Frogwares Returns to Sherlock Holmes With a Prequel Focused on His Early Days as a Consulting Detective

Developer Frogwares is bringing the mystery in another Sherlock Holmes adventure, this time a prequel that focuses on the early days of a younger Holmes as a consulting detective. Sherlock Holmes: Chapter One is scheduled for release sometime in 2021 and will be a cross-gen game, coming to both current and next-gen consoles, as well as various PC storefronts. Watch the exclusive Sherlock Holmes: Chapter One reveal trailer below.

Sherlock Holmes: Chapter One begins with the death of Sherlock’s mother, Violet Holmes. Upon returning to his hometown on a small Mediterranean island, the fledgling detective begins to unravel a conspiracy bubbling amongst the quiet residents of the town. Frogwares calls it a “new interpretation of the iconic character.”

Fans are already pointing out mysteries within the trailer itself, including the second unknown character who doesn’t seem to actually exist. There’s a lot of speculation about whether this character is supposed to represent Sherlock’s father, brother, Watson, or some other as-yet-unknown figure. Multiple shots in the trailer reframe the narrative to show that this character may only be visible to Sherlock himself, including hints in the very end title reveal as the character “flickers” in and out of view. Whether he’s a ghost or a manifestation of Sherlock’s mind, Frogwares isn’t saying just yet.

Sherlock’s mother’s home also has some curiosities, like the S/J carving in the banister. The only obvious names here would be Sherlock and John (Watson), but being an earlier interpretation of Holmes, there’s some question on if he’s even met his assistant yet in this story. The home also ages rapidly in a very supernatural manner, hinting at perhaps some additional depth and mystery than simply an origin story for mister Holmes.

This is one of the first games announced since Frogwares said it would start self-publishing its games. The developer has been working hard to get the Sherlock Holmes games resubmitted to various storefronts after licensing issues with previous publishers made some versions of the past games unavailable.

Sherlock Holmes: Chapter One releases in 2021 for PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and PC on various storefronts.