Horror fans tend to hold the works of H.P. Lovecraft in high regard, and perhaps that's why they will love The Innsmouth Case, a mobile game by developer Robot Pumpkin Games and Assemble Entertainment. In The Innsmouth Case, players take control of a detective who gets a visit from a mysterious woman looking for her daughter. At first, the town seems charming, but as the detective begins investigating, Innsmouth's dark secrets begin to emerge. Not only does Innsmouth have a high incidence of missing persons, but there are also signs that its citizens are fascinated with pagan deities.

In The Innsmouth Case, players must seek out the missing girl and make decisions to remain alive amongst townspeople who want to use the detective as a sacrifice to the Old Gods. This text adventure offers up multiple choices with each scene: choose wisely, or the detective might end up as food for fish creatures from hell. The story is intriguing, with each setting and character adding to the macabre Lovecraftian tone.

Unlike other games based on Lovecraft’s work, though, The Innsmouth Case doesn't take itself too seriously. There is humor sprinkled throughout that results in quirky characters, funny dialogue, and a few bizarre scenes that aren't easily described without experiencing them. This humor doesn't detract from the tone, though, and adds more to the story's disturbing nature while naturally creating a desire to experience it more. That's good, too, because one particular appeal of The Innsmouth Case is its replayability. There are 20 endings, thanks to the branching narrative, which allows players to explore all areas of Innsmouth, meet all its characters, and make decisions that affect the story's outcome.

Atmospheric music offers the appropriate mood to each scene, from a tinny carnival tune introducing some of the town's colorful characters to more menacing orchestral pieces that foreshadow the evil lurking around every corner. The game's cartoonish art style manages to cross an edgy and dark line, beautifully casting bizarre shapes and shadows over the dismal town of Innsmouth.

Fortunately, players will want to visit this miserable little town often. There are 20 different endings based on the player's choices. Certain decisions will end the game earlier than expected, while others will end in death. This offers players a chance to meet all the town's kooky inhabitants as they make their way toward the grand finale. Don't expect a lot of happy endings, though. The Innsmouth Case is a story based on the Cthulhu mythos, and getting out of a situation alive with some sanity intact is more often the point of these stories.

The Innsmouth Case, though, is not without its faults. Players will need to turn their display devices' screens to stay on because the game does not do so inherently, at least on the Android version. Although this is probably a battery-saving feature, turning the screen back on mid-game often prompts the game to go to the next page, meaning that the player might miss part of the story. Getting each ending also involves a lot of backtracking through dialogue and scenes, with much of it starting to feel repetitive after several playthroughs. It's safe to say The Innsmouth Case moves beyond its source material, however, to create a modern and humorous take on Lovecraft's most famous works, which outweighs the negatives and makes it an enjoyable journey for those inclined to question their own sanity in gaming.

The Innsmouth Case is available now on PC, iOS and Android.