By: Corey Lack
Murdered: Soul Suspect was a game published in 2014 by Square Enix for most systems. It featured Salem, Massachusetts detective Ronan O’Connor being murdered soon into the beginning of the game and becoming a ghost. Upon realizing his now spectral existence, he decides to find his killer, who he finds is the serial killer that had been terrorizing the city for a while now. Due to being both invisible and intangible, Ronan enlists the help of a young psychic who is the only one that can see him.
The premise of the game is that each location Ronan, and by extension the player, solves puzzles to progress further in the story and find more information about the investigation. The idea of a ghost using its abilities to solve various mysteries and puzzles is certainly an interesting idea. That said, the logic puzzles that pop up make little sense as you were usually pointing out the obvious rather than using deductive reasoning to figure out a secret. Also, the combat, if it could be called that, was very lackluster. Occasionally, some demonic creatures will appear and attempt to “kill” Ronan. To fight them, the player usually has to circle around the enemies and hit them with a quick time event to destroy them. Beyond the original surprise of their first appearance, this felt more like a chore than a pulse-pounding action sequence. They just lacked any sense of threat to the player.
In terms of the plot, the setting of the game gives away a big plot twist about halfway through. Anyone familiar with the history of the city could guess what the serial killer had a connection to and, having read the Crucible, I even managed to guess who the mastermind was pretty early on. In short, the plot wasn’t really well done and the twists, such as they were, failed to really land any impact.
There isn’t much more to say about the game. The graphics were suitable for the generation of gaming at the time. The dialogue was believable. That said, I’d only recommend this game if someone really wanted something to do. While the game had a unique idea, it simply failed to go far enough with it. I’d give it four spectral bullet holes out of 10.