Sarawak is a literary mystery game set in Oxford and Borneo.
Sarawak will appeal to players who enjoy the cosy pleasures of sinking into an old-fashioned mystery novel as well as the thrill of a classic puzzler game.
Best described as a text-based narrative adventure, gameplay is split between interactive narrative choices and image-based puzzles. Sarawak's beautiful and interactive illustrations set it apart from similar games of the genre, and players will need to open locks and doors, discover secret rooms, hack into police equipment, pore through newspaper archives, and light up a jungle research station to progress the game. Sarawak will appeal to players who enjoyed the likes of 80 Days, A Case of Distrust, LucasArts adventure games or Agatha Christie novels.
The premise is that a university professor is found dead outside the protagonist's hotel, and the police arrest her holiday companion for the murder. The professor left a trail of secrets, which the player must solve to continue with the story. The more the player unravels, the more conflicted they will become as they start to question who is lying and who is telling the truth.
Sarawak is the first project by Cowleyfornia Studios, a husband and wife team based in Oxford. Duncan has written the engine, and Marina has done the artwork and writing. Conveniently, our backgrounds are in software development and writing, and we both love books, puzzles and games.
In Sarawak we are working to merge these interests with something that has both the interactivity of a game along with the narrative flexibility of a book.
Announce Trailer — YouTube