Skip to main content

The Piano is a post-war survival horror murder mystery

It’s rotten luck to be accused of murdering a family member, but three of them? It’s probably something you’d like to clear up rather quickly. In The Piano, the accused, failed pianist John Barnerway finds himself wandering the streets of post-war Paris, trying to find answers and… make shadows explode? It’s a weird one, as the release date trailer above makes clear. It’s due out on May 24. 

As well as being a murder mystery, The Piano also dabbles in survival horror, which is presumably where the shadow creatures—perhaps a hint that our pal John isn’t quite all there—come in. And the ghosts, I guess, too. I’m just assuming they’re ghosts, honestly. At least they seem friendly, clapping and waving instead of menacing the living.

While the trailer and official site keep things vague, I am getting more than a whiff of Murdered: Soul Suspect, a great game (this is the hill I’ll die on) about a dead cop and his fedora solving crimes. Like The Piano it’s a supernatural murder mystery and adventure game, complete with ghosts and creatures from the other side, including the very same, robed, spotlight-eyed spectre that we briefly see hunting John above.

A strong aesthetic can carry a horror game a lot further than shiny graphics, but The Piano’s trailer doesn’t show either. It’s a bit of a muddle, visually, so fingers crossed the writing can support its intriguing premise.

Fraser Brown

Fraser is the UK online editor and has actually met The Internet in person. With over a decade of experience, he's been around the block a few times, serving as a freelancer, news editor and prolific reviewer. Strategy games have been a 30-year-long obsession, from tiny RTSs to sprawling political sims, and he never turns down the chance to rave about Total War or Crusader Kings. He's also been known to set up shop in the latest MMO and likes to wind down with an endlessly deep, systemic RPG. These days, when he's not editing, he can usually be found writing features that are 1,000 words too long. He thinks labradoodles are the best dogs but doesn't get to write about them much.