Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo from Square Enix is a new mystery-adventure game releasing next week for Nintendo Switch, Steam, iOS, and Android worldwide. It was originally shown in the Japanese Nintendo Direct, and caught my attention with its trailer and premise. I’ve been playing it on Nintendo Switch through an early code provided by Square Enix. For this Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo hands-on preview, I will be covering the opening chapter of the game and how it looks and feels on Nintendo Switch based on my time with it docked and handheld on my OLED Model.
Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo is set in the Sumida Ward of Tokyo during the late 20th century. I’ve played about four hours of Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo so far, but will only be covering the opening chapter in this preview. This chapter focuses on Shogo Okiie who visits a park with his friend Yoko trying to look into a ghost story. They eventually start talking about a ritual to resurrect the dead before a certain event occurs that changes Shogo’s night. As Shogo, you must now explore, look into the Seven Mysteries of Honjo, and try to survive.
Without getting into any spoilers, Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo has two specific gameplay and story moments in the early parts that made me want to keep playing more and put all the other games I’m currently playing on hold. One specific game mechanic felt like something a visual novel would pull during the late game, but it happened literally in one of the earliest parts here. As of now, Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo is shaping up to be very special, and I’m looking forward to seeing how people react to these moments.
If you’ve played adventure games like the Ace Attorney series or Danganronpa, Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo plays more like the former so far. You interact with environments, items, talk to people, reference your own files, use items, and move to different locations to progress the story. I like the 360 degree camera movement and environments featured here.
While you can usually progress by just interacting with everything or talking to people, I want to highlight the in-game hint system. I had a game over occur a few times in a specific situation, and the game slowly gave me hints on how to progress after those game overs. I like this hint system so you get a few chances before being pointed in the right direction.
Visually, Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo is very striking. The character designs are great, but the use of camera angles and post-processing during character interactions is very good. The filter might be a bit too strong for some, and there isn’t an option to reduce this on Switch right now. Performance has been mostly great with some frame pacing issues while panning or moving the cursor.
When it comes to controls, Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo feels perfect on Nintendo Switch. It has full touchscreen support in addition to button controls. It also has rumble feedback when you move the cursor over a point of interest. I played it using both control options in handheld mode, and it felt perfectly suited to the system. When docked, I used my 8BitDo controller and had no issues. The developers have done a good job for both control options.
The music of Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo is excellent so far. I’m definitely going to buy the soundtrack whenever it releases. It is a lovely blend of catchy tunes, eerie location songs, atmospheric music, and sounds that perfectly add to the tension of the scenes in-game.
Right now, I can’t wait to play more of Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo. I’ll have a full review of it closer to launch, but this feels like the kind of game I want to see more of from Square Enix. Last year’s The Centennial Case was a similar kind of release, albeit a much bigger production. If the quality holds up through the rest of the story, Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo is likely going to be one of the best mystery games on Switch.