Hotel Dusk: Room 215
|Hotel Dusk: Room 215|
|Release date(s)||NA January 22, 2007
JP January 25, 2007
AU February 22, 2007
EU April 13, 2007
|Distribution||Nintendo Game Card|
Hotel Dusk: Room 215, released in Japan as Wish Room: Angel's Memory (ウィッシュルーム 天使の記憶 Wisshu Rūmu Tenshi no Kioku ), is a point-and-click adventure game for the Nintendo DS. Originally announced on October 5, 2005 as Wish Room, the game made its first public appearance on May 9, 2006 at that year's E3 convention. It was released in North America on January 22, 2007, before being released subsequently in other regions. The game supports the Nintendo DS Rumble Pak accessory. The game was later republished in 2008 as part of the Touch! Generations line of DS games. The game was developed by the now-defunct Cing.
The player, as Kyle Hyde, moves around and interacts with the environment using the DS's touch screen and must solve a variety of puzzles using the handheld's various features including the touch screen, microphone, and closeable cover. The DS is held rotated 90 degrees from normal, like a book, with an option in the game to allow the player to switch which side the touchpad is on depending on which hand is dominant.
Throughout the game, the player must speak with the various hotel patrons and employees in order to uncover vital information. The player can show the characters items that Kyle has collected, or ask questions that have been brought to Kyle's attention. By asking the right questions, Kyle will uncover the information he needs. If he asks the wrong question, makes a wrong assumption, or shows the wrong item, he may confuse or anger the person. This is usually indicated by a darkening of the character in question. This can result in Kyle being forced to retreat to his room or, later in the game, getting kicked out of the hotel, leaving him unable to solve the mystery.
The game is filled with adventure-style puzzles, most of which involve using the touch screen to perform a simple task. Movement is made by leading an iconic representation of Kyle around a map of the hotel on the touch screen or d-pad while a first-person three dimensional view is shown on the other screen.
There is also a journal to write in, which is used by several other characters as well, though all critical in-game story notes are copied automatically. It gives three pages to write in, with a simple pencil/eraser system.
The main setting is the fictional Hotel Dusk, a small and somewhat rundown hotel located in the southwestern United States near Los Angeles, California during the year 1979. The protagonist is Kyle Hyde, a former member of the New York Police Department searching for his old partner, Brian Bradley. During his stay at the hotel, Kyle unravels a mystery shrouded in the hotel's past that may lead him to the answers he's looking for.
The plot of Hotel Dusk is based on noir themes of the 1970s and tells the story of ex-police detective Kyle Hyde. The goal is to solve the mystery behind the murder of his former detective partner Brian Bradley - a direct cause of his removal from New York City Police Department. Kyle, now works as a vendor for Red Crown, whose president is a friend of his father. Kyle arrives at Hotel Dusk to make a delivery of sorts and, after spending the night, Kyle is given the keys to room 215 which, according to the hotel owner can "grant the wishes" of those who rent it.
Production took about a year and a half with 20 staff members involved. In an interview with Qj.net, Director Taisuke Kanasaki "explained that they wanted Hotel Dusk to have an unprecedented visual expression not found in any other game."
The game uses rotoscoping to animate its characters while a brushwork style illustrates the game's environments with half-finished backgrounds with 3-D objects strewn about. While not a first in gaming, rotoscoping is still rare in most games (with only a handful, namely the original Prince of Persia using the animation style).
A sequel, titled Last Window: The Secret of Cape West, was released on January 14, 2010 in Japan, and on September 17, 2010 in Europe. It takes place in Los Angeles, California during 1980, a year after the events of Hotel Dusk. Due to developer Cing's bankruptcy, Last Window was never released in North America.
Hotel Dusk: Room 215 has garnered a review score ratio of 79.36% at Game Rankings, and a 78/100 on Metacritic. Most major review sources gave it high marks, including 1UP.com (B+), Famitsu (33/40), GamePro (4/5), GameSpot (8.2/10) and GameSpy ().
The positive critical reception commonly references the game's storyline and well-written character dialogue. Carolyn Gudmundson of Games Radar notes that the "...game is so well-written, and the dialogue is so natural, that it feels more like interacting with real people at times than following prompts in a game."
The reception was not universally positive, though. The Onion AV Club gave the game a D+ and pointed out that "while a mystery should keep you alert for clues and misstatements, Hotel Dusk slaps you in the forehead with every new piece of evidence, then patronizes you with reading-comprehension quizzes after every chapter".
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- "Hotel Dusk: Room 215". Metacritic. Retrieved 2011-06-23.
- "Hotel Dusk: Room 215 Review from 1UP.com". 1up.com. Retrieved 2008-10-30.
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- "Review : Hotel Dusk: Room 215 [DS] - from GamePro.com". gamepro.com. Archived from the original on 2008-10-12. Retrieved 2008-10-30.
- Carolyne Gudmundson (2007). "The mystery of Hotel Dusk is rich and many layered". Games Radar. Retrieved 2007-01-27.
- "Hotel Dusk: Room 215 for DS Review - DS Hotel Dusk: Room 215 Review". gamespot.com. Retrieved 2008-10-30.
- "GameSpy: Hotel Dusk: Room 215 Review". gamespy.com. Retrieved 2008-10-30.
- "Hotel Dusk: Room 215". Avclub.com. January 29, 2007. Retrieved 2011-01-10.
- "52 Games We'll Still Be Playing From 2007". Gaming Target.
- "Top 500 Japanese Games Of 2007". Gemaga.com. April 14, 2008. Retrieved 2009-07-15.
- Hotel Dusk: Room 215 official site
- Wish Room: Tenshi no Kioku official Japanese site
- Hotel Dusk: Room 215 at N-sider
- Hotel Dusk: Room 215 at GameFAQs
- Hotel Dusk: Room 215 at IGN