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Elsinore is Hamlet from the perspective of a time-travelling Ophelia, out now

We are reaching peak Groundhogbut. We’ve already had Groundhog ‘but it’s a murder party’ in The Sexy Brutale, and Groundhog ‘but you’re his son, in VR’ with Groundhog Day: Like Father Like Son. We’ve got Groundhog ‘but the sun keeps exploding’ in The Outer Wilds, Groundhog ‘but it’s 12 Minutes of arguing with your wife’ is due in 2020, and Arkane Studios’ Groundhog ‘but assassins’ is in the pipes with Deathloop. To tide you over, here’s Groundhog ‘but you’re Ophelia off of Hamlet’.

Elsinore launched yesterday. You poke around Shakespearean Denmark, spreading rumours and changing the (recurring) fates of the cast. I can’t speak to the payoff, yet, but it’s certainly an intriguing set-up. Spoilers for, er, Hamlet are below.

All of the characters have their own routines and beliefs, but that you can alter both by sharing information with them. So you might learn about Hamlet’s plan to trick Claudius into outing himself as a dad-killer, then outright tell Claudius and see what goes down.

Interestingly, your knowledge carries over between time loops. Does that mean you can tell people about Hamlet’s plan before he’s even come up with it? If so, and the simulation is as intricate as the marketing blurb suggests, Elsinor could be delightful. Just ‘Hamlet from the perspective of Ophelia’ is an interesting hook, even sans time-shenanigans. You get to exert agency as someone whose only role in the original play is to get rejected and commit suicide.

Elsinore is available on Itch for $16.99. It will launch on Steam when a problem with Steam’s backend is resolved, say the devs.

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Matt Cox

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Matt is the founding member of RPS's youth contingent. He's played more games of Dota than you've had hot dinners.

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