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'Soul Suspect' a no-brainer

June 20, 2014

By John Powell - G4 Canada

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>'Soul Suspect' a no-brainerYou would think being a ghost would be cool. Being able to phase through solid objects, spy on people, possess them or poltergeist everyday objects sounds like a whole lotta fun. It would be just not in 'Murdered: Soul Suspect', a highly ambitious game which cannot put the pieces of this murder-mystery together.

A police detective in Salem, Massachusetts, Detective Ronan O'Connor is a cop with a troubled past. While pursuing a serial killer, O'Connor loses a struggle, is thrown out a window then shot to death. 

To his surprise, O'Connor emerges from his body as a spirit capable of roaming our world sight unseen, except to other apparitions. Through a helpful spirit, O'Connor learns of his new supernatural powers and how to exploit them to solve the mystery of his own death. He can possess people, read their minds, influence them in various ways, go almost anywhere he chooses and eavesdrop without anyone noticing his presence. Through his investigation, O'Connor runs into other spirits who need his help to move on.

>'Soul Suspect' a no-brainerIn this murder mystery there is no real investigating. You just sweep areas for items, stand by as a silent witness as suspects or witnesses spill the beans and use your possession powers to manipulate people or read their thoughts. Once you have checked off most of the required clues, the game allows you to travel to the next location. 

There is nothing here to challenge your deductive skills or to make you think. 'Soul Suspect' isn't about sorting through clues, making connections between them and solving them. It is about unlocking enough clues to move on and nothing more. The more you play, the more you feel as if you are just going through the motions, which you are. 

>'Soul Suspect' a no-brainerThe only combat comes about when you are faced with roaming demons that drain your energy. You can avoid them by teleporting in and out of the stationary remnants of other spirits and if you are clever enough to sneak up on them, you can stealth exorcise them. These encounters are so infrequent; you wonder why they were included at all.

The idea of playing a being that is not subject to the normal laws of existence may sound exciting but the way it is handled in 'Soul Suspect' it is really quite dull. This paint-by-numbers mystery is more of an interactive movie than a fictional criminal investigation requiring no imagination and no creative judgment to unscramble; just the click of a few buttons and a few taps of a joystick. In all honesty, I had more fun scampering around as a possessed a cat than I did unlocking any of the "clues" in 'Soul Suspect'. Talk about a catastrophe.

Murdered: Soul Suspect Murdered: Soul Suspect
Format: PS4
Publisher: Square Enix
Developer: Airtight Games
ESRB Rating: M for Mature
Official Site: http://murdered.com/

Rating: 4 / 10

 
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About G4 in Canada
G4 Canada (formerly TechTV Canada) launched in September 2001. G4 is the one and only television station that is plugged into every dimension of games, gear, gadgets and gigabytes. Owned Rogers Media Inc., the channel airs more than 24 original series. G4 is available on digital cable and satellite. For more information, see www.g4tv.ca.