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by inkle


Web Site

(based on 6 ratings)
2 reviews

About the Story

Overboard! is a whodunnit where you’re the one whodunnit. You have just eight hours to cover the evidence, mislead the witnesses, frame another suspect and escape ... if you can!

The Story
July, 1935. Wealthy Malcolm Villensey’s fortune has been wiped out overnight. He and his starlet wife, Veronica, have escaped aboard the SS Hook for a new life in America—but Mrs. Villensey has other plans. And one little push is all it takes.

Game Details


49th Place - Interactive Fiction Top 50 of All Time (2023 edition)

Editorial Reviews

Adventure Gamers
Fast paced, fabulous looking and full of opportunities to wreak havoc
With its deceptively simple mechanics, Overboard! gives you so much to experience, brilliantly combining the need to strategise with the tempting potential to unleash absolute mayhem. It’s brimming with well-realised characters to fall in love with or kill (or both!), and it’s all packaged in a beautiful '30s art style. It's smooth sailing all the way in this entertaining inverse-Cluedo-style story, so don't miss the boat on inkle’s latest glorious narrative adventure.
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Zarf Updates
Completely unlike what they've done before, but still clever as dammit
Overboard is smartly done, deeply explorable, and always has that seamless Inkle narrative flow that makes any play-through seem hand-crafted. I managed to avoid jail time, but I didn't come close to a perfect ending. Even if you get there, you've got a rolling list of shipboard secrets to uncover. If that's the sort of thing you're into, it will be very satisfying.
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Number of Reviews: 2
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
A Whodunnit where Youdunnit! Very fun and replayable game from the masters of IF, August 12, 2023
by RadioactiveCrow (Irving, TX)
Related reviews: About 1 hour, replayable

Forgive me, I didn't realize this game was up on IFDB, so this review is coming quite awhile after I initially played the game (also, I totally stole my review title from The Short Game podcast). That said, I might update it in the future, because even after putting 6 hours into a game where a single playthrough takes less than an hour, I still want to play more!

The time frame is pre-World War II. You play as the aptly named Veronica Villensey, a British starlet on her way via boat to America with her husband, whom she promptly pushes overboard to start the game. The deed is done, but can she get away with it?

Though the game has a fun graphical interface that you use to move around the ship, the primary game mechanic is text-based choices and dialogue trees. There are a number of characters on board that you can interact with, some may suspect you, some you might be able to use to cover up your crime. Who is manipulating who? And even if you can avoid prison, can you also collect on your husband's life insurance, and maybe another prize while you are at it?

The writing is excellent, the characters are colorful, and there are so many paths through the game that even after you achieve the "best" ending, you can play again and again to find other, quicker, or more interesting ways to victory. The NPCs have their own goals and move around on their own, and time is ticking while you are playing, so if you want to beat someone to a certain location, make sure that you don't dilly-dally. The game also features as fast forward function, so if you want to get back to a point later in the day to try something different, you don't have to go through each step to get there at normal speed. The game will remember the choices that you made on the last playthrough and let you get through them fast.

All around wonderful game from some of the true masters of the genre. Easily one of my favorites of all time.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Scratches that "80 DAYS" itch, September 28, 2022

Inkle's two subsequent games after their smash-hit 80 DAYS have been deliberate attempts to try something new: a sci-fi graphical adventure game and an Arthurian turn-based strategy respectively. Their latest, Overboard!, is the closest thing to a proper 80 DAYS sequel: a choice-based narrative filled with storylets and side-plots to uncover and explore, with a ticking time limit and zero chance to see it all in one go, a Groundhog Day-like "time loop" game. But of course on a much smaller scale, and focused much more on people (the staff and passengers onboard your transatlantic ship) and their secrets than places and modes of transport. Our deliciously evil player-character, Veronica Villensy, is absolutely brilliantly written, as are all the small cast of NPCs, and both music and graphics perfectly complement the whole 1930s jazz/brass/art deco era mood and tone. Flawless.

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For your consideration: XYZZY-eligible Best Writing of 2021 by MathBrush
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This is version 9 of this page, edited by jakomo on 17 November 2022 at 11:57pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item - Delete This Page