When I first heard about We Are OFK, I approached it with hesitance. A game solely created to advertise a new and upcoming band’s new EP? Preposterous! But with just a few hours spent with the band, my opinion was flipped.
We Are OFK follows Itsumi, Jey, Carter, Luca and Debug (known colloquially as OFK) through their journey creating their debut EP “We Are OFK”. With the player, the indie pop band experiences the hardships and triumphs of friendships, dating, and paying rent in Los Angeles. This review will not contain any story spoilers, as I think it will hinder a reader’s experience during their playthrough.
First and foremost, this game will not cater to everyone, there is very minimal gameplay throughout. In fact, you are spending a large chunk of each episode just clicking through dialogue and choosing choices that don’t seem to impact the outcome of the narrative. However, the game is marketed as a Music Biopic series and Interactive E.P., so I will be reviewing it as such. The first thing you notice about this game is the charm given by its unique art style. It’s simple yet engrossing. I can’t remember the last game I played with a signature style such as this one. You can tell every scene in the game was crafted in a way to make the player put the controller down and look around. The environments, on top of the wonderful narrative, make for this to be a journey that every gamer should experience.
The writers of the game have hit the nail on the head when it comes to the dialogue and narrative. A game like this which relies solely on the narrative could have been a disaster if the mark was missed. But Team OFK invites you into the quirky friend circle that is OFK, and every time you are talking to or texting a fellow band member, it feels like you’re chatting with your friends. In story-driven games like this, I crave that emotional connection with the characters, and that’s exactly what I got.
We Are OFK is a game with many queer themes. Queer people will more than likely enjoy this game more than non-queer people. As I was playing the game, I saw a part of myself in each of these characters. They all have these relatable personality traits which is refreshing in this modern era of games with unrelatable super-human protagonists.
Towards the end of each chapter the game places you into a music video for each song on the EP. In the first two chapters “Follow/Unfollow” and “Fool’s Gold” are the featured songs. The visual aesthetic of the game and the music from the EP are very cohesive and the songs are bops. Throughout the first two chapters, the band members make references to Queen, Lana Del Rey, Lady Gaga, Lady Gaga and Lady Gaga (seriously, she was mentioned a lot!). As you’re listening to the songs you can see that the music is inspired by these iconic musicians.
The music videos are definitely the highlight of the gameplay. I found myself eagerly awaiting the next one after the experience that was “Follow/Unfollow”. The music videos put you in control of one of the band members and have you participate in some mini-games throughout. The mini-games aren’t groundbreaking, but they are fun and are a great break from the point-and-click portion of the game.
Screenshot provided by Team OFK
Visuals. Visuals. Visuals. The art style in We Are OFK is nothing short of exceptional. The emotion of each scene is effortlessly portrayed throughout the game. If a character is feeling something, the art team behind We Are OFK wanted you to know. The way Team OFK created a game where the visuals, writing and music are all so complimenting to each other is such a special thing to accomplish. I played the game on the console with the most graphical constraints, the Nintendo Switch, but the visuals still held up and while there were some frame rate drops, it was very sparce and didn’t impact my enjoyment of the game at all.
Editor’s Note: As I’ve only played the first two episodes, this article will be updated in a few weeks. From what I’ve experienced so far, I think the remaining three episodes will also be a visual and audio feast for hungry eyes and ears.
We Are OFK is a delightful game that instantly welcomes you into the band, OFK. While not the most interactive experience, the game holds a triple threat that is the narrative, visuals and music. Team OFK should be proud of what they have made here and I’m genuinely excited to see what they work on next.