Spike Chunsoft has developed quite a reputation in recent years for quirky, riveting Japanese mystery adventures. Next up on their schedule isn't another Danganronpa or Zero Escape installment, but rather an all-new adventure called AI: The Somnium Files, which is due to arrive this summer.
It's a rainy night in "near-future Tokyo" when "a woman's body is found at an abandoned theme park, mounted on a merry-go-round horse." It's a grisly scene, as "she had been stabbed repeatedly, and her left eye was gouged out." Despite her injuries, detective Kaname Date of the Metropolitan Police Department recognizes the victim when he arrives on the scene. Suddenly, however, he hears a noise coming from inside the carousel, so "he breaks into the merry-go-round's central column to find a young girl. And in her hands, she grips a bloody ice pick." There's much more to this mystery than meets the eye, of course, and so begins the hunt for a serial killer in which players must not only investigate crime scenes, but people's dreams as well.
As with the developer's previous games, this "thrilling neo-noir detective adventure" features a blend of anime-influenced character designs and 3D investigation. We don't know much more about the player experience for now, but from "the mind of Kotaro Uchikoshi" (Zero Escape series director), we can probably expect another unusual mix of both narrative and gameplay elements that set it apart from the norm – like, say, a polar bear killing someone with a circular saw, as teased in the latest trailer unveiled.
AI: The Somnium Files isn't too far off, either, as the game is currently on track to launch on PC, PS4 and Nintendo Switch on July 25th. Along with a standard digital release, a boxed Special Agent Edition will be sold exclusively in North America for consoles, which includes an art book, stickers, a six-inch acrylic character stand, soundtrack and more.