Earlier this year game developer Daniel Mullins released the deceptively titled cult classic Pony Island, a fourth wall-breaking horror comedy about the devil possessing your computer. Now, Mr. Mullins has announced his next project: a murder mystery called The Hex.
Like Pony Island, The Hex will be another satire merging different genres and gameplay mechanics into a peculiar whole. The fourth wall breaks are just as apparent in The Hex as the premise revolves around an old inkeeper who’s told that one of his patrons is planning a murder. The catch: each guest is a representation of a different video game genre.
You’ve got The Spacemarine, The Sorceress, The Platformer, The Fighter, The Apocalypse Survivor, and The First Person Perspective. Amusingly, none of them are particularly interested in solving this seemingly pressing predicament. Instead, they’re all preoccupied with their own ulterior motives which we’ll discover throughout the course of the game.
“At a critical point in each character’s story, you are taken back in time to play out a memory from their past,” Mullins explained in an email to Eurogamer. “The gameplay mechanics of each memory are unique and representative of the character. For example, in The Platformer’s memory you play a sidescrolling platformer, while in The Apocalypse Survivor’s memory, you play an isometric turn-based tactics game.”
Allegedly this means the innkeeper is representative of adventure games, the only mainstream genre that typically places a great deal of emphasis on plot. No wonder no one else cares to solve this thing.
“The game shares some similarities with Pony Island: games within games, inverted expectations, and a heavy helping of secrets,” Mullins said of The Hex.
The developer is shooting to release The Hex for PC, Mac and Linux on Steam and itch.io in early 2017.