Thirsty Suitors Review

The last thing most people would ever want to do would be to confront their exes. After all, they’re exes for a reason, and a lot of break-ups do not end cordially. Well, that’s the opposite of what happens in Thirsty Suitors from Outerloop Games.

If you’ve never heard of this game before, here’s why you should pay attention to it.

Down on her luck, and dealing with yet another break-up, after which she was tossed out onto the street with nothing, a twenty-five year-old woman named Jala returns to her quaint hometown and moves back in with her parents. This would be hard enough for most young adults, but it just so happens that Jala hasn’t seen her family in quite some time. This is especially true of her sister, who we find out is soon getting married. Has Jala been told, or received an invitation? No.

Thus begins a really quirky and charming quest, in which our young heroine tries to fix her life and the relationships she has with her family, all while trying to find her sister. This is easier said than done, though, because coming home means she’s definitely going to run into her exes, which happens pretty early on. In fact, all five or so of them find out that she’s back in town, and try to woo her anew. It seems that these relationships didn’t end as badly as some because, as the title suggests, these ex suitors are still thirsty for Jala.

Thirsty Suitors isn’t a typical kind of game. In fact, it’s an amalgamation of different genres, including skateboarding. You can skate around town, complete killer combos and collect money in the process. Meanwhile, there’s even a skate park to enjoy, with some challenges to be taken upon oneself, including some where you’re trying to collect as many burgers as possible before the timer stops. It isn’t just a skateboarding game, though. No, not at all.

You see, this game about Indian culture, relationships and family is also a turn-based RPG and a cooking game. Yes, you read that right.

The general idea here is that Jala must do battle against her exes, then choose how to proceed with them. This results in some really quirky battles, including one where a guy’s pet cat basically turns into a talking tiger. There’s nothing basic or unoriginal about this design, which features lots of different options, including a basic attack, taunts (which can make your opponents rage, thirsty, or another status type) and special abilities that cause extra damage. It’s a rather well thought out battle system, which deserves credit. Hell, you can even call Jala’s mom in to smack enemies with her sandal.

Of course, you’re not only going to do battle against your thirsty exes. In fact, there are a number of other characters — including an ex’s sister and some skate punks — who wish to best you in combat. Some are optional, but most are not.

That’s just one — well, the main — part of this game. You can also try to win Jala’s parents over by cooking with them, which turns into a bunch of quick-time events that you’re rated on. Doing well will earn you up to three stars per recipe. It’s up to you how you get there, though, because there will sometimes be options to do things like ‘super wash your hands’ or ‘super stir,’ which introduce tougher and faster quick-time events. Then again, the bigger the risk the bigger the reward.

There are also optional side quests, in which you text (or are texted by) Jala’s exes after beating them in battle. They may ask you to fight someone, or they may ask you to cook them something. Cooking is a good thing to do, though, because you can use the foods you cook to gain health and special power in battle, or to up your defense or attack, or whatnot.

Needless to say, this is a pretty quirky, and original, game. It’s unlike anything I’d ever played before, and that’s a good thing. I went in expecting something different, and got what I wanted.

This originality continues on to the visuals, which feature very unique character models and an incredibly colourful style. This game doesn’t take itself seriously, so expect comical cutscenes involving Jala’s parents reacting to the food she’s cooked, including caricatures of them and Indian culture. Everything — from the presumably hand crafted character models, to the colourful environments — has been designed with love and care, and it really shows.

Thankfully, the voice acting and writing are also strong. This game could’ve fallen apart if not for the fact that both are good. They’re both quirky and sometimes exaggerated, but that’s not a bad thing.

In the end, it’s tough to really fault Thirsty Suitors. It’s not the best game I’ve ever played, but it’s definitely one of the most original and interesting. There’s a rather good game here, and it’s one that those who are willing to look outside the proverbial box will likely enjoy. It’s certainly easy to recommend.

This review is based on the PlayStation 5 version of the game, which we were provided.

Thirsty Suitors Review
Reader Rating0 Votes
The Good Stuff
Very original
Has a good battle system
It's a decent, but unspectacular, skateboarding game. Then again, that's just one part of the experience.
A memorable story
Lots to cook
The Not-So-Good Stuff
The skateboarding is decent at best, but that's fine
Some of the quick-time events can be challenging, and very fast