Though I’ve played a few hours of Coffee Talk at this stage, it’s still too early to give a proper review of it. However, I’ve been dying to write about it ever since I started playing.
It’s a wonderfully unique concept; essentially a visual novel in which you play as a night time barista in a coffee shop, Coffee Talk is set ever so slightly in the future, with a Seattle populated by a variety of fantasy creatures as an intriguing backdrop.
It comes across not unlike the setting of Shadowrun, though it forgoes the cyberpunk hacking and gunfights for something an awful lot more sedate. What I’ve really appreciated about Coffee Talk is the subtle worldbuilding; managed through dialogue and newspaper headlines. The news of a worrying virus – leading to zombie infections in-game – seems awfully prescient, as do the themes of racism and diversity, though here it’s addressed with the game’s orcs, vampires, werewolves and elves.
There’s a real satisfaction in brewing someone a drink and – in some cases – creating them a piece of art on top. Though there’s little interactivity in the conversations you have with your customers – and seemingly not much opportunity, if any, to influence the narrative – it’s still very satisfying to just take in their stories, enjoy the incredibly chilled out atmosphere and serve them a hot drink every now and then. There’s nothing quite like it; it’s somehow very involving despite the lack of interactivity. I’ll continue playing to see how things progress and will be back with a proper review when I’ve done so.
For now though, I’m in no rush. I’m just enjoying the slower pace of my night time Seattle coffee shop; the perfect palate cleanser after playing more intense and action packed games.
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