Video Game: Sherlock Holmes Versus Jack the Ripper

Sherlock Holmes Versus Jack the Ripper is a 2009 game developed by Frogware, which pits the famous detective against Jack the Ripper. The fifth game in the Frogware series, the story takes place in Victorian London and the major focus is on the district of Whitechapel, where the infamous murders took place. This puzzle/adventure game has a surprisingly large amount of historical accuracy, as real evidence is used to help deduce the identity of the killer, and the player, as either Holmes or Watson, can interrogate real suspects from the period.

Not to be mistaken for the Sue Mary fanfic Sherlock Homes Vs Jack The Ripper.


Sherlock Holmes Versus Jack the Ripper provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Adventure Game: Within that genre, though the exploration is downplayed to mostly exploring different areas of London.
  • A Foggy Day in London Town: Not all the time, but it shows up in the setting occasionally during investigations.
  • Continuity Nod: References are made to Sir Bromsby from the Case of the Silver Earring. As the game is set in 1888note , it also contains nods to future adventures, such as Watson noting how he and Holmes should visit Switzerland one day, and the French champagne from a "young admirer", signed Raoul d'Andresynote .
  • Cure Your Gays: Inverted with Tumblety, who shows men his collection with the goal of turning them to masculine relationships.
  • Depraved Homosexual: Francis Tumblety
  • Disposable Sex Worker: Holmes has this attitude at the start of the game. Watson calls him out on it pointing out that the victims were forced by circumstances to work the streets, and that they are still people who deserve justice.
  • He-Man Woman Hater/ Effeminate Misogynistic Guy: Tumblety, whom really despies women.
  • Heroic Blue Screen of Death: Holmes, of all people, goes through this upon uncovering the scene of the final murder. He point-blank refuses to let Watson enter the room, for good reason.
  • Historical Domain Characters: Several of the actual suspects from the case can be interrogated and cut off from the
  • I Can't Use These Things Together: It's that kind of game, so it's to be expected.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Considering the letter about the kidney. In addition, the titular Ripper, a bitter ex-member of the Jewish community, secretly sold some of the organs he stole to his fellows under the guise of kosher meat.
  • In Vino Veritas: Gets quoted by the Great Detective after a drunk reporter reveals information essential to the case.
  • Jerkass: Holmes does go into this mode at times; Watson flatly tells him to knock it off at one point.
  • Lady Drunk: There are lots of these in Whitechapel (a pretty bad neighborhood at the time). Danny is prime example.
  • Mistaken for Gay: Watson gets this when asking about Tumblety (who's got quite the reputation).
    Walter Sickert: Are you... intimate?
    Watson: Um, no... what do you mean by that?
  • Organ Theft: A feature of the crimes as matching the real Ripper, removing the organs of his victims.
  • Police Are Useless: Hoo boy. For starters, they tear up two witness' written down testimonies, as well as dismiss a third witness, because the times, while consistent with each other, don't agree with the coroner's time of death. Holmes has to do all the investigating on his own practically. Sadly Truth in Television, which is why the Ripper was never caught in real life.
  • Product Placement: Bizarrely, this appears to be the case with there being distinctly modern bottles of both Bushmills and Tullamore Dew Irish Whiskey in the game. What makes it more striking is that Tullamore Dew was only known by that name after 1890, a full two years after the game is set.
  • Serial Killer: Holmes is on the trail of one of history's most notorious serial killers.
  • Shout-Out: On the seemingly innocuous piece of paper that mentions a previous conviction of Jacob Levy, a man named Ron Obvious is listed as having caused an incident relating to Chichester Cathedral.
  • Shown Their Work: In spades! The game shows off many real ripper suspects, and references many others as one offs. The district of Whitechapel is accurately modeled, and the walls contain many real advertisments from the period. References are made to historical events other than Jack's crimes as well, such as a warehouse fire the night of the first murder. Furthermore, Holmes' and Watson's rooms at Baker Street contains many many references to the original stories.
  • Solve the Soup Cans: Notably averted, compared to some of the game's predecessors—the random quizzes of the past have been replaced by more story-integrated deduction sequences.
  • Stock Unsolved Mysteries: This centers around the Jack the Ripper killings, of course
  • The Killer Was Left-Handed: Like in the real case, this is averted after Holmes eventually deduces he wasn't, despite the persistent belief of this by investigators of the time.
  • The Voiceless: Except for some panicked breathing and maniacal laughter, Jacob Levy, a.k.a. Jack the Ripper is never heard saying a word in the ending scene. He's only heard to talk once, during Annine Chapman's murder.
  • Vomit Discretion Shot: Watson didn't take the description of one murder scene too well. Especially as he had just finished eating breakfast...


Alternative Title(s):

Sherlock Holmes Versus Jack The Ripper