Neo Cabby Aethyna Oct 15, 2019 | 1 Votes | 24 Played | 0 Reviews 10 rate Set in a futuristic yet dystopian world where everything, including taxi services, is getting increasingly automated, Neo Cab is an in-depth interactive story where you play as Lina, one of the very last few human driver-for-hire at Neo Cab. Converse with your passengers and maybe they’d reveal their own secrets. Play Now Similar Games Played
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Set in a futuristic yet dystopian world where everything, including taxi services, is getting increasingly automated, Neo Cab is an in-depth interactive story where you play as Lina, one of the very last few human driver-for-hire at Neo Cab. Converse with your passengers and maybe they’d reveal their secrets. If you’re lucky, you may even uncover important clues that will lead you to your missing friend, Savy.
[Spoiler alert: There are some story-related spoilers here]
Neo Cab is set in a dystopian futuristic world where big corporations like Capra have taken over entire cities - Los Ojos being one of them. From charging stations for cars to capsule hotels to even the local cryptocurrency, Capra Coin, Capra has its fingers in every business pie in the city.
It has even rolled out its fleet of autocars (driverless cars) that are designed to edge out cab services in the city, essentially monopolizing yet another business market. However, surprisingly, Neo Cab, which is a rideshare service that works on an Uber-like model, always seem to have enough business to keep the service going – probably because some people actually appreciate a nice cab conversation while being driven to their destination, and Capra is having none of that.
It is currently lobbying to ban non-autocars on the streets via Sophie’s Bill, claiming that all human-operated cars are death machines and are accidents that are just waiting to happen. A bill that will kill the livelihood of hard-working Neo Cab drivers like your character, Lina. But of course, not many people know that Capra has also been actively burying and settling (out of court) multiple reports of autocars running over people without even stopping due to malfunctioning sensors or being programmed to prioritize the safety of its passengers over that of a pedestrian who’s just crossing the road.
The game also has an overarching storyline that’s a bit more on a personal level. Lina is a human with her own “baggage” and in hope of getting away from it all, she accepted an invitation to join her best friend, Savy, in this new city called Los Ojos. However, things are brewing in the city and somehow, Savy was caught up in them. After a desperate text message asking you to quickly come and pick her up, and a frantic dash to the location she sent you, you arrived there only to find an empty street and Savy’s smashed phone on the ground.
In your search for your missing friend, you may eventually be drawn into whatever mess Savy found herself knee-deep in, and that might not be such a great thing for a Neo Cab driver who’s struggling to survive the day-to-day in a pretty foreign city.
The gameplay here is nothing short of astounding! As an interactive story, Neo Cab has some impressive writing, for both the storyline and the dialogues, and a host of interesting new characters that you’d meet as you drive your passengers around the city.
These characters are filled with personality that ranges from downright eccentric to quirky yet relatable. You’ll get to talk to them, getting them to share something about themselves if you’re great at getting people to open up, by choosing the correct dialogue choices, you may even get them to reveal something about themselves that they are trying hard to hide like the fact that the well-groomed “tourist” in the backseat turned out to be a well-mannered ex-convict who was recently released from a 10-year stint in prison and aspires to set up a cookie shop named after his aunt.
Some stories you’ll reveal can be heartbreaking; some can be inspirational; others can be worrying for Lina as a Neo Cab driver; and well, sometimes, a good conversation may even open up something more. Of course, your choices do matter and it’s really up to you how you’d like to drive the conversation while driving your passengers to their destination. You can pick up the same passengers again and you’ll get to learn something new about them, that is if your previous ride had been pleasant.
From time to time, you might also encounter incidences where you’ll have to make a decision, such as risking getting a ticket by picking up passengers in a strictly Capra-only zone or risking something much more by helping a protestor escape from the police.
As a Neo Cab driver, your ultimate goal is to get 5 stars from your passengers and as such, you might want to go to great lengths to not offend them even if you do disagree with what they are saying. If one of your passengers gave you a bad rating, it is very likely the passenger will not use Neo Cab again and you’ll lose your chance to learn more about him or her, plus you’ll also lose a chance to earn some more money.
Your character’s mood is a very important aspect of this game because it will either prevent you from choosing certain dialogue choices or even open up new ones. You’ll have a mood bracelet called a FeelGrid in Neo Cab and it’ll show you your emotional state, depending on how the conversation is going. Interestingly enough, the game even included facial expressions for both Lina and her passengers so you can try to read your passengers’ facial expressions to learn more about what they are thinking or feeling since your passengers don’t usually have a Feelgrid.
Besides making a living, you will also need to spend cash to recharge your car at the many charging stations around the city – note that different stations will have different prices – as well as to spend some cash to rent a place to sleep, whether it is in one of Capra’s many cheap capsule hotels or in an expensive but proper bed.
I guess Neo Cab can be played as a local co-op game of sorts if you want since you can have a couple of friends come over to your place and vote on the dialogue choices. However, it’s more likely that you’ll be playing the game by yourself as this game is mainly designed to be a single-player experience.
The gorgeous comic book-style graphics are a perfect fit for the sci-fi setting in this game. As mentioned before as well, I love that the characters in this game don’t just have one neutral facial expression throughout and you can see noticeable changes when, for instance, the character says or finds something amusing or sad.
The music and sounds here are amazing as well, providing a nice atmosphere to read the many dialogue texts in Neo Cab. Unfortunately, probably due to budget constraints, there is no voice acting in this game. The game would be even better if there’s voice acting for each of the characters, I think.
All in all, Neo Cab is a fascinating and thought-provoking interactive story that places a lot of emphasis on the value of cab conversations and the way mood can affect what we say. It also makes you really think about the consequences of certain advancements in technology and how massive corporations that are large enough to circumvent any oversight placed on them, can monopolize all aspects of our lives. Of course, there’s even an overarching story where you’re trying to find your missing friend who disappeared under some pretty worrying and mysterious circumstances.
So, if you’re into games that have amazing storytelling and where your choices will affect your relationship with the many quirky characters in the game, then Neo Cab is definitely a game that’s right up your alley. Trust me, it’s worth the price!