Witness to the Revolution

On the day after British soldiers shot civilians in the center of Boston, the Boston Town Meeting appointed a committee to take depositions from those who had witnessed the shooting – or the behavior of soldiers before the violence began. Members of the committee sought out both men and women and asked them for their recollections. Witness to the Revolution asks its players to join this committee and interview witnesses to try to make sense of the shooting. Rather than seeking for the unrecoverable historical truth, however, this quest game demands that the player sort through the confusing evidence and assess the varied value of historical and eyewitness evidence.

Stills and video from game play

The interactions on streets and in homes of this small city are essential to both understanding the past and to the quest of Witness to the Revolution. We have built the game on a meticulous reconstruction of the town’s topography, streets, and buildings. As the player wanders the streets looking for witnesses, he or she will soon get a sense of Boston’s intimate scale as well as its diverse population. 

The setting: colonial Boston