Puzzle game

Review overboard: Inkle’s new surprise puzzle game is a delicious murderous prank

I have found that I am bad enough to get away with murder, which must be a relief for those close to me. That revelation came from Inkle, the studio behind 80 Days, Heaven’s Vault, and Pendragon, as they simultaneously released and revealed today a new puzzle game called Overboard. As ambitious starlet Veronica Villensey who just pushed her husband overboard a luxury transatlantic ship, the goal is not to get arrested for murder.

It’s pretty fabulous – part an Agatha Christie prank, part an intricate 2D puzzle game where you spin a lot of plates. To correct me in part, it’s actually pretty easy to get away with murder in Overboard. I did this my very first try. But if you want to get away with all the money, you actually have to blame the crime on someone else, and that’s a lot more difficult.

This is where you try to be smart, you see. Like many of Inkle’s games, Overboard is endlessly replayable – or at least, there are more permutations of a game than a person could reasonably do, so as far as you’re concerned, that’s infinite. And unraveling who you can or want to mentor – and how – will take many attempts to get you to know where all the NPCs are at any given time.

Overboard takes advantage of the knowledge of the players versus the knowledge of the characters very intelligently. Veronica knows her lackluster husband Malcolm is a dirty little Mosley-like, for example, but as a gamer you have to find some fascist literature for Veronica to comment on. Veronica talks to herself out loud, but not in an unrealistic way that implies she’s unfolding all the relevant exposure in the manner of “Ah look who it is! Just to remind me, this character is an alcoholic who keeps his cabin door locked. “

NPCs are all archetypes of Christie’s 1930s mysteries. Lady H is a talkative and alcoholic widow. The “I have gathered you here today …” authority figure is Subedar-Major Singh, who is brilliant. If it was a book, his eyes would certainly be described as twinkling. I would make him the godfather of all my children.

Getting the obnoxious Malcolm’s death to be accepted as suicide is therefore as simple as finding out which of the NPCs was his lover, or that he owed another buckets of money. But in fact, mentoring someone is complex enough that you mess them up. NPCs move around the ship on their own schedule. It takes time for you to move from one place to another. Veronica is actually a pretty sloppy murderer, the act having been partially or fully seen by at least three people, and she lost one of her earrings in the scuffle. Are you trying to get the earring before someone else? Or is it more important to tell everyone early on that your husband is missing overnight and you are terribly worried?

It kind of becomes a time loop game as you will eventually gain enough knowledge to know where to be at 11:30 am, how to find a key in that person’s cabin, and that those diamond earrings can still be found. credited to a card. Game. Inkle, thoughtfully, also added a fast forward button to cycle through the dialogue from the choices you saw last time around, meaning there is very little boredom in your repeated plays.

But, this being an Inkle game, the dialogue is worth reading. The whole tone is wink and playful, because you play a murderous 30’s husband trying to get away with it, and if they had gotten all dark and serious with this topic, I would have taken a boat out to sea. just to jump out of this one myself. Veronica hates dolphins vehemently. You can stubbornly insist that diamonds worth thousands of pounds are fake glass. It is possible to speak with God in the chapel.

This is how you move from place to place on the ship. The locations of NPCs are indicated by their silhouettes.

Most of the trouble you do is navigate conversations to get the outcome you want, whether that’s important information or leaving an impression on someone else. Depending on your actions, an eyewitness might come to believe that they saw you walking with Malcolm, or with someone else. And your answers shape the character of Veronica in a very nice way. While she is clearly ambitious and ruthless, in different races you can make her blatantly cruel, cunning, or even a multiple murderer if you feel like it.

At best, it’s reminiscent of 80 days, although it doesn’t really have a sense of wonder. But it’s complex and nifty, very suitable for the output on handheld and mobile which it also gets (maybe Following adapted, if necessary), and instant win if you know what you like and what you like, these are the Inkle games. Overboard has a nice frivolity, a sort of cheerful nod from a game to elevate a bit of locking gloom now that we’re back in summer – and that frivolity belies the complexity underneath as well. Just like Veronica herself, who even now, at my request, pulls her husband’s clothes out of her window so she can steal a dolphin paperweight just because she very well can.

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