There’s a game: add the words, ‘And then the murders began …’ to a famous line from a book. This could be the novel of the game.
NASA wants to send astronauts to Mars, but they want a functioning base waiting for them, so they hire this job out to private enterprise. Private enterprise works out that it’s just too complex for robots to do remotely … but not for people, and they just happen to own a private prison company with a lot of lifers in its care. So they seek out seven such lifers, all with the kind of skills that might be needed for constructing a base, and make them the offer: stay in maximum security until you die, or go to Mars until you die where at least you’ll have a bit more variety and freedom. The convicts will build the base and support the NASA astronauts when they arrive. So far so unethical. So the seven, plus one supervisor, are sent off to Mars; they start work …; and then the murders begin, which at first aren’t obviously murders, until it becomes obvious that they are. Part of the fun is that there seems to be no logical reason at all why any murders should be happening at all. Then, when it is clear what is happening, they still can’t work out who’s doing it because the ‘why?’ is so conspicuously absent. This is my favourite other type of sf, after space opera – traditional rivet-counting, but with proper and well drawn characters. The POV is a fifty-plus former construction worker, who engages sympathy with his motivation and the reasons for which he was sentenced to life in the first place. I’m part way into the sequel, No Way, which is showing signs of being just as good.