Genie by the X3 Brothers is a creative endeavor with an art style much inspired by the Victorian era. Black and white pencil drawings line the game, while elegant script dots each page. I felt immersed in this short but sweet mystery visual novel that kept me on edge from start to finish but found myself wanting a little bit more by the end of it all.
Mystery, Short, Stylized
“A series of mysterious murders jeopardize a detective’s career, forcing him to make a difficult choice in his life. What will your decision be?” ~ Excerpt from Steam.
Sometimes you just want a game that doesn’t look like all the rest. The anime art style is wonderful, but I yearn for more visual novels that develop their own style- one that befits the nature of their game. Genie is a complete package unto itself. Stylized black and white pencil drawings not onl draw the eye, but they make sense in their historical mystery game.
The people look straight out of old, dated illustrations you’d find in a book or magazine. The text gives off that seem feeling- written so elegantly that it can at times be hard to decipher names because it looks like you’re reading a letter from the world’s best calligrapher. That’s not a complaint though- all of this adds to a wonderful, immersive story that, while short, was satisfying and stands out from the rest.
My only true complaint is that the game is quite short. As a mystery visual novel, I expect to have a number of scenes before the culprit comes to light. Here, it felt almost rushed, and I was disappointed that I had to leave this strange world just as I’d begun to truly enjoy it.
I see a lot of potential for far more detective adventures with the cast from Genie and can’t wait for more from this developer. They’ve proven their mettle to me, and I highly recommend checking it out for yourself!