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/

If you liked this article, be sure to have a look around or check out MrDavePizza on Twitter or YouTube. Please come back and thanks for visiting!

Good Pizza, Great Pizza – Wholesome Pizzeria Simulator – Review

In the Fall of 2020 when I was just launching the Mr. Dave Pizza concept, I played Good Pizza, Great Pizza by Tapblaze on an Android tablet, one of the many formats this game is available on. Today I played the official version released for Nintendo Switch to go back and really see what amused me about this game. Pizza, the food, has always been pretty popular, but in the last five years, it’s developed a near cult status. It’s kind of weird honestly, but it’s spun some pretty creative and entertaining ideas. So, after so much traffic from google here by indie-game-playing pizza lovers and truffle fast food cravers, I am issuing an inaugural validation of Good Pizza, Great Pizza as one of my favorite pizza-themed indie games of all time. At least that I’ve played–I’ll get to you, Freddy.

Platforms: PC, Switch, Android, Apple, Amazon

Good Pizza, Great Pizza: Greetings Ovenist

The game is generally inexpensive for versions without ads, although there are free versions on mobile with ads. Moving past that, the game works fine with a controller on Switch and presumably PC, and depending on which platform you use, it is possible to use the touchscreen as well (including on Switch.)

Now, let’s talk about the gameplay. Good Pizza, Great Pizza is a pizzeria simulator that puts you in the role of “ovenist,” order-taker, pizza maker, and entrepreneur at a cozy pinkish restaurant in a busy neighborhood across the street from the comic-relief bad guy competition named “Alicante.” Each day you start off a new business cycle, and customers drop in from off the street to order whatever pizza you can make them.

It is always possible to make what they request, but whether you pull it off is a different story. Alicante will drop in at the beginning of every shift to challenge you and discourage you from continuing. He’s the type of bad guy who accidentally compliments you wholeheartedly when you succeed or simply makes you laugh either way, so he’s not all that bad really, but you better heed his warnings.

Customers tend to exude certain customer varieties from a real pizzeria, and almost always phrase things in a way you have to listen to–or read actually–in order to complete their order. They say things like truffle cut in quarters or one-half of four pepperonis. It doesn’t sound too complicated, but it is very challenging at times. And when you mess up once, it can turn the flow of the whole pizzeria into a complete catastrophe. It’s not the end and you will get better, but you might half to improve your focus. Getting your timing right is everything.

Other Things in Good Pizza, Great Pizza

This game does not mess around. Okay, it messes around all the time. But if playing a wholesome pleasant pizzeria is your thing, Good Pizza, Great Pizza goes to town. Some features include a narrative story arc of four chapters that take you from a small neighborhood pizzeria to a big-time pizzeria celebrity.

In addition to that, there are several characters with individual personalities and dialogue, including the previously mentioned Alicante–but also cute, funny, strange, and humbling. Most of the dialogue is downright hilarious or just so weird it is charming. Not every customer is totally polite, but if you make their order right be expectant of delight in their response.

There are tons of new ingredients to add to your inventory, customer area upgrades, plus equipment upgrades. And there is even an achievement system that you can use to earn coins and compete online. Wow, this is pretty much the best pizzeria game I’ve ever seen. Most games of any genre don’t even have half of this much content to unlock. And you’ll find no disappointment in the quality of these really, because not only will you have the upgrades, it will totally change how your customers interact.

A Recommended Game

And at the apex of that very thrilling description, that’s pretty much it. Talk to customers, make their orders, and buy things. I may return to this if I really get serious about playing all the way through the story. After playing and researching for a few hours mixed with my previous experience, that’s the gist of this.

So, I hope you’re out there, you pizza seekers and hobbyists, because I am, and this pizzeria is just getting started. I hope this satisfied your search for whatever you were looking for.

This game is pretty much for everybody. The content is quite wholesome and if you can keep up with the orders there are some huge rewards for enjoying Good Pizza, Great Pizza. This one has been in Mr. Dave Pizza’s own oven for some time, and we’re glad to finally bring it to your tablet.

If you enjoy this, please come back, have a look around, leave a comment, and check out our social media. Thank you so much for reading Mr. Dave Pizza. Take care.

πŸ”½ If you’d like to download this game, here are official links to where it can be downloaded on various platforms.

πŸ€–Android

🍎Apple App Store:

πŸ„Nintendo Switch

πŸ’½Steam (PC)

πŸ”₯Amazon

Not It: Spookiest Edition – This One Is Pretty Scary

Earlier this year, I took a look at a visual novel from this developer called The Last Act. Incidentally, they have a new act called Not It: Spookiest Edition just in time for Halloween. In fact, this whole game’s story revolves around an old legend of a curse that arrives every Halloween. I suppose, being on hiatus and everything, I can still find some room to squeeze this one in because this whole month I’m doing a Halloween theme. Also, it is released today, so that’s a scoop I can’t resist. Therefore, from a very distraction-free space, mostly, let me enthrall you with a first look at Not It: Spookiest Edition.

You may have guessed, Snowhaven Studios was awesome about hooking me up with a copy of this new VN because of my work on The Last Act. If you want to read about my experience with that title, you can check it out here: https://mrdavepizza.com/the-last-act-visual-novel-review/

Hello Visual Novels, Old Friend

VNs are essentially my favorite genre in the history of this site. I don’t even know at this point how many of my visitors are regulars, but a fair few might be able to notice this, really I have a link to all of them in my menu. Anyway, one thing I like about reviewing visual novels is it is kind of closer to a movie than a strategy-based game.
Not It: Spookiest Edition is really on board with this balance of interaction and passive entertainment.

One example is the fully voice-acted dialogue! You can not count on this a lot of the time because VNs are often solo projects. I found this a really good way to get immersed in the story.

Visually, everything is great too. I felt a major leap from the art style of the environment and characters that appear in The Last Act. It has the same style though, the kind of anime cartoon spectrum. Nice though.

I’m kind of glad that everything was so approachable, because in all honesty: this game is just a tad beyond just spooky, it’s got some very, well, scary moments.

So, That Turned Dark Quickly

Yeah, this game IS a horror game, but it was packaged so neatly that I felt alright with it. There is an option at the beginning of the title opening to select whether or not you want normal gore or less gore. I don’t exactly know what normal gore looks like because I am a coward, but apparently, it’s an option.

A good thing to know before I describe this, the choices you make in the game affect the rest of the way the story plays out and who, well, who’s gonna get ya!

For some background, you start off as a new townee in a small rural town that everybody has evacuated due to a curse that occurs every Halloween. You meet a group of people who explain their own views on the curse and eventually become your only allies in a whodunnit hotel mystery.

Some characters are more tolerable than others, but Willow is my favorite character and Joseph is my least. Decide for yourself, although I really disliked Joseph! No worries, just part of the game!

Anything Else You Need To Know About Not It: Spookiest Edition

That’s pretty much it. I don’t want to give away too much, but there you have it. I’ll emphasize, choices matter! But you have options and you can alter the course of the story, even start over. My second gameplay session came to a tragic end, but if you do what you can to survive, you’ll make it.

I hope you enjoyed reading this. Again, thanks to Snowhaven Studios for the preview. This game is perfect Halloween fun, so give it a go, you should too.

Thanks for reading Mr. Dave Pizza. I’ll be back here with more soon. Have a look around in the meantime!

Doubts – Gerda is In For an Ugly Surprise and It’s Sad

Doubts is a short interactive fiction game from a talented solo developer by German artist, Fulmen. Play the role of Gerda, a woman in 1926 Berlin, Germany. She is a runaway with her boyfriend and is by herself during her boyfriend, Joseph’s, temporary absence. She contemplates her surroundings and decisions in a session of examining items around their hotel room while he is away. Without certainty, she wonders if her decision to be with Joseph is such a good idea.

Doubts: Who Is Joseph?

First of all, when it comes to puzzles, I always say this, but I’m awful at them! I wonder quite a bit if this is my own doing or the intended reaction sometimes. I used cheat codes on Myst, alright!? Okay, who didn’t, but some are better at it. Like that puzzle in front of Langley that offers fame and fortune to whoever solves it. I think I read somebody did actually solve it, but I can’t recall.

Anyway, I did not solve what the mystery was in this game–or maybe I did–but I did adore it. The stylized environment is absolutely perfect. Even though the game provides a max of around twenty minutes of gameplay, it’s wonderful.

Sometimes, I play games that really appeal to me, because they help me remember something I don’t necessarily want to write about. Some years ago, I traveled across the country though, and this game kind of reminds me of it, in many, many ways. Although I wasn’t running away from anything, let alone in 1926 Berlin.

That said, this is a wonderful depiction of that environment. I really liked the slight sepia/salmon tint to everything and the cartoonish but historically accurate items throughout the room. This is really high quality. Even if I don’t know the full story here, I take joy in the visual presentation.

Doubts: Troubling Metaphor

I felt bad for Gerda. She seemed an optimistic, reserved woman who was only hoping for the best, and Joseph probably capitalized on that. I hate seeing women taken advantage of, even in fiction. Storytelling has long depicted the bastards of times past in many fashions. Things have changed in some ways and others not. I have many thoughts on this, but that’s what you’ll need to understand with this type of story.

Anyway, I think you can see why this game is intriguing to me and ultimately captivating. I just really was able to get immersed in it from the illustration to the dialogue bars with Gerda’s thoughts on what she discovered. Very strong character development! Back in Gerda’s day she probably had just about no choice in her future. Even the optimism she exudes seems to be tainted by this very impossible situation.

Final Thoughts

If you’re interested in checking this out, which you should, I will provide the itch.io link below. There are a couple of games from the developer, and they seem to be chugging them out, so maybe keep an eye on this one.

This game plays for around 10-20 minutes, depending on how much you explore, but it’s worth your time.

I hope that this will bring attention to the dev. Itch.io is a provider of indie game monetizing, but the game is free. If you’re able to contribute a dollar or so to this developer, I’m sure they will appreciate it. Otherwise, give them a shout-out.

I hope you enjoyed this review on MrDavePizza.com. There are many games like this (and others) around my site, so have a look around and reach as much as you like. Thanks for reading!