Death off the Cuff ($0.99) by Simon Christiansen is a puzzle game that is entirely text-based. Inspired by the famous character Hercule Poirot created by Agatha Christie, Detective Germain is on the case. He’s gathered every suspect together for the grand reveal of the murderer. There’s one minor difficulty. Really, it’s barely worth mentioning. It’s just that he doesn’t actually know who committed the murder. He’ll have to ask questions and examine the people he’s gathered to piece together the crime.
Using a set of prompts, players can guide the investigation by asking about alibis, motives, and personal histories. There are also prompts for examining the clothing, people, and objects they’re holding. The challenge is to ask the correct questions at the right time. You also need to know what to ask.
As you continue through the case, you can type the prompt “Look” to see what’s happening in the room. This gives you a physical description of everyone. It will change as you discover new facts about the murder. For example, if someone’s alibi is challenged, they might become nervous or begin fidgeting.
When you learn critical information about a character, you can unlock illustrations of them. There are five different pictures that you can access. This information is usually something that turns the plot in a different direction.
In a game like this, it can be easy to get lost or make a mistake. For example, if you accuse someone without having sufficient evidence, the game ends, but you didn’t really solve the murder. Luckily, you can type “Undo” and go back to your previous decision. This is going to come in especially handy at the end.
It’s also easy to feel like you’ve asked all the questions you can think of and examined everything that’s important, but you still haven’t solved the case yet. You can type “Hint” into the prompt, and it was give you a clue. You can type in “Hint” multiple times before you figure out what your next move should be.
This is a great text-based puzzle game. It’s an interesting story with twists and turns that hold your attention. You can move along at your own pace as you figure out what questions to ask and whom to examine. You can also speed along by using hints to guide your progress. It’s all up to you. No matter what pace you set, it’s still a great story to interact with.