From the makers of the beloved legal drama Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney and the strangely delightful Hatoful Boyfriend otome comes Murder by Numbers - a puzzle-based mystery game set in 90's Los Angeles, where players take on the role of a TV actress-turned-detective after a shocking murder.
Video game publisher The Irregular Corporation and developer Mediatonic announced the game earlier this week. The mystery visual novel puts players in the shoes of the aptly named Honor Mizrahi, a television actress who finds herself branded a murder suspect after her boss is found dead moments after firing her. With the assistance of a helpful and adorable floating-television-screen-looking robot SCOUT, Honor sets off to find the true killer and clear her name.
In the same vein as the clever Ace Attorney games, players will have to collect evidence, question suspects, and build their case to find the true culprit of the murder. With a colorful cast of characters and so many alibis, stories, and evidence to sort from, players will have to utilize their shrewd investigation skills in order to clear Honor's name.
In addition to investigating, players will also have to solve "Pixel Puzzles", or puzzles à la picross style, to find and reveal various clues throughout the game. Picross, also known as "nongrams" or "griddlers" are essentially picture-crossword puzzles, where cells must be colored or left blank according to numbers surrounding the grid in order to reveal a picture. Or, in Murder by Number's case, an important murder mystery clue.
The game also features a soundtrack by Masakazu Sugimori, the composer for Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. Fans can get an idea of the sitcom-style melodies in the recently released game trailer.
If suspenseful mystery, colorful cast of characters, riveting puzzles, and an impressive score aren't enough, the game takes place in Hollywood, 1996. Get ready for a wave of nostalgia with a ton of 90's-style fashion, with art by Hato Moa, known for his work on dating simulator Hatoful Boyfriend.
With so much going on, how can one wrap their head around this game? Perhaps it a line from the game's official description that sums it up the best: "90s fashions! Upbeat jams! Sass dialed up to 100! Questionable jokes! Drag queens! All that and more awaits... in Murder by Numbers!"
Murder by Numbers is currently available to Wishlist on Steam. The game will be released in early 2020.