The Sinking City is a game of investigation and mystery, set in a Lovecraftian version of the American Roaring Twenties. It tells the story of a private detective (with a few skeletons in his closet), who finds himself in the city of Oakmont, Massachussets. Our hero is one of the newcomers who keep traveling to the city, even though it has been devastated by a terrible disaster. A relentless flood of clearly supernatural origins has buried most of Oakmont in its depths, and awakened frightening monsters. Thousands have died in the calamity, and the rest are trying to do everything they can to survive. The detective is driven by his desire to get to the bottom of what’s happening, because he believes his life depends on the fate of the city.
The three key elements that define The Sinking City are the story, investigation and Lovecraft. Oakmont is fully open for you to explore, though it will often require some effort to get to where you want. As we said the city is flooded, so you will have to use boats to traverse the murky waters. Oakmont is a mix of two opposing in our opinion styles. The iconic Roaring Twenties in our game are exactly as you know it: consumerism, jazz, prohibition and racial tensions. On the other hand, the world is heavily inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft, which adds layers of decay, desolation and, of course, fear of the unknown. Our game is not an official rendition of a specific Lovecraft novel, but we not only draw inspiration from him, but also expand his universe. Which means Oakmont exists in his world, and characters and events he created are canon for us. Some of them are even in The Sinking City, like hybrids, for example.
With The Sinking City we are going for a different gameplay angle than our Sherlock Holmes series, aiming for around 20-30 hours of playtime. The game features main quest and side quests, as well as moral choice and different endings. Our detective mostly relies on his wits and intuition to solve crimes and track down suspects, as well as his weapons to defend himself from monsters. Worth knowing, finding a seemingly optional clue may change the course of your investigation, leading to a completely different outcome. We want to have as little hand holding in the game as possible, avoiding giving the player direct instructions and objectives. We believe open world environment fits this mechanic perfectly, as a place where gamers can experiment with their findings and test their assumptions.