"Suspect" is a little different from the previous two
Infocom mysteries. In both "Deadline" and "Witness", you were the
police, gathering evidence, questioning suspects, and making the
arrest. This time around, however, you're on the other side of
the fence: YOU are the suspect, and the police are gathering
evidence against you, for a crime you didn't commit. The game is
thus a race against time, as you desperately attempt to collect
the real evidence before you're arrested.
The adventure is centered on a critical point; until you
realize that point, you really don't know what you're looking
for, and much evidence can be overlooked or spoiled. The critical
point is the fact that Veronica is murdered before the game
begins. That elaborate fairy costume, with its over-the-head
mask, allows someone else to impersonate her, and thus provide an
alibi for the real murderer.
Also, you will notice that this is by far the busiest
Infocom ever; people move around a lot in the game, and you're
almost always running into, or seeing, someone or other. Most of
the time, you don't have to worry about that (I think they just
put that in there to confuse you a little, and make you waste
time following harmless people around).
It is also necessary to collect ever last bit of evidence.
Overlook one thing, and you'll never be able to get a conviction,
no matter how sure you are of who is guilty. So, with all that in
mind, let's get started.
So there you are in the plush Ashcroft manor on Halloween
night, enjoying a costume ball being hosted by Veronica Ashcroft,
and wondering what sort of story you can work up for your
newspaper. As the game begins, you're invited to join Michael,
dressed as a sheik, and a small group of people.
You might as well go over there, and marvel at the
performance given by the woman in the fairy costume, supposedly,
but not really, Veronica. Having made sure she creates a fuss by
spilling a drink on herself, she promptly leaves. Don't bother
following her, you have better things to do. Go East to the bar,
then North to the French Doors.
Unlock the doors, then open them and go East. Wow, it sure
is pouring out there, isn't it? This is one of the crucial points
of evidence in the game; you must note the rainfall now, and
again in a little while. In the meantime, you can drop your
costume receipt, pen, and notebook here; they are merely excess
baggage, and you won't need them for anything.
Ok, now it's time to head for the front door, to let in a
late arrival who is on her way. Go West to re-enter the Ballroom,
South to the Bar, then straight West until you reach the Long
Hall South. Go South from there to where the Long Hall Begins,
and West again until you come to the Front Hall.
Now it's South to the Entry Hall. Anytime now, the front
doorbell will ring. When that happens, unlock the front door and
open it. Alicia will come sashaying in. After she does that, step
outside South, and observe the rain. Hmmmmm, looks like it's let
up a little, only a drizzle is falling now.
Having gained your first piece of evidence, you now go get
some more, by heading to the office, where Veronica sits,
strangled with your cowboy lariat. Go North to the Front Hall,
West to the Hallway Intersection, South to the Corner, West, and
And here you are in a very messy office. Whoever did this
sure did a good job! But there's no time to worry about the
papers and other items strewn about. First, get the manila folder
from the desk and the fairy mask from the floor. Look in the
waste basket and get the business card. Finally, unpleasant
though it may be, search the body.
Aha! A silver bullet. In fact, it's a bullet from your
gunbelt, thoughtfully placed on the scene as additional evidence
against you. Take the bullet and put it back in your belt. Under
no circumstances remove the rope; if you do that, you will never
get a conviction against the real killer.
Since there is some time yet before the murder is discovered
and the police arrive, you can go pick up another vital piece of
evidence, in the kitchen. Make your way back to Long Hall South,
then straight North to the Dining Room and from there East into
Here is a trash basket with the remains of the broken glass
that "Veronica" dropped. Careful now; don't get the glass (or
you'll spoil the fingerprints on it!), get the whole basket (you
may feel a bit odd running around with the trash basket, but it's
necessary!). Now it's time to play hide and seek.
So, trash basket in hand, you now make your way to the
garage. Go North at the Hallway Intersection (you should know how
to get there by now!), until you come to the door to the walkway.
The door is locked, but fortunately, being on the inside, you can
unlock it, and open the door. Go North onto the walkway, then
West to the garage.
The first thing you notice is a tool chest. Open that, and
get the crowbar. Now you can take a moment to admire the BMW and
the Mercedes, but don't take too long. Someone will be coming
soon. So, hide behind the Mercedes and wait. In fact, you can
wait for Michael.
The reason you are waiting is that, while you've been busily
collecting evidence, a carefully-faked argument has taken place
in the Ballroom. This will lead to the discovery of the body by
Michael, Colonel Marston, and Cochrane. And as soon as Michael
leaves the office, he will head straight for the garage (if
you've played this part before, you may have been suspicious of
his doing something so odd, but following him won't help you to
find out what he's up to).
And yes, here he comes. From your vantage point, you can see
him open the trunk of the BMW, although what he's doing there
isn't clear...yet! Keep waiting until he leaves (by that time,
the police will have arrived), then open the BMW trunk with the
crowbar. Well, look at that, there's a Trust Folder in the trunk!
Drop the crowbar and get the folder. The next part is
crucial, and you have very little time to spare. You must get
back to the Fireplace in the Ballroom as soon as you can. You
have to be there when Marston arrives, or you'll lose an
important piece of evidence.
While you've been breaking into the car trunk, Michael and
Marston have been meeting briefly in the library, where Michael
hands over a piece of paper to Marston. You could hide in the
library, and watch the transaction (instead of first going to the
garage and hiding there), but still you have to go the garage
later anyway. Either way, you must get to the Fireplace quickly.
So high-tail it directly back to the Ballroom. Don't take
any time to do sight-seeing. Once at the Fireplace, just wait.
You won't have to wait very long. Marston will come in, and try
to burn something in the Fireplace. Grab the paper before it's
reduced to ashes. Whew! That was a close one.
At this point, you have two ways to go. You can try spooking
the guilty parties, or you can just go about giving your evidence
to the detective, and let it go at that. If you want to try
shaking up Michael and Alicia (you probably guessed that by now),
you need to show your evidence to them. Show everything that
concerns Michael to Michael, and everything that concerns Alicia
to Alicia (don't forget the analysis reports later on). This is
tricky, since you must also give the detective some of your
evidence, before he decides to arrest you, so watch your timing
if you want to go about doing this (I won't tell you what
happens; try it and see for yourself).
Speaking of the detective, it's time to go find him and
begin presenting some of the items you've been collecting. He's
usually in the vicinity of the office, checking out the various
rooms, after which he heads to the Ballroom and stays there. You
don't want to wait for that, since he'll probably arrest you for
the crime. It's better to go after him, and give him a few other
things to think about.
Once you've located the detective, and he stays in one place
long enough, you can begin to hand over some of your little
treasures. First, have him get the glass analyzed for
fingerprints (and now, at last, you can drop the trash basket!).
While Duffy is on his way to the lab, give the detective the
two folders and the paper. Hey, that sure got him interested,
didn't it? However, hang on to the mask and the card, because
it's not yet time for those (by the way, have you looked inside
the mask yet? You'll need to get that hair analyzed too, and
Duffy isn't here to do that).
You still need some more evidence to wrap up the case, so
head back once more to the Ballroom. Along the way, stop off in
the East Coat Closet, and pick up the wet overcoat. A quick
glance at the label tells you that it belongs to Alicia. Hmmmm,
suspicious that it's so soaked, and it was only drizzling when
When you get to the Ballroom, locate Cochrane (dressed as an
astronaut). You'll most likely find him at the Bar. Show him the
card, and he will give you some important (verbal) evidence. Now
go back to the Fireplace, and hang out until the detective
When he does get there, show him the coat. He doesn't seem
too impressed, so tell him about the rain (NOTE: There is a
variance among the different computer versions. Save the game
first, and then try: TELL DETECTIVE ABOUT RAIN. If that doesn't
work, restore and try: TELL DETECTIVE ABOUT WEATHER. One or the
other of these should do the trick).
Somewhere along the line, the detective will get the
fingerprint analysis and show it to you (actually, he gives it to
you). You aren't surprised to find that it's not Veronica's
prints on the glass. Now, have the dark hair analyzed (did you
ever look at Veronica's hair? She is (or was) a blonde).
While you wait for the hair analysis, give the business card
to the detective (you don't have to tell him about Cochrane).
Then just wait again until the hair analysis comes back. All
right, this is the big moment! Tell the detective to arrest
Michael and Alicia.
TA-DA! Your evidence makes an air-tight case, and both
Michael and Alicia will be in prison for a long, long time! For a
journalist, you're a pretty good detective (of course, there was
a small incentive involved!).
The Spoiler Centre