Murdered: Soul Suspect Review Roundup

Find out what the critics are saying about the newly released supernatural detective thriller.

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Murdered: Soul Suspect, the supernatural detective thriller from Square Enix and Airtight Games (Dark Void, Quantum Conundrum), launched today on the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC in North America and on June 6 in Europe. With its release comes no shortage of reviews, a sampling of which we've collected here to provide you with some sense of what the critics are saying.

Murdered takes place in Salem, Mass. and stars the newly deceased Ronan O'Connor, who sets out to learn the identity of his killer. It features music from BAFTA award winner Jason Graves, composer of the soundtracks for Dead Space and the 2013 reboot of Tomb Raider. Despite being multiplatform, Murdered will not be coming to Wii U.

Reviews of the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions are hard to come by, but many (but not all) of those for the Xbox One and PS4 versions have been neither especially positive nor especially negative. The Xbox One and PS4 versions currently hold average review scores of 50 and 59, respectively, on GameSpot sister site Metacritic.

Destructoid -- 4.5/10

"I truly wanted to like this game. It combines several of my favorite tropes and ideas into one cohesive whole, and I respect what it was trying to attain. But combining an underdeveloped hide-and-seek operation with a ghost story that seems ripped straight from a casual game isn't the way to hold my attention. It's a half-baked concoction full of lofty ideas that don't quite mesh well together topped with a fedora. And I don't think that's a confection anyone really wants to devour. Save this one for a rental." [Full review]

Joystiq -- 3.5/5

"Acquired taste though its investigative gameplay may be, Murdered gets everything nearly exactly right until its final act, at which point it seems determined to wreck everything it's achieved. That said, the mystery at the heart of Murdered really is excellent, and putting the pieces together crime scene by crime scene should satisfy many an armchair sleuth. The hidden ghost stories are well worth finding, and though Ronan is a bit of a dull fish, the people who surround him are worth getting to know, however briefly. With some truly great ideas and some unfortunate choices, Murdered: Soul Suspect and its ghostly hero is neither heaven nor hell, but something in between." [Full review]

GameSpot -- review in progress

"The deliberate pacing immediately pulled me in, because I do love slowly figuring out how and why a crime took place. Murdered is similar to Ghost Trick in that regard, only without the titular ghost tricking, or like L.A. Noire, but without the aggressive interrogations. So there's not a hook that demands your attention. Rather, it's the story that bears the brunt of the weight, and that's where Murdered struggles so far." [Review in progress]

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Polygon -- 7/10

"Murdered: Soul Suspect is awash in tropes, but somehow, that's part of the charm. It's a pulpy detective tale remixed as a classic ghost story, and it works as a sort of playable B-movie. It's linear and mechanically simple, but it flows well and keeps a fast pace, at least as long as I wasn't chasing down demons. Supernatural Salem was a rich, sad, beautiful place to visit, and as it turned out, Ronan was the perfect tour guide." [Full review]

Edge -- 4/10

"With so little systemic support, Murdered puts all its emphasis on its story, which just can't bear the weight. The writing aims for hardboiled horror – Dick Tracy by way of Paranormal Activity – but feels undercooked. O'Connor spouts trite observations full of false import. The ghost writing that accompanies clues rarely has anything to say ('Troubled' floats by a scribble on a mental asylum wall) and the ending is an anticlimax, spitting on any connections you’ve bothered to make and mechanically relying on a baseless leap of logic under time pressure. On every level, then, Murdered throttles its premise. Much as it saddens us, given the promise of seeing a 3D Ghost Trick, we pronounce this dead on arrival." [Full review]

Eurogamer - 6/10

"And it's that underdog likeability that rescues Soul Suspect from the lower reaches of the score table. It's a Good 6, that delightful strata of games that stumble in the technical aspects, but compensate with personality and charm, somehow all the more enjoyable for their imperfections. I can't pretend that Soul Suspect is a particularly great game, but I do know that it's the sort of game I'll still remember - and remember fondly - in five years' time, which is more than can be said for most of its glossier rivals." [Full review]

GamesBeat -- 89/100

"Murdered: Soul Suspect is one of the most surprisingly good games I've played in a long time. It manages to sell its bizarre premise and builds a solid, moving story out of it, and the plot-propelling investigations add immensely to the detective feel. Walking around as a ghost is clever and entertaining, and it even manages to inject variety into some of gaming’s most overused elements." [Full review]

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