We have been silent for some time – sorry for that, but it is because we have been working hard to prepare a first playable demo version of our beloved Moonshine Inc.
So yeah, finally, on February 21st, 2022, you will be able to put your hands on Moonshine Inc, as we opted in for the next STEAM Demo festival.
Meanwhile, to keep you entertained and on track with our development, we will keep on sharing some exciting content about bootlegging, moonshining, and of course on game mechanics and game-related content.
Next year will be an exciting time for our studio. We have planned a very ambitious road-to-market plan including closed beta, open beta, demo festival, events activity, so follow us here on STEAM, join our Discord, or keep in touch to be updated.
To start, let's take a look at the history of alcohol distilling to shine a light on moonshining!
There isn't an exact, universal description telling us precisely what the so-called moonshine - white lightning - fire water - aqua vitae (Latin for 'water of life') - bathtub gin (yup) - good ol' mountain dew - is. However, it's generally understood as a strong, distilled drink. The name 'moonshine' is typically used for whiskey. Still, moonshiners don't mind venturing into the vodka, brandy, or other whatever-the-client-demands territories - as long as it's distilled and illegal, it's moonshine.
A tax collector is tarred and feathered by anti-tax frontiersmen during the Whiskey Rebellion
Still, the Whiskey Rebellion of 1791 is one of the most critical events in moonshining history. It was then that President George Washington decided to tax alcohol. Since most distillers were poor farmers, the people had no other choice but rebel. Then again, nothing much happened. When Washington sent 13,000 militiamen at the very climax, most people just went home, not wanting to fight an entire army.
Whiskey tax, public domain
And so the tax remained, and so the people started hiding their illegal stills better, and in the end, it all didn't matter since the tax was repealed a couple of years later. Then it returned, disappeared, changed, and so on, and so on. And now we have today, when alcohol is taxed and when some people hide in the middle of the woods to make it illegally - the same as those two hundred years ago. Still, man does not live on whiskey alone.
There's evidence that in 1200 BCE in Mesopotamia, people already generally knew about distillation. But it was a simple process, and the outcome was not drinkable. Of course, the wine-loving Greeks and Romans had better technology, but it wasn't until the 12-13 centuries when people (all around the globe; Arabic countries, Europe, China…) finally realized how to make - and drink - the proper, modern(ish) water of life. Then people realized that you could distill (or ferment and then distill) almost anything - and the fun began.
An Egyptian funerary model of a bakery and brewery. ( CC BY-SA 2.5 )
Fast forward to today, and, putting all the sugar, grape, potato, cereal, and plum based alcohols aside (because there's just too many of those to count!), we have the exotic raisin-based zarbali from Afghanistan, Ghanian akpeteshie (distilled from palm wine), Tunisian-Jewish boukha (figs), nocino (walnuts, Italy), okolehao (Hawaii, ti plant), and rice-based soju (Korea), shōchū (Japan) and Laotian lao-lao. In Kenya, there's kumi kumi, in Cameroon mfofo. Chacha in Georgia, kachasu in Malawi.
And then there's arak, araqi, arrack, raki, rakia, rakija, raksi, each different, spread from the Levant to Tibet, and each moonshine - as long as they're strong, illegal, and homemade.
Stay with us to learn more about moonshining as next we will focus on "From Zero to Hero, or How Distilling Technology Evolved".