Rachel Varley is hanging up her uniform and drone rig and leaving her promising career at NASIA, the North American Security and Intelligence Agency, in order to start a family. Unfortunately for her, piloting a drone is proving to be a hard habit to break. And it really doesn’t help that she has a knack for finding trouble, especially after she stumbles across a shadowy new underground organization only known as Arcadia Ego. Will Rachel be able to leave behind her old life and settle down, or will she be unable to resist being drawn back into the high technology intrigues of an agent of NASIA?

Mandatory Upgrade is a cyberpunk thriller based in a near future earth where the world has been transformed by incredible technology but at its heart is still ruled by humanity’s ageless quest for wealth and power.

About the author

Hi! I’m Chris Tihor, a game designer, writer, and creator of comics and other assorted geekery. In my spare time, I’m the organizer of the local chapter of the International Game Developers Association in Victoria, BC, Canada. I’m also the owner of Ironic Iconic Studios where I’ve been making games and developing other software since 2003. My clients include Harebrained Schemes, Tap Tap Tap, Paper Machete Games and GameHouse Canada.

I came up with the idea for this project while discussing the cyberpunk genre with a fellow game developer. I have a great love for cyberpunk, but I felt that I wanted to explore different approaches, moving away from cybernetic implant technology and instead investigating some developing technologies in augmented clothing and other wearables. I began working through some of my ideas through creating a tabletop role-playing game and writing short fiction. Most recently I wrote and released an interactive story game based on the world that I built around these ideas. You can find information about these projects at my Mandatory Upgrade website. Ultimately, I’d love to write a book of fiction based in the Mandatory Upgrade universe as well as continuing to develop these other related projects.