majnightlogoAlongside neon, cocaine, and capitalism, conspiracy theories remain one of the enduring cultural touchstones of America during the 1980s. Some of the best crackpot theories happened in the preceding decades— the Philadelphia Experiment, Roswell and Area 51, MK Ultra, John F. Kennedy's assassination, Watergate—but the Iran-Contra affair and the ensuing crack epidemic happened under Ronald Reagan's wrinkly watch, putting a doughy, plastic face on years of alleged coverups. It's no surprise that X-Files was created in 1993.

Conspiracy theories are an American pastime, and a new game by Epiphany Games hopes to tap into the paranoia, secrecy, and intellectual adrenaline rush that come with them. Majestic Nights is an episodic role-playing game set in an alt-history 1980s in which there really is a shadow government controlled by a cabal of Illuminati power brokers.

In Majestic Nights, you'll play as either Cardholder, an intelligence operative at the heart of the American government's illicit coverups, or Cal, a lowly gumshoe with skeletons in her own closet. Epiphany describe the mechanics as "fast and light," and they seem to focus on conversation, investigation, and exploration, with some stealth and gunplay mixed in for good measure, all explored through the grimy, isometric lens of so many edited Zapruder films.

"Essentially this setting came about because I was researching secret government projects and found there was a large amount kept secret and the reasons were not clear," Epiphany CEO Morgan Lean explains via e-mail. "I don't want to say I'm a conspiracy theorist but during this development, I have become a conspiracy theorist."

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Eesh. That may sound startling, but it didn't stop the Australian government from supporting the Sydney-based company: Screen Australia threw $128,000 their way during its most recent round of funding, which is probably enough to order exactly one (1) black ops hit on a political opponent. Follow the money!

In the game's prologue chapter, called "Sunset After Dark," Cardholder searches for a missing movie director who has proof that the Apollo 11 mission to the moon actually took place on a Hollywood sound stage. The prologue will be released for free in September, with the other six (!) episodes to follow. If Epiphany can stick to the timeline posted to their website, we'll get a Majestic Nights episode roughly once a month until February 2015. If the prologue is convincing for you, there'll be a Season Pass option to buy all future episodes.

Until then, to crib a line from X-Files: "Trust no one."

  • ImJPaul

    Cautiously optimistic here.

  • hellscaretaker

    i wish someone do FLOOR 13 type game on IOS,, dont know what FLOOR 13 is google search made by virgin games

  • Professionalbum

    I thought Apple frowned/didn't accept season passes; case in point Pinball Arcade offered season three and it was dropped within the first few weeks(I luckily picked it up).

    Another title I want to add(boy my backlog is getting bigger and bigger).

  • curtneedsaride

    Wow. I loved the X-Files as a kid, and can totally see myself enjoying this. BUT, after the whole Republique fiasco, I don't know if I'll be buying a season pass until all of the episodes have been released. And if they are all 2 GB or so, I'll just avoid it altogether. But, if they can fit it all into a decently sized package and not add too much to that every time... Maybe I'll give it a try. I'd still much rather just have a full game at once, then pay for a sequel, etc.

    • DiMarco

      What republique fiasco? I smell a conspiracy...

      • curtneedsaride

        When their second episode hit, a lot of season subscribers couldn't get it to download properly. And then there's the fact that each episode is so big AND the extra documentaries are also very big! I just don't have enough space for all of that even if I could get it all installed and restore my save.

  • saucybag

    SOLD! This sounds incredible!

  • CecilMcW00t

    Give me this game right now!

  • Reckall

    Maybe the "Moon Landings" thing is only a smokescreen which leads the main character to a real cover up. We will see.

    What happened with Republique? I was interested in the game but I waited for the complete experience. Why you say it fiascoed?

  • Fazeo

    Doughy president? That would be Clinton.

  • fightclubdoll

    I'm getting some Psychonauts flashbacks... ^_^

  • Emotive

    The X-Files first episode, the pilot was in 1989 not 1993.

  • JetLinerSaw

    Anyone who still believes we have a benevolent government, and that these topics are still even "conspiracy", well, hats on to you jackasses, do more digging. Of course we don't want to believe, it suits our complacent and lethargic needs. Capitalist pigs for citizens, communist turds for leaders. Go America, even a video game forum still propagates misinformation among such important topics. If you'd like I could compile hours and hours of info to show you that agenda 21, along with mk ultra, operation northwoods, among the rest, are in fact, not a joke. Morons.

  • JetLinerSaw

    Lawl not to mention this 7 nation 5 year plan our country is currently operating under. Woopee, we have a great military. Let's support them toppling entire systems of law and destroying entire civilizations livelihoods.

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