Cognition: An Erica Reed Thriller combines mystery and the supernatural in a point & click adventure game.
Erica Reed is an FBI agent whose brother was kidnapped and killed by a serial killer. To find out who took his life, she uses both her detective and analytical skills in addition to her psychic powers. She has post-cognition—the ability to touch objects and see what’s happened to it and where it’s been. For example, she could touch a necklace to see who wore it last. Knowing that, she can investigate that person to see what she has to do with the case.
To solve each of the cases, you have to solve puzzles using the items you find and the memories you see. Discovering clues and using them requires intuition and savvy. There are different ways to unravel important puzzles, which means there are more ways to crack the case and experience the story.
The mood of Cognition is very dark, with artist Romano Molenaar illustrating hand and designer Jane Jensen assisting with the story. One memorable part is when Erica Reed and a fellow agent find a wall with “Only Reed Blood” written on it. A wheel needs to be turned to open a door and a camera ominously looks at the scene. When Erica Reed turns the wheel, spikes come out which injure her and draw blood. Despite the protestations of her fellow agent, she insists on doing whatever it takes to bring the killer to justice.
There are four episodes planned, each with eight hours of playtime. Each episode has a different story and stands on its own, but there’s an overarching story that connects them to each other. Erica Reed gets a new power in each episode which she’ll need to discover the truth.
Cognition: An Erica Reed Thriller will be available for Mac, PC, and iOS in Fall 2012.
See our full PAX Prime 2012 coverage.