Dysfunctional Systems: Learning to Manage Chaos

An episodic Visual Novel series detailing the life and job of Winter Harrison. She visits other dimensions to solve that world's problems so that they do not adversely affect her own.
  AttractionEN

Overview

Dysfunctional Systems: Learning to Manage Chaos is a visual novel created by Dischan Media and released on Steam, Desura, and iOS in early 2013. Players progress through the game's story by reading the series of events that play out automatically, accompanied by changing images of backgrounds and characters. Very rarely, the player is given the option to make a choice and branch the story down one of multiple paths.

Story

Dysfunctional Systems stars a 14-year old girl named Winter from Earth, although not an Earth like ours. She is a mediator, a person who is sent to other worlds (either cross-dimensionally or translocationally, though the game makes it clear which) to keep the balance between order and chaos in check. Many of the planets these mediators visit are unaware of their actions, with some even being much further behind in technology and development than others.

Winter is sent to Sule as her second world, after her first world's problems only took a day to solve. She is pared up with Cyrus, a mediator with a history of aggressive and controversial tactics in keeping order on his worlds. What is supposed to be another easy lesson ends up quickly escalating into danger and potential civil war. The player must make the decision of how best to help the world in peril: by either siding with Winter's instructor or choosing her own path forward.

Sequel

Episodes 2 and 3 of Dysfunctional Systems were Kickstarted successfully on March 24, 2014. Episode 2 is set to release in September 2014 and will again focus on Winter but also feature other characters as they mediate various planets in distress. Episode 3, set for March 2015, is planned to wrap up the storylines introduced in the first two episodes and conclude the trilogy. The developers have much bigger plans for the sequel, stating that, "...we're loosely estimating a 12 hour play time for episode 2, at least."

The developers shut down production of further episodes of Dysfunctional Systems in January 2015. In emails sent to backers, the developer states that they "made too many mistakes" in development of further episodes, not realizing how quickly the money would go and how much work was actually necessary. They also mention that it's possible the the series will return in some fashion in the future, but that there are no guarantees.

After a long period of silence from Dischan Media, a prologue episode titled Dysfunctional Systems: Orientation was released with little warning on July 24, 2017. This episode sets up the character of Winter and the events leading up to the original game. The developer also revealed shortly after that Episode 2 was back on track, taking place after the events of Episode 1. This follow-up is still in development and has no announced date of release. Both Episode 0 and Episode 2 were offered to backers of the prior Kickstarter, whether they requested refunds or not.

System Requirements

PC

Minimum

  • OS: Windows XP
  • Processor: 1.2 GHz Pentium 4
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Integrated Graphics
  • Hard Drive: 500 MB available space

Recommended

  • OS: Windows 7 or higher
  • Processor: 2.0 GHz Dual-Core
  • Memory: 3 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Dedicated Graphics Card
  • Hard Drive: 500 MB available space

Mac

Minimum

  • OS: OS X 10.6
  • Processor: Any 64 bit processor
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Integrated Graphics
  • Hard Drive: 500 MB available space

Recommended

  • OS: OS X 10.8 or higher
  • Processor: 2.0 GHz+ Dual-Core
  • Memory: 3 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Dedicated Graphics Card
  • Hard Drive: 500 MB available space

Linux

Minimum

  • Processor: 1.2 GHz Pentium 4
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Integrated Graphics
  • Hard Drive: 500 MB available space

Recommended

  • Processor: 2.0 GHz Dual-Core
  • Memory: 3 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Dedicated Graphics Card
  • Hard Drive: 500 MB available space