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Isabella Santos is a young real estate agent living in Luxbourne, England. Her latest assignment is the infamous Ermangarde Mansion — a house rumored to be cursed since the 17th century.

While preparing for a tour of the mansion for potential buyers, Isabella comes across a letter in the attic with the words "Help Me" written in blood…

The Letter is a horror visual novel created by the Filipino developer Yangyang Mobile. Each of the game's seven chapters focuses on a different character who has read the contents of the letter and is now cursed by an eerie, Stringy-Haired Ghost Girl.

The game also features an expansive story-branching system which can alter the fate of each protagonist, as well as their relationships with the other characters.

It is available for purchase from Steam.

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This visual novel contains the following tropes:

  • Alien Geometries: Under the ghost's influence, the Ermengarde mansion becomes this.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: Rebecca likes Ash who in turns likes Isabella who is too focused on her own problems to notice. This can change based on the player's choices.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: Each chapter focuses on a different character who has read the letter.
  • Anyone Can Die: All the main characters can potentially die. Each death unlocks a memory fragment, some of which are needed for the True End.
  • Babies Ever After: Luke and Hannah, if they both survive and the relationship between them is good enough.
  • Barsetshire: Anslem Village, in contrast to the more urban Luxbourne City.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: If the player decides to choose the Ash and Isabella romantic route, their relationship becomes this as they continue to argue while nursing romantic feelings for each other.
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  • Betty and Veronica: The Ash, Rebecca and Isabella love triangle fits this model. Ash is the Archie while Rebecca is the Betty who grew up with Ash and has nursed a crush on him for years while Isabella is the Veronica who moved from the Philippines five years ago and is the object of Ash's affections. It's played with as Rebecca is a hot head and thus more standoffish while Isabella is sweet and loyal. Who Ash ends up with if he does end up with anyone is based on the player's choices.
  • Big Bad: The Ghost aka the Anslem Butcher, a Stringy-Haired Ghost Girl Serial Killer who haunts the Ermengarde Mansion and is said to kill anyone who reads the titular letter. All seven of the playable characters have to fight her off in their respective chapters. She is actually the fused spirit of Takako, a Japanese slave-turned-Meido, and Charlotte Ermengarde, the noble who rescued her, then tormented her until she had her executed as a witch. Takako came back and haunted Charlotte into suicide, wherein their spirits fused and became the terror of the main story.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The true ending. It is not the Everybody Lives ending. In order to achieve this ending, Hannah, Marianne, and Ashton must die by the time of the final chapter. Afterwards, Luke performs a Heroic Sacrifice to ensure that Rebecca, Isabella, and Zachary can escape, and allows himself to die in the embrace of the malevolent spirit who has haunted them all, as she finally finds peace by having her wish granted. Zachary, Isabella and Rebecca spend the rest of their lives spreading the truth of the Ermengarde mansion in their own way, and mourning Ashton.
  • Bland-Name Product:
    • Isabella's mother mentions looking at her profile page at Facenook.
    • The characters frequently visit a coffee shop called "Czarsbucks".
    • Rebecca is mentioned to have played a lot of Nancy Blue games as a child.
    • Marianne has a lucky d20 from her Druids & Demons campaigns.
  • Bloody Horror: The ghost can make the Ermengarde Mansion appear as one.
  • Body Horror: While mainly just the ghost, the CGs that show what happens when said ghost gets its hands on the main characters aren't pretty.
  • Break-Up/Make-Up Scenario: Luke and Hannah have one over the course of the game. How it goes is based on your choices.
  • Breaking the Fellowship: A potential ending is having Isabella, Rebecca, Ash, and Zach survive the game but destroy their individual relationships except for Zach and Rebecca so they stop hanging out. Though the potential to make up is hinted.
  • Bury Your Gays: In the True End, all LGBT characters die.
  • Cassandra Truth: No one else believes that Isabella saw a ghost in the Ermengarde Mansion, until later on.
  • Chain Letter: The eponymous letter. Subverted. The letter was originally just a call for help until a group of young pranksters added the chain clause.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Rebecca has a crush on her childhood friend, Ashton. Ash can reciprocate if Rebecca and Ash's relationship value is high enough.
  • Color-Coded Characters: Each of the main characters is associated with a color.
    • Pink: Isabella and Rebecca. Isabella for her blazer and Rebecca for her hair.
    • White: Hannah and Luke for the white clothes they wear.
    • Green: Zach due to his shirt.
    • Black: Marieanne due to her hair and pants.
    • Red: Ash due to his shirt.
  • Couldn't Find a Pen: The titular letter is written in blood, and when someone is killed because of the curse, bloody messages appear on the walls near them.
  • Creepy Changing Painting:
    • In her chapter, Hannah sees a creepy painting of the ghost during a tour of the mansion. When she points it out to the other characters, the painting changes to a normal mirror.
    • Another example can be encountered during Rebecca's chapter if Isabella ended up in a coma.
  • Creepy Doll: What Luke thinks of Kylie's doll Narcisa.
  • Curtains Match the Window: Every character with an unnatural hair color has eyes to match.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Since the player can mend or break relationships it's possible for the main characters to be rejected by their love interest.
  • Dirty Cop: Harvey Lee, the Chief Inspector of the Luxbourne Police is hinted to be one in Ash's chapter and is confirmed in Luke's chapter.
  • Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male:
    • Isabella hits Ashton when she becomes too annoyed with him, which is Played for Laughs.
    • The player can invoke this by having Rebecca not apologize to Luke after she assaults him at the café.
  • Double Standard: Rape, Female on Male: Completely averted in the Kill 'Em All ending. When Luke finds himself trapped inside the mansion and the ghost rapes him, the game pulls no punches in showing what a genuinely horrific experience it is.
  • Driven to Suicide: The prologue narration states that the last person who lived in the Ermengarde Mansion, Charlotte Ermengarde, committed suicide. Later on in the game it gets heavily implied she did this as a result of being ceaselessly haunted by the ghost and subsequently driven to despair.
  • Earn Your Bad Ending: In order to trigger certain character deaths or ruin certain relationships, you have to deliberately choose options that are cowardly, impulsive or very clearly offensive. Surprisingly, this also applies to the True Ending, which is not an Everybody Lives ending and requires you to deliberately trigger the deaths of Hannah, Marianne and Ashton before sending Luke off for a Heroic Sacrifice. And this is after you unlock the Memory Fragments that are triggered by every individual character's death.
  • Everybody Lives: It's possible to achieve a Golden Ending where all the main characters survive, though their exact fates depend on their Relationship Values. The curse is broken, at least for a good long while, and with the exception of The Stinger, nothing ominous ever happens again. However, this is not the true ending of the VN.
  • Eye Scream: Some of the deaths involve this.
  • Fictional Province: The Luxbourne area is fictional. However, characters do refer to real-world locations.
  • First-Episode Spoiler: Near the end of Isabella's chapter, Rose dies.
  • Foil: While Ash and Luke are on the opposite sides of the law, they are very alike, something Luke notes in his route. Their families were broken as children, they are filled with self-hatred and regrets, jaded by their dealings with the dark side of the world, over cautious and secretive by nature and their respective love interests at the start of the game are cheery and kind, but this makes their differences more apparent. Ash is a cop, who was able to find parental substitutes in Andrew and his wife, is filled with regret over his failures, is cynical with the world as he's seen its darker side because of his work, has friends that he truly trusts and Cannot Spit It Out to Isabella. Luke is a businessman that regularly dabbles in criminal activities, never received any parental affection after his mother passed away early, knows exactly what kind of person he is and is disgusted by it while also fearing just how horrible he can be, is paranoid about everything and is married to Hannah.
  • Food Porn: This game features nice pictures of pancakes, cakes and many other dishes, often accompanied by descriptions of said dishes.
  • Foreshadowing: The intro cinematic shows the letter without the send-this-to-five-people clause, hinting that it was added later. It also shows glimpses of the potential fates of a few characters, such as Zach and Rebecca’s deaths, Isabella’s car accident and Hannah’s possession.
  • Gay Option: Hannah and Marianne can have a romantic relationship.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • Filling out the branching tree completely. Some of the tree's nodes require multiple specific conditions to unlock.
    • Getting the True Ending, particularly since it differs from the Everybody Lives ending, in that certain characters have to die.
    • Some character relationships, since some choices can affect the relationship between characters that the player is not currently playing.
  • Hate Sink: While the Big Bad is The Ghost she is more mysterious and scary than loathsome and eventually revealed to have a sympathetic backstory. Luke Wright, on the other hand, is a pompous, rich, racist, and overall unpleasant Jerkass who abuses his butler, constantly insults everyone around him, is suspected to be responsible for many crimes, and is Ashton’s Arch-Enemy. Depending on the route, he can also kill his own wife and confess to killing her father in cold blood, then pin it on Zack while going on a racist tirade against him. This changes when his chapter reveals his Hidden Depths.
    • Once Luke becomes more sympathetic, the role shifts to The Ghost herself, after fusing with Charlotte Ermengarde. The Memory Fragments and True Ending reveal Charlotte to be a deplorable Bitch in Sheep's Clothing, and easily the most despicable character in the game. The unlockable Memory Fragments only serve to expand upon how horrible she really was, to the point that her death due to being haunted by Takako's spirit seems completely well-deserved. However, even after her death, her reign of terror continues since she ended up fusing with Takako's ghost, and quite likely became the source for its more sadistic and vindictive tendencies.
  • Haunted House: The Ermengarde Mansion, which has been unoccupied for several centuries due to its reputation despite having otherwise wealthy owners.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Isabella's friends are made up of two sets, Ash and Zach and Isabella and Rebecca.
  • Human Sacrifice: Should Zachary meet up with Professor Andrew in his chapter, the professor brings this up. He says that one way to break the curse would possibly be to offer up something or someone as a sacrifice to the ghost. In most endings, this idea is promptly shot down the moment Zachary brings it up, but the true ending plays it straight, as Luke decides to sacrifice himself as atonement for murdering Hannah and dooming her and their unborn children to the curse.
  • I Ate WHAT?!: One character can eat a "yummy" pie. The possessed Hannah made the pie either from a cat or with human intestines.
  • Identical Stranger: Luke and Hannah look very similar to the last owners of the Ermengarde mansion, Charlotte Ermengarde and her fiance, Eduard Godfrey. Turns out to be a plot point as Luke's similarity leads the ghost to grow obsessed with him.
  • In-Series Nickname: Nearly every single main character has one with Hannah being the only exception.
  • Interface Spoiler: There's a relationship chart you can look at any time you want to examine where you currently stand with the other characters. This not only allows you to gleam who all of the playable characters are before you meet them, but also take an estimated guess on who will likely die no matter what the player does; Rose is noticeably not listed in the relationship chart, in spite of her screentime in Isabella's chapter.
  • Lampshade Hanging: The Letter doesn't exactly have the most original plot ever, being heavily inspired by Japanese horror media and all, and the game lampshades this several times via different characters.
  • Last-Second Ending Choice:
    • In each of the routes, a single choice near the end will determine whether or not the character lives or dies. It’s not always obvious, though, and Hannah’s route in particular has a few more wrinkles and outcomes.
    • Depending on who is alive at the end, Luke might have the choice of burning the mansion or the letter which will lead to slightly different endings.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Due to not having varying sprites, the characters always wear the same clothes. In one egregious scene, Isabella is supposed to be in her pajamas, but her portrait still shows her in her regular outfit.
  • Love Triangle:
    • There can be one between Isabella, Rebecca, and Ashton. Which girl ends up with Ashton, if either, depends on how the player built their relationships earlier.
    • Alternatively, Hannah, Marianne, and Rebecca can have one between Luke.
  • Maybe Ever After: Luke's romance endings with Marianne and Rebecca. In both of them, the narration states that the two are good friends, but only time will tell whether or not they'll become a couple.
  • Misery Builds Character: In the True End, the surviving characters make works of art spurred on the events of the game, including the death of Ash. Zach makes a movie about his experiences, Rebecca writes a book about Charlotte's life and Isabella becomes a painter famous for her dark themes.
  • Modular Epilogue: The epilogue goes over each character's fate, depending on what the player did as them.
  • Morton's Fork: In most routes of the game, Luke is given one near the end of his chapter. Luke can heed Isabella's advice and burn the entire mansion down, or decide to just burn the letter instead. Both choices lead to the good ending and epilogue, though torching the mansion does give you an extra scene where the ghost gives Luke a forlorn farewell.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Isabella and her friends sometimes recall Isabella's first sale at Devlin Court which apparently involved a dead body stuffed into a sofa.
    • The secret outings between Ash and Zach where the former asks the latter to "help him with something". Isabella notes how it's something only they know about, and Zach vaguely mentions the "last time" he ended up covered in chicken down and insisted it "was that bad" after Ash scoffs it off as the opposite.
    • Ash and Zach's first meeting is never really explained in detail. All we know is Zach was in the wrong place at the wrong time which led to Zach punching Ash, Zach being sent to jail for a short period of time and Ash later clearing Zach of the charges.
  • No Romantic Resolution: In the true ending, it is impossible to successfully complete a romance arc, since all the surviving characters end up losing their potential love interests to the curse.
  • One Degree of Separation: Isabella, Rebecca, Ash and Zach are friends and Isabella meets Marianne, Hannah and Luke at the open house of the Ermengarde Mansion. Zach then meets Hannah later as the photographer for a home magazine about their new house and later meets Kylie, who is Luke's goddaughter, Rebecca's student and friends with Takako, the ghost! Hannah realizes that Rebecca is a childhood acquaintance. Finally, Luke turns out to be the person Ash is currently investigating as he caused Professor Andrew's, Ash's mentor, wife's death.
  • Optional Sexual Encounter: The game has a few of these. One such encounter is early on in Marianne's chapter, where Luke follows Marianne home after meeting in a pub.
  • Palette Swap:
    • When Ashton visits the bar, he notices how similar Bartender G looks to Chief Inspector Lee. Both characters use the same sprite with some minor changes. They even share the same voice actor!
    • Father Norman also has a similar sprite and shares the same voice actor too.
  • Plot Threads: Each chapter follows the character it is named after and they have a tendency of intersecting with other character's chapters.
  • Precision F-Strike: Hannah unleashes one on Luke in one version of the housewarming party.
  • Press X to Not Die: The game has these, though, thankfully, the player can retry them without having to load an earlier save. They're also skippable.
  • Relationship Values: All of the playable characters have relationship values with each other, which will change over time depending on the player's choices. Character relationships will affect the epilogue as well as some story branching.
  • Room Full of Crazy: All of the ghost's victims use their blood to write "Help Me" multiple times throughout the room.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Luke can do this if he refuses to sacrifice himself shortly before the true end.
  • Spooky Photographs: One of the photos that Zach takes of Hannah ends up being this, due to the ghost's presence. Trying to make another copy of it doesn't help.
  • Story Branch Favoritism: The Letter is generally good at averting this, especially for how extensive the branching tree is, but there are still some examples.
    • Prof. Andrew Clark gives some useful exposition on the supernatural, but he only appears in Isabella's and Zachary's chapters on certain routes. Zach's meeting with him is also required for the True Ending.
    • Marianne's chapter explains more of her backstory with Lorraine if she pursues Hannah, particularly if she goes up to the first floor of the mansion instead of staying on the ground floor.
    • Luke's chapter ends a bit abruptly if he only burns the letter. In the True Ending, this isn't even an option. Once triggered, Luke will either trap the others inside the house with the ghost or Luke will burn the mansion down and sacrifice himself to the ghost.
  • Story Branching: While the game never permanently diverges into different routes, a lot of scenes and dialogue are exclusive to certain player decisions.
  • The Stinger: Happens after any ending where Luke is alive and has the potential to romance someone. In it, Kylie screams in terror that the ghost is still here and after her, before her neck gets snapped. The Doylist explanation for this, of course, is the game teasing the True Ending for you. The Watsonian explanation is left completely up to the player's interpretation; whether the ghost returned to haunt everyone, whether it murdered Kylie in a final act of spite, or whether it was simply another bad dream.
  • Teens Are Monsters: The pranksters that added the "send to 5 people" part planned to give the letter to some of their classmates to scare them.
  • Til Murder Do Us Part: Can happen in Hannah's chapter.
  • Torture Cellar: Marianne can find one in her chapter. It's connected to the wine cellar of the Ermengarde Mansion. She also gets trapped in it if she survives her chapter.
  • True Companions: Isabella, Rebecca, Zach and Ash are this. If Isabella dies in chapter one, they are heartbroken.
  • Wham Line: In Ashton's chapter, if Isabella is still alive, we learn something major about Isabella when Seb the security guard says of Isabella's boss, "The least he could do is be considerate to her, after a family member's passing."
  • What Does She See in Him?: A lot of characters wonder why Hannah married Luke.
  • Where Da White Women At?: Downplayed. Hannah and Zach can be in a romantic relationship, but it's mainly just Luke who has a problem with it. It's also the only possible romance for Zach.
  • You Lose at Zero Trust:
    • If Hannah has a bad enough relationship with Luke he will flat out murder her at the end of her route. Surprisingly Inverted later, as this is required for the true ending.
    • In a similar (and less subtle) way, not going to work and avoiding your friends at the end of Isabella’s route will get her killed.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Averted for most characters who have very realistic hues, but in the cases that do fit the trope (pink for Rebecca, green for Rose Cooper, and blue for Kylie) nobody comments on it being unusual.
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