Herbst 89 - Auf den Straßen von Leipzig. Illustration Kurt Masur von hinten blickt durch Fenster

Autumn 89

Herbst 89 - Auf den Straßen von Leipzig. Phote aus dem Ausstellungsbereich im Deutschen Historischen Museum mit großflächigen Illustrationen.

Historical visual novel shows history as an open process

On October 9, 1989, more than 70,000 people marched in the streets of Leipzig to protest against the GDR regime. People of all classes. And students. They were opposed by a determined state power with an enormous deployment of security forces. Those who marched on the streets that day had no way of knowing whether it would end peacefully. The possibility of a "Chinese solution", a violent suppression of the protest as in June 1989 in Beijing on Tiananmen Square was hanging in the air. This is precisely where "Autumn 89" begins. Through the medium of a historical visual novel, players experience October 9, 1989 from different perspectives and can actively influence the course of the day. This is to show that history is an open process. Or in other words, that history is the result of decisions and concrete actions, but also of lucky or unlucky constellations and coincidences.

Together with the DHM, we developed the historical visual novel, which can now be played free of charge at the DHM. Players slip into the roles of seven possible characters to experience October 9 in Leipzig from different perspectives. In doing so, they have the opportunity to make concrete decisions and influence the course of events in Leipzig. The seven figures are linked to exhibition objects that, as relics of their time, tell the story in their own way. Depending on the playful actions, historical artifacts become visible and audible in the space.

From prototype to final application

A first version of the historical visual novel was on display free of charge in the form of a game station from February 25 to March 27 in the DHM's Pei Building - here still under the title "Leipzig '89 - Revolution Reloaded."

The game could be played via the user's own mobile device or tablets used on site at the DHM. During this period, the application and its setting were intensively tested.

MdB and Minister of State for Culture and Media Claudia Roth did not miss the opportunity to try out the application recently.

After the end of the test period, the prototype was optimized and further developed based on the results of the extensive evaluation.

Impressions of the historical visual novel

The installation and graphic novel "Autumn 89 - On the Streets of Leipzig" is on display for about 2 years from today in the new exhibition.Roads not taken” im DHM zu sehen. Seid alle herzlich eingeladen. Wir freuen uns über euer Kommen.

Prizes & Awards

  • Nominiert für den deutschen Computerspielpreis 2023 in der Kategorie “Bestes Serios Game”
  • Nominiert für den DIGAMUS AWARD – Die besten Digital-Projekte der Museen / Shortlist in der Kategorie “Apps und Games”
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