The premise of Body of Evidence is a good one: you’re a cleaner, a cleaner of dead bodies. Woo hoo! I mean, no, that’s disgusting. Regardless, there’s no escaping it, if you aren’t comfortable with it, play something else.
Now we got that out of the way, the tone of the game is light-hearted – it has to be really as you’re dragging corpses about, cleaning up claret without any real reasoning behind it.
Body of Evidence is a mini sandbox, to some degree, as you play around with the tools scattered in a location to make a clean getaway. Quite literally as you can’t leave any evidence behind.
Body Of Evidence Switch Review
The concept works and has worked before in Serial Cleaner – a similar theme, only a third-person stealth action title. Body of Evidence, from Empyrean Games and No Gravity Games, is a first-person puzzle-like simulator.
Depicted by low polys, the visuals worked for me and, while the physics were often awkward and vector-breaking, they were fun when they worked. The music was out of place, however, and very understated – almost forgettable.
But let’s move on to the actual gameplay, starting with the story: it makes no sense. You start the game taking tickets on a bus, in what was one of the most monotonous intro scenes. The explanation for the segment was a lost bet, but it didn’t justify the purpose, or reason behind including.
Then, from text-based instructions to a full voiceover, we deal with our first body. Again, it makes no sense as you wake up with a dead body in a bathtub and a pool of blood. The phone rings informing you that the police are on their way, so you have to dispose of and clean up the scene.
What’s The MO?
You’d think that the story in Body of Evidence would be explained as you progress, but it isn’t, at least not to a coherent level that would seem reasonable. The scene straight after the first body is helping someone dissolve a body in acid. The protagonist has gone from collecting bus tickets to becoming public enemy number one to the Forensics Department.
Still, it doesn’t have to make sense. We can give or take some believable truths in the gaming world, but unfortunately, the experience doesn’t have your back. The controls can be clunky, there’s no explanation on how to do anything, and on top of all this, your progress is being timed.
My expectations of Body of Evidence were that it would be a dark comedy, didn’t take itself too seriously and was a bit of a sandbox of death. While there are witty moments here and there, regarding pop culture movies, it’s often muted due to the frustrating controls.
On a couple of occasions, the bodies ‘disappeared’ into the scenery. I mean, I could see them on screen, but no matter how hard I tried, could no longer interact with them and had to restart the level. This was no good, especially when you’ve completed all the other tasks impeccably.
Google Searching ‘Body Disposal Instructions’
Of course, you can head to the menu to find out what buttons do what, but there aren’t any tutorials or tips on screen. The visuals are very no-frills, but I really liked the minimalism, and the simplicity of low polys worked in Body of Evidence favour.
Alas, it’s the fundamental gameplay. It was often erratic and spoiled the experience. I could live with the plot holes, and the lack of hand-holding as any decent experience should be intuitive. While it takes a bit of time to learn the ropes, it’s the interaction that lets it down.
Beating the clock or even the monotonous, though somewhat fun, using a mop to clean up broken glass would be familiar for anyone who’s played House Flipper. Coincidentally, the latter is by the same developer and easily my preference of the two. It’s an unusual incentive, but I enjoyed the cleanup process, but having to restart a level because the body could no longer be tampered with wasn’t good.
The idea of body disposal, while not unique (though equally not exploited to death yet), is welcome, but the execution wasn’t up to speed. I wanted to like this a lot more than I did, but when the focus of a game is body removal, and you can’t pick that body up, it defeats the purpose. Perhaps it would be a better experience on PC like House Flipper was? I will investigate…
Body of Evidence Review Summary
Disposing of a corpse and mopping up the aftermath may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s something different, and you have the choice to play it. However, it’s marred by the lack of interaction with objects and a scatty plot that makes it difficult to feel connected with the experience, and on my part, a bit of a miss.