Deepsea Desperation: Greenpeace game mocks the oil industry

Satirical board game draws attention to Arctic exploitation

Press release - 16 December, 2010
Spending this holiday season challenging the might of the global oil industry might seem a little odd, but now you can at least do it from the comfort of your living room, thanks to Greenpeace’s Deepsea Desperation free downloadable board game, created by game designers Terror Bull Games. Released under a Creative Commons license, this irreverent print-and-play game satirises and dramatises the battle to protect the Arctic from the oil industry and the creation a network of global marine reserves.

Once downloaded and printed (on recycled paper, of course), you can:

Choose your side: Are you the oil industry or a Greenpeace activist?

Tremble, as mighty oil rigs explore the ocean

Thrill as you occupy those oil rigs

Cheer as marine reserves protect the ocean

Gasp as lobbyists remove them

Wince as valuable oil spills across the board

Weep as whole species are wiped out

The game is all about Greenpeace’s campaign against Big Oil, with one player struggling to establish marine reserves in the very territory the other player wants to exploit. Through a mix of strategic lobbying, oil exploration, direct action and reserve creation, one of you will triumph. But beware: If you choose to take on the role of the oil industry and cause too many blowouts, you'll have to face the prospect of marine disaster, a mock twitter account handling your PR, pictures of dead animals in the world’s media, and billions in damages to pay. And if a species falls extinct, you both lose.

“We wanted to offer our supporters a gift that’s a little different this year.” Said Martin Lloyd, Marketing Communications Manager at Greenpeace International. “So here’s something you can print out and play using coins and dice. It’s fun to play and it gives a guilt-free opportunity to see what happens if you put massive corporate profits ahead of environmental health.”

In 2010 long-standing concerns about offshore drilling were realised when a blowout on the Deepwater Horizon oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico triggered the worst oil spill in US history, devastating the marine environment. Greenpeace has continued to campaign against reckless offshore drilling, including occupying an exploratory drilling rig off the coast of Greenland [1]; subsequently Greenpeace swimmers spent several days blocking a drilling ship off the coast of the Shetland Islands. [2]

Greenpeace is calling for a ban on new offshore drilling and the establishment of marine reserves – national parks at sea, closed to fishing and industry – across 40% of the world’s oceans. 

You can download your copy of the Deepsea Desperation game at: 

A print quality version suitable for publication is available on request






Martin Lloyd, Marketing Communications Officer, Greenpeace International, 

, +31 (0) 6 4619 7324

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