Contradiction: Spot the Liar! is an absolutely wonderful, hilarious, campy romp. If you haven’t played a full-motion-video (FMV) game in a while, or ever, this is the perfect starting point.
Designed by Tim Follin and starring Rupert Booth as Detective Inspector Frederick Jenks, you’re tasked with getting to the bottom of the mystery behind Laura Palm- I mean Kate Vine’s death. She’s a student who has drowned in the local lake in an apparent suicide, but the small village of Edenton is a weird old place where all kinds of bizarre activities come to light.
This game is brilliantly headed up by Booth’s performance, his elastic face depicting everything you could possibly want from a British Poirot. You play the game by finding evidence and using it and your lines of questioning to discover when the other characters are lying. They’re all at it, everyone with something to hide, and you must take Jenks and his trusty fedora around the village to get to the bottom of it.
The plot continues to thicken, as the subtly-named Atlas course, run by the even more subtly-named Ryan Rand, appears to be a focal point of the characters in the town, and it’s up to you to find out what really happened.
It’s a lovely place to start with the resurgence of FMV, and the cast went on to star in future productions by other studios like D’Avekki and Wales Interactive. It’s most fun to play with a friend - there’s a lot here to riff on, but you should give it a go regardless. You might just fall in love with FMV as a medium.
Don’t go in expecting gritty cop-show drama. You’ll find something far more earnest and endearing, and a game that takes itself exactly as seriously as you should.