Genres: Visual Novel, Mystery
Lady Love Dies has been exiled from Paradise for 3 million days. Now Paradise’s Council has been murdered, and Lady Love Dies has been summoned by Justice to return to Paradise and find the killer. This is the premise of Paradise Killer. The description is strange, but everything comes together to create an unforgettable detective game full of vaporware aesthetics.
Lady Love Dies is a detective prodigy, and players take control of the disgraced hero. They will investigate and explore the island and its eclectic denizens in an effort to find out who murdered the council. I’d rather not go into any more detail on the plot because the sense of discovery is what makes Paradise Killer so special. Players are free to explore the island, meet the characters, and come to their own conclusions.
Exploration is rewarded in Paradise Lost. Players can initiate a trial and accuse their primary suspect whenever they want. Players can be as thorough as they think is necessary. Evidence and how it connects to a suspect needs to be presented or it won’t be useful in court. Few games allow the player to actually feel like a detective. There is a small amount of hand-holding, but the player is still free to solve or botch their case.
As mentioned before, the characters are full of personality. Their designs fit the Vaporwave aesthetic that Paradise Killer shoots for. The characters have colorful personalities and appearances. They are diverse, though admittedly rather cliche too. Despite how trope-y some of the characters are, I still found myself invested in learning more about them. Everyone is a suspect, and Paradise Killer does a great job of making players want to find their primary suspect.
The characters and Paradise itself fit the game’s aesthetic perfectly. The music in Paradise Killer ties everything together. Vaporwave tunes fill the player’s ears throughout the game. It’s one of the most thematic and delightful soundtracks of the year. I’m not the most familiar person with the genre, but I found myself in love with the music. It is fun and makes the experience much more immersive. The voice acting is minimal in Paradise Killer. This is probably a good thing since the few lines that are voiced here and there leave a lot to be desired. The voice acting is the game’s weakest point. There are much worse things for a game to be criticized for, and this likely won’t bother most players.
Paradise Lost runs great on the Switch. It doesn’t seem to be an intensive game, so the Switch handles everything well. It’s all optimized exceptionally well and looks solid docked or handheld. The graphics aren’t exceptional, but everything looks clean and the theme makes any imperfections easy to ignore. There is a myriad of accessibility options available to players. It’s fantastic for making this a comfortable experience.
Paradise Killer is worth getting into for the presentation alone. Throw in a fantastic story and great detective experience and you have a fantastic game. The freedom that Paradise Killer gives players allows for players to be as thorough as they need to be. There isn’t anything quite like it, so fans of visual novels or detective games will want to check this one out.
Paradise Killer is one of the best detective games available on the Nintendo Switch.