Route 59 Games, an indie studio from Melbourne, Australia, has announced the impending release of their first title, Necrobarista, on Steam on July 22. The project has been in development for several years and has received funding from Film Victoria and RMIT University's New Enterprise Investment Fund.
Set in Melbourne, Necrobarista puts players in the shoes of Maddy, an apprentice necromancer who just took over ownership and operation of The Terminal, a cafe where the spirits of the dead come for a cuppa before passing back over to the other side.
The living can chat and nosh with the dead, but there are rules which make these interactions potentially complicated, and the spirits are more likely to gulp and go than the flesh-and-blood patrons. With ghosts like infamous outlaw Ned Kelly rubbing elbows with other necromancers, trying to keep the orders straight is the least of Maddy's problems.
Described as a "cinematic cel-shaded visual novel," Necrobarista looks to be a significant evolution compared to other VNs such as Steins;Gate. First-person exploration sequences allow players to explore The Terminal and pick the narrative thread they want to follow next as opposed to just stumbling over the right conversation option. But the game's anime influences are still undeniable, particularly with composer Kevin Penkin (Made In Abyss, The Rising Of The Shield Hero) handling the musical score.
Lead Designer Kevin Chen had this to say about the game, "Necrobarista is an extra-caffeinated blend of our love for games, anime, and our hometown. The resulting brew is something uniquely Australian, and we're thrilled to finally serve up our magical world and immerse everyone in coffee puns when the game launches on Steam for PC next week."
Necrbarista will be available on Steam for $19.99. Route 59 Games is planning to release the game on the Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 sometime next year.