Four Horsemen is a visual novel game that tells the story of the immigration experience through the eyes of four teenagers. It follows the group as they try to find a place for themselves in a world war II era bunker which they’ve decided to ‘claim’ as their new hangout.
The game is set in a present-day dystopian country that they immigrated to as refugees. This is further explained to the player as they progress through the game. The player starts the game armed with only the information they’ve collected from the Steam description.
Gameplay in Four Horsemen is exactly like what you’d expect from a visual novel. There’s lots of clicking to get through the text boxes. However, the game is separated into different days where the player is able to choose what to do. It’s possible to visit the hardware store or dumpster dive during the day while the evenings have other options for each character.
Each character has their own unique story and there are nine different endings in the game. There are four unique main storylines for players to explore so there’s a good amount of replay value. In addition to this, there are 12 playable homelands which all play differently. The game doesn’t really explain this at first so it’s a little bit confusing to be faced with a list of possible countries for the first time.
In addition to the standard visual novel gameplay, there’s also ‘combat’ in the game. This ‘combat’ system is built around the player talking and responding to what their enemy is saying to outtalk them essentially. It’s an interesting mechanic and you have to pay close attention to what’s being said in order to win.
The music does loop endlessly with a distinctive ‘end’ to the music before it starts to play again. This is quite annoying as a result. In addition to this, the lack of explanation can make the start of the game a little bit confusing initially but the player should quickly understand what the game wants them to do. The game also opens in a small window with no option to enlarge it to a fullscreen mode.
Four Horsemen is an interesting addition to the visual novel genre and it’s certainly built on a very interesting topic.