the project’s concept and scope.

(Media courtesy of the artists)
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