Freeware Garden: Grim Express

Poor doc. All he wanted was to be rich and alive.

There you were minding your own business and enjoying the luxury and efficiency of the Soviet rail system, when everything went dark and the nice gentleman sitting opposite you got stabbed in the heart. Now the trip to Moscow would be too depressing to bear, unless, that is, you decided to solve the murder on the Grim Express. Or, better yet, actually play sleuth-’em’-up Grim Express.

It’s a wonderfully atmospheric game set in a train, that’s strongly reminiscent of the Last Express, was made in an astonishing 48 hours and you can directly download for your Windows PC via this link.

So, the good, somehow rich doctor has been murdered and you have to discover who killed him by mainly searching through three expertly realized 3D cars for clues that could reveal the order and nature of the events leading to the murder. You’ll also have to subtly interrogate the suspect passengers, ask the right questions, uncover their pasts and relationships with the victim and each other and learn as much as you can in order to formulate a concrete theory regarding the killer’s identity.

This radio plays some pretty epic Soviet tunes, you know.

Having done that you can talk to the inspector nearby, pick the killer from a list of suspected culprits, read what your theory sounds like and discover whether you were right or wrong.

Obviously, things aren’t as straightforward as they might initially appear, what with numerous red herrings and people pointing fingers all over the place; correctly guessing the killer requires quite a bit of thought and what feels like sensible detective work. Possibly even discovering a lost necklace or counting knives, in what could only be described as a short yet lovely detective game, despite its almost childish and confused politics.

So, better get in there and find out whodunnit. Was it Alexei who was hospitalized in an asylum due to the doctor and was conveniently close to both him and the lights off switch or was it the left-handed rich widow Natalia? The killing blow was probably administered by a left handed person, you see, and she did know certain knife-wielding people from her circus-loving days. People like Igor, who sounds suspiciously like her lover. Then again, could it have been a suicide? Or were you, the too-eager-to-help detective, a part of this?

18 Comments

  1. YogSo says:

    Ivan and Juan are equivalent names (the latter is the Spanish version, the former uses the cyrillic alphabet).

    Obviously, Anna Navarre killed Ivan “Juan” Lebedev. Case solved ;-p

    • swiftshlock says:

      So I should proabably gun her down right here on the pla… uh, train.

    • kament says:

      I thought Juan “Ivanovitch” Lebedev was a son of newly revealed Dr. Ivan Lebedev. Ivanovitch means “son of Ivan”, see. I guess this is how all that mess at LaGuardia starts. They killed his daddy, and Juan haven’t forget and certainly haven’t forgiven. But when he tried to avenge the death of his father, he became a threat to them and in the end they got him, too. Or maybe not.

  2. celticdr says:

    It was the butler, its always the butler (cept when its not).

  3. Grey Cap says:

    Can anyone elaborate on the “childish and confused politics”? Or would that be too spoilery?

  4. bonuswavepilot says:

    Think you mean “…too depressing to bear…” in the first para. Though I suppose the trip to Moscow would be too cold to go bare…

    Or was it a clue? A naked left-handed murderer! Fiendish.

  5. Borodin says:

    Has anyone worked out how to conduct the conversations? Clicking (or pressing `E`) on some of the passsengers brings up an interface that looks like the beginnings of a dialogue, but I can’t get to ask any questions. Furthermore, there’s a pull-out tab on the right that I can’t get to perform. There’s no hint of this in the minimal controls set up, and entering one of these dialogue screens removes your mouse pointer, so I’m kinda stuck.

    • Terragot says:

      Sounds like that might be a bug.

      There’s not traditional conversation system in place, it works more like the L.A. Noire setup (if you played that), wherein you open the pamphlet to the right of the screen and click on a topic to discuss with the character. The more you find out, the more topics you have to discuss with each character.

      • Borodin says:

        Yes, it’s the “pamphlet” that I was talking about. How to open that?

        • Terragot says:

          Your mouse cursor should appear during the conversation and you should just be able to click it to slide it open. I was playing in windowed mode so that might help? Hope you figure it out, it’s an intriguing experience worth the time spent.

  6. Zhamul says:

    Dev here!
    I want to say thanks for featuring this game on behalf of the team. It was a pleasant surprise to encounter own game in the newsfeed. I wonder how did get here, we didn’t promote it or anything. :D

    I hope you all enjoy solving the mystery~

    • Durkonkell says:

      This was an enjoyable half-hour or so, thank you!

      Considering how long it takes me to put together a mission in something like STO’s foundry or ARMA’s mission editor, I think it’s incredible that people can make things like this in two days.

  7. waltC says:

    “There you were minding your own business and enjoying the luxury and efficiency of the Soviet rail system…”

    Got a chuckle there…;) Like saying…”There you were minding your own business and enjoying the luxurious creature comforts of the bleak Siberian tundra in the depths of winter…”

    • AyeBraine says:

      Ha-ha, those Russians, right? Those wacky wacky stupid Russians!

  8. SuperTim says:

    That must be a lot of work done in 48 hours. Well done!

  9. vesinokkaelain says:

    Hi, another Dev here!

    I want thank RPS & Konstantinos Dimopoulos for featuring Grim Express.
    Happy hunting everyone.