Spinning the inevitable !
Devolver Digital has become one of my favorite publishers, displaying great taste with every new title it chooses to release. The Red Strings Club is an indie title from Deconstructeam, known from its previous game, Gods Will Be Watching.
The game takes place in a Cyber Punk themed future where the vast majority of humanity is fully embraced by the use of artificial implants provided by the giant company Supercontinent. We take on the role of Donovan, owner of the famous bar "The Red Strings Club" who has gained the reputation of the most powerful informant in the city by applying his technique of extracting information from his customers, with the help of his famous cocktails.
Through his contacts with a revolutionary group, Donovan learns that Supercontinent intends to install a program to users, without their permission, that is leading them to mass domestication.
The purpose of Donovan and the rest of the team is of course to prevent Supercontinent's plans and for that he will have to use his hidden talent as a bartender (also known as mixologists nowadays).
Continuing the tradition that began with Gods Will Be Watching, Deconstructeam's game looks like an adventure, without being one. The title combines two types of mini games, given more emphasis to dialogues. The mini game that concerns us the most is making cocktails depending on the preferences of each customer and the information we want to get from him. The second, found only in the introduction, is the production of implants, in a way reminiscent of manufacturing a ceramic vessel. At first they both feel a little weird but as soon as you understand them, they end up being quite fun.
The dialogues are the core of the game and is what makes it stand out. The end of the story on the one hand is finite, with the introduction starting with the last moments of the finale and, on the other hand the diverse dialogue tree invites multiple playthroughs on the way to the end. Almost every action you take in the game has an impact and despite its prescribed end, it will make you wish you could change some of the decisions you made.
The Red Strings Club greatest achievement is how it makes it possible to trouble the player himself.
If the wonderful Firewatch carried out a subcutaneous and insidious analysis of our psychosynthesis, then this game deals with the ideas concerning the proper functioning of a society.
Do not be surprised if during your gameplay you'll realize that you are fighting against your own personal beliefs and opinions.
In audiovisuals, the very beautiful pixelated graphics evoke the desire for something more since the game unfolds only on five different screens-locations. The music has a discreet ambience with jazz references that matches the noir style of the title. Voice overs are absent but i enjoyed the text heavy theme of the game.
Lastly, the gameplay is about four hours.
Watch the launch trailer below.
The Red Strings Club is definitely not for everyone. A more interactive story than traditional game, like the repression program we struggle to prevent, invades without asking permission in everyone's worldview judging it, leading to deep thinking.
Tested on : PC
Developer : Deconstructeam
Publisher : Devolver Digital
Distributor : Devolver Digital
Available for : PC, Mac, Linux
Release date : 2018-01-22