First Impression: Nine Noir Lives

Developer: Silvernode Games

Release Date: 7 September, 2022

Platform: Windows, MacOS, Linux

Genre: Point and Click

By Chris Picone, 28 September 2022

I’m not sure why there’s been an influx of point and click adventures featuring anthropomorphised animals lately but I’m totally down for it. And I’m a noir lover so I figured Nine Noir Lives would be right up my alley.

Nine Noir Lives is gorgeous with it’s Deponia-esque art style, and as a comedic game about cats it’s perfect but as a supposed noir game the aesthetic misses the mark most of the time. The voice acting’s similar; it’s good quality, but probably better suited for a kids’ game. That’s been my single biggest finding so far – and for the sake of clarity, I’m only about 1/4 to 1/3 through the game – is that it’s inconsistent. It’s like the game isn’t quite sure whether it wants to be a gritty noir or a cute game about cats or a detective parody and I’m finding the dissonance a little jarring. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still a decent point and click; it looks good, the puzzles are decent, the story’s been engaging so far, it’s just that I went in expecting a noir game and instead found a light-hearted detective parody full of cat puns and the odd noir flash sequence. The one thought that keeps coming back to me is that Nine Noir Lives would be a perfect point and click game for young players to dig their claws into – except that it’s about a murder and frequently references drugs and alcohol.

So, my first impression? In terms of meeting my expectations for noir, it’s a bit of a swing and a miss – there are certainly elements that are done well but it’s too inconsistent. As a point and click, however, it’s decent. If a point and click game about an anthropomorphic cat detective sounds interesting to you, go for it!