Because nothing says "mid-'80s" like fanaticism, F5s, and Fords.

Bahnsen Knights is an ’80s-inspired choose-your-own-adventure thriller in which you play as Boulder, an undercover agent whose partner went missing while investigating a gang called the Bahnsen Knights.

This gang is known for its obsession with fast-driving cars and…tornadoes? Seems so. Add religious fanaticism to the mix for an even creepier combination.

They also have an unfeeling leader, Toni (he is a former car salesman, after all), and members who create dangerous situations everywhere they go. It’s your job to discover what happened to your partner and to shut down the Bahnsen Knights, all while keeping your identity hidden.

This is the third game in LCB Game Studio’s Pixel Pulps series, following Mothmen 1966 and Varney Lake, both of which are available for the Switch. These visual novel stories are separate from one another, so you’re free to jump straight into Bahnsen Knights if you haven’t yet tried the others.

Like those, however, Bahnsen Knights has a complex and captivating story that keeps you on edge. You get to make your own choices, explore your own areas, and even play mini games. I liked that my choices mattered. That I could inadvertently lead my character to being caught or even dying kept the tension on high throughout the game. If that happens, though, you’re taken back to the choice that led you to those results so you can change your answer and continue the game.

The mini games also help lead you in certain directions in the game. For example, the Bahnsen Knights have a game they like to play in which they “exorcize the road.” You start the mini game leading three other cars down a highway at fast speed, trying to avoid other cars on the road. If you or another one of your cars crashes, you die and the mini game stops. If you pass the mini game, the story continues and you gain respect from the leader. The controls for this game are simple and turn-based, reminiscent of the actual handheld racing games from the era in which the game is set.

Speaking of that era, the pixel art style and bright colors of Bahnsen Knights are also a selling point. Straight away, the game pulls you in with its pixel art style and bright colors. Bahnsen Knights uses its mid-80s setting to its advantage by incorporating a lot of neon pink and blue to create that retro vibe. Contrasting this with black shadows creates a super cool effect that adds to the eeriness of the game. When speaking with different members of the Bahnsen Knights, their faces are covered in deep shadows and bright highlights, adding to their intimidation factor.

It’s worth noting that the game can be completed in under three hours, and there’s not a lot of replay value. But that timing is fine for a visual novel, and the game is priced accordingly. Whether you play Bahnsen Knights like a movie in one sitting or split it up like a streaming series, fans of captivating stories and dark characters will enjoy every moment.