South of the Antarctic Circle, Promised Buried Beneath the Glacier – South of the Circle

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South of the Polar Circle is a gripping narrative game that explores the emotional relationship between Pitt and Clara, two Cambridge academics caught up in a political conflict. How can we keep the promise of our careers and true love when the choices we were forced to make in the past are phantoms.

About the game

“South of the Polar Circle” will tell a touching story with a multi-layered cinematic narrative. The main story of the game will question the importance of life choices, and explore the impact on career and true love from the dual perspectives of the past and the future. Players will take on the role of Pitt, a Cambridge scholar who was involved in a plane crash in the Cold War Antarctica. On the way to seek help, he will recall his past and consider how the coercion of power and personal ambition led him step by step into this predicament he must escape. With the love between Pide and his colleague Clara, he gradually realized the weight of the promise he made. Like childhood memories, inadvertent promises will accompany us for a lifetime.

Ingeniously crafted, full of movie flavor

Created by the BAFTA award-winning studio State of Play, South of the Polar Circle’s beautiful graphics and meticulous writing will be narrated in a cinematic lens language, in addition to In addition, there are many well-known actors and actresses: Gwilym Lee (Bohemian Rhapsody), Olivia Vinall (Woman in White), Richard Goulding (The Crown), Anton Lesser (Game of Thrones), Adrian Rawlins (Cherno) Bailey) and Michael Fox (Downton Abbey).


  • An engaging and immersive narrative experience set against a unique time and place
  • A nuanced and visceral choice
  • A live-action motion capture show that perfectly interprets mood swings
  • Delicate background set in the real Cold War era
  • An environmental narrative technique that is intertwined with the story itself
  • Outstanding art style
  • Created by State of Play Games, which produced BAFTA Award-winning Lumino City, BAFTA-nominated KAMI 2, and Apple Design Award-winning INKS, players will witness many heartwarming moments in the game

game live

Game experience

Unique picture tension


The Impressionist painting style, which is very similar to The Long Night, gives the art style of this work a unique feeling. It is very simple. It does not focus on outlining the details of faces, buildings and scenes, but on color contrast and shadow processing. The way of expressing the atmosphere, the simplified model is used as the main form of expression of the picture, allowing players to focus on the development of the plot.


By making the game screen old, this retro screen design elevates the unclear texture of the Cold War period, showing a sense of “time has changed”.


Another manifestation of the screen tension of this work. The colors of this work are relatively bright. Although the saturation is not too high under the influence of noise, the color contrast produced makes this work very intuitive and visual impact.


The way of dealing with shadows in this work is also very ingenious. A large number of special lenses and light relationships wrap the player in a limited space of maneuver, especially in the room. The spotlight-style lighting method and the shadows outside the circular screen are very impressive. Fear, and the visual expression of focusing on one place in a narrow space is very depressing.

Film Narrative and Montage Techniques

State of Play turned the game into a lengthy movie, in which the montage-style episodic narrative technique was used to combine the stories of two different timelines of “Past/Cambridge” and “Present/Antarctic”. Drizzle, snowfields and streets, uranium mines and amusement parks, Antarctic stations and offices… The stories of the past are inserted in the middle of the Antarctic adventure like a dream. The metaphorical connotation that can only be understood enhances the sense of hierarchy and rhythm of the whole work.

In contrast, the cinematization of games is a test of the producer’s approach: balancing narrative and gameplay. Obviously, this game has not reached a perfect balance. The game requires the joint name of the article to exist only in Peter’s self-fantasy. No matter what decision is made in front of the player, the player will not change the result. This will give people a very strong negative feedback and frustration. The lack of interactivity due to the inconspicuous plot and weak options is also one of the reasons why many players give bad reviews.

Controversial discussions and reflections

Although the game is only a short three-hour process, it contains two controversial opposing issues: women’s independence and equality, ideology and Cold War thinking.

Cold War Mentality and Ideology

The “Now/Antarctic” timeline in the game is about Cold War thinking.

school political campaign

The game involves a lot of historical facts, such as the Cambridge professor mentioning the Cambridge quartet to Peter and suggesting that the military is suspicious of all Cambridge researchers; and the government’s almost inquisition-like persecution of homosexuality and feminism.

The real existence in history is the Cambridge Five. They are five top students who studied at Cambridge University in the 1930s. They believed that capitalism could not save the fate of the European continent, and they were full of interest in the new socialism of the Soviet Union. communist believers. After graduation, the five worked in British foreign affairs, intelligence and even spy agencies, and the KGB, the Soviet spy organization, also began to secretly contact them. The five later became Soviet spies one after another, continuously providing the Soviet Union with information about the British government.

Antarctic Treaty

Although many countries, including the United States and the Soviet Union, have signed and joined the Antarctic Treaty in 1959 to ensure the peaceful development of all countries in Antarctica, the scope of the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union has inevitably spread to this virgin land of the earth, even in Antarctica one after another. Nuclear weapons experiments were carried out nearby, and a large amount of residual radioactive chlorine can still be detected on the ice in Antarctica today.

soviet engineer

In the process of Peter’s communication with the pilot, players can clearly feel the prejudice of the Western world against the Soviet Union. In fact, before playing the game, I thought that the producer might discredit the Soviet Union as a form of political correctness, like most Europeans and Americans.

But the production team still hit me in the face. In the end, the pilot put down the prejudice in his heart and threw the problem to the player: for most people, the times are like an invincible torrent. During the entire Cold War, people from all countries were full of malice to each other, but in the polar circle, the three of them depended on each other for life. Feel the warmth in the cold. This is also a trace of the conscience of human nature in the last period of life. This kind of feeling is not limited by countries before, but is a life-and-death friendship between people.

Women’s Movement and Women’s Independence

The “Past/Cambridge” timeline in the game is about female independence.

In fact, I have never wanted to discuss the topic of women’s independence, because this topic involves too many disputes, and I was slandered by my friends in the name of “feminism” before. Now that I think about that person, I may never think that I would be so game promotion.

But the subtlety of this game is that even if the player chooses all options to support Clara, the result is still betrayal. In fact, many dark lines point to betrayal. First of all, Peter appeared in Antarctica at the beginning of this work, which means that he finally chose to compromise with fame and fortune and did not co-sign in the thesis; secondly, when Peter chose the option of joint thesis many times, the speech he gave was ambiguous. , which confirms the “fantasy theory”: many scenes are imaginary by Peter himself. In fact, he chose to betray and break his promise, but his guilt forced him to escape this reality and fabricated a fictional scene (that is, the player selected scene).

In other words, the player is actually assisting Clara from a relatively hypocritical angle, with a gesture of pity from the strong rather than equal respect. When the truth finally came out, the players’ choices were denied one by one. In fact, the production team told you that everything before was just a fantasy, and it was also a story that shocked me a lot.


The icy winds roaring from the Antarctic permafrost with frost in the hearts of the world have never stopped since the Cold War.

The ending of “South of the Polar Circle” can be seen as open-ended. Whether Peter and his companions succeeded in getting out of danger at the last moment has not been clearly explained to the players, leaving room for imagination and aftertaste. The game shows the life of the hero Peter through a flashback-style interlude between the present and the past, expressing the helplessness of personal destiny in the context of the Cold War, but at the same time it also praises the peace-loving anti-war spirit. The art of the game is very strong, and the ideology is also remarkable. If you are not very concerned about the gameplay, but want to experience an immersive story, then this game is very recommended.

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