9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors is a text based/puzzle game for the Nintendo DS published by Aksys Games. The game casts you as Junpei, your average college student, who is kidnapped and placed on a sinking ship to play a game of life or death. The title come from the fact that you have 9 hours to escape the ship before it sinks, and you’re not the only person on the ship 8 other people have been kidnapped and forced to play these game too. Each person is outfitted with a digital watch that displays a number (1-9). Only by working together and combining their numbers to open 9 doors hidden around the ship can they escape.
The characters are unique and written with a lot of personality. The interaction between them is handled extremely well and makes for a fun read. They also each have their own secrets and that adds a bit of suspense as you try to figure out who you can trust.
The game offers multiple endings and the only way to actually see the true ending is to unlock some of the “bad” endings. This isn’t as bad as it sounds as each play through provides you with more of the story behind each character and the motivation of the mysterious Zero, the person who has kidnapped you and organized this game. The multiple endings also tie into the under lying theme of Morphogentic Fields, the ability to communicate with the mind through the Collective Conscience. I know it sounds a little far fetched but the game does a great job of working it into a believable story.
The puzzles themselves are fun but not to challenging. They require little thought and that you search every nook and cranny but at no point should you really hit a wall. Though they do get progressively hard as the story progresses.
There is a lot of reading in this game, so if that’s not your thing then I would recommend you stay away from it. Otherwise anyone who loves a good sci-fi/suspense game with a few puzzles scattered in between should pick this up. It has cult classic written all over it and is a true gem that should not be missed.
- ‘9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors’ Review – What’s Behind Door Number 2? (multiplayerblog.mtv.com)
- 999: 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors – review (gonintendo.com)
- Review: ‘Visual Novel’ Nine Hours Mixes Gripping Drama, Spotty Prose (wired.com)