Pipe Trouble is a re-imagining of the classic game Pipe Dreams. It is designed to take players through an exploration of the complexities around energy extraction. The game debuted in a fleet of custom arcade machines at events across Toronto as a companion piece to the indie documentary Trouble in the Peace. However it soon took on a life of its own, igniting debate in the media concerning the role of video games in social commentary.
I was responsible for all visual aspects of Pipe Trouble, from overall art direction to branding, character design and animation. I also created the promotional materials around the launch of the game, including the wraps for the full size and tabletop arcade machines that popped up around the city.
The game was publicly called out by critics as a left-wing ecoterrorism simulator that encourages pipe bombings and other acts agains the gas industry. The gaming community rallied in support of the game, pointing out that gameplay actually presents both sides of the issue in careful balance.
Character designs based on the Pipe Trouble team. That's me in the yellow t-shirt.
Mock-up of the full size arcade unit: