Alicia Von Volish seems to have a tendency to wake up after nights of alcohol and passion (subtle way of saying sex) only to find mysteries she needs to solve the moment she’s up. As far as detective stories go, it’s a pretty good way to start a day. Still, AR-K‘s main struggle is attempting to mount a pretty interesting narrative while dealing with several technical missteps within the game itself.
As mentioned earlier, the game stars Alicia Van Volish, a former cadet and star pupil at the police academy (future space police academy), when a conspiracy involving a mysterious golden orb leads to her arrest and subsequent expulsion from the force. Now she’s an ex-con and a journalism student, attempting to utilize her keen deductive powers in the field of investigative reporting. That is until the golden orb rears its ugly head back into her life.
But that’s giving away too much as it is. Episode 1 starts earlier when she wakes up hungover from a one night stand with no recollection of who her mysterious partner was from the previous night. The stage is set and the mystery is afoot for the case of the forgotten booty call.
If any of this sounds fun to you, that’s because it’s a pretty entertaining story in and of itself. Written by award winning comic book writer Greg Rucka, he is a writer famed for writing stories for some of comic’s strongest female protagonists such as Elektra and Wonder Woman. It definitely shows with Alicia Van Volish whose sarcasm and witty remarks comes off as a particularly potent form of toxic.
This is both good and bad.
While her ability to respond verbally to most of her challenges comes off as entertaining and intelligent, when she points that no-nonsense attitude at the player for getting the answer to a puzzle wrong, it gets a little frustrating. Still, that’s her character and you have to respect someone that sticks to their guns. Speaking of, Alicia is a character that tends to utilize her sex appeal quite a bit, which comes across as a bit heavy handed in its execution. It is less empowering than it is just plain fanservice.