British police made this right-wing extremism simulator which ends in you murdering somebody

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The simulator in action.
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Bedfordshire Police

A British police force has published an online narrative which simulates what it’s like to descend into right-wing extremism – and ends in you killing somebody.

Cross The Line, a project by Bedfordshire Police, is designed to deter young people in Britain from committing hate crimes by warning them how seemingly innocuous activities can lead to more sinister outcomes.

The web page, hosted at crosstheline.co.uk, asks to pull data from your Twitter account, then uses elements like your profile picture and your handle to make the narrative more realistic.

Business Insider tried out the app, which launched on Wednesday. Here’s what it was like:


It starts with a simulated notification on your phone, showing news that the jobs market is bad for young people.

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Bedfordshire Police

The app pulls your details to show you sharing the story on Twitter (they call it Chirper, but you get the drift).

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Bedfordshire Police/Business Insider

You then look for something to do, and end up going to a combat class in your local gym.

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Bedfordshire Police

This is where it gets sinister. After the class, you’re contacted by a new “friend” who runs a Twitter account called Youth Action.

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Bedfordshire Police

Youth Action looks like a riff on real-life groups in the UK, like Britain First or the English Defence League.


Your new friend invites you out — your first chance to pick a response and ‘cross the line,’ which I chose to do.

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Bedfordshire Police/Business Insider

Afterwards, they start sharing innocent funny videos with you over messenger.

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Bedfordshire Police

This particular example was a generic clip of two people trying to go down a water slide at the same time.


Then you get another message…

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Bedfordshire Police

…and another decision. I choose to go again.

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Bedfordshire Police

This time it’s an all-out rally, and the experience is a bit more full-on.

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Bedfordshire Police

The app plays loud noise and makes it clear you’re in a confusing place.


But you have a good time, and are immediately invited out again.

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Bedfordshire Police

I don’t actually talk like this, but it’s targeted at people aged 15 to 30 years old, so you can see what they’re trying to achieve.


Obviously, we went.

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Bedfordshire Police

This one is immediately darker. There’s noise and clear signs of violence.

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Bedfordshire Police

Then there’s this — footage of a man being kicked repeatedly on the floor. The implication is that you’re joining in.

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Bedfordshire Police/Business Insider

You then get a message that the guy dies — and it’s your fault.

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Bedfordshire Police/Business Insider

The last message says that the police are here. Then you get this.

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Bedfordshire Police

Focus, the creative agency running Cross The Line for Bedfordshire Police, told Business Insider that it wants to reach 250,000 people in its target demographic. It will use paid posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to promote the game.