VirtuaVerse is a retro throwback to many things. The game is a point and click adventure game, reminiscent of old favorites like Space Quest and Beneath the Steel Sky.
The game follows hoodie-wearing protagonist, Nathan, as he smuggles hardware Between the existence of Cloudpunk and Cyberpunk 2077, fans are in for a tech-dystopian treat.
The story of VV follows a population that is tethered to a neural network. Society has an rabid fascination with hooking up, with an online reality that optimizes “user experience by processing personal data.”
In this “not so far future,” a super-intelligence is lord all over every AI and it is migrating everyone online. Nathan works as a modded hardware and software smuggler, disconnected from the entire world.
Nathan one day discovers that his girlfriend and live-in partner, Jay, is missing. All that he has is an empty apartment and a broken VR headset. From here, he needs to go on an adventure, wading through hackers, cryptoshamans, and digital archaeology.
VirtuaVerse is grimdark, even with all the purple neon lights that burn through the night. Developer Theta Division and music label-turned-game publisher Blood Music has their fingerprints all over.
VV runs away with many tropes fans of the genre know. It’s a grim and gritty world with visuals so beautiful you can feel the rain and muck on your skin.
The game does not limit itself within the confines of the dystopian urban jungle. VV goes to different landscapes, adventuring everywhere from snowy mountain ranges to a lush cyberpolis.
The entire premise of the game is like Matrix meeting Minority Report. The pervasiveness of futuristic advertising rings reeks with every corner. Hardware graveyards exist, and monstrous robots juxtapose with a green backdrop.
The cyberpunk aesthetic of the game is palpable, with deep story immersion as its strong point. The world is glum and wretched, with pixel art pushing towards picturesque. It helps that the cyberpunk gibberish is not off the mark with what tech society has now.
Theta Division announced the game March last year, promising an adventure that lets people fight the system once again. Point and click adventures have always excelled in the cyberpunk genre too.
Beneath the Steel Sky was one of the hallmark games of the genre in 1994. Adventure of Monkey Island, though far from cyberpunk, was among the most popular point and click adventures of yesteryears.
Images courtesy of Theta Division/ Official Steam Listing
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