It’s a typical scene repeated in hundreds of murder mystery novels – a murder, a room of suspects, and an expert detective. But this time there’s a difference.
“They all stare at you expectantly, like children waiting to be told a bedtime story. Who can blame them? You are, after all, Antoine Saint Germain, the great French detective. No criminal has ever been a match for you, and everybody is looking forward to a description of your brilliant deductions.
There is just one small problem. One tiny detail that makes it different this time. A mere trifle, really. This time you have no idea who did it.”
The picture above says it all really. Just look at the intense attention of the detective’s audience as they hang off his every word, eager to discover who was responsible for the death of the Colonel, then look at the detective himself. Doesn’t have a clue, does he?
Simon Christianson’s text adventure Death Off The Cuff is a hilarious tale with a very simple objective – Just keep talking. Talk about what you know about the murder, then talk about what you don’t know. Once you’ve exhausted the obvious topics of conversation, just talk about everything you can see. Clothes, motives, noses, it doesn’t matter, just mention it all in the vain hope that one of those present will slip up and confess to something they think you already know.
I’m not great at text adventures – I frequently struggle to get into the mindset of the author, repeatedly banging my head against actions I think must work, but the author hasn’t thought of. Luckily for me, DOTC is kind enough to be extremely generous with its hints, even providing a walkthrough for those completely stuck in the water.
So I talked. I talked and talked and talked, until somebody finally snapped. To be honest, I don’t even know if I got the right killer – I may have just bored them so utterly that they’d rather go to jail than continue listening to me.
Death Off The Cuff is currently available for purchase from Itch.io for a minimum price of $0.99. It’s not particularly long, but it’s long enough that the central joke doesn’t get stale.
So who dunnit? Take a seat, listen very carefully and I’ll explain. I warn you, we could be here a very, very, very long time…