This MBR Album is everything from the Golden era of point and click story adventure games from the Lucasfilm classics, to the Sierra legends, infused with more Cyberpunk Gibson hacking action than even Technobabylon or the legendary Blade Runner story adventure game itself, and that was a hell of a game! This Cyberpunk retro-futurism inspired adventure is also a non-stop ride of nostalgia, inside jokes nerdy trivia, and even MODE 7 GRAPHICS! Remember that hype train?
There’s a level of CRAFTING that’s tangible with this game, which makes it stand out with the greats like Monkey Island or Space Quest. First off the graphics got me, where had I seen this art style before? Holy ♥♥♥♥ Valenberg painted this game. So going in I already knew the scene leader MASTER BOOT RECORD did the music for this, but now I’m also seeing Valenberg at the helm of design. Wow. That leads me to the music. I knew MBR’s sound, so I expected more of that, right? What I didn’t expect was a level of sound design that showcases the painstaking work that went in for what, four years of development? The music grows with your playthrough, it is crafted to enhance the mood and what’s going on in-game, and at no point does it feel like a standard soundtrack just looping in the background. I even noticed audio cues when walking around the various locations in the game, which clearly showed they cared to make things perfect.
Which leads me to the journey, from all the advertising, and certainly the cyberpunk genre itself, I expected more of the same: neon rain and tech. Yeah, there’s definitely a lot of that, which as a fan of the genre, I absolutely love – however at the core of a point and click adventure game is the ADVENTURE: we follow our hero to all sorts of exciting places. It felt like we only stay in the locations long enough to get to know them, but not long enough. If there’s a sequel, it would be great to revisit some of these places.
The gameplay is a complete point and click story adventure masterclass that I’m sure even Ron Gilbert would enjoy. It definitely makes you pay attention to solve logic puzzles, in a way that games often don’t nowadays in the era of twitchspeed plays and constant fps k/drs, etc. The way it’s been created really made me want to play through it to see what the authors put into it and why. Also, it’s a really good example of the devil’s in the details. Whenever I got stuck, eventually it would be the answer that’s so obvious you slap yourself on the forehead, or occasionally so silly you’ll find yourself laughing about it later. The dialogue and writing is fun, hilarious at times – gripping at others, and most importantlt inherently human in a story about what it means to be human. There’s a sense of seeking community amongst the outcasts, strength in unity. There’s a lot of really strong messages in the game, that made it really fun to keep traveling along on this crazy journey.
I am looking forward to more from Theta Division for sure. If this indie crew could pull off something so big in scale, scope, synergy, imagine what they could make next. Bigger and better. Git Gud. I guess I’m really feeling like shilling this game because it made me care about it, a lot. The story stood out as something new and different, whilst also being familiar. The characters, even the fandoms, all had so much to them, and all felt like I could run into them on any night out. And with that rolling MBR soundtrack, the game in itself is a party, especially considering how locked in most of us are right now. What a perfect time for this game.
It’s been hard not to spoil in this review. There are so many things I wanna talk about. I can’t wait to read how others enjoy things.
Anyhow, best album I’ve played in a long time. Plus there’s a Wilhelm scream in there if you pay attention! With a bike so 7331 that it would make KANEDA jealous, the only thing that’s missing are more tentacles! Here’s hoping they do more with this fantastic world.
Art by industry leader VALENBERG means that the art is always a detail oriented blast, especially if you’re familiar with his style.
Music by the BandCamp chart slaying MASTER BOOT RECORD makes it a constant audio adventure that really keeps the pace going.
IT’S A CYBERPUNK GAME. Need I say more, that’s ultimately my favourite part, and it really hits all the tropes~
It’s not too short but not too long. I would have liked maybe an hour more, but I think it’s a great length,
It’s both original and funny. At no point was I like “Oh this again, I’ve seen this in a million games”. It was always new and original.
I didn’t really feel like this came from a three person dev team, except for a few glitches early on that were handled like ninjas.
It’s not easy mode, which is perhaps a PRO, it was for me. Really though, you have to focus to get through this game, as much as it rewards you for winning, it punishes you for not moving along, but keeping your progress in place.
While most of the puzzles are logic to the point where it’s hard, but you slap your forehead with how stupid you were after; there’s a few that are very wtf. Like, the sushi puzzle early in the game was harder for me than some of the complicated endgame stuff. Even then though, it makes perfect sense.
I would have liked more hidden achievements. I got them all, even the two rare ones, just by playing through.
The main story resolves perfectly, but there were a lot of friends along the way, who just disappear. I with there was more elaboration in that realm.