A couple of months earlier, I’ve downloaded this game called Adventure Bar Story when it’s on sale at 99 cents. I didn’t start playing until a month earlier, and I couldn’t stop since then.
At first glance, the game seems to be a run-of-the-mill RPG. The graphics are similar to the ones you find in Gameboy Colour. The music was unimpressive. So why do I bother reviewing this game? Hold your horses, we’ll get to the good part REAL soon…
The synopsis is that you are Siela, and you own a tavern called Kamerina’s Bar along with your sister Kamerina. However, your sister is a bad cook, and so there aren’t much customers around. In the brink of being purchased by an evil owner Gustav, Siela decided that the best way to save the restaurant is to make it world-famous by winning various cooking competition and raising prestige of the bar. Sounds simple enough, right? Wait a minute…. If the protagonist is poor, how can she afford to buy ingredients?
YOU DON’T!!! You kill monsters, and monsters drop ingredients. This feature is one of the reason why I bought the game. It’s kinda funny how killing slimes gets you gelatin and killing mice gets cheese and wheat. However, you can only visit on town or dungeon in a day, so you might need to do a bit of planning before deciding on where to visit.
So if this is an RPG game, how do you level? Simple, you EAT!!! EAT!!!! In this game, you can eat the dishes you cooked up for experience and levels. However, since the objective of the game is to make your restaurant successful. You need to balance between eating the dishes or selling the dishes for making money. Furthermore, each dish also have a satiety number. Once the number gets to 99, the character is officially full and cannot eat anymore until the next day.
Now I’m going to delve into the restaurant aspect a bit deeper. First of all, you can sell 7 different dishes at one time. At the end of every day, you will open your restaurant to sell your food to make more money, which you can use to buy ingredients and equipments. Furthermore certain dishes will complement each other to create a “combo”, which lets you sell more of that dish in one night. Finally, do note that in addition to combos, seasons can also determine the popularity of the dish. For instance, cold drinks are more popular in summer and hot dishes are more popular in winter.
Another interesting feature is that in order for the story to progress, you need to raise the bar ranking. The bar ranking can only be raised by both winning cooking competitions and through high sales. To win cooking competition, you need to submit your most expensive dish you have and win points. Meanwhile, to achieve high enough sales, simply sell dishes that is easy to cook and can give great revenue.
All in all, this game is actually very well thought out. In fact, I’m surprised and pleased to see that the restaurant and cooking features are fully incorporated into the RPG. As I mentioned before, you don’t play this game for the graphics and the music. Heck, I usually play the game on mute while listening to music. But the fun factor of the game just won me over. I have to say, it is definitely a dollar well spent.
- Graphics: B (Almost similar to Gameboy colour graphics)
- Music: C (Nearly non-existent)
- Fun Factor: A+ (Plenty of good features to keep you playing, it also includes a bunch of secrets paths and a secret catalogue to complete)
- Time it takes to finish: Around 40-50 hours for simple playing. I found myself spending over 100 hours, but I overleveled in most places and was trying to complete everything and amass 99 of each ingredients.
- Overall Ranking: A or A- (What can I say… It’s just plain fun)