When I first heard about the Sexy Brutale, I didn’t know what I was getting myself into but that’s the way you’re programmed to think about indie games and small market games. The Sexy Brutale is a game where you will need to think on your feet. Puzzle games make you think and use everything available. You play the role of the preacher Lafcadio Boone and without giving too much away, will have the dubious task of trying to keep the other guests/patrons of the casino alive. Shuffle the deck and bet on black, it’s going to be a fun ride!
I just mentioned that you play the role of the Preacher Lafcadio Boone and as Boone; you will be tasked with keeping the other guests at the casino from being murdered/alive. This is where the puzzle aspect of the game comes into play. There will be all kinds of puzzles to solve and in turn will be the reasons why or why not the guest is alive at the end of the day. You will need to be sharp and quick to solve all the puzzles that the casino throws at you. If you need a comparison, you could think of Clue mixed with The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask. The guests you save in the casino have masks with special powers.
When you keep these guests from kicking the bucket, some of them will give you their mask as a thank you gift. Each mask has a different ability, ranging from clock manipulation to better hearing. Trust me when I say that you will put each ability through its paces when you’re trying to save all the guests. I feel that the game reminds me of Clue and Majora’s Mask because you can think of the casino as the setting in Clue. The magic masks I think is a no brainer for a comparison as well as being able to reset time.
You meet the “Blood Woman” in the tutorial that you have to play and in games where the tutorial isn’t thrown in my face (where I need to play it) I don’t mind them. The Sexy Brutale teaches you the basics of the controls as well as the main concept of the story without really telling you too much of the story. You get the basics of the controls while you’re playing the first chapter of the game as well as learning how simple/tough the puzzles will be. You also learn the one other main part of the game, time manipulation. You’ll be able to rewind time and reset the day to the start. Puzzles will take trial and error to solve and you will need to study certain things and learn where certain people are at certain times. Another way to solve a puzzle could be just trying something that you might think could never work. Doing something dumb is always the way to solve something that isn’t starring you right in the face!
Stealth is key in this game. You will need to learn guest patterns as well as the perfect hiding spots in the casino. The Bloody Girl has given you the ability to not be detected by the other guests as you try to save them. However their masks will notice you and attack you when you’re in the same room with one of them. On the plus side, before you enter the room, you will glow with a flame to signify that one of the other guests is in the room you’re about to enter. There are ways to avoid encountering the other guests and one way is peeking through keyholes in the doors and listening to voices. You might get that vital piece of information by listening to someone in his or her room.
While wandering through the casino, you’ll find other things other than deceased guests. You’ll find invitations that give background information about the guests in the casino. You’ll find playing cards strewn throughout the casino as well that will unlock different information such as the bar in the casino for example.
Up To CasiNO Good
The Brutale does a lot of good things but there are things that it could improve on. For starters, there is a lot of trial and error, which isn’t a bad thing but it does give the game that repetitive feel to it. Having to replay the same events over and over again to learn what needs to be done to clear it is fine for gameplay but like I mentioned, it just gives the game a repetitive feel. There were times that the controls weren’t as responsive as they should have been. What I mean is there were times where the doors wouldn’t open when I wanted them to or times where Boone wouldn’t get up at the start of the level and then he would and his legs weren’t moving. These minor things don’t make the game unplayable but if they weren’t there, the game would be that much better. It’s these reasons that I’m giving The Sexy Brutale for the PlayStation 4 a 8.5/10.