Top Critic Average
This is slow burn gaming experience that is not for everyone, but those that fall into the demographic it’s aiming for are going to be absolutely smitten with it. Where The Water Tastes Like Wine is like nothing else I’ve ever played and is a title I intend to keep savouring over coming weeks.
In short, Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is an incredible achievement, and the latest in a growing body of games that really push the bounds of what the medium can do. It is, at its heart, a game about stories, and the incredible power that they have, brought to life in the most beautiful way possible.
That being said, you shouldn't go into this one looking to speedrun it. Like, well, a fine wine, this game is meant to be savored. Play half an hour a night, maybe an hour. The stories will still be there for you. Your friends might hop from town to town, but you'll always be able to find them. And if you're unlucky, or perhaps lucky, the Wolf will also find you.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is absolutely a solid and engrossing game. It may be slower for some, but even then it's something to play for a few hours at the least. I found myself traveling to faraway points just to see what little story I could find and unravel in the middle of nowhere. I enjoyed finding stories I previously told become larger and larger, subtly changing with each new retelling. I enjoyed getting to know those who lived on the road and away from civilization, understanding their quirks and seeing just how my interactions with them affected my travels. Topped with impressive voice acting, a stunning soundtrack, and beautiful visuals...I highly recommend trying this game out. It's a different experience, but getting to explore early Americana and listening to its tales should be hard to pass up.
Despite the star authors, Where The Water Tastes Like Wine runs the risk of being overlooked by the general public. Game is very specific in form and deep in content, almost devoid of gameplay in the usual sense. A collection of stories, dipping into folklore and exploring basic American archetypes under the guise of a video game.
Review in Russian | Read full review
As a game devoted to the art of storytelling itself, Where the Water Tastes Like Wine shines with its powerful writing, exceptional voice-acting, and its visual and aural elements that bring players back into the time of tall tales and endless stretches of road to explore. While its gameplay structure might be a bit loose for some players, the tales and characters that Where the Water Tastes Like Wine introduces make the journey to the promised land that much sweeter, even if there is no telling what is on the horizon.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is a game as well as a full experience. It transports you to another time and another place, and brings you to the stream of American legends. With fun, inventive gameplay and story after story to collect, it's a game unlike any other.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is an excellent exploration of stories and the meanings we place upon them. It's a road trip game through the American landscape that's punctuated by astounding writing and entertaining encounters. There's nothing quite like it, and it's doubtful that there ever will be.
The aesthetics, soundtrack, and writing here are wonderful and more than reward the patience required to fully unravel the game's mysteries. Playing it resulted in an immersion that went beyond my niggles with the gameplay.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine's slow pace may grate on some, but those who can acclimatize are in for a fascinating deconstruction of America, as seen through the myths, folklore, and scraps of history we tell each other.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is an adventure game that perfectly encapsulates the spirit of adventure. Roam the United States countryside, meet interesting folks and swap tall tales until sunrise.
As the debut effort of indie studio Dim Bulb Games, featuring a talented group of writers and a star-studded voice acting cast, Where the Water Tastes Like Wine eagerly explores the "mythological Americana folk adventure point-and-click visual novel" genre with an eerily unnerving but deeply loved austerity.
Where the Water Tastes like Wine is an engrossing trip into 1920s America that brings its mystical - and sometimes dark - storybook setting alive. Its game mechanics don’t work as well, but it’s an amazing instance of storytelling in an interactive medium, and visual novel fans should pick it up
There are some unfortunate glitches that really hurt the ability to enjoy the atmosphere the game is trying to create. This doesn’t change the fact though that it is still a game worth checking out.
Where The Water Tastes Like Wine gets to translate the oral narrative into a game mechanic. The way the game transforms and mutate the stories that we know and we tale make the game a deep reflection about the most human act of all: telling our experiences to other so they can learn from us.
Review in Spanish | Read full review
A powerful, rich, and exceptionally well written narrative experience, with exploration mechanics that heighten the power of its stories, Where The Water Tastes Like Wine is let down by its own central premise. Fascinating, but flawed.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine excels in its narrative, visuals and audio but really struggles to fit into the video game medium with its tedious gameplay. This is overshadowed by beautiful stories and moments of pure humanity.
I love the idea of Where the Water Tastes Like Wine. It has a lot of personality, and several days after I finished it, I was still humming some of the songs to myself. However, it's impeded by a few gameplay quirks, like how tedious it is to move around.
Overall, if you enjoy a very slow burn game that really seems better suited to being played for an hour or so a day, or just really want something with a huge focus on narrative, Where the Water Tastes Like Wine may scratch that itch. Those looking for a game with more varied gameplay probably won't find much to like here, however, as just walking around an admittedly bland map will likely come to bore you sooner rather than later. The game has value and I certainly enjoyed my time with it, but its Switch debut likely won't turn any more heads than its original release did.
Where The Water Tastes Like Wine almost certainly won't appeal to everyone, but if you can look past its sometimes myopic design, you're sure to fall in love with it.
Where the Water Tastes like Wine is an amazing piece of storytelling caged in an unwieldy game structure. The journey through the States is a charming trip about the importance of the stories we share everyday and a great portrait of America form many point of views. On the long run, unfortunately, the lacklustre gameplay simply fails to sustain the sense of wandering and discovery of such an amazing journey.
Review in Italian | Read full review
An inspired attempt at something new, like an Americana graphic novel read through at a snails pace. The lovely meditative quality to the gameplay eventually becomes somewhat frustrating because of repetition, the limitations of the concept and how much the player can interact with the characters and stories. Regardless of these shortcomings, anyone looking for some fresh ideas in their games should give it a try.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is a game which, deserves your time but not in one sitting because just like any adventure you should just kick back and enjoy the journey. If you’re looking for an experience which is equally enchanting and haunting head over to Steam. Itch.io or GOG. Just remember, take your time.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is a narratively-driven adventure game in which you travel across Depression era USA collecting stories amid a beautiful backdrop of hand-drawn story vignettes. However, the experience is heavily bogged down by a clunky overworld and purely disruptive gamification of an otherwise pleasant collection of stories.
As an interesting intellectual exploration of the role that word-of-mouth plays in storytelling, Where the Water Tastes Like Wine plays like a proof of concept that never graduated beyond an initial prototyping stage. Sure, it has plenty of narratives to uncover, but ultimately the repetitive, shallow mechanics prevent the experience from meeting its full potential. Despite the best efforts of the excellent visual presentation and voice acting, the net product is a hollow shell of what it could've been.
A story packed adventure which spans across the USA, with some wonderfully written stories, a fantastic soundtrack, and some sublime voice acting. However, Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is let down by a map that is too large often resulting in a lot of time spent walking, doing nothing.
Your enjoyment of Where The Water Tastes Like Wine is completely dependent on whether you value story more than gameplay. That element is second to none when it comes to enjoyment, due to both the writing and your evolution as the simple stories grow into complex tales. As a game, that section doesn't hold up. Movement is slow, and the different meters that you have to manage feel rather tacked on. As a whole product, Where The Water Tastes Like Wine can be a drag, but if you're in it for the story, bump up the score and have fun with a game that spins an excellent yarn.
I do think Where The Water Tastes Like Wine is worth a gander, just don’t expect a swan song of a tale or gut punch metaphor about early America. Enjoy it for it what it immediately offers: a fun series of tiny vignettes and discoverable characters to unwind with. Forget the rest.
If you treat Where the Water Tastes Like Wine as a visual novel with added interaction, you'll find a unique premise surrounded with a host of interesting characters and stories. As a video game, however, it is too stripped back to feel substantial and remain engaging through its lengthy run time.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine takes a bold step in trying to make a game based on a concept that is very unusual in this medium. That's something to praise but even though the game features an interesting plot and the stories are certainly worth reading, the gameplay experience does not feel adequate to what is on offer and way too often the game feels like it should have been done differently and with other mechanics.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
With a lovely art style and an entirely intriguing concept, Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is unlike anything you’ll have played before. Its uniqueness makes it worthwhile, but some slow-moving elements, inconsequential mechanics and a few lacklustre stories mean it doesn’t stand out quite as much as it should.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine contains charming stories, wonderful illustrations and voice-acting that fits the game’s slow-paced and relaxing nature. And this is where the budget ran out. I have to assume that after paying Sting, the writers, and the illustrators, there was no money left to design the over-world and flesh out the short stories. This leaves Where the Water Tastes Like Wine being half of a great game that requires you to wade through the weaker parts to get to the good content. It’s an eight to ten hour game when it would have been better as a four to five hour one.
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is an original narrative experience. He's got a lot of American stories to tell us, supported by a perfect dubbing and high-class illustrations. The problem is that the end result is harmed by a repetitive gameplay and extremely slow character movements, all that ending up causing a deep feeling of boredom after one hour or so.
Review in French | Read full review
On the surface, Where the Water Tastes Like Wine seems like it has a recipe for an incredible game. It stretches the lengths of what story-driven, Twine-like games can accomplish in scope—thematically, narratively, and in terms of the dozens of writers from different cultures and backgrounds behind them. And yet, the game's onerous pace and the way it relegates the stories you collect to flash cards ends up doing a disservice to the game's strengths.
There is space in gaming for narrative output like this, but they need to be carefully tailored to be games first and experiences second. You don't even want to know what this water tastes like.
At the end of a long road, emotions can be mixed, with many exhausted by the experience or rejuvenated by the discoveries made along the way. WTWTLW instills the former, driving players to feel dragged through the mud as opposed to fulfilled. Although the game touts the importance of the journey over the destination, neither offers any real sense of satisfaction. In the end, an interesting concept and great art direction cannot save the game from the weight of ambition. The attempt is admirable, but the execution leaves much to be desired. WTWTLW is lacking the narrative punch and cohesion of other story-focused games, as well as the freedom and gameplay quality of other exploration-based titles. WTWTLW has all the promise of a long and exciting road-trip across unknown territory, but ends up only offering flat tires and postcards of better places.
Another example of that latest trend of videogames with "high artistic quality," Where the Water Tastes Like Wine is not something brand new, unique, and meaningful, but something boring, boring, boring that uses big words to say things that aren't that interesting. Oh, and it has Sting in it…