You’ll soon be able to join an online simulation of TV reality competition show “Big Brother” — cooped up with a gaggle of other virtual housemates all trying to avoid getting kicked out — if you’re into that kind of thing.
“Big Brother: The Game” is set to be released Oct. 15 on the Apple App Store, Google Play and at bigbrother.game. “With a life-changing prize fund up for grabs, anyone, anywhere can win the world’s first massively multi-player online reality TV show,” says the game’s developer, 9th Impact.
With gameplay similar to EA’s long-running “The Sims” franchise, “Big Brother: The Game” lets players become virtual housemates, experiencing life as a Big Brother contestant. They must make strategic choices in order to remain in the house and ultimately become victorious — navigating social, psychological and interpersonal pitfalls to win.
It’s unclear whether, in the current COVID-19 era, people will be more — or less — inclined to engage in such escapism (or is it captivity?).
“Big Brother: The Game” has two modes: Housemate and Spectator. The game is free to download and the Spectator mode is free with optional purchases. Entering the competition as a Housemate will cost $4.99 (for three in-game currency tokens). Players use one token to get into the house, so if you get evicted without progressing to the next tier, at minimum you can start in two other houses. If you win, you automatically advance into the next house; there’s no way to pay to progress, though.
The game was developed by 9th Impact through a partnership with production giant Banijay, which this summer acquired Endemol Shine Group, owner of the “Big Brother” franchise. In the U.S., the show, hosted by Julie Chen, is in its 22nd season on CBS.
“Big Brother” first aired in the Netherlands in 1999. Since then, 480 versions of the format have aired across 62 markets, featuring over 28,000 episodes. More than 7,000 housemates from around the globe have spent over 35,000 days in a “Big Brother” house, with over 5,000 live evictions.
9th Impact, based in Galway, Ireland, specializes in developing games based on TV shows. Other titles include a “Danger Mouse” game for mobile and Nintendo Switch.