Proper: Labour’s Letters Lost

Labour’s Letters Lost” portrays Edwardian England’s sense of class and propriety properly. The player-character’s friend is, after all, quite embarrassed that he meant to call your father, instead of you, for help. And neither he, nor anyone else, would like to admit they would wear eye glasses, though it might be helpful if they would. Speaking of the help, they would never allow that they might be interested in their employer’s business, and the PC would never intrude on them by going downstairs to see if that’s actually the case. You won’t even ask about the particulars of the letters you’re searching for until it can’t be avoided.

But, the PC will take the kind of proper notes that will help the player sort through what can’t be said as well as what has been. The notes, as it turns out, are the real focus of game-play.

Unfortunately, Huang’s implementation isn’t quite as proper as his characters. “Talk to” is described as a more general form of interrogation than “ask about,” but “ask about” does not even reveal the information that “talk to” does. This makes interviewing frustrating, because “talk to” chooses the subject for you and “ask about,” which should allow you to get to the particulars you’re interested in, works very infrequently.

Fortunately, these coding problems don’t make the game unplayable or even particularity unpleasant. “Labour’s Letters Lost” is still a suitably proper example of a cozy mystery.