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Who doesn't love a good murder mystery, right? The drama, the intrigue, the suspects, the scene, it's all set meticulously for the journey to figure out who could have committed the heinous crime. Some of these types of games are milder than the rest, but once you find a good one with interesting characters and an enjoyable setting that resonates with you, it is hard to put it down. After playing the demo for Moses & Plato - Last Train to Clawville, I believe this could be one of those games for me.

MosesandPlatoDemo 3

The Moses & Plato demo primarily exists to set the stage for the full game, stopping before the murder happens, but it does a great job of giving us a teaser for what to expect. The demo starts off giving us an intro scene where we go from standing on top of the train to when we first get on the train at the beginning. Here, we are introduced to our Sherlock Holmes duo: Moses, the intelligent and calmer detective, and Plato, the rough-and-tumble high-energy officer. You take the time before the train to introduce yourself to some of the guests and the client you are hired to protect, and then board the train.

Once aboard, you are given a small amount of time before the party to get a taste of what it will be like to investigate. It was here that I took the time to meet a new passenger and interrogate an ambassador's assistant who was on board. This is where the demo stops, though, and we don't get to experience the party, but I do know that you will be racing against time to figure out who the murderer is, even though everyone will suspect you!

Gameplay-wise, this is a point-and-click game. You will look out across a scene and move your cursor to select the people you want to talk to, inspect items or buildings, or move to other areas. There are some unique mechanics here, like being able to inspect objects using your heightened sense of smell, sight, and sound to get more information about them. Then, with all the information, we can go and interrogate the passengers to try to reveal the secrets about why they are here and what they are up to.

You also have a mind garden, which reminded me of how you would put clues together in Alan Wake 2. This is an area inside of Moses' mind where you can check out details for each person, put clues together to create conclusions and connect individuals to each other via emotions. So, as you learn about people, you can connect and visualize how others feel about each other. The board is completely malleable and includes everyone, even Plato, and I am excited about how the full game will have me utilize the board.

While the gameplay is sound, the characters carry the experience. Moses and Plato have very different personalities, which play off of each other quite well, and the passengers all feel wholly unique. In the demo, we met the cold ambassador Ignet and his snooty daughter Cunnia, Ambassador Mujara and his assistant Fahni (who Moses finds very pretty), snooty actor Cassidy and the paranoid actress Cassandra, and the conductor Pierre who likes to make terrible jokes.

I loved getting to know the characters I could in the short time I had, and it made me want to keep playing to discover more about them. I decided to interrogate Fahni to try to discover some secrets, and I was actually able to extract information about Ambassador Mujara, but the entire time, Moses was trying to be nice and slightly flirty. It oozed personality, and it made me want to just keep on playing.

I also want to make a special mention of the art style. The backgrounds are a nice blend of semi-detailed and cartoony, but the character designs captivated me the most. From the detail in the designs in the clothing to the makeup on the faces, I felt each character had a very distinct look. Even with the detail, the faces were full of expression, and I could tell what each person was feeling when talking to them. I also liked that moving around the train changed the environment to a 3D model instead of the game's normal 2D.

So far, I am captivated by the world that was built and intrigued by how the murder mystery of Moses & Plato will play out. The characters and designs are intriguing, and the gameplay has some interesting elements to keep me focused, like the Mind Garden and the use of your senses. There's no word on official controller support, so you will have to use the Steam Deck touchpads to move the cursor around, but I wasn't really upset by this. It runs well, too, hitting 90 FPS with a 12W - 15W battery drain. I am optimistic about the final game's performance in general if the demo is able to perform like this!

Moses & Plato - Last Train to Clawville doesn't have a release date yet, but the demo is available now on Steam to try out! And if you are a fan of point-and-click murder mysteries, I highly recommend trying it out.

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Noah Kupetsky
A lover of gaming since 4, Noah has grown up with a love and passion for the industry. From there, he started to travel a lot and develop a joy for handheld and PC gaming. When the Steam Deck released, it just all clicked.
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