Visual Novel: Hotel Dusk: Room 215
Hotel Dusk: Room 215
"Mr. Hyde, I must ask you again. Who are you?"
"Like I said, pal. Just a salesman."
(Wish Room: Angel's Memory
in Japan) is an Adventure Game
for the Nintendo DS
. In it you play as an ex-cop, Kyle Hyde, who arrives in a small hotel in the middle of nowhere — the eponymous Hotel Dusk. Kyle left the force after shooting Brian Bradley, his former partner who betrayed him and joined a criminal syndicate. Bradley's body was never found, but Kyle is sure that Bradley is alive and is searching for him, hoping to understand what happened.
Kyle soon runs into the staff and residents of the hotel. There's the initially bratty kid with her father, an old lady who wears an eye patch, a girl wearing white who doesn't speak, and many others. All have tragic secrets hidden in their pasts, which is not a surprise in a game like this, and these secrets start to lead Kyle closer to finding Bradley.
The game can be played almost entirely with the touch-screen of the DS and, in some of the puzzles you have to solve, uses some of the more unconventional abilities of the machine (remember that puzzle in The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass
that took you an hour to solve? Hotel Dusk
did it first, and twice). You move around the hotel as Kyle, pick up things and speak with other characters, asking them questions. The game is divided into ten chapters, each culminating in interrogation of one of the characters. A game over can result by asking the wrong questions or by being caught doing something you shouldn't do. (It is a hotel, so you shouldn't wander around in the kitchen or other areas marked 'Staff Only', but usually this just gets you some angry looks. Lucky you.)
Visually, backgrounds are in 3D and fully coloured, but the characters are in 2D and most of the time black and white. There is no voice-acting, but background music is on most of time and different characters and situations have their own theme-tunes.
A sequel was released in early 2010 titled Last Window: Midnight Promise
, again featuring Kyle, now in Los Angeles in 1980.
The Another Code
series takes place in the same universe, twenty-five years later.
Hotel Dusk contains examples of:
open/close all folders
- Adventure Game
- Amoral Attorney: Larry Damon.
- Ambiguously Brown: Well, there's a lot of debate on Rosa's ethnicity.
- The Bartender: Louis.
- Bigger Bad: The criminal organization "Nile."
- Bittersweet Ending: Bradley's sister was murdered by Mila's father, who has been killed by Bradley in return. Bradley is being chased by Nile. Grace is still missing, and nobody has any idea how to find her. Alan is still missing, and nobody has any idea where he is. While at first this seems like a full-on Downer Ending, the game still ends on a positive note with Kyle and Mila leaving to restart their lives, Jenny being returned to Dunning, and, quite simply, all the characters being ready to take on whatever else the world throws at them.
- Book Ends: The game begins and ends with you opening a door, and happen around Kyle teasing Dunning's claims about room 215 "granting wishes."
- Bookcase Passage: There's a hidden door behind the shelf in the wine cellar.
- Butt Monkey: Louis - the poor guy just kind of gets bitchslapped by life, again and again.
- But Thou Must: You're gonna help these people whether you want to or not.
- Captain Obvious: Bound to happen with the ability to observe any everyday item, in the words of Kyle, "It's tall, a lamp, and I'm king of the obvious."
- Chronic Hero Syndrome: Kyle just can't help but help. One of his monologues calls it a hold-over from his cop days.
- Collector of the Strange: Rosa, who collects famous people's autographs.
- The Confidant: Kyle Hyde. He lampshades it at one point by asking Louie why everyone wants to dump their problems on him.
- Continuity Nod: There are a lot of them to the Another Code games that indicate that the games take place in the same world.
- Contrived Coincidence: All these people connected to each other in some way meeting in the same place on the same day can be a bit ridiculous.
- CPR (Clean, Pretty, Reliable): Kyle performs this on Mila in Chapter 9 when she begins having trouble breathing.
- Creepy Basement: It's dark, spooky and has at least two hidden doors.
- Cute Mute: Mila, until Chapter 9.
- Dark and Troubled Past: Almost all the characters in both games.
- Darker and Edgier: Compared to Another Code which this series is the Spiritual Successor to.
- Dead Artists Are Better: Osterzone.
- The Dev Team Thinks of Everything
- Dialogue Tree
- Didn't See That Coming: Kyle makes a remark like this two or three times as the plot twists start piling up.
- Doing It for the Art: The game was in development for almost 2 years because of the character portraits.
- This coincides with the plot considering that paintings and art galleries play a big role.
- Drowning My Sorrows: In one of the Nonstandard Game Overs, Dunning cheers up a depressed Kyle by offering to get drunk with him. It's a Game Over because Kyle is too busy getting drunk to get anything done for the rest of the night.
- Earworm: The tunes can be a bit catchy.
- Event Flag: The game leads you to believe you have to figure out a way of the Creepy Basement, but actually you're saved because decoding a message triggers Louie helping you out. In general, situations like this are noticeable throughout the game, such as the majority of the cast being absolutely nowhere most of the time until the right events happen for them to become plot relevant.
- Extremely Short Timespan: Kyle's first adventure takes a day to go through.
- The Faceless: Ed's eyes are never shown.
- Film Noir: Though it's set in the late '70s/early '80s, so this would kind of be... neo-Noir?
- Game Over Man: Dunning.
- Glasses Pull: Martin does this when his facade starts crumbling.
- Grievous Bottley Harm: Dunning KOs Kyle and Louie this way at the end of Chapter 9.
- Guide Dang It: Good luck getting that secret item from the vending machine without using one.
- However, there's no penalty for just putting in numbers until you get the prize. Still, good luck getting the coins.
- To view a special message in the final chapter to escape an airtight room, better have an item from earlier in the game! Don't have it? Well, you can also tilt the DS screen. Playing it on a 3DS, which has a fundamentally different screen making the number impossible to see? Um...note
- And the puzzle immediately after the one described above is... walk into a corner.
- Ironic Nickname: Each room in Hotel Dusk has a nickname. By extreme coincidence, each guest on the day that Kyle stays at the hotel is in the room with a name that describes the particular virtue he or she is lacking:
- Martin Summer is in "Honor." He stole his best friend's manuscript to fulfill his dream to become famous.
- Jeff Angel is in "Trust." He does not trust his father, who has ties to Nile, to the point of refusing to use the old man's surname.
- Helen Parker is in "Angel." She is eaten by guilt over having walked out on her family.
- Kevin Woodward is in "Courage." His cowardice is why his wife left him. When his wife somehow managed to raise enough money to pay off a malpractice suit, he was afraid of how she may have gotten that money, and couldn't leave it alone, even when she told him never to ask about it.
- Iris is in "Success." After her mother died, she never really got much of a successful job, or had much of a life, to the point of being ashamed when her sister, who had become far more successful, met up with her again.
- Even the empty rooms have either appropriate or ironic names: Melissa gets trapped in Room 218 (Daybreak) which has no power; and Bradley stayed in Room 217 (Prayer) where he left "Angel Opening A Door" behind and, following his corruption, is noted to be "beyond prayer now."
- I Should Write a Book About This: Martin decides to write a book based on Kyle at the end of the game. Kyle is less than enthusiastic about it.
- It's a Wonderful Failure: Whenever you get a game over, Kyle will flash back to the exact moment he screwed up. The one exception is if he dies in the basement.
- I Was Quite a Looker: Rosa.
- I Will Show You X: Rosa gives the remark of "I'll aggravate YOU!" when Kyle gives the serious questioning.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Kyle, again. Anyone who digs through a hotel storage room and decorates a Christmas tree just to cheer up a little girl who's had it rough... Yeah. That thing's 24 karat.
- Jigsaw Puzzle Plot: Very little is spelled out until the end. Half the fun is figuring it out.
- Kleptomaniac Hero: Played With. There are only two or three items you can pick up that aren't necessary, and showing stolen items to Rosa or Dunning (or even hlding them in some scenarios) causes a Non Standard Game Over.
- Let's Play: This is a long, but good one.
- Lost Forever: The vending machine's bonus gift. Particularly annoying because you only get one chance to get it and the game doesn't tell you when that chance is.
- Knight in Sour Armor: Kyle.
- Locked Door: As the adventures take place in buildings with private rooms, this is inevitable. You can normally get in just by knocking and having the person inside let you, but there are occasions where you can either slip by or acquire the key.
- Metaphor Is My Middle Name: At one point in the game, Kyle claims that "moderation" is his middle name.
- Moon Logic Puzzle: Some of the odder puzzles require a little thinking with the features of the DS.
- Morality Pet: Melissa, Helen, and Mila.
- Mukokuseki: Oddly inverted. Most of the younger female characters have distinctly Japanese-looking facial features despite the game taking place in America and there being nothing to indicate any of them have any Asian heritage.
- Multiple Endings: The main part of the ending remains the same, but several factors can change depending on player actions:
- Extended snippets for each individual are shown for treating them well.
- When a certain character collapses, your response alters the ending: hitting Mila to make her regain consciousness means she stays at the Hotel in the end, whereas properly resuscitating her means she hitches a ride from Kyle.
- Finishing with zero failures earns a bonus, post-credits scene: after all the guests depart and while Louis is busy in the bar, Rosa and Dunning muse over the previous day, only for Dunning's daughter to enter.
- Mysterious Parent: Mila's father takes this role, due to his importance in setting up the events of the game.
- Mysterious Waif: Mila.
- Never Found the Body: Bradley after his betrayal.
- New Game+: With some slightly different dialogue, a few new scenes, a different prize in the vending machine and a few other tidbits.
- No Damage Run: A variant — beating the game without a single game over unlocks adds a post-credits bonus to the ending. Dunning and Rosa talk about the previous day at the front desk, only for a new guest to enter; Dunning recoils in shock, before revealing it's his daughter, Jenny.
- Non Standard Game Over: If you check too many items while locked up in a airtight room at one point in chapter 10, Kyle will run out of oxygen and die. Interestingly, the Game Over screen still shows Kyle leaving the hotel. Also, if you lie to Summer in the bar at the beginning of chapter 7, you'll get a very bizarre Game Over sequence.
- There are also several non-confrontation points in each chapter where if you lie to someone, pester them, perform the wrong action, or act like a general jerk/creep, Dunning will give you heat and boot you out of the hotel or Kyle will spend the rest of the night brooding in his room. Thankfully, each one can be side-stepped by picking a neutral or apologetic conversation branch or just doing what the NPCs tell you to do.
- No Tell Motel: The titular hotel.
- Now, Where Was I Going Again?: You don't really get reminders, so making a note in the notebook helps.
- One Degree of Separation: Every guest staying at Hotel Dusk tonight is connected to Kyle, Bradley, and/or one of the other guests. No exceptions.
- One-Hit-Point Wonder: While the game initially lets you get away with a few slip-ups, getting even one question wrong in later interrogation segments (save for one question involving Martin's signature), you're pretty much dead in the water.
- One Steve Limit: Averted. Mila is the name of both the girl at the hotel and Bradley's sister.
- Painting the Medium: Most puzzles do this.
- The Paragon: Kyle, if a somewhat grouchy take. By the end of the game he was able to give every character he met the strength to follow their dreams and move on in life.
- Parrot Exposition: Kyle Hyde repeats parts of other people's sentences as a question at least as frequently as Solid Snake. His boss even calls him out on it during a late-game phone conversation, as does Jeff Angel in chapter 1.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: It's implied that Bradley had Robert Evans killed as payback for his deeds with Nile.
- The Plan: As revealed in a letter at the end of the game, Bradley set up almost all of the events in order for Kyle to solve the secrets plaguing the hotel and its guests and to get Kyle to stop chasing Bradley.
- Batman Gambit: None of this would have worked if Bradley hadn't figured Kyle would still be after him for so long.
- Player Nudge: If you get a Game Over, Kyle will reflect on how he screwed up in the previous scene.
- Plot-Powered Stamina: Kyle does at least stop to eat, but he's capable of functioning quite well past midnight without rest.
- Point-and-Click Game
- Pop Quiz: At the end of each chapter you have get things straight in Hyde's head.
- Present Day Past: It's 1979, and Hyde has a digital pager. While early pagers were around in the late '70s, they were bulky, lacked digital displays, were very short-ranged, and generally weren't in use outside of hospitals and fire departments.
- Private Detective: Kyle Hyde, who even speaks like a hard-boiled 1940s private eye despite the fact that the game is set during the late '70s.
- Lampshaded by a few characters at different points in the story, who all call out Hyde on his out of date cop lingo ("Who talks like that anymore?"), generally as he gets ready to interrogate them.
- Private Eye Monologue: Kyle goes into something like this during the recaps at the end of a chapter.
- Puzzle Reset: All puzzles have this feature. Doing it at one point in chapter 9 will result in a Game Over.
- Rainbow Speak: Words that open up new dialogue options are orange-colored.
- The Reveal: Osterzone was not real, but a pseudonym used by two painters; one of these painters was Dunning Smith.
- Rotoscoping: Angling is sometimes required to find hidden items or see what else to look at.
- Running Gag: "Nice name, isn't it?"
I found myself a paper clip!