Monster Prom, is a high school dating simulation and choose your own adventure game first published in 2018. It was developed by Beautiful Glitch and published by Those Awesome Guys. In it one to four players compete to capture the attention of one of the most popular students at Scary High School in order to ask them out to the Monster Prom.
The players have three weeks to woo their crushes. Each week is divided into a morning, lunch-time, and night. During these divisions, a player is presented with a social situation in which they must choose a course of action. Some courses of action lead to preferable results, others lead to disaster. In some cases there is no right answer.
All of these situations seem to be predetermined and non-randomized. This means by memorizing a particular path through Monster Prom, a player should be able to figure out how to beat the game every time in that particular way. Monster Prom is therefore a form of item collecting game, one in which a player collects all of the situations and endings to the game.
This makes playing in multiplayer a little tricky. It is best for players who have the same level of experience playing Monster Prom to play together. I would imagine someone who has completed all of the situations and endings would absolutely steamroll someone who had never played the game at all before. Those who wish to bring their friends into a friendly game of Monster Prom might need to warn them that the purpose of the game is not so much to win, but to enjoy the experiences on the way to whatever ending awaits.
Given how colorful and cartoonish the artwork is in Monster Prom, and given its name, I expected it would be a game geared toward preteen adolescents or teenagers. This is not at all the case. The humor is heavily adult themed and while funny, quite vulgar. It was after being surprised at the vulgarity of the interactions that I noticed each of the students at Scary High School were over 18, some a couple years into their early 20’s. That seems a little old for high school, anywhere in the world. I wonder if they made the age of the characters older to fit with the adult themes peppered throughout the game. Long story short, Monster Prom is not a game for kids, but would be a fun party game for adults sitting around drinking alcoholic beverages and reminiscing about their own high school experiences.
Monster Prom begins with a quiz in which each player’s attributes are determined. Answering the quiz questions in a particular way will set the player up to be initially more attractive to one of the six popular students that must be wooed for the player to make it to the Monster Prom. After the quiz, each player in turn chooses the location they will spend their time in that first morning. These locations are the: auditorium, class, library, outdoors, gym, and bathrooms. Choosing any one of these places will initiate a cutscene and a dialog in which the player must make a decision.
Sometimes there will be the face of a cat hovering over one of the locations. This cat will sell you products that you can use to help you get a date in the game. I have yet to figure out how to use the things I buy, but it seems like it could be a good mechanic. Unfortunately spending time buying an item from the cat eliminates an opportunity to have an experience, so through trial and error it seems best to know what you should buy before you enter the store when doing so burns a turn where you could be wooing your potential prom date.
After every player has chosen their morning location and completed their scripted cutscene, the players enter the cafeteria for lunch and must in turn choose a place to sit and eat. If a player doesn’t know anything about the game (hasn’t memorized the other locations), this is the best place to spend quality time with the crush you wish to woo. Another cutscene ensues. Then night comes and all of the players choose another location and experience another cutscene. Each choice a player makes affects their character statistics and how well they are liked or disliked by the popular students.
At the end of the three weeks, a player may choose a popular student to ask out to the prom. If they made the right choices with the right experiences, in theory they should be attending the Monster Prom with the crush of their dreams. In practice, I was rejected so hard my player character will have severe psychological issues for the rest of her life and will live miserably ever after.
Monster Prom is a very fun, enjoyable party game that allows a group of people to sit and talk around a game without taking the game too seriously. It would be a good game to play with friends who don’t like games that are competitive, but would be most fun in those situations where no one has played through the game or remembers any more about the game than anyone else. Despite the superb, expressive artwork, this is not a game for adolescents due to its adult themes. I had a lot of fun playing Monster Prom each time I’ve played it and hope to complete through all of the interesting experiences available in play-throughs to come.