Xbox version tested
Review code provided
When the first trailer for Afterparty dropped way back in early 2018 the premise instantly intrigued me. You control Lola and Milo as they find themselves in hell, having died, and naturally being a bit disorientated. They find out that that they can potentially get back to the land of the living but it means out-drinking Satan, as it turns out he’s a big fan of partying.
The first thing to discuss is the voice acting, I don’t recognise a lot of the cast however I’ve done some research and they’re largely veteran voice actors and have worked on games before. Games like Life is Strange and various Telltale games so at the very least you know you’ve got people onboard that know what they’re doing. I have to say the voice acting is very good which is always good for a dialogue-heavy game.
The dialogue mechanic is pretty simplistic, you usually have two options when conversing which are selected with a button prompt. You can get an extra option by having a drink before answering, with the drinks to can obtain from the various bars giving you different options, for example there’s a drink that gives you an option to talk like a pirate or one that lets you respond like a mobster, it’s a lot of fun.
The voice acting is naturally helped by what is a really good script, the dialogue is very funny and does a good job of coming across as perfectly natural, which is impressive given the setting isn’t exactly an everyday location. Even the background conversations are a lot of fun and I’ve found myself listening to as many as I can just to see what’s going to be said.
The only issue I have from a voice acting standpoint is that sometimes conversations will segue into a different conversation while you’re in the middle of the first conversation, thankfully its doesn’t happen often but when it does it’s a little distracting. Music is solid and never gets annoying which is good, and realistically it doesn’t need to be anything more than it is.
Graphically the game is pretty distinct, everything looks functional without being spectacular. The demon designs are largely a lot of fun, the various humans are distinctive and the design for Satan is pretty cool all told. The scenery is also decent though some of the level design can be a bit frustrating as it’s not always clear where you need to go and the layout of an area can be a bit unintuitive.
In terms of issues I’ve had quite a lot of instances of slowdown, these seem to be especially prevalent when the game auto-saves or you’re in one of the taxi sequences so doesn’t appear to get in the way of conversations and the like. I’ve also had instances where I’ve gotten an error message when the game is auto-saving, though this seems to just need you to select the retry option when the error comes up and it sorts itself out so a minor inconvenience more than anything.
I think the thing I like most though is that after certain events in the game you get a rundown of what you did and being as it’s hell it insinuates that you could have done things another way with better results, obviously you don’t know this for fact as you could be being lied to in order to torture however it gives a great incentive to play through again to see how things play out with different choices, it’s a clever way getting you to experience everything.
Overall it’s a really fun game to play, I really enjoyed the story it was telling and the way it was told, which as previously mentioned is massively helped by the solid voice acting. I’m also a massive fan of the sense of humour the game has, there were a lot of instances where I laughed out loud. I’d definitely recommend it and I’m looking forward to playing through again and seeing what different choices throw up.
TBG Score: 8/10
Platform: Steam, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Release Date: 29/10/2019
No. of Players: 1
Category: Action & adventure
Publisher: Night School Studio
Download link: Microsoft Store