Snail Detective is a free murder mystery that doesn't skimp on the detective work

Made for the February 2019 Bitsy jam—theme: snails—the straightforwardly named Snail Detective is a surprisingly detailed and well-plotted murder mystery that just so happens to feature some escargot as its protagonist. If you're unfamiliar with development tool Bitsy, it's geared towards making top-down browser games focused on exploration and conversation, both of which feature heavily in this jazzy detective game.

As the titular escargot investigator, you'll be exploring and conversing with the inhabitants of a hotel, dragging your sluggish body from room to room in order to solve the murder of hotel owner Mr. Sheridan. There are plenty of items to examine, documents to read, and guests and staff to interview—despite the jokey premise, real care has obviously been taken to develop the mystery. I love the loungey, almost Twin Peaksy soundtrack too, which perfectly sets the breezy tone for this mystery.

Ultimately, like your more upright detective peers, you'll be required to point your finger...well, to point those two antenna things on your head at one of the five suspects, but have you made the wrong choice—or have you snailed it?

Snail Detective can be played for free in your browser here. I recommend having a pen and paper handy.

For more great free experiences, check out our roundup of the best free PC games.

Tom Sykes

Tom loves exploring in games, whether it’s going the wrong way in a platformer or burgling an apartment in Deus Ex. His favourite game worlds—Stalker, Dark Souls, Thief—have an atmosphere you could wallop with a blackjack. He enjoys horror, adventure, puzzle games and RPGs, and played the Japanese version of Final Fantasy VIII with a translated script he printed off from the internet. Tom has been writing about free games for PC Gamer since 2012. If he were packing for a desert island, he’d take his giant Columbo boxset and a laptop stuffed with PuzzleScript games.