Generally favorable reviews - based on 57 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 57
  2. Negative: 1 out of 57
Buy On
  1. Though the hotel is seedy Hotel Dusk Room 215 is one place you won’t want to check out of any time soon.
  2. A class act. It may not be a cake walk the first time through, but for those who can deal with the occasional head scratching bouts of frustration, this game is another winning addition to the Nintendo DS library.
  3. 90
    If you're a sucker for a great story and don't mind a slow paced, puzzle filled adventure, Hotel Dusk has a room for you, so come on down, check in and get yourself involved in the mystery of room 215!
  4. The art style is flat-out amazing. The sepia tones and hand-drawn characters perfectly complement the game's mood and 1970's setting. The film noir themes that occur throughout the game are perfect, never over-the-top or cheesy.
  5. Like a good book, Hotel Dusk is a satisfying experience that you'll likely find yourself returning to beyond its initial fifteen hours. If it can be classified as a game, Hotel Dusk is one of the best on the DS.
  6. AceGamez
    Hotel Dusk: Room 215 is, all around, a stroke of genius. The dialogue is great, the storyline will pull you in and grab hold, the graphical presentation is simply phenomenal and the puzzles are a joy to solve, if a little easy and linear.
  7. Play Magazine
    Fun, uniquely designed and has an absorbing mystery to solve. [Mar 2007, p.70]
  8. Hotel Dusk: Room 215 is not just a fun play, it's a good read. It's a classic PC-styled adventure with an emphasis on story and realized in a great way on DS hardware.
  9. Hotel Dusk is one of those games that should be used as Exhibit A in the discussion of games legitimacy as a storytelling medium, or even as art. A brilliant art and graphical style, innovative use of the DS’s features, and one of the best noir stories to be told recently in any medium add up to a must-play.
  10. Enough challenge and a well executed story to keep hardcore gamers interested, but interesting, unique and intuitive enough to draw in the Brain Age crowd as well.
  11. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    With a cast of well-written characters, branching conservations, and a cool interface, this is the adventure the DS has been dying for. [Feb. 2007, p.97]
  12. If you find that you're the kind of person that is willing to sacrifice a lot of gameplay for a compelling and engaging storyline, then you will absolutely love Hotel Dusk.
  13. If you enjoy mystery novels you'll find yourself immersed in this game in no time. You will be required to read a lot, but if you're patient enough and love reading as much as playing a game, this could become one of your richest and most interesting gaming experiences.
  14. 86
    The story was engrossing, getting me engaged from start to finish, and the 2D styles on the characters and environments gave the game some charm.
  15. Beware; even though Hotel Dusk has an intriguing story, great atmosphere and an interesting look, you have to like to read. Word heavy, Hotel Dusk won't appeal to gamers who need action and constant stimulation.
  16. 85
    If you’re not a fan of adventure games like Phoenix Wright, Maniac Mansion or Sam & Max this game won’t change your opinion on the genre. But if you’re like me and like to play one every now and then, this should be the next title you should pick up when the adventure genre bug bites.
  17. This game is unlike anything you'll have ever played before. From the sharp dialogue to the memorable graphics, this is a refreshing challenge for the weary adventure genre.
  18. Nintendo Gamer
    Engrossing tale told by master storytellers, with all the Noir-ish thrills of "The Big Sleep." Unless you're a hardcore action junkie, import now. [Apr 2007, p.62]
  19. In the end, I wish there would have been more items to find and more puzzles to solve, but the story is very detailed and uncovering the mysteries behind the different characters is very enjoyable.
  20. Hotel Dusk weaves an absorbing noir-style mystery with traditional adventure game elements and stylish presentation and does it all with a deft touch.
  21. Its design and gameplay are from the stone age, yet the story, writing, and characters are so interesting that it beckons you to keep playing, hoping to see what's around the next corner.
  22. Nintendo Power
    Impatient gamers looking for a little more action may want to look elsewhere, but they'll do so at the risk of missing our on yet another groundbreaking DS title. [Mar. 2007, p.88]
  23. 80
    Hotel Dusk is in a class of its own, with a vastly more interesting story and setting than its predecessor. It's stylish, intriguing, and unique -- definitely worth tracking down.
  24. The beautifully sketched graphics give Room 215 a unique style. Although the game grows tedious, thanks to what seems like endless, scrolling text, surprises pop up every few minutes that further the plot. Definitely play this game.
  25. If you’re looking for something new and fresh, Hotel Dusk fits the bill and then some. It has superb graphics featuring hand-drawn characters, a great storyline and very interesting characters that constantly had me wanting to find the next conversation to see what would happen next.
  26. If you like interactive adventure games, noir murder mysteries, and the unique capabilities of the DS then this is a no-brainer purchase.
  27. 80
    Though it is slow and subtle, it works out in the end, providing a great story that holds its own against the vast majority of current games. Now all you have to do is manage to find a copy.
  28. There's a lot more dialogue than some adventure players may be used to, but the characters have wonderfully distinct personalities. (Who doesn't love an old woman with an eyepatch drinking at the bar?)
  29. Although you will have to read a lot of text, the story pulls you in and the plot has its fair share of twists and turns.
  30. A great adventure with an interesting story that will keep you wondering throughout just what will happen next. If adventure games are your style, you won’t be disappointed with this one.
  31. It is a fantastic yarn beginning to end, with a satisfactory noir ending that leaves just enough unresolved stuff to allow a possible sequel.
  32. If you’re the kind of person who ranks plot as one of the most important features in a game, Hotel Dusk is worth the 15 hours it takes to beat, and another few hours to watch the story over again (and possibly unlock one of the multiple endings). However, if you’re looking for a game to bend you brain over with difficult puzzles and a thrilling exploration experience, you’d be better off with "Shadowgate."
  33. Games Master UK
    It's packed with style, intrigue and originality - super sleuths will love it. [Apr 2007, p.84]
  34. 80
    The game itself is compulsive and addictive until the point at which it sadly has to conclude.
  35. A stylish, noir-inspired adventure with a sophisticated plot and deep characters, Hotel Dusk is the place to stay for smart DS gamers.
  36. Some would say the puzzles are a touch easy at times, though there certainly are some corkers. If you are looking for action then try elsewhere, but if you fancy the old-fashioned pleasures of a great point 'n' click, then snap this up now, and enjoy one of the sharpest, coolest worlds seen in gaming for a long time.
  37. With rich characters brimming to the top with personality, an intriguing if highly coincidental plot, and tons of interesting uses of the DS, Hotel Dusk engages the mind and heart and takes players to an unexplored sector of the gaming universe and keeps them there for a long time.
  38. 79
    It's meant to be an interactive novel, but even so sometimes it's hard not to wish the characters would get to the point just so you can get to the next puzzle. Still, it's a significant improvement over the team's previous effort, and it's a nice revitalization of the point-and-click adventure genre on the Nintendo DS.
  39. Official Nintendo Magazine UK
    A decent grown-up game for the DS with some neat ideas and a great plot, but the slow pace may frustrate people looking for a little more hard-boiled excitement. [Apr 2007, p.80]
  40. 75
    Hotel Dusk probably won't appeal to every DS gamer, as it requires a degree of patience and thoughtfulness that only the aged (and insane) are capable of. But anyone looking for a cerebral and deliberate challenge should definitely check out this cool and unique title; just be patient with it.
  41. The storyline and characters are compelling in a way that many recent video games lack. Likewise, the puzzles, while on the easy side, were generally well crafted and require the player to use brains over brawn.
  42. This game has a hotel full of strangers with secrets, which might just be enough to get you to stick around to hear them all. But perhaps you’ll want to skip the ambiance and go somewhere with fresher towels.
  43. games(TM)
    There’s a certain atmosphere to the hotel itself, augmented by the three-dimensional exploration and sketch-realistic characters, which creates a sense of actually existing in this mysterious building full of secrets to discover. [Mar 2007, p.118]
  44. Perhaps one of the most unique, stylish and absorbing games for the DS, and remains one of the best adventure titles for the system. Whether this says a lot about the game or rather the dearth of alternative adventure games is another matter; but given a chance Hotel Dusk will almost certainly keep you hooked to the end.
  45. The game is entertaining, and a worthwhile purchase for any DS owner who enjoys a lot of story in their games and doesn't mind the occasional lame puzzle.
  46. It's a game that really understands people, and their complex motivations. And yet so often forgets the motivations of the people playing an adventure game. It's a game that knows how to use the DS to great effect, and how the stylus can be so casually and effectively. But its ‘minigames' are perfunctory and underdeveloped.
  47. 70
    Hotel Dusk hangs somewhere between a game and an interactive story. While we would have liked to see a little more interactivity thrown into the mix, its storytelling elements are nevertheless fantastic.
  48. Unfortunately, the overall experience is bogged down with too much dialogue despite its novel influences, and an unfulfilled demand for something to actually play.
  49. Characters, styling, story, modelling, puzzles, conversations, setting - all fantastic, but infuriating let down by design and play constraints.
  50. Hotel Dusk: Room 215 is a hell of a tale, even if by day it masquerades as a mediocre adventure game. If you have a strong memory and a high threshold for aimless exploration, this is a case worth solving.
  51. 60
    They story is good enough to be in a book and if it weren't for the long-winded dialog, I would rate this game higher. I think if people treat Hotel Dusk more as an interactive novel than an actual game, they'll be less likely to be disappointed.
  52. Edge Magazine
    The plot proves strong enough to keep even the most disappointed player clicking through the dialogue trees, and in the final chapters the endless conversations finally give way to something more engaging. [Mar 2007, p.80]
  53. Having to wait until the game lets you solve a riddle even though you have grasped the solution long ago is particularly galling. Players too often feel like passengers on a scripted ride, rather than individual auteurs directing their own unique experience.
  54. netjak
    In the end, it's nothing but some nice 2D art strapped onto a mostly non-engaging story and a halfhearted attempt at a game. The gimmick to gameplay ratio is almost off the charts for this one.
  55. It starts out well enough, with great graphic stylings and some cool gameplay features, but turns into a gimmicky stylus-tapping festival of boredom within an hour.
  56. Some of the conversations offer multiple paths, but there seem to be as many dead ends as interesting choices. And if you get tired of the dialogue, there's no way to speed-read through it...Save your time and money for some real L.A. crime novels.

Awards & Rankings

#3 Most Discussed DS Game of 2007
#5 Most Shared DS Game of 2007
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 108 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 35
  2. Negative: 3 out of 35
  1. AnonymousMC
    Oct 3, 2009
    This game has truly captured what Nintendo DS is all about. Using the touch screen, the console itself and microphone, the game takes you onThis game has truly captured what Nintendo DS is all about. Using the touch screen, the console itself and microphone, the game takes you on an amazing mystery which you can lose yourself in. Do not underestimate Cing. This game should definitely be in the Top 5 and should be apart of everyone's collection. Full Review »
  2. Jan 23, 2012
    One should regard this game as an interactive book rather than an adventure game. The story is very interesting and you will always want toOne should regard this game as an interactive book rather than an adventure game. The story is very interesting and you will always want to hear more to finally unravel the mystery. All the characters are interesting and look like they're hiding something and I frequently found myself looking for someone to speak with just for the pleasure to exchange a couple of words with them. There is A LOT to read in this game, so if you enjoy reading you will definitely find food for your eyes (not by coincidence the console is to be held like a book when playing). On the other hand, puzzles are extremely simple and in fact there is very little "game" and pretty much story instead. Unfortunately, the game creators chose to insert dialogue-tree puzzles, in that you have to choose the correct sequence of answers when speaking with someone or is a sudden game over. This can get frustrating soon and what's worse is that you cannot skip the dialogues and cannot save the game whenever you need it. Game over is a matter of luck for the most part. Having said that, the game remains a very nice mystery story and provides solid hours of reading enjoyment. Full Review »
  3. Aug 16, 2017
    This game was a trully masterpiece. Ost, History, Characters, Art Style, and a deep and memorable Plot. Best game on the DS and one of theThis game was a trully masterpiece. Ost, History, Characters, Art Style, and a deep and memorable Plot. Best game on the DS and one of the best game ever made. Full Review »