Table of Contents[Hide][Show]
- #17 Saturnalia
- #16 AI: The Somnium Files - nirvanA Initiative
- #15 Great Ace Attorney Chronicles
- #14 Sherlock Holmes Chapter One
- #13 Judgment
- #12 Kona
- #11 Life is Strange Series
- #10 Murdered: Soul Suspect
- #9 Lost Judgment
- #8 The Sinking City
- #7 The Vanishing of Ethan Carter
- #6 Return of the Obra Dinn
- #5 The Wolf Among Us
- #4 Disco Elysium
- #3 Heavy Rain
- #2 Batman Arkham Trilogy
- #1 L.A. Noire
As media has loved to show us in various ways, people love a good detective story. After all, they’re crime thrillers that usually have some good plot twists and keep people engaged until the end. Video games aren’t always known for their detective titles, but the ones they have made do stand out. We’ll show you some examples of that.
Upcoming games up to next 3 months
Amnesia: The Bunker – PC PS4 XSX|S Xbox One – May 16, 2023
Platform: PC PS4 Xbox One PS5 XSX|S Switch
Release date: October 27, 2022
Saturnalia is a horror game with some detective moments scattered about. In this game, we’re getting a group of townsfolk trapped in a maze-like town. It’s an eerie location that only grows more unsettling as you know a monster is slowly searching for those to devour somewhere within the area. The goal of the game is to solve puzzles and escape the city with as many people in your group as possible. However, the more you dwell in the city, the more information you’ll uncover. Notes within the in-game journal will start to build out the horrifying truth behind this city. So if you’re brave enough to take on this city, unlock its mysteries and find a way out, you can pick up the title to enjoy right now.
#16 AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative
Platform: PC PS4 Xbox One Switch
Release date: June 24, 2022
In the future, a bizarre serial killer has haunted detectives. Half of a body was found in one case, and the other half was never recovered. But then, six years later, it was found. Yet there was a problem. Despite the body being from six years previous, the corpse showed no signs of decay.
You’ll take the role of two detectives, who, alongside their AI partners, must attempt to figure out what happened with this body, and others like it.
A deep and complex mystery awaits you, and you’ll need to keep your wits about you to prepare for what comes next. Think you’re up to the task?
#15 Great Ace Attorney Chronicles
“OBJECTION!” You might cry out. “The Ace Attorney title is about lawyers, not detectives!”
If you did say that, then you really haven’t played these games. Because the Ace Attorney saga focuses on the courtroom yes, but also detective-like investigations so that clues can be found and truths exposed.
The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles takes that to a whole new level. Set in the times of the 19th century, you’ll play as the ancestor of Phoenix Wright who gets caught up in a conspiracy across two continents. What’s more, you’ll be teaming up with the legendary detective Herlock Sholmes to get your cases to the right conclusion.
With lots of cases, and a lot of fun to be had, this DETECTIVE game will be perfect for those who want a long adventure.
#14 Sherlock Holmes Chapter One
It’d almost be criminal to not have a Sherlock Holmes game on this list, wouldn’t you say? After all, he’s one of the best to ever do it. And in fact, there are plenty of Sherlock games to go and play, but Sherlock Holmes Chapter One is the one we’ll be focusing on here.
In this telling, you play as a young Sherlock Holmes, who is trying to prove himself as a detective by solving various crimes. The catch is that you’ll need to be using both your wits and your fists at times to try and survive the cases you partake in. All the while deducing all sorts of things to try and get the right result…which is never guaranteed in this game.
Add to that, the game features a very different Jon for you to solve a mystery of…
If you were a fan of the Yakuza games, then you’ll definitely want to try out Judgment. In this game, you play as Takayuki Yagami, a disgraced attorney who is determined to get his credibility back and take down those in the underworld as a result.
When a string of grisly murders pops up in Japan, you take on your new role as private investigator to figure out what really happened. You’ll need to investigate, interrogate, and walk the “fine line” as best you can, or, dive into one side or the other to see what the consequences are of your actions.
Add to that, there’s a battle system, a very cinematic experience to it all, and a set of thrills you’ll just need to play to truly experience.
Kona is quite literally a “Chilling mystery game” due to the sole fact that it’s a game set during a snowstorm in Canada as a detective is trapped in a village that seemingly has no inhabitants.
The problem? He was called there by a rich man to investigate some vandalism, but when no one is there when he arrives, he must figure out the truth before he can even think of leaving.
Explore the creepy village, see what awaits you, see what clues you can find, and unravel the mystery and conspiracy of what happened in this remote place. All the while, doing your best to survive the elements, because if nothing else kills you…nature might.
#11 Life is Strange Series
The Life is Strange series is one of the most acclaimed games of the last several years, and for good reason. The tales that you get to see unfold show you incredibly deep characters who have various abilities that can affect the world around them.
Such as being able to rewind and fast forward through time, put thoughts into people’s heads, and more. Through these characters eyes, you’ll dive into deep and emotional stories that might not have the endings you’re expecting. And with each tale you hear, the more invested you’ll be.
If you haven’t played these games yet, you really should, some of them are in episodes which are free to play right now! So don’t miss out.
#10 Murdered: Soul Suspect
What happens when you’re given the hardest case of your life…and that’s to solve who caused your death?
That is the crux of Murdered: Soul Suspect. You play as Ronan O’Connor, a detective who was brutally murdered, and to finally cross over into the next part of the afterlife, he has to find out who is responsible for it.
As a spirit, you’ll have a wide range of abilities to use as you explore the land of the living, as well as the dead. Each act you take though will either get you closer to your freedom, or corrupt your soul even more. And you’ll have to face off against spirits who want your soul for themselves!
Will you be able to find out the truth?
#9 Lost Judgment
Ready to jump back into the shoes of Takayuki Yagami? You better be, because Lost Judgment is the sequel to the previous title, and it’s a darker tale than before.
As a man is accused of one crime, but seemingly confesses to another that is MUCH more heinous. Takayuki Yagami is called in by a lawyer to try and figure out the truth, and the truth might just be more shocking than the events that led to his hiring!
Like before, you’ll have a “fine line” to walk as you try and figure out the truth, and as you do, your choices will determine how you view the law, and how you choose to dish out justice.
#8 The Sinking City
Welcome to the 1920s, and the city of Oakmont. You are an investigator who wakes up to find that the city is half-sinking into the ocean, and that its people are being corrupted by a supernatural influence.
Oh, and you’re being corrupted as well, did we not mention that before?
Now, you’ll have to go and solve cases around a city filled with H.P. Lovecraft inspiration in order to see what has happened, and whether anyone can be saved.
The best part about the game is that each case can be solved in a variety of ways, and that’ll heavily affect the ending that you get. So enter this atmospheric world and see what awaits you…if you dare…
#7 The Vanishing of Ethan Carter
Paul Prospero is an occult-minded detective who receives a case of paramount importance. He gets a letter from a young boy named Ethan Carter, and rushes to his aid…only to find him missing after a murder has taken place. And as the detective realizes very quickly, there’s even MORE going on here than what was being led on.
As such, you’ll have to go and explore various areas, use Paul’s ability to talk with the dead, and do whatever else it takes to solve the various mysteries at hand. It won’t be easy, and even the dev team thinks you might “get scars” from playing the game.
But if you work it out, then you’ll truly solve… The Vanishing of Ethan Carter.
#6 Return of the Obra Dinn
How about we give some love to the indie games, shall we?
Return of the Obra Dinn is a very fun yet “stripped back” detective game. And by that we mean that the visuals are meant to be basic, yet entrancing in their own way.
In 1802, the Obra Dinn was declared lost at sea. But then, in 1807, it returned with only some damage, and no sign of the crew. As an investigator, you must use a variety of special mechanics to weave in and out of the stories of the crew members in order to find out what’s happened to the crew, and the ship, and why it took so long to be found.
We won’t say much more as that might spoil things, so just get on board and solve this case for yourself!
#5 The Wolf Among Us
Based on the Fables series, and with a sequel coming out soon, The Wolf Among Us features you as Bigby, the one and only “Big Bad Wolf”. But in a twist, he’s the sheriff of Fabletown.
A murder shakes the town to its core, and now it’s up to you to investigate, see the truth of the matter, and figure out who is really behind it, and so much more.
True to the TellTale saga, The Wolf Among Us gives you key dialogue choices that’ll help determine what path you take in the game, and the ending will be affected by your choices whether you like it or not. So dive into this unique realm of fairy tales and see what awaits you.
#4 Disco Elysium
Arguably one of the best games of recent times, Disco Elysium is an RPG that leans heavily into detective elements.
In fact, you play as a detective who must go across a vast city and explore, talk with people, and grow in a way that YOU get to decide. The game based off the tabletop title gives you dozens of skill sets that you can try and build up, or not even touch. You can make your detective one of noble virtue, a person who takes bribes to look the other way, or one who walks the grey.
The more choices you make, the more the game opens up to you, the more characters you can find and paths you can walk. There is total freedom in this title, and that’s just how the devs wanted it.
#3 Heavy Rain
Heavy Rain in many ways was a groundbreaking title when it came out, because it was a detective/psychological thriller that hadn’t really been done in that style at that point in time in games.
In it, you’ll play as four different people on four very different journeys, but they all tie back to the mysterious Origami Killer. You’ll need to investigate, find clues, talk to people for information and do what you need to do in order to find this killer and stop them from getting another victim.
Not unlike a real detective case, your choices and decisions matter, and there are multiple endings in this game that can determine just how good, or how badly, you did.
If you can live with that burden, then jump into Heavy Rain.
#2 Batman Arkham Trilogy
Yes, we know, the Batman Arkham Trilogy isn’t known SOLELY for its detective mechanics…but it’s definitely one of the high spots for the trilogy! When Rocksteady made the three main Arkham titles, they didn’t just want you to be the Batman in terms of fighting, they wanted you to FEEL what it meant to be the “World’s Greatest Detective”, and as such, they gave you the “Detective Mode” setting in your cowl.
As you go throughout Arkham Asylum, Arkham City and battle the Arkham Knight, you’ll need to use your wits as well as your fists to save the day. And there are some things like the Riddler sidequests that can ONLY be solved by being a detective.
So go and see if you can complete the game and revel in being as smart as Batman.
#1 L.A. Noire
Let’s end this with a game that is 100% a detective title, ok? In L.A. Noire, you are an LAPD detective, Cole Phelps, who is waist deep trying to both solve cases and take down some of the most notorious criminals in the city.
As you go from case to case, you’ll have to use your actual detective skills and interact with both the crime scene and witnesses in order to solve the crimes and see what dastardly person did this. Rockstar Games tried to make this as realistic as possible, and they did triumph at the time.
Plus, the game now has all of its extra DLC cases when you buy the game, so you’ll be able to have even more puzzles to solve in this older version of LA.