Longterm readers of Geeky Hobbies will likely already know that I am a huge fan of the cooperative video game genre. In fact it may be my favorite video game genre at this point. Ever since I was a kid I have been a big fan of couch co-op games. There was a period where couch co-op was basically abandoned by the industry, in recent years the indie video game genre has really started to pick up the slack. Games like the Overcooked series have brought new life to the cooperative genre creating games that are a blast to play that almost anyone can play. As a huge fan of this genre, when I first heard of Very Very Valet I was really excited. A silly wacky cooperative game built around being negligent valets? Count me in. I don’t think I have ever played a game built around being a valet before, and the concept seemed perfect for a cooperative game. Very Very Valet is a fresh and highly entertaining take on the cooperative video game genre that unfortunately ends too quickly.
In Very Very Valet you play as an elite team of puppet valets. Wherever there is a need for cars to be parked quickly you and your fellow valets are called in to remedy the situation. No matter the circumstances no job is too great. Will you be able to save the world from an impeding severe parking crisis?
The basic premise behind Very Very Valet is quite simple. You and up to three other players will work as valets. Customers for the local establishment(s) will pull up. As the customers are inpatient you need to take the keys to the car and park it somewhere while the customer is inside. You can either do this like a normal valet and park it in the nearby parking garage, or you can leave the car pretty much anywhere. Some customers will spend quite a bit of time at the business, while others will be in and out quickly. After the customer is done they will leave the business and will want their car delivered to the pick up location. Before the timer runs out you need to return the car they arrived in (indicated above the car) to the pick up location. If you fail to either pick up or drop off a car within time, you will lose the car for good which will hurt your final score.
To begin the game most of the missions will be simple. Pick up the car, park it somewhere, and then drop it off after a period of time. As you progress in the game though things get more complicated. There will be locations with multiple pickup and drop off locations. Some locations will also force you to drive the cars into specific areas for work to be done. The parking situations for some of the locations are also more complicated requiring teleporters, launchers, and other gadgets.
With such a simple game concept, it should not be a surprise that Very Very Valet is really easy to play. While on foot there is a dodge/dash button, and a button that enters and exits vehicles. Otherwise you have to deal with the driving. I will say that the driving does take a little time to get used to. Instead of using a button to drive forward and reverse, the game uses an analog stick for the driving. Basically you use the analog stick to alter your driving arrow and the car moves in the direction that the arrow is pointed. What makes this a little more complicated is that to switch from forward to reverse you need to wait for the car to fully stop before changing the direction that you push the analog stick. It may take some time to get used to, but afterwards the controls are really straightforward and easy to use.
This is a good thing because Very Very Valet is basically meant to be a game that is played in family/party situations. Therefore the game was designed where pretty much anyone can play it. Whether you play a lot or very few video games, I don’t see you really having any troubles playing Very Very Valet. In fact I could see the game working really well as a family game. Helping this is the fact that the game is entirely cooperative where everyone is working together to try and succeed.
I began this review talking about how I am a huge fan of the cooperative video game genre. Because of this I had pretty high expectations for the Very Very Valet. Despite these high expectations the game succeeded at meeting them if not even surpassing them. Very Very Valet succeeds because the developers know what it is that fans of this genre like. The gameplay is simple and to the point. Pick up cars, park them, and eventually bring them back. That pretty much sums it all up. Despite this simple gameplay loop, the game succeeds because this is just so enjoyable. I can’t really explain why, but it is a lot more fun being a valet than you might be expecting. The driving itself is satisfying, but then you add in all of the other quirks which keep things interesting.
Very Very Valet is obviously different than a lot of cooperative games due to the theme, but it played quite a bit more like games like Overcooked than I was anticipating. The main gameplay may be different, but the overall feel of the game is still very similar. Players need to work well together in order to divvy up the tasks so all of the cars are handled in time. The game does a very good job taking simple gameplay and making it satisfying with various tweaks. It may not quite be the best game from this genre that I have ever played, but I would say that it is towards the top as I had a blast playing it.
I think one of the main reasons that the game succeeds is that it never takes itself serious. While you are working as a valet and thus should treat the customers’ cars well, the game simply doesn’t care what you do with the cars. You can be nice and actually try to park them well, or you can ram through cars and just leave cars sitting in the middle of the street. You aren’t punished in any way for driving reckless. In fact in some ways the game rewards you for cutting corners in order to save time. Who care if you create a massive car pileup if it saves you a couple seconds?
This leads to the game being pretty hilarious at times. As you are best off cutting corners whenever possible, a bunch of reckless driving ensues leading to tons of laughs throughout the game. Cars, people and drivers will fly everywhere. The game doesn’t really care about presenting realistic physics either so anything can happen. There were times in the game where it was hard not to laugh at what we were witnessing on screen. Because of this the game likely would be pretty entertaining just to watch. While you are busy driving you might not see everything that goes on in the game, but thankfully every level ends with the players voting for the best “play” of the game. I ended up playing a pre-release version of the game so this might be “fixed” for the final version. While some of the clips are actually of players doing a good job, the game seems just as likely to pick clips where players are messing up or are literally doing nothing. It might be weird voting between several “plays” of people doing nothing of significance, but I thought this just added to the game’s overall humor.
Speaking of the game’s silly nature, I thought the game’s overall atmosphere was quite good as well. The game’s story is pretty basic like most games in this genre. Basically you work for a valet company that eventually has to start dealing with a problem of cars suddenly disappearing into the sky. The story is silly, but it works for the type of game that Very Very Valet is. As for the theme itself I thought it was quite good. I don’t really understand why the game’s world features normal human beings and then “muppet” like creatures that work as valets, but it works. The game’s graphical style is quite good and it only adds to the game’s overall silly nature. If you are looking for a silly game, Very Very Valet will succeed at giving you what you are looking for.
While I had a blast playing Very Very Valet, I will say that I didn’t find the game to be all that difficult. Outside of some of the “special” levels, we were able to three star most of the levels on our first attempt. We ended up playing through the game on normal difficulty at first. This was because I didn’t notice the ability to raise the difficulty until we had already beaten the game. I ended up replaying some of the levels on the hardest difficulty though to test how much harder it was. While more difficult, I still didn’t find most of the levels to be very difficult. Unless you are playing the game with someone who normally doesn’t play a lot of video games or games in this cooperative genre, I would recommend just starting with the hardest difficulty as that should make the game a little more challenging.
I think the game’s simplicity comes from a couple different things. First I play a lot of games from the cooperative genre and thus have become quite good at most games from this genre. I found Very Very Valet to be quite a bit easier than most of the games from this genre. I think a lot of this has to deal with the game being kind of lenient with the time limits. This might be adjusted if you play with more players (we only played with two players), but outside of a couple missions we usually had quite a bit of time to handle all of the customers preventing them from becoming upset. If you do a good job keeping track of the various waiting times you shouldn’t have too many problems. Probably the thing that contributes the most to the game’s simplicity though is that you don’t have to really care about where you park customers’ cars. We basically parked cars everywhere. The cars for fast customers we just parked at the drop off location so we didn’t even have to worry about picking up the car again. The only real “punishment” for poor parking is that you might eventually get a huge car pileup making it harder to drive cars to their eventual destination. This adds to the game’s wackiness though as some of the car pileups are kind of hilarious as the AI tries to figure out how to get their car out of the pile of cars.
While I wish the game was a little more difficult to provide more of a challenge, I didn’t mind it all that much as the game is meant to be an accessible game that anyone can play. The main issue I had with the difficulty is that it makes Very Very Valet pretty short. The game has around 20 levels. While these levels are a blast to play, I really wish there were more of them. The game introduces quite a few different tweaks to the formula and then never really uses them again. Some people may have felt like this was padding, but I would have had no problem with extra levels being created where the layout is only slightly tweaked as I would have still really enjoyed them. With most of the levels only taking a couple of minutes, we ended up beating the entire game within about four hours. We were having such a blast playing the game that it was disappointing that it ended earlier than we would have liked. I think the game had a lot more that it could have done with the mechanics as well. For this reason I really hope that Very Very Valet gets some DLC at some point.
Being a huge fan of the genre and generally intrigued by the game’s premise, I had pretty high expectations heading into playing Very Very Valet. Despite this the game met all my expectations and in some ways surpassed them. Basically the game is a valet simulator that doesn’t really care about being realistic. The controls take a little while to get used to, but the game is really easy to play where everyone should be able to pick it up. While the basic gameplay is pretty simple, it is just so satisfying. The game also does a good job mixing things up to keep things interesting. Maybe the game’s greatest asset though is just that the game is so silly that it can be hilarious at times. If you enjoy silly games you will likely have a blast with Very Very Valet. I will say that the game is on the easier side though. This leads to the game being kind of short where I wish it was longer as I was having a blast until it ended.
My recommendation for Very Very Valet is pretty simple. If you don’t generally like silly cooperative games or aren’t interested in playing as a valet, Very Very Valet may not be for you. If the concept intrigues you at all though or you generally enjoy these type of games; I would highly recommend checking out Very Very Valet as I had a blast playing it.
We at Geeky Hobbies would like to thank Toyful for the review copy of Very Very Valet used for this review. Other than receiving a free copy of the game to review, we at Geeky Hobbies received no other compensation for this review. Receiving the review copy for free had no impact on the content of this review or the final score.