Murdered: Soul Suspect

[E3 2013] An Out Of Body Experience

Square Enix shows off Murdered: Soul Suspect
Author: Aram Lecis
Published: June 12, 2013
It was only a couple weeks ago that we first heard about Murdered: Soul Suspect from Square Enix. The initial description had us very intrigued as it sound like something a little bit different and we sure do like out different. Plus it takes place in Salem, Massachusetts, a town with more occult history than almost any other. Not only that, the game looks like an interesting fusion of L.A. Noire and Dishonored.

Because of that, expectations were higher than normal when we sat down for a 25-minute hands off demonstration of the opening act of Soul Suspect. Right off the bat we entered just in time to see our hero police detective Roman O'Connor murdered in the street by a mysterious hooded man. Only we see the whole thing through Roman's eyes because HE'S watching his own murder take place. See, Roman has become a ghost of sorts, trapped in a shadowy world known as "The Dusk" which doesn't come as much of a surprise as you'd think to him. Soon the police arrive to start the investigation into Roman's murder.

Only, this isn't a normal murder, and the cops aren't off to all that great of a start. Roman hangs around in his ethereal form to check on them and soon realizes that without his help his murder may never be solved. Unfortunately, without the ability to interact with corporeal objects and no voice to speak to witnesses, Roman is severely limited. Thankfully his new form comes with a few new powers that are decidedly helpful for an investigator.

First off, Roman can possess living humans and observe things through their eyes and ears, so he can check on the scrawl in a notebook or listen in on a whispered conversation simply by occupying that person. Even better, he can exert some small amount of influence over their very thoughts, jogging free forgotten memories or planting new ones if necessary.

Using those abilities, Roman soon pieces a bit of the backstory that happened just before he was unceremoniously sent to The Dusk. Soon he's investigating the interior of an apartment building and getting distracted by haunted memories of past residents.

Once he's dealt with those distractions he sets about gathering clues through the building and analyzing what he's seen by selecting the correct observations from a slew of ghostly floating text (it looks super-cool in motion). As Roman unlocks more and more clues he gets closer to breaking the case open. From time time a demon will appear to try and thwart him, but either through catching the demon unaware or possessing a nearby living soul Roman can dispatch the demons and continue the investigation.

Eventually Roman got enough info to get a better lead on his killer and he sets off into the city to follow up and hopefully track down who killed him. That's where the story ended for us and despite the relatively long look at the game, we were left wanting a whole lot more of this decidedly unique game.