PSYCHO-PASS: Mandatory Happiness Review
PSYCHO-PASS: Mandatory Happiness is a Visual Novel published by NIS America, Inc. (At least here in the US). If you are like me, I honestly didn't know visual novels were a thing until I got a chance to play this game. To boil it down, it is an interactive story that is more complex than a simple Choose Your Own Adventure, and is more interactive to boot. It allows more branching plot lines, hidden scenes, and things like that. This is one of the big reasons video games are great, and I'm glad I had the good fortune to expand my gaming horizon.
Now, this game is a bit of a special case for me. The PS4 version came out almost a year ago AND we did a review on it. In fact, it was written by our own Ryan Johnson, and you should go read it now. I'll even link it for you. It's okay. Go ahead and read it. This can wait.
Great, now that you have read that, I'm not going to discuss the story. Why? Well, two reasons. Ryan did a great job already going over several key points. The second is that I recently learned (due to the Persona 5 steaming policy), that story-driven games like this shouldn't have its plot spoiled and should definitely be experienced. That said, I'm going to talk about how this game functions on the PC.
This is a pretty standard dialogue screen. As you can see, there are a bunch of controls along the bottom with key bindings.
Great, now forget them. Everything in the game (aside from something I'll mention later) can be done through the mouse. Honestly, I had a much better time with this than the controls. All of the little buttons you can just click, and since this game is not based on quick timing or anything like that, you can focus on the story more. Even a right-click brings up the menu screen. Basically, they did a great job on the controls. They are super simple, which lets you focus on making the choices which almost always seems to lead to 2 bad endings then finally a good one.
There is one caveat to this, and that's the mini game included in the "extras" option in the main menu. This one you should definitely get out the arrow keys. Why? Well, take a look at the screenshot below and tell me if it reminds you of anything.
That's right, it is 2048! Like Ryan mentioned, it is used to unlock all sorts of cool extras. It is the best of both worlds: a time sink minigame AND a way to easily get unlocks.
Overall, this game is a great PC adaptation. The controls make sense. Really, pick up this game. I'm going to give this a slightly higher rating than Ryan.
This game was reviewed on the PC, but there is also a PS4 version.
+Very well translated captions
-Sometimes the background noise overpowers the audio
-The phone conversation subtitles don't pair well with the audio being subtitled
Thank you NIS America for providing us with this code!