Picture this: it’s your 101st attempt at finishing off that obnoxiously challenging video game mission. Your primal instincts urge you to throw the controller into the nearest furniture – plus, you feel like crushing a double G&T. That’s perfectly reasonable and feasible, even if you are not willing to ditch your ‘curled-up-on-sofa’ status. At the end of the day, you are just a few key presses away from a video game nightclub.
From GTA V’s legendary strip club to Cyberpunk 2077’s neon-soaked futuristic bar, video game nightclubs digitized the illicit euphoria of clubbing before the Metaverse made it cool. Not many of us resisted the temptation of spicing up our single-player journey with the virtual allure of hazy dancefloors and debaucherous bass throbs.
So much that sometimes side missions and story objectives become a distant memory.
Outlandish and immersive, the gaming cosmos had always been the ultimate cure for lockdowns (thanks, COVID-19) and boredom. Virtual nightlife spaces have always been part of them – at least for the ones whose wanderlust went beyond the robbing banks and hijacking cars mantra.
The good news is that you don’t need to kill an unbeatable boss or pay a $30 entrance fee to unleash your inner party animal in those video game nightclubs.
Club Solar – Call of Duty Black Ops 2
Bloodshed and Skrillex’s bumpy beats make a good mix – or, at least, COD Black Ops 2 proves that. As part of the campaign mission “Karma”, Club Solar has a spiffy and futuristic allure by fostering dubstep sounds and jazzy lights.
But the grim solemnity cloaking the dancefloor and NPCs predict how shit is going to go down. Nothing too wild, just some mercenaries shooting the crowd and taking innocent clubbers as hostages. Just like most clubbing adventures, the good won’t last too long.
Lizzie’s Bar – CyberPunk 2077
Yep, the game best known for getting off on the wrong foot with its disastrous launch. But Cyberpunk’s braindance club set the bar high for forthcoming video games willing to integrate nightclubs into their infrastructure.
At the heart of the dystopian Night City, this watering hole imbues your sight with a neon-tinged interior and kooky murals. The cherry on top lies in its braindance, some type of weird VR in Cyberpunk’s universe that grants you access to other people’s memories. Pretty much how we all wish for clubs to look like in 2077.
Mass Effect 2 – Afterlife
It might not be the safest place for chit-chatting with the bartender while he pours vodka in your glass, but it’s worth a shot. No pun intended. Located on the mercenary-controlled Omega space station, this video game club can easily translate into nightlife in prison.
If your eyesight wouldn’t be captured by the suspended dancefloor and the hefty central hologram, you would immediately sense the club’s dodgy aura. But who cares about that when there’s a Milky Way clubbing session bringing aliens and humans together? That’s what we thought too.
We can thank video games nightclubs for making the concept of dancing Macarena with creatures from outer space possible.
Hercules – GTA IV
Oh, the good old GTA IV days. Always dedicated to making the unparalleled GTA world as bona fide as possible, the game’s creators never disappoint when it comes to nightclubs. But Hercules isn’t just like any other nightclub – it overshadows Vanilla Unicorn’s comfy stripper booth and Galaxy’s ostentatious bar.
Echoing the stereotypical New York gay bar vibe, this video game club encompasses a certain feeling of freedom. With its blaring disco beats and patrons dancing at high-top tables, Hercules makes your character thirsty for a nocturnal showdown.
Even in spite of the uber small space, stuffed with a tucked-away bar and dozens of clubbers going all sweaty.
Club Hölle – Hitman 3
Not sure about you, but being able to cosplay a kickass agent who clashes against an Illuminati-style association of crooked politicians is why we press the “start game” button in the first place. All of that while the character keeps moving around the globe, from one exotic battle playground to another – just like James Bond would.
But if you reach the Berlin level, Club Holle isn’t something to miss. For techno aficionados, this particular video game club is a towering post-industrial heaven. Featuring a Berlin-infused underground vibe, Club Holle proves that sometimes it is better to ditch the side missions in favor of a 24-hour rave.
Fun fact, the club’s main stage is very much similar to Berlin’s infamous Berghain club. For those who never reached the end of the queue, now you have a digital walkthrough at your fingertips.
Gaming’s virtual reality encompasses a playable replica of the clubbing culture. It transmutes your average nightclub’s dark glitz and sweaty dancefloors – minus the part where you get crushed in the queue while screaming “Four tequila shots, please!”.
Sometimes, games are more than ritualistically slaughtering the bad boys.