999: 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors Review

By Eugene Sax On 17 Jun, 2013 At 11:11 AM | Categorized As Featured, Nintendo, Reviews | With 2 Comments

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9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors (999) is developed by Chunsoft games, and part of the Zero Escape series. With a name like 999, there is so little telling what the game is about, it’s how I was drawn into it’s mystery. It’s another game that I haven’t heard much press on, and I wanted to know what the game was all about. After playing it, I couldn’t wait to jump right back in. Here’s a review of this fantastic tale of 999.


999 is a narrative game mixed with a puzzle game. The game focuses on telling a story as opposed to making confusing controls or extremely detailed graphics. As opposed to other narrative games like Heavy Rain, 999 is closer to a virtual “choose your own adventure” book. Players are cast as the role of Junpei, just the average joe character who gets chosen, along with 8 others, to play the Nonary Game. None of the characters know why they were chosen or where to go, but they know what they have to do: escape. All of the characters have to work together in order to survive, all while figuring out the mystery of their captor, Zero, and the dangerous Nonary Game.

This simple game is mostly story. Players read the story as it goes along, hearing the dialogue and thoughts of each of the characters. There are some choices that players make throughout the story, changing what players see, hear, and explore. In some rooms, players will start the escape mode. This mode forces players to look around, finding clues to escape the room they are trapped in. By putting the clues together, a key will be revealed.

999 gameplay



With such a strong focus on story and character development, there was also no lack of attention to art in the game. The stylized illustration of the characters is a nice contrast to the normally dark and creepy setting that the characters are trapped in. With the first person look on the game (normally in the eyes of Junpei), players get sucked into the game and feel like they’re also trapped with everyone else.


There isn’t much to audio. Minus the occasional music in the background, there isn’t much audio in the game. Characters are not voiced. As text for each character is shown on the screen, the tone behind the text changes depending on which character is talking. Otherwise, audio is mostly for atmosphere and nothing more.


999 other


Final Thoughts:

999 is a fantastic game. There is a wonderful story, very pleasing graphics, and good gameplay to keep the game simple yet fun. There is also a decent replay value to the game, as there are multiple endings. One playthrough is maybe 6-8 hours. Other plays will be less, as the game makes it easier for you to skip through dialogue you have already seen. If you want a good story, look no where else than this game.


Score: 9.5 / 10

Review Score 9.5



Publisher:  Chunsoft Games Developer:  Aksys Games

Release Date:  November 16, 2010

Platforms:  Nintendo DS

Price:  $20 Rating:  ESRB: M

Offline Players:  Single Player

About - Ohio University graduate; Game designer; and avid gamer. Eugene tries to to play as much as he has time for between making games and his work. Whenever he can, he always plays, always looking for the next challenge. You can find him on 360, PS3, or Steam at Azoth_of-Flame, or on twitter @eugene_sax.

  • Mohammed S. Alomran

    Nice post man, to be honest I was kind of surprised to read a fresh
    review for 999 on DS. A game that I did not know about till recently while
    browsing gaming sites about similar DS games to Trace Memory, Hotel Dusk : Room
    215, The Ace Attorney series, and The Professor Layton series.

    So I bought 9 Hours.9 Persons.9 Doors. without reading anything but the
    name of the game and without seeing anything but the cover for its box. With a
    good feeling that I won’t be disappointed.

    The game is good as any puzzle DS
    game can get, the graphics is good, the music is ok, and the absence of voice
    acting was imho much better than a bad voice acting that might ruin the atmosphere.

    With the story is the main focus
    you have no choice but to be “Junbei” and reveal those mysteries by
    escaping from rooms and solving puzzles and with multiple endings you will be
    clearing this game over and over.

    The characters and the story somewhat remind me of Saw movies and the
    movie (Se7en) but in an animemanga sort of view.

    999 is a lost gem indeed , I wish they release another one on a Wii U.
    again , great review man and hope to see more of your reviews soon.

    • Eugene Sax

      Thanks, I appreciate it man. There is another one out, Zero Escape: Virtues Last Reward for the PSVita and the 3DS i believe. It’s out there, go find it! I think it’s probably about the game as most of the new games out there. Maybe less since it’s a little older. Compared to Saw is a good way to look at it. Glad to hear that there is someone out there who still likes these kind of games. I’ll keep trying to put up anything I play. Hopefully you keep coming back! If you read my other reviews, I hope they might help you find more games that would be good for you.