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Smoking Gun unveils preview of a graphic novel series embedded with an online experience like no other. Hint: check out page 13.


VANCOUVER, CA (November 4th, 2009) – Smoking Gun Interactive an independent premier video game studio, today launched its first installment of the graphic novel series titled “X”. Written by controversial, award-winning author and social critic Douglas Rushkoff, the series is illustrated by Smoking Gun’s lead concept artist Cheoljoo Lee and Younger Yang. “X” is the first graphic novel of its kind embedded with an interactive experience that builds a community around the story.

The preview will be delivered over the course of four weeks starting today, and can be experienced online at and provides a first glimpse into the universe and characters of Smoking Gun’s as-of-yet undisclosed debut franchise. With a focus on real-world mystery, ancient locations, and deep conspiracy, X promises to explore the secret history of mankind in a way that has never been done before.

As a small, scattered group of people stumble onto the truth, they find that they are too late: every great power on earth has already aligned itself against humanity. The war is all but over. Their struggle to discover the truth will lead them into a massive conspiracy that predates humanity itself - from the world's most ancient sites to the global centers of power.

For those few brave enough to resist, reckless enough to see, and foolish enough to fight history itself, the war has never been over. For those few, the struggle will not be complete until the old prophecy has been fulfilled:



The first novel is scheduled to be released next year and is the first in a series of stories that will continue to expand the X universe.

“One of our main goals as a studio is to constantly innovate in how we tell our stories”, said Smoking Gun CEO and Creative Director John Johnson. “Our perspective is, if you can interact with it, then it can be part of the experience we deliver. And if you cannot interact with it, then we will evolve it to the point where it can be part of our universe. There are no boundaries to where we can go or what we can accomplish. The first time we buried something in the desert, this time we buried a world inside a graphic novel, in a way that’s never been done before”

"It has been insanely challenging and insanely fun to dive head-first into Smoking Gun's universe," explained Douglas Rushkoff. "And while I work on threading one narrative through this material, other artists are building it out on many other levels, all at once, for different people to engage with in so many different ways. So for the audience this multi-faceted, multi-media approach brings new dimension to the epic struggle that we're talking about here: nothing short of how humanity defines itself."

Smoking Gun Interactive was formed in 2007 by former developers from Relic Entertainment. Led by CEO and Creative Director John Johnson, and founders Angie Pytlewski and Drew Dunlop, the executive team has worked together for over 9 years building and leading passionate teams. Smoking Gun’s core team of leads and senior staff are some of the best the industry has to offer, and will help position the studio into becoming a leader in innovative interactive entertainment.

Smoking Gun’s founders have developed multiple platinum titles including the critically acclaimed and award-winning RTS Company of Heroes™, that garnered over 45 industry awards and is the highest rated strategy game of all time*.

For updated news and additional company information, please visit the official Smoking Gun Interactive site

*According to



About Smoking Gun Interactive

Smoking Gun Interactive was founded in 2007 by award winning industry veterans and the creators of Company of Heroes™, the highest rated Strategy game of all time. Garnering over 45 industry awards including 9 – Best PC Game of year and 13 – Best Strategy Game of the Year awards and is currently rated 8th best PC Game of all time.

Smoking Gun's founders have over 30 years of industry experience shipping 14 products, including 9 platinum titles. They have worked together for eight years, building and leading passionate teams -- teams that stand with the very best in the industry. Over time, they realized that they shared a vision of what games could be; with Smoking Gun they have come together to build that dream.

For enquiries please contact

About Douglas Rushkoff

Winner of the first Neil Postman award for Career Achievement in Public Intellectual Activity, Douglas Rushkoff is an author, teacher, and documentarian who focuses on the ways people, cultures, and institutions create, share, and influence each other’s values. He sees “media” as the landscape where this interaction takes place, and “literacy” as the ability to participate consciously in it.

His ten best-selling books on new media and popular culture have been translated to over thirty languages. They include Cyberia, Media Virus, Playing the Future, Nothing Sacred: The Truth about Judaism, andCoercion, winner of the Marshall Mcluhan Award for best media book. Rushkoff also wrote the acclaimed novels Ecstasy Club and Exit Strategy and graphic novel, Club Zero-G. He has just finished a book for Harper Business, applying renaissance principles to today’s complex economic landscape, Get Back in the Box: Innovation from the Inside Out. He wrote a series of graphic novels for Vertigo called Testament, and is now finishing a book on the corporate spectacle called “Life Incorporated” for RandomHouse, to be released in June 2009.

He has written and hosted two award-winning Frontline documentaries - The Merchants of Cool looked at the influence of corporations on youth culture, and The Persuaders, about the cluttered landscape of marketing, and new efforts to overcome consumer resistance.

Rushkoff writes a column for the music and culture magazine, Error! Hyperlink reference not valid. His commentaries have aired on CBS Sunday Morning and NPR’s All Things Considered, and have appeared in publications from The New York Times to Time magazine. He wrote the first syndicated column on cyberculture for The New York Times and Guardian of London, as well as regular columns for Discover Magazine and The Feature.

Rushkoff is a PhD candidate at Utrecht University’s New Media Program. He teaches regularly for the MaybeLogic Academy, NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, and the Esalen Institute. He also lectures about media, art, society, and change at conferences and universities around the world.

He serves on the Board of Directors of the Media Ecology Association, The Center for Cognitive Liberty and Ethics, and as a founding member of Technorealism, as well as the Advisory Board of The National Association for Media Literacy Education, and HyperWords . He has been awarded Senior Fellowships by the Markle Foundation, the Center for Global Communications, and the International University of Japan. He served as an Advisor to the United Nations Commission on World Culture and regularly appears on TV shows from NBC Nightly News to Larry King and Bill Maher. He developed the Electronic Oracle software series for HarperCollins Interactive.

Rushkoff is on the board of several new media non-profits and companies, and regularly consults on new media arts and ethics to museums, governments, synagogues, churches, and universities, as well as Sony, TCI, advertising agencies, and other Fortune 500 companies.

Rushkoff graduated magna cum laude from Princeton University, received an MFA in Directing from California Institute of the Arts, a post-graduate fellowship (MFA) from The American Film Institute, and a Director’s Grant from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. He’s finishing his dissertation on media literacy and gaming for University Utrecht. He has worked as a certified stage fight choreographer, an SAT tutor, and as keyboardist for the industrial band PsychicTV.

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