- System: Nintendo Switch, Steam
- Publisher: D3Publisher
- Developer: Dogenzaka Lab
- Release Date: June 14th, 2018
- Rating: M for Mature
- Genre: Visual Novel, Otome, Adventure
- Players: Single Player
- Official Website: https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/pub-encounter-switch
Who it Caters to
What to Expect
Of course, let’s not forget the fact that Pub Encounter is a romance between a young woman and several middle aged men. Oh yes, your romantic love interest will not be a young boy fresh out of university or high school; he’s a seasoned man with a stable career and real life problems outside of finding himself. If any of this entices you, keep reading to find out more!
Pub Encounter is a rather unique game in the dating sim/otome game scene what with all of the love interests being older (but not elderly) in comparison to the usual ikemen type. How does this really change the gameplay? Well, for the most part, the characters don’t immediately seem to fall into the usual tropes (i.e. tsundere, kuudere, dandere), although they all do have similar personalities to the usual love interests if you continue playing. However, these personality tropes change when you alter the situations by making the characters more mature with careers, history, and even their upbringings. Despite the age of these men, Pub Encounter still has that “first love” feeling that we are so used to. Whether or not this will appeal to you is up to you, but do remember that this is an M for Mature title so be prepared for more than just a first kiss at the end of the game!
It was nice to be able to play a game with more mature themes and some unique plots, but because this is for casual gaming, we were disappointed to see that things were wrapped up too easily and plots weren’t well developed. We tried to be understanding considering this is a mobile game, but it still stings a little. Also, something that feels awkward is the emphasis on the age gap between the male leads and Shiori. Yes, we get it; there’s probably a 20 year age difference (we’re guessing), but we don’t need people to be constantly saying how young Shiori is or how much older the male lead is, nor do we need strange moments where Shiori is treated kind of like a child. You may not notice these moments as well as we did, but it did make us feel a bit awkward, but we understand that there is ageism in most societies so this could be part of the normal, awkward conversation, right?
Honey's Gameplay Consensus:
- Game is available in English, Japanese, and Chinese text
- Has mature content for adult gamers who might wish for more physical interactions
- Plot lines were written to reflect the age of the characters including more mature possibilities
- Many hours of gameplay that don’t feel text heavy
- Sometimes it feels like there is an overemphasis on the age gap between characters
- Jumps into the romance a tad fast giving it that obvious mobile dating sim feel
- Rather dull main character who seems to conveniently be exactly who the characters need her to be
- Some of the plots wrapped up unrealistically and too easily
- Weak character backgrounds
Honey's Final Verdict:
For those of you out there reading this, what are your thoughts on the game? Do you think it’ll be as moe as any other dating sim with younger men? Do you look forward to dealing with real life problems with these handsome older men or do you wish they were a little bit less seasoned? Share your thoughts in the comments below because we’d love to hear your take!