Welcome to the Department of Liberty. Ascend the ranks of the NSA-like surveillance agency and decide: will you stand up for privacy, or help create an unstoppable police state? Spy on people’s deepest secrets, pick apart their private lives and decide their fate in this modern surveillance thriller.
All Reviews:
Mostly Positive (67) - 74% of the 67 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Aug 28, 2018
Developer:
Publisher:

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Includes 2 items: Need to Know, Need to Know - Official Soundtrack

 

Recent updates View all (57)

March 4

Need to Know v1.29.1b Update - Changelog

Thanks so much for your continued feedback and bug reports! If you have any bug reports or suggestions to make - you can also visit this board to post them.

This version is in beta due to a restructure of the save game system in v1.28.0b, and a restructure of database loading in v1.29.0b. We have tested this internally, but we advise backing up your saved games before using this version as a precaution. To access this update, right-click on the game in Steam and select 'Properties', then go to 'Betas', and select the 'beta - Dev testing' option. This beta version is also available for GOG Galaxy users.

For a list of the changes made in v1.29.1b, see below:
  • Fixed possible game over loop in Skeleton Key missions directly after Operation SpotlessComb 2
  • Fixed incorrect map in Skeleton Key missions directly after Operation SpotlessComb 2

For a list of the changes made in v1.29.0b, see below:
  • Added loading bar to splash screen, to show loading progress more clearly and prevent game from hanging
  • Changed backend of database loading to prevent memory allocation crash which was occuring on game startup for some users
  • Fixed unclear rules in Operation SpotlessComb 1
  • General bug fixes and typo fixes

For a list of the changes made in v1.28.0b, see below:
  • Changed backend of save game system to reduce loading lag on game startup, and significantly improve performance when logging out of game
  • Fixed issue where ‘Skip to First Workday’ option on main menu was not working correctly
  • General bug fixes and typo fixes
0 comments Read more

February 27

Need to Know v1.29.0b Update - Changelog

Thanks so much for your continued feedback and bug reports! If you have any bug reports or suggestions to make - you can also visit this board to post them.

This version is in beta due to a restructure of the save game system in v1.28.0b, and a restructure of database loading in v1.29.0b. We have tested this internally, but we advise backing up your saved games before using this version as a precaution. To access this update, right-click on the game in Steam and select 'Properties', then go to 'Betas', and select the 'beta - Dev testing' option. This beta version is also available for GOG Galaxy users.

For a list of the changes made in v1.29.0b, see below:
  • Added loading bar to splash screen, to show loading progress more clearly and prevent game from hanging
  • Changed backend of database loading to prevent memory allocation crash which was occuring on game startup for some users
  • Fixed unclear rules in Operation SpotlessComb 1
  • General bug fixes and typo fixes

For a list of the changes made in v1.28.0b, see below:
  • Changed backend of save game system to reduce loading lag on game startup, and significantly improve performance when logging out of game
  • Fixed issue where ‘Skip to First Workday’ option on main menu was not working correctly
  • General bug fixes and typo fixes
1 comments Read more

About This Game

Watch the World.


Welcome to Need to Know, the surveillance thriller sim that tests your ability and integrity within the shadowy, cutthroat world of a modern intelligence agency - the Department of Liberty. You must spy on people’s deepest secrets, pick apart their private lives, and determine how dangerous they are. You can also resist these suffocating privacy invasions by aiding underground groups in leaking data to the media. Or, you can just use all of that juicy classified information for your own personal gain. Your call.

Need to Know emphasises story, and will sculpt the crushing growth of our real-world surveillance society into a meaningful, gripping journey. It critiques the system by passing the uncomfortable (or too comfortable?) mantle of power onto your shoulders, and testing which choices you’ll make. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll sweat bullets under the searing blaze of an interrogation lamp.

Features


Assignments - To move through the game - and upwards in the Department - you must complete assignments, which require detecting or solving crimes. In each assignment, you spy on people, determine their guilt, and decide how best to deal with them. Missions are investigative puzzles, founded upon story, character and moral choices.

Evidence - Each profile will contain a person’s digital footprints, from private emails to even more private text messages. Early Clearance Levels only allow you to access a target’s metadata or browsing history. As you progress, you bore deeper into their lives, with geo-tracking, shopping purchases, and even psychological analysis.

Profiles - The Department doesn’t discriminate in its abuse of privacy, so you’ll encounter people from all economic backgrounds, locations, ages, and cultures. The DoL database, CodeX, is packed with citizens’ profiles, with colourful biographies, human flaws, and realistic dilemmas.

Powers - Profile investigations will almost inevitably result in dual-choice decisions. Is the person suspicious or a model citizen? Guilty or innocent? As your Clearance Level increases, so does your authority and the breadth of your powers. Will you fuel your rise to power with searches, wiretaps, smear campaigns and abductions? Exonerate people you want to help? Or covertly undermine the Department from the inside?

Outcomes – Your actions lead to in-game consequences, and at the end of every mission you’ll discover how your decisions affected each suspect.

Clearance Levels – Everything hinges upon your Clearance Level. Impress your superiors, and they will promote you to a higher level, unlocking cooler (and creepier) powers, classified information, a higher salary and prestige.

Personal life – Using a software backdoor, you can also access the CodeX database at home. Steal a corporation’s financial data to make a stock market killing, impress matches in online dating, or help underground groups subvert the Department of Liberty. Be as altruistic or as selfish as you want.

Chapter-based storytelling – Gameplay intertwines with plots and subplots that extend throughout the game. Experience dystopian surveillance, but with the moral complexity of the modern world.

Main plot - Above all else, your primary goal at the Department of Liberty is to find the mysterious figures responsible for the initial terrorist attack. Clues for this central case are buried throughout the story, and are mapped out in your Gray Day chart.

Assets & Prestige – As your salary grows, impress and intimidate peers with new homes, purchases, and more.

Design – A more clinical, traditional surveillance design is eschewed for colour and imagery. You should feel the fun and temptation associated with absolute power.



A catastrophic terrorist infiltration of nuclear power plants leads to the formation of a new and immense intelligence agency – the Department of Liberty. Its primary goals are to hunt down those responsible, and prevent further attacks. It will carry these out with unprecedented access to people’s daily lives.

In Washington, the DoL grapples with rival agencies for political supremacy, combats domestic threats, and ruthlessly silences its opponents.



Join the DoL as a broke, directionless graduate. Every day you spy on people, collect their data, and determine their threat level. You have no intention of being sucked into the vortex of surveillance culture, but the deeper you go, the harder it is to escape…

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: Intel Core i3
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD 520 or equivalent
    • DirectX: Version 10
    • Storage: 3 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 10
    • Processor: Intel Core i5
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 460+
    • Storage: 3 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion
    • Processor: Intel Core i3
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD 520 or equivalent
    • Storage: 3 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Mac OS 10.12 Sierra
    • Processor: Intel Core i5
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 460+
    • Storage: 3 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04+
    • Processor: Intel Core i3
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD 520 or equivalent
    • Storage: 3 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04+
    • Processor: Intel Core i5
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 460+
    • Storage: 3 GB available space

What Curators Say

5 Curators have reviewed this product. Click here to see them.

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