The Sexy Brutale is a unique, fun, detail-filled murder mystery game. Eccentric guests at the mansion of an equally eccentric host are being murdered in gruesome ways, but the day keeps resetting at midnight, and it’s up to you to spy, eavesdrop, and discover things around the mansion in order to stop them from dying.
All the guests are being murdered — horribly! — at this extravagant masquerade party set all across the sprawling and bizarre Sexy Brutale casino mansion.
Then at midnight, the clock re-winds and the grisly pantomime all plays out again in exactly the same way.
You awake on the floor of one of the rooms wearing a mask with a bloody handprint across it. It protects you from the worst of the evil that lays across the mansion, but you can only watch, and spy, and try to learn each guest’s secrets so you can save them from their bloody fate.
This is such a cool game! With immaculate eccentric millionaire mansion vibes. Once I started playing, I didn’t want to stop. And when I had to stop, I wanted to get back to it asap.
I couldn’t understand what the gameplay would be like from the description, so I’ll try to explain in my own words. The game is separated into what I’m going to call levels. In each level, there’s a character who gets murdered, and you need to save them. You save them by exploring the mansion you’re in, finding rooms, eavesdropping, spying through doors, and interacting with items until you figure out how they were murdered and how to stop it from happening. It’s ok that they were already murdered because, at midnight, the clock resets, and you start over at noon. So you can use as many days as you need to explore and figure everything out. It gets a little more complicated as you go through the game because you get different abilities, but that’s the gist.
So it’s essentially a puzzle game! With really unique, fun, organic mystery-solving. You’re taught the game mechanics, then it’s up to you to figure things out each time a new level starts. Even the way you often don’t hear full conversations but rather start your eavesdropping while two people are mid-conversation makes it feel more organic and real. Things are just happening the whole time, and you are just wandering around, choosing where to go and when to spy.
There’s nothing super fast-paced or stressful. There are a few times when you have to quickly get from point A to point B, but take it from someone who does not like fast-paced games, it’s not hard, as long as you can use a keyboard+mouse or controller without issue. And the screen/sound turns a bit scary to encourage you to leave if you end up in a room with someone (you’re not supposed to), but nothing actually happens except the day resetting if you stay for too long.
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The game also just has a fantastic vibe. There’s a creepy mansion with secret rooms and gaudy decor and grotesque art and a bar that serves drinks with literal poison and stained glass windows and a casino and a theatre and a gorgeous library and occult items and trap doors and so many more weird things I’ll let you discover on your own. There are eccentric guests, all brilliant in their own way, wandering around in fancy clothes and ornate masks. There are ghosts and demons and a giant spider. And, of course, there are horrifying, gruesome murders—truly the kind of murders that live up to the expectations you have when you hear “creepy mansion murder mystery.”
There’s so much detail and lore too. It’s really worth using your powers later in the game to unlock all the info in the “brochure.” The characters and all the different rooms and things in the mansion—so fascinating and creative. It’s all so wild and weird.
There are also just some little fun things to discover, like a robot that explains the name of the game, and this horny ghost haunting the library:
There’s great music that changes to perfectly suit whatever section of the mansion you’re in, from fun and jazzy, to calm and relaxing, to spooky and ominous.
I don’t know how to describe the art style, you can see it yourself in images/videos, but I loved the amount of attention and care that went into every single room in this massive maze of a mansion. It was so much fun every time I discovered a new room.
And in the end, there is a story, an explanation for the time loop and the powers you have and everything. I’m not explaining anything, but in case you want to know sort of the tone, *SPOILER* it gets SO DARK, HOLY CRAP. But the secret ending lightens it up a bit. *END SPOILER*
The game included a bit of diversity among the characters. One was blind. One was in a wheelchair. A few were Black. One was a man in love with another man. I mean, they’re all being murdered, but, you know, equal murder for everyone! And again, they’re all fascinating and brilliant in some way or another.
My only complaint is the controls. It would’ve been easier on my tennis elbow to be able to change the controls, to have the option to use keys to walk around, or to be able to click once where I wanted to walk to, rather than having to press and hold the right click button constantly.
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Some words of advice before you start! 1) Keep track of which cards you’re finding. The game tells you in the moment, but there’s no way to see later. If you keep track, near the end, you can look up a guide and see exactly where to find any cards you’re missing. 2) The map is your friend. However, the direction in which you view the rooms is not always the same way it is on the map. I found it best to navigate relative to the character. E.g. “Go through the door straight across the room from where he enters, then the door to his left, then the second door to his right.”
It took me 12 hours to finish with all the collectibles and both endings. You may finish in more or less time, depending on how long it takes you to solve the puzzles. (And the good news is, in order to see the secret ending, you just finish the game, then load the save and do the other ending without having to replay the whole thing. I imagine you can also find any collectibles you haven’t yet, in order to get the secret ending, but I’m not 100% certain. Just make sure you have all but two cards and all but one invitation before going back to the chapel near the end, and you won’t have to worry.)
Overall, this was a fun and unique puzzle game with so much interesting lore and detail and immaculate “murder mystery in the creepy mansion of an eccentric millionaire full of equally eccentric guests” vibes, and I really enjoyed playing it!
Source/Cost: I played this on Utomik with a monthly subscription.
– Super unique and organic puzzle solving
– Immaculate murder mystery in a creepy mansion vibes
– Fascinating characters, lore, and backstory
– Lovely detail in the art and design of the mansion
– Great music
– Story that explains everything in the end
– Overall a fun and memorable game!
(May not include everything)
– Not accessible for blind / visually impaired players.
– Requires use of both mouse and keyboard, or controller.