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Murdered: Soul Suspect is a 2014 Video Game, published by Square Enix and developed by Airtight Games, which released on Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

The game follows Ronan O'Connor, who, in most regards, is your average Hardboiled Detective from Salem, Massachusetts. Oh, except he's been brutally murdered in the opening scenes with seven bullets to the chest.

But because his fellow cops have been unable to catch the perp, a serial murderer called the Bell Killer, Ronan returns as a ghost to investigate his own murder, using his new abilities to uncover fresh clues and at the same time revealing some disturbing secrets about the town of Salem and the serial killer he had been investigating in life.

As he searches for the truth about the night he died, Ronan comes across a teenage medium named Joy who's looking for her missing mom. Joy is the only living person Ronan can interact with (given that he's dead and all), which comes in handy for investigating crime scenes and the like.


There's also some background lore by way of collecting ghost stories, finding strange sigils written on the walls, and letters from your dead wife. Gameplay elements take something of a backseat to story, and ultimately the game is very short, more like an interactive horror/mystery movie, but proportionately less challenging.

Has a character page.

Murdered: Soul Suspect contains examples of the following tropes:

  • 100% Completion: By doing all the sidequests and collecting all items.
  • 11th-Hour Ranger: Shortly before the finale, Baxter is killed, and goes off to help Ronan by protecting Cassandra at his insistence.
  • Air-Vent Passageway: You can travel in them while possessing a cat.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Demons are never encountered in even a passive mood, only ever looking to turn Ronan into lunch.
  • Ambiguous Situation: As revealed in the finale, the hell pits are caused by Abigail's powers. However, there is no confirmation on whether she literally has made a Deal with the Devil as per her accusations, that it's even a true pit to Hell, or whether or not the demons themselves are what Ronan knows of them, owing to the fact that all explanation of their existence came from Abigail herself.
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  • Ancient Conspiracy: The Bell Killer has been operating for over three hundred years.
  • And I Must Scream: Being stuck in a metaphysical version of this (ie, being unable to complete what is binding them to Earth) is what turns a ghost into a demon, according to Abigail.
  • Another Dimension: Dusk, the limbo-esque dimension that ghosts who can't move on inhabit.
  • Artistic License – History: The Bell Killer is copying the deaths from the Salem witch trials, which is why all his victims are women, and the methods of killing include hanging, crushing, drowning and burning. In reality, no one was killed by burning or drowning in the witch trials, and several of those executed were men.
  • Apathetic Citizens: Ronan is pushed out of a window, and the only woman who finds the body doesn't do anything about it. Considering he was still alive at this point, she might have been able to save him.
    • To be fair, in one of the side investigations, you find out that the woman is a murderer herself and likely didn't want to attract police scrutiny.
  • Asshole Victim: Several of the ghosts that you can talk to are this, including the Big Bad, Abigail Williams.
  • Ate His Gun: One of the ghosts comments that he ended his life this way.
  • Bedlam House: The Lux Aeterna mental hospital, where they still use electroshock therapy. Its past is even more sinister than that.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Zig-zagged. No matter what happens, Ronan is still dead. Nothing you do is going to change this. Then again, he goes to heaven with his wife, so…
  • Blood from the Mouth: Ronan after receiving seven shots into his chest.
  • Bloodless Carnage: For a guy who gets shot seven times in the chest, Ronan sure doesn't bleed much. Slightly justified by the fact that you don't bleed after you're dead (because your heart isn't beating).
  • Bookends: Shortly after his death, Ronan fails to reunite with his wife in heaven and then asks a few questions to Abigail which ended when a portal of hell opens. The game ends in reverse, Ronan again interrogates Abigail and then sends her to hell via the portal she opens. Following this, he heard the voice of his wife, finally being able to cross over and reunites with her.
  • But Thou Must!: Thanks to plot advancements being scripted, this happens sometimes.
    • In the police station, there are two stairways that lead up to the second floor. One of them has a hell pit on it, making it impassable to Ronan, but passable for living people. After breaking Joy out of her cell, you arrive to that staircase. Joy, who hates when ghosts (including Ronan) to possess her, allows him to possess her so that they can pass. You can Take a Third Option and go up the other staircase, but Joy will be waiting for you downstairs instead of just walking up.
    • In the asylum, after you enter Iris' room, the door, which can only be opened by an electronic lock from the outside, closes behind you. You have to investigate the situation with Iris, meanwhile Joy is working on the door trying to open it. If you go out through the wall and open the door from the outside, Joy will keep sitting there trying to open it.
  • Calling Card: The "Bell Killer," who marks his victims with a drawing of a bell. It's a symbolic representation of how Abigail wants to have "the bell toll" for witches in Salem, and a symbol of her own powers, as she drew it prior to her execution as well.
  • Chekhov's Gun: When you meet Joy, the fact that her scream can affect ghosts is listed as a clue. Cut to the very end of the game, where that clue is what you must use to influence Joy.
  • Colon Cancer: For a game that isn't actually a sequel, it's actually the kind of game that could have a sequel. It just has a colonized title already, but never got a sequel.
  • Cowboy Cop: Ronan fits into this trope somewhat. He's shown to have been at odds with the cops multiple times in the past, and doesn't seem to listen to regular cop protocols. However it's also shown that the cops genuinely respect him because he is usually correct.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Ronan's "fight" with the Bell Killer, which simply consists of him being slammed and tossed around like a rag doll.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: The Bell Killer specialized in these. Killing girls by burning them at the stake, drowning them, crushing them with rocks... Made even worse because these were allegedly used in trials of accused witches in various countries.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Before becoming a cop, Ronan was a street criminal with an extensive criminal record.
  • Deader Than Dead: Demons, ghosts who have lost their humanity and warped into insane spiritual monsters, can consume the souls of other ghosts in an attempt to fill their own emptiness. Victims of a demon's feeding leave behind a "corpse" of sorts in the form of a floating blank silhouette that other ghosts can use to hide from other demons in.
    • Ronan himself can "execute" demon if he manages to get the drop on them. Whether this actually destroys the corrupted ghost or just forces them to cross over is unclear. It is unknown if other ghosts beside Ronan can also do this to a demon as they usually flee whenever a demon arrives.
  • Demonic Possession: A unique take on this power: Ronan is unable to actually control those he possesses, but he can read their minds, influence their thoughts and perceive through their eyes and ears, allowing him to gather information. When he possesses a cat, however, he can control the cat's body.
    • Unlike Ronan, Rose is fully capable of possessing living humans, having been possessing Iris even before the player meets her. Whether her ability extends onto anyone or is limited to her sister is not explored.
    • While not a Demon, Abigail uses several living hosts to carry out her murders on mediums.
  • Destination Defenestration: Ronan is thrown out of a four-story window while fighting his killer.
  • Dragged Off to Hell: Ronan can suffer this if he is not careful to avoid the demon arms reaching out of the ground. This is Abigail's final fate.
  • Driven to Suicide: There are several ghosts around who committed suicide. One of them is a woman who thought her lover was cheating on her, but you can help her find out that he wasn't.
  • Extremely Short Timespan: The plot takes place over the course of one night.
  • Flash Back: You can find memories that are replayed like this. Some of them are integral to the investigation, others are bonus collectibles about Ronan's life.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • In the beginning of the game, a hell portal opens up randomly after Ronan speaks to Abigail. Come the end of the game, Abigail reveals she can open them.
    • When asking Sophia about her murder, Sophia points at his direction, with Ronan assuming she's pointing at his police badge. Turns out he is her murderer! Or rather, Abigail used his body to kill Sophia.
    • The message that Abigail is writing (that is "not for you") reads "Sisters not in life but in this living death, the town is ours forever", hinting at her true motives.
  • For Science!: In the ghost hospital part of the cemetery, there is a ghost of a Mad Doctor who makes scientific experiments on the victims of the disease. One of the patients (also a ghost) is freaked out about him.
  • Ghostly Goals: Ghosts seek to solve their Unfinished Business before moving on to begin with being Ascended to a Higher Plane of Existence. Ronan needs to solve the mystery of the Bell Killer. Rose protects Iris until she no longer can. Abigail wants to purge Salem of witchcraft and avenge her own execution. The latter doesn't succeed thanks to the former.
  • Go into the Light: Ronan goes towards a light after being killed only to find Julia.
  • Good All Along: Zigzagged. Flashbacks from Abigail Williams' memory shows an angry man executing young women who are accused of witchcraft, Abigail herself included. He even had a dungeon beneath the dungeon where he kept the accused before their execution. It turns out that after discovering Abigail had falsely accused several women of being witches, the man isn't very a bad guy after all, he was just doing his job.
  • Good Colors, Evil Colors: Human ghosts are blue, demons are red. Subverted, however, in that some of the still-human ghosts are Asshole Victims.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Ronan has a few thin scars on his face, as well as seven glowing bullet wounds on his chest.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: The main gameplay mechanic, and required for 100% Completion. You collect clues in crime scenes (albeit you don't have to collect them all in every crime scene)and collect ghostly mementos referencing whatever sidestory happened in a location before the events of the game.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: You help Joy sneak past other people by activating electric devices with your poltergeist power. They will walk there and stare at said device, allowing Joy to sneak past them. Demons can be distracted with crows in a similar manner.
  • Hell Is That Noise: Demons emit an unearthly shriek before they attack. Most ghosts know to flee the area as soon as they hear it.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
    • At the shore there is a ghost woman who were rescuing people from a sinking ship. She managed to save several of them, but then her boat capsized and she drowned, as she could not swim.
    • Rose Campbell broke Iris free from her bonds and distracted the Bell Killer long enough for Iris to escape; sadly, Rose herself wasn't so lucky.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • Ronan's killer finishes the job by shooting him repeatedly with Ronan's own gun.
    • During the Final Boss, Abigail summons a portal to Hell in an attempt to drag Ronan in, only for Ronan to avoid it and toss her into said portal herself.
  • Hope Spot: At the first scene when Ronan's ghost leaves his body, he realizes he is still alive, so he tries to retake control of his body and reach for his weapon. Only for the killer to reach the weapon first and shoot him seven times.
  • Insecurity Camera: Ronan can use his poltergeist power on security cameras to temporarily disable them. Nobody will notice that something just went wrong.
  • Interface Spoiler: There is a "Teleport" among the game controls, yet you only develop that power around the middle of the game.
  • It's All About Me: Abigail seems to have this mindset. She sees nothing wrong with using her own powers to falsely condemn other people to death, then actually has the nerve to say that she is better than the people that she killed. She even has this mindset when confronted by the leader of the Salem townspeople when he comes to visit her in jail.
  • Jacob Marley Apparel: All ghosts retain the clothing and items they had on hand at the time of their death, along with evidence of the means of their deaths, such as Ronan's seven gunshot wounds, Rose's burning flesh, Sophia's sunken face, Iris' bleeding face, and Baxter's missing eye.
  • Karma Houdini: The first side mission involves Ronan helping a ghost discover where her body is, along the way discovering her killers. Unfortunately, being a ghost and not having met Joy at this point (and never getting around to telling her when he does), there's nothing he can do about it, so the killers get away scot free. There's also a Stalker with a Crush who's implied to have Murdered The Hypotenuse repeatedly, and even though he died at some point, he has no problem with it, because now he can continue stalking her for life without her ever knowing.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout: Mediums can shout at ghosts to hurt them, even managing to exorcise them from possessed bodies.
  • Monochrome Apparition: Ronan's ghost turns grey after his body dies.
  • Monster and the Maiden: Ronan O'Connor comes back from the dead as a ghost, and starts a partnership with a teenage medium Joy Foster. She's trying to help him find his murderer and together they're trying to find Joy's Missing Mom.
  • Must Be Invited: A variant: Ghosts like Ronan can't pass through the walls of consecrated buildings, which pretty much applies to every single one in Salem. However, they can pass through an open door or window, and after that, the walls don't hinder them anymore.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: One of the ghosts, named Brad, died in a car accident along with his two passengers. All of them were drunk, and Brad feels guilty because he thinks he was the one behind the wheel. You can help him find out that he wasn't.
  • Occult Detective: The player controls Ronan, a ghostly detective.
  • Our Demons Are Different: Demons in-game are said to have once been human ghosts, but became corrupted and robbed of their souls over time after being stuck on Earth, left to instinctively consume ghosts such as Ronan in an attempt to regain their humanity.
  • Personality Powers: According to Abigail, the unique powers that a ghost has are based on the talents they had before they died. Ronan's power appears to be psychometry (memory reading of places) and mind reading, to fit in with being a detective. Abigail herself, as an absolutely horrible human being who focuses on manipulation, has far stronger Demonic Possession powers enabling her to better control her victims and the ability to summon hell pits.
  • Recycled IN SPACE!: A lot of players have noted that the entire game could be summed up as a "darker and grittier version of Blue's Clues". Also note the very obvious similarities to Ghost Trick.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: Demons are colored red and black.
  • Red Herring: The game points evidence at Baxter for being the Bell Killer. It's a subversion, however. Although Baxter himself isn't the Bell Killer, his body was hijacked into doing at least one of the killings via Demonic Possession.
  • Reformed, but Rejected: Baxter adamantly refused to see Ronan as anything but a common criminal even after he became a cop. Made a bit more reasonable because Rex helped sweep Ronan's past under the rug so that he could become a cop — he'd have been rejected outright with his rap sheet.
  • Riddled With Bullets: Ronan is killed with seven bullets.
  • Salem Is Witch Country: In the Back Story, the trials executed several mediums, falsely accused of gaining their powers from a Deal with the Devil. The Big Bad is the ghost of Abigail Williams, the girl who condemned several women to their death with her accusations during the trials, who is possessing people to kill mediums as the Bell Killer.
  • Scars Are Forever: Some ghosts retain the wounds that killed them in life. For example, Ronan, who was shot, has seven bullet holes in his chest, and Rose, who was burned at the stake, is still on fire and burned badly in several places. Baxter, who is shot through the eye, also retains that wound in his ghost form.
  • Serial Killer: The "Bell Killer".
  • Shout-Out: The menu screen of Deus Ex: Human Revolution is displayed on multiple monitors in the police Station. Posters for Just Cause 2 can also be found throughout the station.
  • Smoking Is Cool: Even in death, Ronan smokes cigarettes.
  • Speak Ill of the Dead: Baxter, one of Ronan's fellow officers remarks that he was a "dumb son of a bitch" upon his death, which earns him a punch in the face from Ronan's brother-in-law, a fellow cop. Later, he continues to speak dismissively of Ronan to another cop, insisting that he was "more criminal than cop". The other officer angrily responds with, "He was still a badge, dickhead, show some respect!"
    • Rex berates an officer who tries the opposite trope because Rex was well-aware that Ronan was tough to work with, but admired his honesty above anything else.
  • Spiritual Successor: Quite literally to L.A. Noire, as both are detective games though they weren't made by the same developers.
  • Standard Female Grab Area:
    • Played completely straight (although in ghost form, but still...)
    • Also with Joy when she's caught sneaking into the church (on your second visit).
  • Story Branching: The game has actually been compared to Gamebooks — as being a choose your own adventure game with only one ending, since even if you choose the wrong clues in crime scenes, it has no effect on the story; you just keep choosing more clues until you do get them.
  • Super Strength: The Bell Killer is strong enough to easily overpower Ronan and throw him around, as well as casually push over a large stone statue.
  • Suspicious Video-Game Generosity: Averted. The hiding spots first appear when the demons are introduced, so the logical assumption is that where there are hiding spots, there'll be demons sooner or later. This is not the case — hiding spots are all over town while demons are mercifully rare. Since the two are not always connected lore-wise either, it makes the world feel less like a game that only caters to the player. However the ravens occasionally seen are a sign that there are demons ahead and you'll have to use them.
  • Stealth-Based Mission: How Ronan deals with demons. He will die very fast if he faces them head on, but he can one-shot them if he manages to get behind their backs.
  • Take Your Time: Most evident at the tailend of the game. Ronan hears a police transmission that leads him to conclude that Joy's life is in immediate mortal danger, but on your way to the marker for that mission you're completely free to roam around, pick up collectibles, and do side cases.
  • Tattoo as Character Type: In life, Ronan was originally a Tattooed Crook, marking himself with tattoos over his body that represent his crimes but when he fell in love and became a cop he adds new tattoos that represents his love for his wife Julia.
    • Discussed by the morticians examining his body — one is trying to analyze the meaning of each tattoo, while the senior of the pair brushes it off as meaningless since he's now dead.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Baxter doesn't appear to be looked upon favorably by the rest of the police, though considering his Jerkass behavior, it's not really surprising.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: First Ronan is pushed out of a four-story window. When he attempts to return to his own body (we never really know if this would have worked) his killer finishes the job with seven shots to the torso to really make sure of it.
  • Tragic Hero: Ronan finds out that he was possessed by Abigail to kill one of the victims of the Bell Killer, as one of the many identities of the Bell Killer.
  • Unfinished Business: The reason many ghosts, like Ronan, can't move on to the other side outside of Dusk is this. His is finding out the mystery behind the Bell Killer.
  • Wham Shot: In the finale, Ronan hanging Sophia, revealing he is one of the Bell Killers.
  • Who Dunnit To Me: The main case is Ronan solving his own murder. He can also solve the deaths of other ghosts to let them pass on.
  • Who Names Their Kid "Dude"?: When Ronan formally introduces himself to Joy, she makes a snarky comment about how his parents must have expected him to become a gladiator, but only after Ronan snarks about her (seemingly) Ironic Name.
    • A flashback shows his own mother commenting on the oddity of his name as an infant.
  • You Can See Me?: Ronan has one of these moments when he catches Joy for the first time and she tells him to get out of her head, then proceeds to chastise him, which causes Ronan to realize she's a medium.
  • Your Soul is Mine!: Demons hunt down normal ghosts and consume their souls.