“Black Sheep” is a choice-based cyberpunk noir about a woman’s attempts to find her missing sister.

Gameplay: Gameplay is smooth throughout, with the choice-based system not feeling limiting. The world is a fairly large one, and the player has freedom to roam around in it and interact with other characters. While some of the puzzle elements are a bit contrived, the mystery itself is solid and well-clued. The revelation at the end of the game, while satisfying, wasn’t a surprise to me at all. 7/10.

Mechanics: The game has quite a bit of state: the protagonist has a burgeoning inventory; the choices available to her at each point depend on previous encounters; and there’s a global timer in the game. Like most ostensible mystery games in IF, the focus of “Black Sheep” is more on evidence collection and standard adventure-game-style actions (e.g., getting into locked areas) rather than deduction itself. There is a mechanic for combining pieces of evidence and thereby drawing conclusions from them, but the game uses it sparingly and only toward the end of the story. 8/10.

Presentation: The setting and writing of the game strongly support its cyberpunk setting. The cyberpunk elements aren’t as overwhelming or pervasive as they are in most games of that genre, but they’re noticeable, creepy, and evocative. (One particular detail I found memorable was a character noted as literally wearing “her uterus on her hip.”) 7/10.

You might be interested in this game if: You want a more restrained cyberpunk noir with a satisfying mystery.

Score: 7

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