Here it goes:
The story takes place in America that never was, in a XX century different than our own.
Here, history walks hobbled in chains and previous times still linger on.
The goverment is corrupt and deep in the pockets of the rich. The law is merciless and always needs more chained people to split rocks. Technology is almost like today, just a bit different... Internet is very small, computers are primitive and expensive. Goverment approved media bore people trough radio and television, often black and white.
While real morality is scarce, victorian bigotry raises it's head anew in the form of the 'morality league' active in many cities. Fashion and culture seem to follow the hobbled parade. Women in skirts and blouses, military influenced fashion for men. Bleak, rigid and no one is smiling.
And they say that in some small village, a woman was burned for witchcraft. In XX century. And they say there are bandits robbing cars on the highways. And they say than in this world, only evil men prosper.
They even say ghosts exist, but who would believe them?
Cheer up, the world is waiting for you. A weird amalgam of 1920, 1950 and almost today. A backdrop to a story that begins differently for each of you:
(choose any of those characters, only player 1 is mandatory, others are optional)
(player 1) would bless their luck when they received a letter informing them about inheritance. They were looking forward to debtors prison, or at best a life of poverty. Whoever they were, they were not ready for such fate.
The letter that came announced a mysterious death of uncle and aunt, who's will stated that (player 1) is to inherit their mansion. Selling the old house could get the debts payed and there'd still be something left. There's just one condition, the beneficient has to live in the house for two full months and would lose it if they leave.
The uncle and aunt were strange people. There must be a reason why you didn't even knew they existed since today!
(player 2) is (player 1)'s spouse or lover. (despite the moral rigidity of this fictional world, same-sex marriages are completely acceptable. mysterious, huh?) They were worrying for them and now relief came. They look forward to spending the months in the house, perhaps are even excited about something that will be found there? Are they a passionate gardener, amateur astronomer or avid collector of old books?
(player 3) is a close friend of the two and down on their luck even more than they. Being on the run from evil people, they cannot stay long in any place and can't make their identity known. Under assumed identity, they hang on to (player 1) and (player 2) who provide them with shelter. Who is pursuing (player 3)? Bad people. Criminals or law, it doesn't matter. So often those are interchangeable. Or perhaps (player 3) is really guilty of something? One way or another, they might be quite safe in that old, secluded house...
(player 4) is distant family of (player 1) or (player 2). Whoever they are, they were also named in the will. While not desperate, they have much hope for the money they can gain from the house and what's more important, they once heard rumors that the owners had more than just the house... There is something valuable hidden inside, just where?
(player 5) is a decadent one. Artist, gambler or bussinesman down on their luck. Maybe even an adventurer and traveller? Whatever happened, they were left without money and without chances to get anymore. Friends help friends and (player 5) offered to help in searching trough the house, if only because they hate being idle.
Pick any of the histories, fill it out and add or take details as you wish... There doesn't have to be 5 people of course.