Demo available for upcoming hand-drawn mystery puzzler inspired by Professor Layton and Ace Attorney
The Professor Layton and Ace Attorney series are both incredibly popular, so why not create a game that blends in a little of both? Clearly Karavaj Games thinks so, as reflected in the indie developer’s upcoming debut adventure Maelström Legacy: The Tesla Mystery, which is currently seeking funding on Kickstarter.
The game is set in a fictional, “anachronistic” version of 1940s/1950s Paris, where WWII did not take place and characters from various eras in real-world history are now part of a shared time period in their primes. Against this backdrop, players control a young Japanese scientist and inventor named Hayao Maelström, who is invited by none other than Nikola Tesla to a prestigious scientific event in the Eiffel Tower. Just as Tesla finishes his speech, however, the lights go out and Tesla has mysteriously vanished when they are restored. With his “insatiable curiosity to find the truth,” Hayao isn’t content to let the police handle the case so he takes it upon himself to investigate as well, with help from his trusty canine companion Alpina.
Maelström Legacy is presented in a stylish hand-drawn aesthetic that melds steampunk and art nouveau influences. As Hayao, you must investigate the tower’s corridors and visit other places around the city, interacting with everything you can and everyone you meet, solving a variety of contextual puzzles along the way. Some people will be friendly and helpful, but you “will probably also make enemies” in your travels, and on occasion you may need to “uncover a secret that someone is trying to keep you away from” via a form of strategic combat that breaks through their “Logic Shield.” Once you think you’ve found all the evidence required to form a conclusion, you can notify the Police Inspector, who will “gather the relevant people around a table, and you can point out the suspect.”
In order to finance the remaining production of Maelström Legacy: The Tesla Mystery, the developer has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise €6,000 by December 25th. For those who’d like to sample the game before deciding whether to back it, you can download the playable demo on Steam. If the modest crowdfunding goal is reached, we should see the game arriving on Windows, Mac and Linux sometime in January 2024.