The smallest adventure platform is starting to get crowded from all the developers climbing aboard. The Nintendo DS, already with three current adventures in production and another new game recently announced, will soon be home to an adaptation of Sinking Island, the upcoming mystery by White Birds.
Written by Benoît Sokal, Sinking Island is the first game in a planned series of adventures starring middle-aged private investigator Jack Norm. The third-person game takes place on a private tropical island that is literally sinking under the weight of the colossal art deco-styled hotel built upon it. In a classic whodunit with a twist, the hotel's billionaire owner is murdered, and there are ten suspects on the island, each with a strong motive for having done the deed. It's up to Norm to determine the true culprit. The catch? With the island sinking and the game occurring over a simulated three day period, lower level environments (and the evidence they contain) are only available until they're lost forever to the sea, so players will need to make best use of locations and time in order to succeed.
According to White Birds co-founder Michel Bams, development on the point-and-click PC version of Sinking Island is progressing well and still on target for its projected completion next February. The French developer kindly provided some exclusive screenshots (still works in progress, as post-production has yet to be done) to show off the game's environments, which can be found in our Sinking Island image gallery.
The surprising news, however, is that White Birds has also begun pre-production on a DS version of the game. Believing there to be a strong market for more mature games on the popular handheld (an opinion we certainly share), White Birds will retain the same storyline, characters, and gameplay of the PC version, and adapt the controls and presentation to the unique features of the DS. The main screen will be the lower one, while various secondary interface features such as the inventory, map, and notes will be shown on the top screen. The following is a mock-up of the game provided by the developer:
Mock-up of Sinking Island DS
Looking even further ahead, the story for Jack Norm's second adventure has already been written, though so far White Birds has only revealed that the case will take place in New York.
For more background information about Jack Norm and Sinking Island, be sure to check out our interview with White Birds from this year's E3.