Bandersnatch, is brand new, Choose Your Own Adventure-style episode of Black Mirror out today, is a twisty bit of interactive story. And Netflix has further tied the metatextual knot by building out a real website for the episode’s fictional games studio Tuckersoft, where some of the company’s titles (like Metl Hedd) are direct references to past episodes of the show.
Many of the links just point to Netflix’s show page for Black Mirror. But as a treat for those who find the site, the new game briefly demoed by the episode’s ace programmer Colin Ritman (Will Poulter) is available to download and play. And yes, it’s period-accurate, in that it’s only playable on ZX Spectrum emulators.
Nohzdyve—a nod to the season 3 episode “Nosedive”—takes the concept literally, as you control a blocky avatar falling face-first down a bottomless chasm between two buildings. The goal is to pop as many balloons with your head while avoiding the walls, air conditioning units, and whatever those spiked things are.
Though speaking of speculation, those who managed to get the rabbit ending in the episode proper were likely greeted by a series of unsettling noises produced by a tape labelled “Bandersnatch Demo,” leading some to speculate that Netflix may have hidden a playable version of the game in those bleeps and bloops, if only someone is able to decode it…