Deja Vu: A Nightmare Comes True!!

aka: Deja Vu, Deja Vu: A Nightmare Comes True, Deja Vu: A Nightmare Comes True!, Deja Vu: Akumu wa Hontō ni Yattekita, Déjà Vu
Macintosh Specs [ all ]
(prices updated 9/27 2:09 AM )

Description official descriptions

Déjà Vu: A Nightmare Comes True!! is the first game made by ICOM, known for its adventure games such as Shadowgate and Uninvited. It featured mouse support, a multi-window interface, and bitmapped graphics at a time when text-based interactive fiction was the norm.

In Deja Vu, action takes place in Chicago in December 1941. Your character's name is Theodore "Ace" Harding - a retired boxer working as a private eye. He wakes up in a toilet stall of a sleazy pub with no memory of who he is or what he is doing there. To make matters worse, you as him soon stumble upon a very dead corpse upstairs with three bullets buried in him. Sure enough, you find there's a gun in your pocket with three bullets missing. From there you have to figure out what happened and who you are before whatever is happening to your brain turns you into a mindless vegetable. To make matters worse the cops would very much like to have a word with you about that stiff.


  • ディジャブ A Nightmare Comes True!! - Japanese spelling

Groups +


Credits (Macintosh version)

9 People



Average score: 78% (based on 29 ratings)


Average score: 3.7 out of 5 (based on 60 ratings with 2 reviews)

Early point/click adventure(the first?), adult themes

The Good
Well the game is set in 1941, Chicago and it has the feel of an old, gangster/detective film. It's a very early point and click adventure, but is different from others in it's allowing you to drag, drop, resize, open and close. It has a very dark, serious, adult feel to it, you're in a dirty city full of crooked, untrustworthy characters, Ace Harding himself appearing to have a skeleton or two in his closet.

The graphics are nice, like pencil sketches in this original, black/white version.

The Bad
I found it very easy to die, you begin by having to counteract the effects of a drug before it's too late. Also there's a mugger on the street that can pop up at any time, wasting valuable time(or killing you). There are a lot of locked doors. Basically I found there was too much to do in too short a time.

I also thought the sleazy atmosphere of the game was a bit too much. I like that Ace Harding isn't supposed to be some sort of saint in a city of sin, but I wish the game had some momentary relief from all the sleaze and crookedness.

The Bottom Line
Well if you want to trace the roots of point and click adventures then this is surely an essential game, but it's not the most pleasant game. I wouldn't recommending trying too hard to finish it, at least not without a walk-through.

Macintosh · by Andrew Fisher (695) · 2018

Film Noir, 8-bit style

The Good
In the 1980s, graphic adventure games were quite popular in the land of personal computers. Alas, they were much rarer in the land of home consoles. It was a treat to be able to play this type of game on the NES. This was especially the case when a popular, well designed, adventure game made the jump from disk to cartridge.

The game shows off the hardware capabilities of the NES in terms of graphics. Little was lost or censored in the transition. The story, puzzles and classic 1940s setting are all present in the NES edition.

The Bad
If you played the game on the computer, you will notice a few changes, which may have been ordered by the Big 'N before the game could be released. It is not a huge problem, but it is does remind the player how different the industry was when this game was published. Think of it as a ,slightly, tamer film noir adventure and not the sort of dark, gritty and adult world of more recent titles.

Most of the game's music and sound effects do their job, but don't break any new ground. You generally did not play these games to be blown away by the audio or visual style. You may lose interest in the music after awhile and well, the sound of a gunshot or a fist, was never easy to recreate on the NES.

It is the story that draws you into the game and pushes you to want to explore more of this world. It is the writing that makes you feel as if you gone back in time to the days of 1940s Hollywood detectives and pulp crime novels.

The Bottom Line
The transition from disk to cartridge has not made the game any less fun to play. The game manages to recreate an impressive storyline, complete with colorful characters, locations and puzzles. If you enjoy graphic adventure games and old fashion detective films, then this game will be a 8-bit video treat from start to finish.

NES · by ETJB (431) · 2014


Subject By Date
Major Spoiler? Edwin Drost (7020) Nov 27th, 2020
Merge with other versions? Игги Друге (46154) May 27th, 2014


1001 Video Games

Déjà Vu appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.

Amiga release

On startup, the Amiga version says "Déjà Vu Nov 19,1986", but it is doubtful that the game was released before the end of the year.

Version differences

This game was ported to a variety of systems from its original Macintosh platform, including the Nintendo NES console system. The Mac version featured significantly crispier graphics in black and white and its operating environment set the tone for the game's multi-window interface, while the NES version was subjected to several major changes (the syringe was replaced with digestible capsules, and some of the text was altered as well to save space or edit content).

The Windows 3.x version features enhanced graphics as well a more organized windows system (such as the ability to automatically organize the inventory).

Related Games

It Comes from Hell
Released 2019 on Windows
...A Personal Nightmare
Released 1989 on DOS, Amiga, Windows...
Endless Nightmare: Escape
Released 2020 on iPhone, 2020 on iPad, 2022 on Windows
True Fear: Forsaken Souls - Part 1
Released 2016 on Windows, 2018 on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch...
The Sacred Tears: True
Released 2006 on Windows, 2020 on iPad, iPhone
Released 1985 on ZX Spectrum, Atari 8-bit, Commodore 64
Nightmare Park
Released 1981 on ZX81, 1982 on ZX Spectrum
Voodoo Nightmare
Released 1990 on Amiga, Atari ST
Released 1982 on Atari 2600, 1983 on Atari 5200, 1984 on Atari 8-bit...

Related Sites +

  • Ace Harding
    Site promoting the new Gameboy versions of Deja Vu I & II. Hints may help and the art is great.
  • Déjà Vu Review
    NES Video review on the Retroware TV website.
  • Howard & Nester do Deja Vu
    A regular feature in Nintendo Power magazine, Howard & Nester was a comic strip about two game whizzes who would one-up each other, while disclosing hints and tips, in the settings of various recently-released games for the NES platform. In Volume 23's two-page installment, Nester takes on the role of the film noir amnesiac investigator, contending with a photograph of a fat lady, sewer alligators and a car bomb outside of Joe's Bar -- elements all lifted right out of the game.
  • Schnittbericht
    A detailed list of cuts in the NES version (German).

Identifiers +


Are you familiar with this game? Help document and preserve this entry in video game history!

Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Alan Chan.

Commodore 64 added by Quapil. Apple IIgs added by Martin Smith. Macintosh added by Pseudo_Intellectual. Atari ST, Amiga, PC-98 added by Terok Nor. NES added by Unicorn Lynx.

Additional contributors: MAT, KnockStump, Unicorn Lynx, Freeman, Pseudo_Intellectual, Игги Друге, formercontrib, Patrick Bregger, Magus_X, FatherJack, Vito Giovannelli.

Game added March 17th, 2000. Last modified August 30th, 2023.