Get In The Car, Loser!: A Fun Queer RPG – PC Review
I’ve always enjoyed RPGs, especially those that send you on grand adventures to fight fated evil with over the top weapons and special attacks. So when I heard about Get In The Car, Loser – a queer RPG based around friendship, self-acceptance and tracking down a thousand-year-old evil, I was sold immediately.
Get In The Car, Loser begins with protagonist Sam standing outside her school, The Academy of Order, while waiting for her friend Grace and Grace’s partner, Valentin, to pick her up. Without spoiling too much, she’s been convinced to join them on a road trip for summer. She quickly realises this is a quest to fight an ancient evil with a legendary sword that Grace has stolen from the school. The plot is a fun mix of fantasy, camp and adventure, and this combination made me excited to discover what would come next.
The mechanics of the game are relatively simple. You drive along long stretches of highway, switching lanes to either enter into or avoid fights with monsters. At the same time, you need to keep an eye on your fuel gauge and make sure you time your rest stops so that you don’t run out on your way. Stopping at petrol stations lets you interact with various NPCs, buy and craft items to help power up your party, and explore small parts of the beautiful pixel landscape.
“The art in Get In The Car, Loser is incredibly impressive.”
Admittedly combat was a little confusing initially, and the types of attacks your party can do run on a cycle. If you need a character to taunt, so the enemy will stop healing itself, you’ll need to wait until that type of attack comes up again on the cycle. The cycle runs on a timer, and you have to wait until the timer has run down to 0 before you can attack again. So, timing your attacks for when an enemy is moving is essential.
You can alter the types of attacks by crafting and equipping different items. Items also do different things when equipped with different characters. In typical RPG fashion, it’s worth planning out what items you’re going to equip if you have a big fight coming up. However, once you get the hang of the combat system, it becomes satisfying to create different combo cycles and strategies.
The art in Get In The Car, Loser is incredibly impressive. The entire game is illustrated in a nostalgic pixel style, which took me right back to playing games in the 90s and provided a fun sense of nostalgia. Despite the limitations this style can often have, the sprites are intricate, with each character having a distinct personality from their designs alone. The landscape is just as stunning and made me want to explore the map beyond the screen. Not many new games allow me to use my imagination to fill in the gaps, but I loved imagining the rest of the world.
“The game deals with more serious themes of self-discovery and self-acceptance.”
One of my favourite tropes in games is when the characters know they’re in a video game and break the fourth wall. Get In The Car, Loser has this in spades. Sam constantly makes comments about tutorials and fighting enemies that are multiple levels above them, and each time, it made me laugh. The writing is tongue in cheek, and the humour targets millennials and those who spend a lot of time online (i.e. me).
You are given dialogue options at various points that help decide certain things in the game, such as what you want Sam’s backstory to be and her relationship with her party members. Each choice gives an emotional tag such as flustered, heroic and, amusingly, Sam-like. These choices help thrust the player into Sam’s role and add a touch of personalisation to the game since there are no customisation options for any characters.
As well as the overarching storyline of journeying to save the world, the game deals with more serious themes of self-discovery, self-acceptance and how to work through anxiety to become the hero. The comedic writing balances these themes, and both sides complement each other to make a poignant yet still amusing experience. The game is unabashedly queer and is described by the developer as “the disaster lesbian representation we need in 2021”, and quite frankly, I agree.
Get In The Car, Loser is incredibly witty, charming and beautiful, but, most importantly, it is fun. It provides excellent representation for under-represented groups and is just a good time in general.
The game is currently available for free on Steam.
Get In The Car, Loser Review
Get In The Car, Loser is a delightful game packed with witty humour, gorgeous art and explosive fights. It provides excellent queer representation and packs a punch with characters that we can all relate to in one way or another.
Gorgeous Pixel Art
Great Queer and Gender-Diverse Representation
Confusing Battle System That Can Take Time to Learn