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VA-11 HALL-A, the cyberpunk bartender action game, is getting a sequel

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The cyberpunk bartender action game VA-11 HALL-A is getting a sequel, and its title is just as weird (and annoying to type) as the original. N1RV ANN-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action will feature the new adventures of a new bartender named Sam, who works at the "most iconic and luxurious bar" in the idyllic upscale paradise of Saint Alicia. 

Not all is as it appears, however, and Saint Alicia's glittering facade hides a seedy criminal underbelly, replete with extortion, trafficking, and worse. Sam's partner Leon is hip-deep in it as a member of the Yakuza, which puts a tremendous strain on their relationship. Through it all, you must serve drinks to people who will stop at almost nothing to maintain their lifestyles, not just for yourself but also your eight-year-old son, Tony. 

It sounds like N1RV ANN-A will play a lot like VA-11 HALL-A, as lives and stories will change based on which drinks are served to what customers. Relate well to your patrons and you'll unlock secrets and earn better tips that will enable you to build a better life—and maybe put all this cyberpunk bartending business behind you. 

“Most games use a big-picture perspective, but what made VA11 HALL-A special was its focus on the characters and their problems,” Sukeban Games co-founder Christopher 'Kiririn51' Ortiz said. "It’s about getting to know people on a personal level, this time with a shiny new location, more options for drink orders, and more ways to relate to customers." 

We didn't find VA-11 HALL-A all that terribly engaging, saying in our 2016 review that it tries to do interesting things, but is mainly just boring to play—although we noted that if "you long for a cyberpunk narrative you can really get your teeth into," it might do the trick. For an awful lot of players, it clearly did: User reviews on Steam are "overwhelmingly positive," and people on GOG seem to like it a lot too. N1RV ANN-A is currently expected to be out sometime in 2020. 

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.