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Dr. Frank’s Build a Boyfriend Review

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Mary Shelley’s famous novel Frankenstein, written in 1818, was a groundbreaking piece of work that has had a huge influence on many things after it. One big myth of the novel is that of Frankenstein – it is in fact the name of the doctor, and not, as many believe, the creature that was created from the dead. 

It’s in Dr. Frank’s Build a Boyfriend in which we have a new take on the famous Mary Shelley novel, playing out as a point-and-click visual novel. It’s a tale of the creation of life, but also of jealousy, dating, and getting revenge on ex-partners. It’s ALIVE.

dr franks build a boyfriend review 1
What the hell is Dr. Frank up to?

There are many visual novels available on the Xbox Store, but this is another with over 20000 words to take in, plus a few different endings and an epilogue. It all makes Dr. Frank’s Build a Boyfriend a bit of a bargain for its sub-£5 price tag. There is something quite good about the sheer number of games arriving on the scene with that price tag lately, all because you can take a risk without breaking the bank. 

So, story is key to the game here and this one is full of charm, comedy, and mild horror. You play a typical mad scientist called Dr. Frank who has been keenly researching the dark arts of necromancy. However, his ex-boyfriend Dominik has stolen his research and plans to present the ideas as his own at the local university. In revenge Dr. Frank decides to build a new boyfriend from scratch, making him more beautiful and the first artificial life form in the world. But in doing so Dr. Frank finds love in the most unexpected corner of his world. 

The story and writing are a lot of fun and very tongue-in-cheek. But underneath the mad premise is quite a sweet love story, one full of heart. There is a good and bad ending to be found and the epilogue adds an extra finale to the story.

dr franks build a boyfriend review 2
How’s this boyfriend looking?

Gameplay-wise and this is mainly sold as a visual novel – that means you’ll be doing a lot of reading, making some choices in the conversations which will determine the arc of the narrative. But what makes this different from the rest of the pack is that there is a fair amount of point-and-click adventuring to be had too. You collect items, combine them, and use those with people or in certain locations… you know how it works. I found that in Dr. Frank’s Build a Boyfriend to deliver a nice set of extra elements and it works well. There is also a section when you make the boyfriend and can decide how he looks, in regards to hair and eyes and vibe. 

The visuals are good, with a lovely cartoony design that is colourful and bright. Locations are interesting from the Dr’s lab to all the different rooms in his large house. You also get to travel to a graveyard and a church; both of which are integral to the storytelling.

There isn’t any voice-over in the game but the music and score are bouncy and vibrant which works perfectly with the textures of the narrative. 

dr franks build a boyfriend review 3
Seems Dr. Frank is happy

There is a nice collection of visual novels building up in the Xbox library. Most of those come with a cheap price attached, meaning it feels like buying a modern magazine. Dr. Frank’s Build a Boyfriend is similar, well worth trying if you like stories and comic book visuals. The game has the added benefit of adding some substance to the gameplay in terms of the point-and-click mechanics, allowing it to stand out from the rest. 

With just over two hours of running time, Dr. Frank’s Build a Boyfriend will entertain, delivering a charming story of revenge and necromancy. If you fancy being a mad scientist and are up for building a boyfriend, then this little game could be right up your alley.

SUMMARY

Pros:
  • Fun story
  • Point and click mechanics
  • Bright visuals
Cons:
  • A lot of reading
Info:
  • Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, Ratalaika Games
  • Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One, Switch, PS4, PS5
  • Release date and price - 2 February 2024 | £4.99
Gareth Brierley
Gareth Brierleyhttp://www.garethbrierley.co.uk
I am an actor and a writer. I act quite a bit on stage, a little bit on tv and never on tuesdays. I have had some of my writing published and have written for TV and stage. I have been playing games since they begun and don't seem to be getting any better.
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<b>Pros:</b> <ul> <li>Fun story</li> <li>Point and click mechanics</li> <li>Bright visuals</li> </ul> <b>Cons:</b> <ul> <li>A lot of reading</li> </ul> <b>Info:</b> <ul> <li>Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, Ratalaika Games</li> <li>Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One, Switch, PS4, PS5 <li>Release date and price - 2 February 2024 | £4.99</li> </ul>Dr. Frank's Build a Boyfriend Review
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