The Darkside Detective - Spooky Doorway

Hey folks, Would you be so kind as to vote for The Darkside Detective in Adventure Gamers' Reader Choice Poll? A BIG thanks from the Darkside Division!

The Darkside Detective - Spooky Doorway

Attention all recruits! To celebrate our impending launch on the Nintendo Switch on February 7th, we're running a 40% sale on Steam for the next 48 hours! What a time to be alive (or dead, as this is only a minor inconvenience in the world of The Darkside Detective)

Sale starts 6pm GMT / 10am PST

The Darkside Detective - Spooky Doorway

Some last minute shopping on Christmas Eve. What's the worst that could happen? Find out in a brand new case from the Darkside Detective. It's Free, just update your game and play Buy Hard!

There's a lot more of Twin Lakes to explore, people to meet and mysteries to investigate. We wanted to show that off, as well as thank our fans for the support they've given us throughout the year. Merry Christmas, Detectives.
The Darkside Detective

In the Indie GIF Showcase, we dig up the best-looking new and upcoming indie games and explore what makes them special. Are you developer with a game to submit? Use this form.

The Darkside Detective is a point-and-click adventure set in Twin Lakes City, where demons, the undead, and cultists are a regular problem. The Darkside Division are tasked with dealing with occult crimes in Twin Lakes, but there's only enough room in the budget for one detective: Francis McQueen.

The Darkside Detective uses pixel art to make the strange seem mundane, to bring to life a town where zombies on the lawn are just one of those things, where ghosts in the library are the purview of one detective and a uniformed cop who sometimes buddies up with you, Sam & Max style.  Creators Spooky Doorway released The Darkside Detective earlier this year, and it earned a mention in our list of the best detective games thanks to its winning writing and a soundtrack by Ben Prunty of FTL fame. But its chunky graphics are worth celebrating too, perfectly crafted for an adventure game where you don't have to pixel hunt for tiny details. Everything is upfront, and its faceless characters aren't hiding anything. 

The Darkside Detective

I've played two of the six cases in The Darkside Detective, a winning so-called 'micro-adventure' game from developer Spooky Doorway. Each episode is about Francis McQueen, lead investigator of the Darkside Division of the law enforcement in Twin Lakes City, who's joined by his foil, Patrick Dooley, in an effort to uncover nearby occult happenings. 

In the first case, you have to find out what happened to a family's missing daughter. The dad isn't too fussed about his little girl's disappearance, while the mother is in tears—and the nanny is acting suspiciously. In the second, ghosts are haunting the local library. You have to discover why it's attracting such activity, while the librarian does sweet FA to aid you in resolving the problem. You eventually come across the ghosts of Poe and Lovecraft, arguing about who's work is scarier, along with other renowned authors from history knocking around the library's different floors. 

The slightly moody pixel art and soundtrack (by FTL's Ben Prundy) are contrasted nicely by the writing, which is winningly wry. Dooley mentions how he's suspicious of anyone who owns more than six books, which made me laugh, and at one point it's strongly suggested that the ghost of Aleister Crowley is enjoying some alone time with internet pornography. It's warmly funny and offbeat, like a detective sitcom that isn't rubbish. It's reasonably heavy on pop culture references, most of which I found subtle enough in their delivery to enjoy. 

I was smiling throughout both of these cases, except for about ten minutes I spent trying to work out how to fix an elevator button. As typically plagues point-and-click games, there are a couple of 'really?' moments in The Darkside Detective as you stumble across abstract solutions to puzzles you can only discover through trial-and-error. 

It still took me about an hour to do those two cases, which isn't bad at all, and I'm drawn to the writing and characters here rather than the puzzle design anyway. Check it out if you're a fan of the genre and you're discerning about good jokes in adventure games—the whole thing apparently takes 4-5 hours to beat. 

The Darkside Detective is out now on Steam and GOG.  

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The Darkside Detective - Spooky Doorway

Hello, Linux-friends,

We know that some of you are experiencing an issue where the game starts and all you see is a jet black screen. While you might think this is the game, we assure you it is not. It seems to be an issue with some Linux configurations, especially when prime synchronization is in use. Essentially, a 0x0 resolution is being auto detected for fullscreen mode and being used by the game startup.

It's not a perfect solution but a workaround (until we patch it) is to navigate to:

~/.config/unity3d/Spooky Doorway/The Darkside Detective/
and edit the prefs file to be like this:
<pref name="Screenmanager Is Fullscreen mode" type="int">0</pref> <pref name="Screenmanager Resolution Height" type="int">1080</pref> <pref name="Screenmanager Resolution Width" type="int">1920</pref>

This will set fullscreen mode to false and force a windowed resolution of 1920x1080.
If it doesn't help, it would be awesome if you could forward on your Player.log and prefs files from the above directory to tracey {at} spookydoorway {dot} com

We hope this helps some of you,
The Spooky Doorway Team (but mostly Tracey)
The Darkside Detective - (Adam Smith)


Officer Dooley is the best point and click character I’ve met in ages, and I say that having thoroughly enjoyed the company of Thimbleweed Park’s misfits and misanthropes. Dooley is on a different level though. Maybe it’s that he’s unvoiced and yet so smartly written that I can hear his every word, or maybe it’s that he’s secretly the world’s laziest anarchist trapped inside the uniform of a policeman.

He’s the best thing about The Darkside Detective [official site], a small but perfectly formed paranormal adventure that is full of good things.


The Darkside Detective - Spooky Doorway

We recently sat down with Adventure Gamers to talk about making The Darkside Detective and adventure game development.


The Darkside Detective - Spooky Doorway
The Darkside Detective - Spooky Doorway

A scene from our new mini case - POLTERGUYS (play here)


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