Small, unassuming American towns make the perfect backdrop for a good old-fashioned murder mystery.
Being the type of town where everyone knows each other’s business, it makes it all the more shocking when all of a sudden, a dead body shows up. And that’s exactly what happens in Rainswept, a stylish adventure game from Frostwood Interactive that’s now available on PC.
Rainswept, in fact, has two dead bodies. You assume the role of Detective Michael Stone as he arrives on the crime scene in the small town of Pineview one morning. It’s wet and miserable outside the unassuming suburban house, but even more miserable inside as two bloody bodies await you. As Stone, you’ll talk to witnesses, other police officers and examine the crime scene to try to make sense what’s going on.
The officers in the town, they’re adamant it was a domestic problem. Husband kills the wife then pulls the gun on himself. They’re eager to wash their hands of the tragedy. But Stone’s not so sure. He knows there’s something more to it. And so this is where Rainswept begins, leaving you in the middle of a gruesome murder investigation, in a strange little town where everyone seems to be hiding something. It doesn’t have quite the same supernatural feel as something like Twin Peaks, but the mysterious small town vibe is definitely familiar.
Read more: 10 games that fans of Twin Peaks will love
Rainswept has a distinct point-and-click style feel to it; you move over to objects and interact with them, collecting anything useful in your inventory. Annoyingly though, you can’t control the game simply by clicking your mouse to where you’d like to go. You need to control Stone with your keyboard to approach the object you’d like to look at and then interact with it. It’s a little clunky, and with no controller support currently, it’s your only option.
Still, it’s worth persevering with, if for nothing else than Rainswept‘s gorgeous art style. It manages to be both minimalist yet teeming with detail. It has a classic look to it that hearkens back to games of the 90s without looking old-fashioned. The town of Pineview is simply beautiful and begs to be explored. The dialogue, too, is well-written. There’s no voice acting, which really could’ve brought the game to life, but for a small indie game it wasn’t really to be expected. The text, though, is still enough to give the characters personality, and after only a few minutes with the game you’ll be desperate to find out more about them.
More than just a whodunnit murder mystery, Rainswept is a narrative filled with themes of love, loss and unresolved trauma. It’s a story that feels real, that begs you to keep playing to find out what happens next. If you’ve previously enjoyed games like Virginia or Knee Deep, then Rainswept should definitely be on your wishlist.