va 11 hall a cyberpunk bartender action review
To make things easier on both myself and on the reader, I am simply going to refer to VA-11 HALL-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action from here on after as Valhalla, as that is the name of the bar within the game.
When I first read the description of Valhalla, I was beyond super excited. It seemed like it was to be something akin to Style Savvy or Diner Dash. (Both are favorites of mine, though I will deny the first vehemently if asked about it in public in order to save my pride.) My excitement increased tenfold when I opened up the game and saw that the opening scene and setting reminded me of Shadowrun. (I’m referring to the one on Sega which might honestly be my all-time favorite game. I keep a copy on every system with the Sega emulator on it, no exceptions.)
The world was overrun by corrupted corporations, there were robots and nearly everyone had Nano devices of some sort. This was sure to be my kind of game.
The game starts off with telling you that your membership to Shining Fingered will automatically renew on the 17th and that you need to be sure to have at least $800 in it. You see your sparse room with a cat in it, a device that lets you save/load and unlock more features in the future, but being one to want to jump right into the gameplay aspect, I immediately click on the go to work option.
Here, it takes you through the tutorial and has you make a few drinks, showing you how to use the navigation to sort and find what drinks you are looking for; simple enough. After this, there is an odd conversation about tuxedo-clad corgis that had apparently been served the week before.
You finally get your first customer, who happens to be the chief editor and owner of the Augmented Eye, which is the device in your room that lets you save/load/etc. Here is honestly about where the game starts to lose me. The dialogue seems to be endless and most of it makes little to no sense. By the time events and people start coming together, the developers have already kind of lost my interest. Most of the game is dialogue and conversations.
The gameplay is basically only you making drinks here and there. Occasionally, you might have to figure out what kind of drink a customer is looking for and that was an interesting twist of events. There just weren’t enough options when actually making the drinks to hold my attention nor enough of actual drink making interspersed amongst the dialogue to make much of a difference.
The concept is definitely there and this has the potential to be a fun game were the right aspects to be involved and put into play. (no pun intended)