Zero Escape – Game Recommendation
Zero Escape is a three-part series adventure game originally published in Japan and later adapted for North America and Europe. The three games within the series in chronological order are Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors (999), Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward, and Zero Time Dilemma.
The premise for all three games is identical: a group of nine individuals are kidnapped and held captive by an anonymous person named ‘Zero.’ To escape, they play a gruesome game that determines whether they live or die.
The most horrible thing about death is how it turns a person into a thing. It’s a thing that looks like your friend, but it’s not them anymore. Just this strange, cold shell, and every time you look at it you feel a little of that coldness creeping in around the edges of your soul.
– Sigma Klim
What’s unique about the Zero Escape series is you don’t have to play in chronological order to understand the storyline. While Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors, is the first official game in the series, I began with Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward and still understood the overall plot. I later went on to play Zero Time Dilemma for the PS Vita.
What I enjoy most about the Zero Escape games are the plot and characters. It’s gripping, thrilling, exciting and full of mystery. It keeps you on edge and wanting to know what happens next. Knowing every choice–big or small– you make can change the ending is also exciting. Your pathways are mapped out which you can jump to a specific scene and continue to get a different ending. Every ending is also connected, so by jumping to different timelines, you’ll get different endings which connect to the overall plot.
I love the characters in the series, especially in Virtue’s Last Reward. Their interactions and different personalities make the game entertaining but not taking away the suspense that carries throughout the game. While each game can technically stand on its own, its fun to see their character growth and change throughout the series.
When someone betrays your trust, it feels like a part of you dies. For me, I guess it was the part that cared.
If you’re an escape-the-room lover, you’re guaranteed to love the puzzles. No matter the difficulty, you’ll always feel satisfied after you complete them. What’s convenient is that you only complete each puzzle once.
While the premise is the same for the games in the series, I would recommend Virtue’s Last Reward over Zero Time Dilemma. I enjoyed the characters and that specific plotline better than the latter. Puzzles and choices aside, the narrative of Zero Time Dilemma is like watching a movie with moving characters. That element also appears in Virtue’s Last Reward but less predominantly. Zero Time Dilemma has also been said by fans to be the weakest in the series while Virtue’s Last Reward is considered a lot better than 999.
Play blindly the first time, and consult a walkthrough later. You won’t regret playing this game.