Famicom Detective Club review: “Perfect for those with a lot of patience”

With a game like Famicon Detective Club, you expect to feel like a detective. The clue is in the name, right? This remake, following 30 years after its original 1980s Japan-exclusive debut, is more about stumbling across the right answer than making you feel anywhere near like an investigator.

Fast Facts: Famicom Detective Club

Famicom Detective Club screenshot

(Image credit: Nintendo)

Release date: May 14, 2021
Platform(s): Nintendo Switch
Publisher/Developer: Nintendo

The way you’re required to figure out the facts is by traveling from different locations interviewing suspects, witnesses, and those with any connection to the victim to deduce exactly what led to the murder. Just like the likes of Ace Attorney or any other interactive mysteries, players need to push their subjects’ buttons to tease out the information they’re looking for. But, in Famicom Detective Club, opportunities to discover actual clues are so badly signposted, you end up feeling more frustrated than clever. 

I expected interviewees to give small hints in their alibis or retelling of events that would lead me to want to ask further questions. However, during both games included in this package – The Missing Heir and The Girl Who Stands Behind – I felt constantly lost as to exactly what I was supposed to say, ending up just cycling through the different options until I got the answer I was looking for. 

Famicom Detective Club screenshot

(Image credit: Nintendo)

Sometimes I’d be at my wit’s end trying to suss out exactly what dialogue option to press to progress before realizing that I had to select the same option again to get them to further explain their point. Occasionally I even had to trigger things that I would have had no way of knowing were available to interact with and only discovered as I frustratingly clicked around every part of the screen attempting to get any kind of reaction.

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