Thanks to the wonder of simulation games, gamers are able to transport themselves into the role of their dreams. Dating simulators can make even the most lonely shut-in a popular Lothario, while the popular Sims series allows users to simulate placing a man in a room without doors and watching as he cries and pees himself to death. SimCity even managed to recreate the experience of having a game but not being able to actually play it. Oh, also there’s something about city management in there too. But these are grandiose in scale, allowing you to micromanage a family of people or an entire bustling metropolis. Haven’t you ever just wanted to play a game where you could simulate the experience of something simple like drinking a soda?
Well someone made that anyway, because apparently every other possible idea was already taken. Soda Drinker Pro is a game about drinking sodas at your leisure. Do you chug it all down at once? Do you slowly sip the sweet nectar of soda-y goodness? Or do you turn the game off because even at free, the game is overpriced? Whatever you decide to do, this game exists, and the universe is slightly sadder for that fact alone. A morbid curiosity caused me to check out this game, and I’m almost positive that this is the last time I will ever be curious about anything.
Soda Drinker Pro is about as minimal as an experience can get and still be classified as a game. Use the left mouse button to bring the soda to your mouth. Use the right to loudly sip your soda. Try to ignore the sobbing of your loved ones as you waste your life. That’s it. That is literally everything you need to know about the game. This is an actual soda drinking simulator. Drinking soda is all you do, and I can’t even fathom how anyone could ever be interesting in this, even ironically. You can technically move around in the same sense that tectonic plates technically move around, and it feels like you are wading your way through mayonnaise. Walking occurs at a glacial pace, which realistically reflects the fact that your vociferous soda consumption has lead to early onset diabetes. For some reason, you walk faster if you shimmy sideways so either you’re playing as some sort of soda loving crab or your character is so fat from consuming nothing but soda that you get stuck walking forward even in open spaces.
As you sip, you can hear the weird, ethereal ramblings of your subconscious, and it reveals the thoughts of a deranged lunatic. “I wish I could eat soda,” you hear someone say, and at this point it would not surprise you if this line was followed by the desperate bleating of a goat being slaughtered. The same handful of phrases repeat endlessly throughout the first stage, the last stage, and the numerous nightmares you’ll be having long after the game finishes. The bizarre environments that look to be drawn by a fourth grader after they first discovered Microsoft Paint and the stupid, almost surreal gameplay create this odd mix that causes the game to be infinitely more unsettling than most actual horror games I’ve played. I wouldn’t have been surprised if after completing the game, the room warped and revealed a shed full of dismembered corpses, showing you what your character had actually been doing while you thought you were playing Soda Drinker Pro.
I played through all ten levels in the free demo in the span of about ten minutes, and I regret every single moment of it. They’re all basically the same thing, and sipping on fake soda at the beach is every bit as boring as sipping it with weird, floating geometric shapes. There is absolutely no one out there that this game will impress. If you managed to thaw out a caveman to whom fire was still a novelty and showed him this game, he would immediately try to trap himself in another block of ice in the hopes that the next time period he awoke in would be less dumb. It isn’t even that I don’t like weird experiences, because I delight in the absurd. The stranger, the better. But Soda Drinker Pro isn’t weird; it’s just bad.