5 detective and murder mystery video games to explore to feel like Sherlock Holmes

Detective video games allow players to push their cognitive functions. Such video games require audiences to pay greater attention to the story and deduce the crime’s culprit. These games are a fun experience for those who pride themselves on their ability to pay attention to detail, identify patterns, and connect the dots.

These kinds of video games can vary in their gameplay, with some being linear, while others could even be open-world. This might feature an overarching story, where the larger story might revolve around a single mystery or involve many different crimes.

Detective/murder genre is one of the most popular types of video games

1) Among Us


While players do not assume the role of a detective in-game, Among Us requires anyone playing as a crewmate to use their skills in deductions and logical reasoning to identify the imposter. Developed and published by Innersloth, this social deduction game is played on an online multiplayer.

Up to 15 players can participate, where they can take on the role of astronauts or researchers on the map and try to complete all their tasks. Amongst these cremates will be three imposters. Their goal is to sabotage the crew’s plans and eliminate them until the same number of cremates and imposters remain.

Players who play as crewmates must assess the information available to identify the imposter. Suspected imposters can be kicked off the map. The game ends as a win for the crew if all tasks are completed or all imposters are ejected. Alternatively, imposters may win if they have eliminated enough crewmates.

2) Heavy Rain


Developed by Quantic Dream and published by Sony, Heavy Rain is an interactive drama, an action-adventure video game released on February 23, 2010, for the PS3. It was later released for the PS4 and Microsoft Windows in 2016 and 2019, respectively. The game received a lot of praise for its writing, voice acting and emotional impact. It won three BAFTAs.

The game features a mystery surrounding the Origami Killer, who drowns his victims in a water body and leaves an origami figure nearby. At the start of the game, the killer kidnaps a new target, a young boy named Shaun Mars. Players must identify the killer and locate the missing boy.

Across the narrative, players get to play as four different characters, all of whom are somehow looking into the actions of the Origami Killer. These include Ethan Mars, Shaun’s father; Norman Jayden, an FBI profiler; Madison Paige, a journalist; and Scott Shelby, a PI.

With different characters, players find clues to identify the killer’s real identity and Shaun’s location. Based on how the events unfold, multiple possible endings are possible.

3) LA Noire


LA Noire is an action detective video game developed by Team Bondi and published by Rockstar Games. It was released on May 17, 2011, for PS3 and Xbox 360, and Windows later that year in November. An enhanced version was released for the Nintendo Switch, PS4 and Xbox One in 2017.

Players become Cole Phelps, residing in 1947 LA. Cole is a Los Angeles Police Department detective and has to solve many cases during the game. The main story centers around a drug case involving many of his former squadmates from World War II.

This is a third-person game that is set in an open-world environment. Players must sweep crime scenes for clues, follow leads, and interrogate the various suspects and witnesses when investigating cases.

One of the most praised features of this game was the facial animations, especially during the integration phase, which can give players some big hints as to who is guilty or innocent.

4) Return of the Obra Dinn


The Return of the Obra Dinn is a puzzle-type video game developed by American game designer Lucas Pope and published by 3909 LLC. It was released on October 18, 2018, for PCs and later on for the Nintendo Switch, PS4, and Xbox a year later.

Set in England in 1807, the player takes on the role of an Insurance Inspector for the East India Company. When a ship called the Obra Dinn, which has been missing for five years, appears off the coast, the player is sent to perform an appraisal based on the ship’s condition and the crew’s fate.

Playing from a first-person perspective, this video game allows the player to move around the Obra Dinn and thoroughly explore the vessel. The goal is to deduce how the crew died, who killed them, their names, and their current location if they are alive.

Using a pocket watch called the Memento Mortem, players can hear the final moments of a corpse before they die and witness the moment of death, frozen in item.

5) Disco Elysium


Disco Elysium is cited as one of the best video games ever made and has become a cultural phenomenon since its initial release on October 15, 2019. It was first available on Windows, but an expanded version was released for consoles called The Final Cut.

The game follows an initially unnamed protagonist, whose skill and ability stats are decided by the player before the start of the game. It is slowly revealed to the players that they are playing a detective who is currently suffering from amnesia. The protagonist’s partner Kim Kitsuragi briefs the player on the murder that must be solved.

The game centers on this homicide case, which leads the duo across the open world of the city of Martinaise and outlying areas. This world is depicted in an isometric format and divided into various sections, through which the players control their characters. Gameplay includes interacting with the environment, inspecting items, and clearing certain skill checks to perform actions.

Note: This article reflects the writer’s opinion.

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