Return of the Obra Dinn is due out this fall from the creator of Papers, Please

It’s been quite a while since we heard anything new about Return of the Obra Dinn, a striking-looking mystery game from the creator of Papers, Please. Well, the wait seems to be nearly over: Lucas Pope’s next game now has a Steam page and a brand new trailer.

Return of the Obra Dinn is about a merchant ship that mysteriously reappears in Falmouth in 1807, five years after being declared lost at sea during a trip to the far east. You play as an insurance investigator for the East India Company, and it’s your job to work out what happened aboard the ship, and where its crew and cargo have gone.

Return of the Obra Dinn is immediately distinctive thanks to its throwback look that’s deliberately reminiscent of the monochrome graphics adapters of the early PC era. It’s remarkable how evocative the look is though, and it turns out there’s more to the Obra Dinn than meets the eye. For one thing, despite the extremely retro look, Return of the Obra Dinn is rendered in 3D, so you’ll be exploring the lost ship and searching for clues from a first-person perspective.

Have a look at the trailer to see what I mean.

The idea is to reconstruct memories and assemble a narrative of what happened on board the vessel, eventually building a cohesive accounting of what led the ship and its crew to disaster.

The Steam page for Return of the Obra Dinn is up now, and it says the game will be coming sometime this fall.