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Papers, Please dev releases early build of new game

Return of the Obra Dinn

Papers, Please creator Lucas Pope has posted an early development build of his next game (opens in new tab). The Return of the Obra Dinn may not be set behind the desk of a border control station, but it is still somewhat administrative in nature. A first-person mystery, your job is to find out what happened aboard the merchant ship "Obra Dinn"—uncovering the fate of the ship's crew.

This demo gives you a brief idea of its central mechanic—which I won't spoil because it's a neat revelation. Still, as it's easy to miss things: make sure you've collected the watch and the passenger manifest before you've finished. You should, with some deduction, be able to work out the fate of two crew members by the end of the current content.

Systems aside, it's worth taking a look to see the beautiful "1-bit" rendering style in motion. Screenshots don't really do it justice. To download the build, head over to the game's Itch.io page (opens in new tab), and for more development details, check out The Return of the Obra Dinn's TIGSource thread (opens in new tab).

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.