Metascore
84

Generally favorable reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. 100
    It is impossible to put down.
  2. May 1, 2019
    100
    There are some really hard-hitting and beautiful moments in this game, as well as a lot of funny ones, and the more I learned about Jill the more I liked her. The world and all of the characters of VA-11 HALL-A are so damn interesting, and I found myself eager to return to the game after every play session. If you’re a fan of visual novels, this is a must play.
  3. May 1, 2019
    100
    One of my favourite games of all time.
  4. May 6, 2019
    95
    VA-11 HALL-A demonstrates its ability to create a unique world filled with diverse characters without even setting foot outside of a rundown dive bar.
  5. May 1, 2019
    95
    Endlessly stylish, emotionally gripping and deceptively addictive, VA-11 HALL-A is the pure essence of a visual novel: a digital page-turner filled with unforgettable characters and set in an infectious cyberpunk noir that will live in your head for weeks after you’ve put the game down.
  6. May 22, 2019
    90
    VA-11 HALL-A is one of the coziest experiences I've had in a video game.
  7. 90
    VA-11 HALL-A is a game I think everyone should try out. Its interesting characters, compelling stories, and flawless soundtrack help it stand out in the visual novel genre. It’s simply a must play on the Nintendo Switch.
  8. 90
    VA-11 HALL-A is so much more than just chatting up clients and making drinks. It's the kind of game that makes you think, and it can be silly, serious, soul-crushing, and light-hearted, all at the same time. Its cyberpunk/anime flair is just the garnish on top of the cocktail.
  9. May 3, 2019
    90
    When it comes to visual novels, VA-11 Hall-A is king. Never before have I seen such a perfect balance of sharp writing, gorgeous visuals and downright delicious music that also manages to pack in hours of engagement without ever overstaying it's welcome. Furthermore, the combination of drink-mixing action and visual novel storytelling creates an addictive gameplay loop that makes the game even harder to put down once you pick it up. VA-11 Hall-A is a gem of creativity from the most unlikely of places, and I can't wait to see what the team has up their sleeve next.
  10. Jun 25, 2019
    85
    VA-11 Hall-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action is a unique experience that’s literally a book in game form. Mixing drinks and changing lives proves to be a blast as you interact with many interesting characters. There’s loads of reading to do here but as long as you’re ready to read a novel while you play, this is one book, er, game that you won’t want to put down.
  11. 85
    Overall, VA-11 HALL-A on the Switch is a marvelous port that works far better than I ever expected it to. The new controls may take some getting used to, but after a few minutes tinkering with them I found they came pretty naturally, and overall the game has kept the charm and likeability that drew me to it back in 2016. Gameplay may get a bit stale after long sessions of play, but for small relaxing wind-down sessions at the end of the night, you’ll find no better place to be than in Jill’s head during yet another shift at the bar.
  12. Jul 8, 2019
    80
    If you like great stories and immersive world building, with little to no gameplay, this is a game for you.
  13. May 20, 2019
    80
    VA-11 HALL-A might not quite fulfil your bartending dreams in terms of concocting your own drinks, but if the social side of being a bartender without leaving the house is more your thing, then this is the game for you.
  14. May 18, 2019
    80
    VA-11 HALL-A is a variegated and long visual novel, interesting from a narrative point of view.
  15. May 7, 2019
    80
    The mix of bartender simulator, interesting characters and clever writing makes VA-11 HALL-A a little gem, especially if you like games that are not your typical an have a lot to say. It is best savored in a smooth way... Like a whiskey on the rocks in a bar.
  16. May 2, 2019
    80
    For all my minor grievances, I’m enamored with this little bar. The larger narrative is pieced together by countless conversations with just as many people. None of them are alike, and all of them add something new to the mosaic. Even the apocryphal bits end up worth it in the end. Chat logs, history lessons, job descriptions, alibis, and cryptic orders all build what feels like a real place. More than ray tracing or 4K textures ever could, these collected story bits have swept up into a smoky dive that I’ll continually revisit, long after the tale is told. For a glimpse into something genuine, fascinating, and truly memorable, absolutely check out VA-11 HALL-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action.
  17. May 1, 2019
    80
    Photorealistic graphics are great but there’s something really nice and comforting about the retro-inspired visual aesthetic. The portable nature of the Nintendo Switch is absolutely perfect for this kind of game. Like the title screen suggests, pull the Switch off the dock, pour yourself a drink, grab some salty pretzels, and make yourself comfortable.
  18. May 1, 2019
    80
    VA-11 HALL-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action is a perfect example of the fact that a whole can be greater than the sum of its parts. Mixing drinks isn’t mechanically interesting, and it fumbles around with social commentary in questionable ways at times. However, those moments between Jill and Alma were enough to elevate the whole game for me. It truly does feel like you’re sat at the barstools with your friends, chugging some brewskis, shooting the shit, and (mostly) having a good time. You might be making out with a toilet come morning, but hey, in life there’s no reward without risk. So if you’ve yet to play VA-11 HALL-A, or if you just want to revisit it, prep your finest glass cleaning rag, because it’s time to mix drinks and change lives.
  19. May 2, 2019
    75
    I really like a lot of what VA-11 HALL-A is doing. I think changing up the choice mechanic, taking control away from you, and putting the focus merely on dialogue and not one character's story are all fantastic, but a lot of the ideas sound better on paper to me. Glitch City is a fascinating world, and Sukeban Games have created something truly unique that has inspired many. VA-11 HALL-A deserves its large fan following, but it's not mixed quite right for me to love everything on offer.
  20. Jun 18, 2019
    70
    For visual novel fans, VA-11 HALL-A is definitely refreshing and distinctive enough to be worth your time. It’s also ideal to play handheld on Switch: touchscreen, Joy-Con, HD rumble, pick-up-and-playability and a close-up screen for reading all add to the experience. If you don’t usually go for visual novels then it’s back to our starting question: can VA-11 HALL-A be excused its lack of gameplay? If you’re happy to try it just for a story, then you’ll be delighted. Delighted enough to read it through six times in search of alternate endings? Probably not. But, like a good cocktail, its flavour lingers after the final sip – so sometimes one is enough.
  21. 70
    The gameplay, and some of the dialogue, could do with some refinement but this dystopian drinks-making game has some of the most interesting storytelling of the last few years.
User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 32 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 32
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 32
  3. Negative: 6 out of 32
  1. Aug 19, 2019
    3
    I found this game pretty boring. Its set in a cyberpunk world but is very pg-13, characters are very bubly and the gameplay is random andI found this game pretty boring. Its set in a cyberpunk world but is very pg-13, characters are very bubly and the gameplay is random and boring. You just mix about 10 different ingredients to do all the drinks possible with no logic whatsoever, that definitely wasn't for me. If you're thinking this is a blade runner kind of cyberpunk you will be sorely disapointed, this is more like animal crossing cyberpunk, but animal crossing actually has engaging gameplay. Full Review »
  2. Jun 2, 2019
    9
    VA-11 Hall-A est un jeu particulier. Unique en son genre. Il faut adhérer bien sûr au concept du visual novel et des graphismes Pc-98, mais leVA-11 Hall-A est un jeu particulier. Unique en son genre. Il faut adhérer bien sûr au concept du visual novel et des graphismes Pc-98, mais le fond dépasse les **** défauts de la forme. L’histoire est passionnante, mature, et le monde cyberpunk dystopique dans lequel travaille notre joli barmaid Jill est terrifiant de réalisme. Les clients et leurs états d’âme vous feront parfois réfléchir sur votre propre existence et votre place dans la société. Lorsque le 4iéme mur est brisé par une narration brillante, on comprend que l’on a affaire à un grand jeu! Full Review »
  3. Jun 1, 2019
    9
    I was initially drawn to this game because of the similarities I thought it would have to The Red Strings Club, and to my delight it deliveredI was initially drawn to this game because of the similarities I thought it would have to The Red Strings Club, and to my delight it delivered a great story. Can easily recommend this to anyone who enjoys story games. Full Review »