A downloadable game for Windows and macOS

The Ben Wander Murder Collection (Working Title) is a 1920s historical fiction set in San Francisco, where you play a female private investigator. I'm making the game almost entirely on my own, with audio generously contributed by Mark "Marowi" Wilson.


What is this demo?

I made this demo to determine the art style and most of the gameplay elements. You'll search for evidence, take a statement, and contradict a suspect, with visuals inspired by Saul Bass, Dieter Rams, Olly Moss, and other designers. The plot, however, is completely temporary -- I wrote a simple scenario in less than an afternoon so I could test many features, but didn't worry about its level of engagement.

What's missing from this demo?

Beyond the placeholder story, the main feature missing is travel -- how the player explores San Francisco to solve mysteries and discover the connections between them. The mechanic currently works, but the art isn't complete (I will be doing that in a devlog soon!).


Follow development of the game at www.thewanderingben.com or find me on Twitter @TheWanderingBen. Thanks for your interest!


BWMC_Mac.zip 76 MB
BWMC_Windows.zip 106 MB


Log in with itch.io to leave a comment.


Seems awesome, but I'm on Linux, any chance of a Linux version? I'd be happy to help with testing.

Thanks for the support! I did try making a Linux build with Unity, but my Ubuntu friends couldn't get it running properly. My schedule's already tightening, so for now I have to continue making the game on OSX and Windows. But I won't rule Linux out if, at the end of this process, I can get it to work on all three platforms.

That would be super. If you want to send me your Linux build, maybe I can help debugging (I'm a dev and used to Linux), no pressure though, I perfectly understand not wanting to add one more concern during the devving of the game. If you manage to get a Linux version working, I'd be grateful if you can ping me. Keep up the good work!


Big fan of noir, diggin the style and setting. The details were nice, women's temperence, Bolsheviks, Mackinac. Kinda feels like an updated throwback to those old point and click games/text adventure games, too.

You still plan on the stories being procedural?

Thanks for the love, Rob!

Procedural story was an early experiment that didn't go well. All the stories were too generic and the conversations non-existent. The more I added personality to different parts of the story, the more I control I took away from the procedural engine. I realized I was doing more work than writing five stories, all to write a simple one with parts that could be interchanged -- but the parts wouldn't fit as nicely as if there were just a cohesive plot from the beginning.

In the end, I'd rather spend that same time crafting stories that I feel good about. I'm hoping to pull out even more style and history in the final plots. Wish me luck! And thanks again for playing, man!


Enjoyed that a lot - best of luck with the full game.

Thanks man! I look forward to showing you more!