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The Case of Charles Dexter Ward invites you to explore mystery-laden Providence and uncover its enchanting secrets, research ancient history of witchcraft and occultism in shadow-blighted Salem, and sneak into an eerie Pawtuxet farm to meet unspeakable horrors lurking underneath in one of the most memorable sequences in Lovecraft’s oeuvre. Take the role of both the inquisitive Charles Dexter Ward and Dr. Marinus Willett in a race against time to save Providence (and possibly humankind) from the evil warlock Joseph Curwen, who has made a pact with powerful forces of ineffable cosmic hideousness to exert his abhorrent influence across centuries.

From visits to dusty libraries where awaits the hideous Necronomicon, through excursions to nightmarish cemeteries where time-worn bones tell of horrible past events, to sojourns in the old Salem-Village of crumbling gables and clustered gambrel roofs where wizards of yore still prowl, this is a blood-tingling project bound to stimulate the pineal glands of fans of adventure games and supernatural horror alike.

Adventure games are the ideal medium to tell Lovecraft’s stories. If you think about it, his protagonists rarely encounter their horrors — and whenever they do, the consequences are devastating — yet there are countless so-called Lovecraftian games where you must pit your strength against amorphous creatures or the mandatory slimy tentacles. And nothing wrong with that, but we’re looking to do things differently this time: in Charles Dexter Ward there are no weapons, no enemies, no jumping, no running, and no dying. If you believe it’s impossible to make a scary horror game without those features, then we encourage you to ask people who have played Scratches about the infamous boiler scene and why they’re still clamouring for Agustín’s head.

In Charles Dexter Ward we’re going to focus strictly on story and mood. That is what we love about adventure games and Lovecraft, and we have no intention to compromise his powerful, brooding narrative for the sake of cheap scares. It feels like only yesterday that we first read the novel, and even brief passages such as the oneiric sunrises in Prospect Terrace will be forever embedded in our minds. Lovecraft’s skilful pen transported us to a bygone time of witchcraft and unguessed horrors, magically interweaving historical facts and fiction, and we at Senscape are ready to do justice to this classic work.
Spoiler alert: there are no tentacles in this game. None.
Spoiler alert: there are no tentacles in this game. None.

Following repeated readings of the story over the past year, we have absorbed its mood, analysed its structure, and taken copious notes. Every aspect of the novel has been exhaustively researched, and we have the assistance and expertise of S. T. Joshi to ensure we get historical facts straight and bring Lovecraft’s vision to video games as faithfully as possible. We even meticulously considered Lovecraft’s entire output of fiction to understand how Charles Dexter Ward fits into that chronology and how certain aspects of his popular cosmology evolved over time. The game is already fully designed, and we know for a fact that you’re going to love it. The best way to describe it is as the long-lost classic horror game by LucasArts.

It took years to bring this project to you — the realisation of a dream — and today we invite you to be part of it.
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