Overboard! – Get Away With Murder – Really Funny And Dark – Review

This article about Overboard is in the June 2022 Issue 4 of ChoiceBeat: The Visual Novel and Interactive Fiction Zine.

With eye-catching flat graphics and exciting period stylized environments, no one could say the game Overboard! doesn’t have class. (Also known as Overboard! Get Away With Murder.) Literary elements and composition create an intellectual environment on the fictional steamship SS Hook, where your task is to resolve speculation on a murder. It’s not just an ordinary mystery though. From the very get-go, it’s made apparent that you, the apathetic yet charismatic, Veronica Villensey, are the killer–of her own husband! It is up to you to decide what your motive is, or if you even care! For context, however, it is hinted that the financial ruin of the late Mr. Villensey is most of the motive.

In this article, I’ll cover Overboard‘s innovative gameplay and include some peppering of the satisfying nature of Overboard.

Platforms: Steam, GOG, Nintendo Switch, Apple Appstore, and Android

Parallels and Comparisons

Mysteries are a respected genre for their ability to unravel a story at a consistent pace. But, with the exception of some frequent cozy or speculative interpretations, the formula is pretty standard. I can only speculate how much of this fluctuates between trope and innovation in Overboard, but it’s worth mentioning for context.

Amongst similar games in what I’ll call the youdunnit genre, there is not an absence of the you-are-the-killer trope. For example, of an indie youdunnit, the pixel detective game Loco Motive, a free-for-all upon the Orient Express, contains the theme of unraveling a mystery in which everyone is a Clue‘esque suspect. It doesn’t quite put the modus operandi of the killer so specifically in the hands of the player as this game does though. Loco Motive appeared on a 2022 Nintendo Direct and is set for release this year.

Because of this, it is an interesting side note to speculate if adaptation for pre-digital formats of the genre has become a trend. With an identical decade and similar characters, and me being a moderate fan of historical dramas, I personally find this trend to be intriguing. There are certainly other historical games, but organized crime and war are the usual themes. Overboard lets you kick off your shoes and enjoy a 21st-century version of an engaging 20th-century mystery.

Screen Grabs from Overboard!

How Overboard! Works

The ability to really hone every aspect of the story really impressed me. From the moment you wake up as Veronica, the ability to direct your own fate is based on a combination of luck, guessing, and skill. For example, themes of foreshadowing are important story-telling tools in Overboard. Because of this, what might seem like a character trope can actually help you direct the desired income by taking advantage of the character flaws of other passengers on the ship. You are really put on the spot to cover up what seems like a barely meditated act along with the quirks and nuances of complex characters.


Most of the dialogue contains response options that float between defensive, collected, and guilty. As you interact, mostly in an attempt to cover your tracks, the clock counts down until your arrival at the port which effectively ends the game. Also, the solution to Overboard is not as simple as it sounds, and most likely is meant to take several rounds of experimentation to get off free. Losing is not terribly discouraging though, because experimenting exposes the secrets of each character.

The game makes way for a new style of experiencing visual fiction and has been lauded by players and game critics. The interactive story gets credit for unlocking critical innovation in the interactive-fiction/VN genre with every production perk that a creative dev outlet would pull together. Also, UK developer inkle Studios has a bibliography of several high-quality stories, including the successful 80 Days, a take on the Jules Verne classic, similar in scope to Overboard as an open-ended/high-quality period game.

Summary of Features in Overboard!

  • Open-ended story with many possible endings
  • Stylish flat-graphic animated illustration
  • Historically accurate environment
  • Several characters with purpose and unique backstories
  • Replay accommodation with saved history and no penalties
  • A dark but witty theme
  • A wonderful navigation system that uses an animated diorama of the ship
  • Meaningful choices and time-sensitive objectives
  • Risk, romance, and intrigue!


Other Thoughts about Overboard!

Overboard helped me step outside my comfort zone for mystery narratives. With the art so trendily stylish and the subtle Wes Anderson likeness, a genre in itself, Overboard put me in the zone. So, I felt like after Mr. Villensey went literally “overboard,” I was ready to have some fun quite soon. Nothing feels excessively sinister in the story–even though it kind of is. The ability to really mess around with characters can be really fun. The time-sensitive countdown for each game encourages fluid gameplay that can be used as a lesson for each next game. In that sense, the flow is perfect. So, overall, if you don’t mind paying upfront for an armchair adventure, the value is consistent. It’s definitely one of the more engaging visual novels/interactive fiction that I have played though.

Thank you

Thanks for reading my article on Overboard. If you’re interested, I have a whole section of visual novels on my blog here:

https://www.mrdavepizza.com/category/visualnovels/

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Mini Motorways – You Need To Take the Wheel

Mini-motorways is a delightful traffic planning sim released within the last month. It boasts charming flat graphic aesthetics with an intuitive casual style game experience. The sleek 2D environment bleeds indie simplicity worthy of a gaming machine or a new phone. The gameplay is relatively simple but allows interactive city planning in a selection of metropolitans all around the world. Start with a small group of structures within the map and drag road tiles and other traffic structures between color-coordinated structures to advance. As you progress, you’ll learn tricks and skills to create a flawless infrastructure. I’m excited to take a look at this one with you, so let’s get started!

Yes, indeed, this is another showcase made possible by Indie Game Collective, my best buds, and a group of talented/brilliant indie content creators. And thank you so much to the developers at Dinosaur Polo Club for making this possible with a sponsored copy of the game!

What’s Included in Mini Motorways

I had to examine this title when I first saw it because it seemed familiar. That’s right, this is a sequel to the popular Mini Metro, a similar predecessor to connecting public transit lines. I enjoyed that and I enjoy this. Perhaps, I enjoy this one even more though. You start out with a simple map and draw roads from structure to structure. The first road is a linear line. I feel that this new title does some things differently that is refreshing. For one, when you draw a road, it doesn’t need to be at a 90-degree angle. You can kind of skirt in from the edges of a structure, or make a round-a-bout, or even a highway. There’s a lot to experiment with here.

And the gameplay is quite enjoyable. At the end of the tutorial, I saw the vision of this. This game has low system requirements and insists on beautiful interacting environments created by the players themselves. With minimal strategy hangups, I was able to get in touch with a feeling of logical strategies and rewards from my choices to create things the way I want to. It adds up to a very chill and relaxing experience. The learning curve is rather short and you’ll be able to figure out most things within a few minutes.

Features of Mini Motorways

Here is a list of features to be found in Mini Motorways based on the developer press kit:

  • Draw roads in dynamic cities that grow and change – every game is unique!
  • Explore stunning maps inspired by cities all around the world.
  • Dynamically growing cities that make every game unique!
  • Stunning maps visually inspired by cities all around the world for you to explore and a photo mode that lets you share GIFs and snapshots of the cities you design.
  • A variety of upgrades help you meet the demands of your ever-expanding road network.
  • Different color modes to choose from, including colorblind and night modes.
  • Daily and weekly challenges that put a refreshing spin on gameplay and let you compete with your friends on the leaderboards.
  • A responsive, relaxing soundtrack that grows with your city, created by the wonderful Disasterpeace.

Why We Love Games Like Mini Motorways

Mini Motorways is the PC debut of Dinosaur Polo Club. Its predecessor Mini Metro was primarily well suited to a mobile tablet/phone game, though not exclusively. ‘Motorways is released on the Steam and Apple Arcade platforms. With the added context of a little more computing power and more dynamic controls, you get this game style on a superior level. I think we all like to take the captain’s wheel when gaming sometimes, where we want our own ideas to be present in the games we play. Mini Motorways is all about that. There’s also a ladder here for skill. There are so many things in this game that encourage strategy and even community that it is sure to sit with an ambitious gaming crowd for as long as it is out there.

If that description of ambitious digital commitment is you, then head on down. If you just want a chill game to play to pass the time that doesn’t demand too much, it’s here too. Puzzles, here. Transportation hobbyists, here. Check it out, it’s enough to entertain more than a movie, and probably cheaper these days. And frankly, it’s a work of art.

Yield to Oncoming Awesomeness

That’s today’s game. It does delight me to write these, but I update them all the time! Please have a look around and find something interesting for you today. Thank you so much for reading Mr. Dave Pizza. I hope you enjoyed it, and please stop by again!

Widget Satchel: Ferret in Space

Widget Satchel is a cross-platform indie platformer out a couple of years but is still very fun and fresh. It is currently available through the Itch.IO Palestinian aid bundle. Widget Satchel is a delightful flat graphic style game, where you play as an adorable ferret upon a space station. You start off with a satchel and explore junk-filled levels and build things. There is no game over or way of getting hurt, but plenty of challenging scenarios to try things out. Let’s have a look.

First Impressions

One thing I immediately love about this, aside from there being no way of messing up, is how smooth the gameplay is. There is no clunkiness or lag, everything runs perfectly as if it were an Apple Arcade title. I think this is probably due in part to intentionality, but also why it’s available on every platform. The flat graphics and minimal intrusion make everything flow nicely.

You might not totally know what’s going on in the beginning, but basic game intuition will lead you forward. All the junk everywhere is what you’re supposed to collect and failed at attempts to gather broken monitors and cogs. The real items seem to mostly be circuit boards and computer chips that hover in the sky above platforms and elevators. After you complete a level, there is a large furnace jutting down from the ceiling where you can cash in your junk for the gear you can use like jumping boots and a swatting stick.

As the description says, there is no real way to game over, so these items enhance gameplay to personal preference.

Other Fun Things

This is a very simple game. Simple games are often some of the most fun! Not unilaterally, but as a jump-in and get-going context, there’s a lot of fun to be had here. And the art style is clever but, again, very unintrusive.

One thing to also mention is “mischief points.” These have no game-changing importance but you can rack them up if you want to knock as much stuff over as possible. It is kind of fun tossing around all the junk everywhere too. You can also speed run levels if you want a challenge that is amusing to watch.

I realize this review is a little bit shorter than usual. The game is pretty neatly packaged, with no loose ends to tie together through the power of reductivism. Cheeky remark there. Really though, it is what it is, and I laud it for that! On this one, the screen captures and videos the job.

That’s It About Widget Satchel

This game bracket is in the general price range of your stand indie platformer, I think around $15 or so right now. I think that Widget Satchel seems a good fit for the Nintendo Switch, which it is available on eShop. It’s also on PC, PS4, and Xbox though too, which is pretty impressive! If you recently purchased the Itch.IO Palestinian Aid bundle for $5, it’s on there too. It is kind of nice it is on there actually, because I have been wondering what gems lie in some 1,000 games on there.

Anyway, if you are interested, be sure to check it out, I’ll leave the itch.IO link below, and you can have a look if you like. It is also on Steam. And ALSO: I just realized a little later here that this game was produced by none other than the creator of one of my favorite podcasts. Nice Games Club. A podcast for game devs, check it out!

Also, though it is no longer the total domain of my site, this game is very family-friendly, and I highly recommend it in that context!

Thanks for reading MrDavePizza.com. I’ve started posting really frequently lately, four times a week, so check back and, please, have a look around!