Cyber Heist, a novel two-player video game created by a group of 13 Entertainment Arts and Engineering (EAE) students, was a Student Showcase winner at the 16th annual Independent Games Festival (IGF) Jan. 22. IGF’s nod recognizes Cyber Heist as one of the most innovative creations from the world’s top university video game program.

Two Roles, One Goal:

Lauded for asymmetrical game play, Cyber Heist is set in 2114 where a deregulated Department of Education (DOE) has sold student debt to corporations, turning debtors into servants. Placing one player as “Hacker” and the other as “Thief,” the two cooperate to infiltrate the DOE and eradicate student debt.

Hacker plays in a 2-D world in which he or she compromises the DOE’s IT infrastructure to provide Thief with facility access and information. This enables Thief, who is in a 3-D world, to physically infiltrate the DOE to obtain passwords that will enable the duo to succeed.

Cyber Heist was among eight IGF Student Showcase winners selected from 350 projects. One of the winning games will be named Best Student Game at the 28th annual Game Developers Conference March 17–21.

The EAE program is the result of interdisciplinary collaboration between the College of Engineering and the College of Fine Arts. The Princeton Review ranked the EAE program number one for its undergraduate program and number two for its graduate program in 2013.

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