The Let's Play Archive

Missing Since January / In Memoriam

by macnbc

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Original Thread: Let's play internet detective in Missing: Since January!



A reporter and his companion disappear while investigating a murder. A package arrives at his news agency claiming to be from the reporter’s kidnapper, someone calling himself The Phoenix. The package contains a CD-ROM full of puzzles. Eventually, the agency decides to take the case public to get help in solving the mystery.

This is the story that leads up to a rather bizarre adventure game. In the US its called “Missing: Since January”, where in Europe its called “In Memoriam.” Released by French developer Lexis Numerique in 2003, this game is sort of a quasi-ARG. You essentially play yourself in the game. Puzzles involve real-world knowledge, websites that were created especially for the game, and characters who will e-mail you.

It’s a quirky little artifact that mixes some lofty design goals with some really horrible puzzle design, poorly acted FMV scenes, and a format that is destined to disappear with time. The story itself is something of a mix between SAW and The Da Vinci Code.

In Memoriam was successful enough in Europe that it spawned an expansion (The 13th Victim), and a sequel (In Memoriam 2 in Europe, Evidence: The Last Ritual in the US). If all goes well here I’d like to include these as well.

The reason why I decided to do this LP now? The game is 10 years old, and the websites and servers maintaining it clearly won’t be around forever. This is a way to archive what playing this game is like before its gone for good.

I will be presenting the contents of the Phoenix’s CD as a video LP, but because part of this game does take place on the internet, it presents a great opportunity for others to get involved! When possible, I will aim to set chapter breaks at the start of a puzzle that involves internet research. If you’d like to try and figure things out for yourself, have at it! I’ll go over submitted answers in the next chapter.

As I mentioned before characters in the game send e-mails out. This occurs even when the game itself is not being played. If I get any e-mails of importance between updates I’ll be sure to post them here.

A note on spoilers: Since this is a pretty niche title I don’t expect a lot of people reading this to have played it before. With that in mind, please don’t post spoilers for things not yet covered in the LP. Also since this is a 10-year old adventure game, there’s a lot of spoilers and walkthroughs online for it. If you’re interested in playing along with the investigation, please make sure you include “-walkthrough” and/or "-solution" in your Google searches without the quote marks in order to exclude them from your search results.

Video 1 | Chapter 1
Video 2 | Chapter 2
Video 3 | Chapter 3
(Text only) | Chapter 3.5
Video 4 | Chapter 4
(Text only) | Chapter 4.5
Video 5 | Chapter 5
Video 6 | Chapter 6
(Text only) | Chapter 6.5
Video 7 | Chapter 7
Video 8 | Chapter 8
Video 9 | Chapter 9
Video 10 | Chapter 10
Video 11 | Chapter 11
Video 12 | Chapter 12
Video 13 | Chapter 13
Video 14 | Chapter 14

“Beware my little friend
You’re about to enter the Phoenix’s lair and become a chosen one…”

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