"Gamification" of mystery stories dates back much further than computer games. For example, 90 years ago, established genre author Dennis Wheatley thought up what he called Crime Dossiers. Those essentially were binders full of clues towards solving a fictional criminal case. A description of the setting, then letters, pictures, evidence found at the scene of the crime etc. Studying all this material, the reader (or "player") was supposed to draw her own conclusions as to what exactly happened and who the culprit was before finally opening the sealed included solution to confirm.
Interactive movies… you might say that if you have played one of them, you have played them all. From the humble beginnings with pixelated miniature slide shows up to the fullscreen full motion video titles, all of them have one thing in common: A shallow plot combined with bad acting, interspersed by obscure and out of nowhere puzzles. The game we are going to discuss today, Black Dahlia, tried its best to leave this reputation behind by turning things up to eleven, with really high production values and an even somewhat creative story.
The time has come. The night of all nights has arrived, where I will dive into darkness. Evil awakens and a nightmare comes true: Dracula rules our city of New York and the lord of darkness is also the head of the local corporation for cyber-genetics, cyber-space, cyber-surgery, cyber-technology, cyber-weapons and cyber-surveillance. Appropriately, it has been a very long time since the city has seen any light; we are in an apparently endless night.