Each character in the game plays an important role, and none of the people you meet at Hotel Dusk are one-dimensional or boring. From the bellhop to the washed-up writer, each person will reel you in with intricate stories and personalities. Although the plot of Hotel Dusk relies on extreme coincidences to work (all these people with connections to each other staying on the same night?), none of the links between characters seems reaching or forced.
Above: You'll need to do more than merelyfit the pieces together to solve this puzzle
The majority of the gameplay revolves around dialogue, but the story is frequently punctuated with puzzles and time spent exploring the hotel. Most of the puzzles are simple devices to keep the plot moving, like finding an item to use to pick the lock on your complicated suitcase orpeelingthe label off a wine bottle. Some are more involved, making innovative use of the DS, like putting together a child's puzzle or finding an engraving on a ballpoint pen.
Usually these puzzles are fairly obvious, but a few times we found ourselves wandering around the hotel aimlessly, trying to get the story to progress. Still, these exceptions were few and far between, and most of the time the story progressed smoothly and naturally.