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Road 96: The Kotaku Review

On Wednesday night, as a hurricane tore its way through the Eastern Seaboard, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld a Texas law that essentially criminalizes abortions after six weeks. The 5–4 decision, issued at midnight, effectively nullifies Roe v. Wade, which has been the law of the land for nearly half a century. Though the letter of Roe still stands, the road is now paved for future statewide anti-choice bills to circumvent it. And this happened, as Slate put it so well, in the “most cowardly, dishonest, and shameful manner imaginable.”

If there’s a perfect system of politics, the world hasn’t seen it yet. But one thing’s for damn sure: The American political system falls far short of that ideal. Some might even say it’s broken past the point of repair. It certainly feels that way sometimes. It especially feels that way recently.

It’s in this context that Road 96, a new adventure game with its heart in the right place but its head somewhere else, trucks along. Fundamentally, Road 96 posits that a particularly American-flavored two-party system of politics really is as simple as it seems, a battle of good vs. evil, light vs. dark. That’s a nice thought. But it conveniently overlooks the way things really work, and comes off as a naive oversimplification that places far too much faith in those on one side. The world is of course rife with problems. But if you want a panacea, Road 96 says, just vote blue.

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