Play this creepy, charming girl detective game

It's hard to be adorable and scary at the same time, but the teen detective game Jenny LeClue somehow pulls it off. You play, in a sense, both as Jenny and as the reader of her books; we're told that she's the star of a series of choose-your-own-adventure novels by the (fictional) author Arthur K. Finkelstein, who narrates the game. When Jenny's mother is accused of murder, this "ruthless pursuer of the truth" must discover what's really going on in the odd town of Arthurton, with your help.

Although Jenny LeClue isn't due out till next year, the developers at Mografi just released a free, playable teaser for Mac, PC, Linux and even iOS. As it opens, you're sneaking into the study of an unknown man; his name is redacted for players, though Jenny seems to know exactly who he is. It only lasts about 10-15 minutes, depending on how adept you are at collecting clues, but it's a wonderfully atmospheric experience, thanks in large part to the sound of driving rain and creaking doors, not to mention spine-tingling music. The introduction recommends wearing headphones, and it's right.

In keeping with its choose-your-own-adventure premise, the sleuthing game also promises to let players help write the story of Jenny, and choose what happens next at several points throughout the game—including cliffhangers at the end of each chapter that will be decided by popular vote. Personally, I'm sold.


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