Papers, Please creator's next game is a first-person mystery

With a decidedly retro aesthetic



4:00 PM on 05.27.2014

As expected, the next game from Lucas Pope won't be like his last project, the critically acclaimed "dystopian document thriller" Papers, Please. It's a 3D first-person mystery that takes place aboard a merchant ship, the Obra Dinn, which was thought to be lost at sea for years. It's now 1808 and the vessel has drifted into port with damaged sails and no visible crew.

Playing as an insurance adjustor for the East India Company's London Office, you'll board the ship, find the captain's logbook, and try to piece together what happened. This is Return of the Obra Dinn. Notably, the game will feature a graphical style reminiscent of early Mac titles.

Pope has provided early descriptions of the project on the TIGForums. Talking about goals for the game, he said "There'll be less creativity with the gameplay [compared to Papers, Please] and instead I want to experiment with the rendering, story, and a few technical features.

"I'm hoping to capture a compelling mystery with suspense and twists in the limited space of an old merchant sailing ship. It won't be the typical 'collect items and look for clues' structure. There's a slightly cool gameplay hook but I won't go into details on that until much later."

It's estimated that Return of the Obra Dinn will "realistically" take half a year to complete.

Return of the Obra Dinn [TIGForums]


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Jordan Devore

Managing Editor