So as you know I have a load of Steam games that I’ve brought (and keep adding to) that I never play and this time out I thought I’d give a game that I fell in love with the moment I saw it in the Steam store, brought it and never had the time to play.
For a start YES the game is about Potatoes.
You play a Potato who has inherited his grandfathers business of a weapon shop. Your young Potato is impressionable so when Agent 46 tells you that your grandfather is dead and that he owns 99.99% of the business and you own 0.01% you just happily agree to everything.
There is a decent in depth tutorial at the beginning which isn’t too bad to get through and then you are left to run your store with only small interactions with Agent 46 (usually to get his “share” of the money.)
I haven’t completed the game in any sense though I feel like how I feel about the game 7 hours in is going to possibly be the same as how I feel when I complete the story (with maybe slight variations of happiness about the final plot point… If we ever get to it.)
First up the game play.
It is a simple game, I’ve read the people that created it are best known for mobile games and it does have that mobile game feeling to it. You click on a blacksmith, send them on a job, wait for them to finish before sending them on another one.
Every button is explained away, the screen isn’t cluttered and its easy to figure out what needs to be done.
You run a blacksmith, so you build weapons! Click on the Forge button in the middle on the bottom and it’ll open a menu of unlocked items for you to create, it’ll also show you who wants these items, what skills they want imbued in the item and tells you what world they live on.
So you have someone who wants a Dagger with great accuracy.
You start with three Smiths, one who is good at Attack, one who is good at Accuracy and one who is good at Speed. When you press create they will all start working on adding their own value to the weapon, in the top right hand corner it tells you how complete the weapon is, you get to boost one stat (so in this case Accu) and you can move the Smiths to add more Accu to the Dagger.
When its done you can send one of your Spuddy Smiths to the World to sell the item, all the heroes on the world will bid for it but usually the one offering the most money is the one you’ve created it for.
There is a area of hardness to it, it ain’t all simple clicking.
For a start you need to pay their wages, it doesn’t really matter about Agent’s cut of the profit as that just turns into a Quest to do if you haven’t got it but every month you need to pay your Smiths else they won’t be happy. Therefore you need to make sure that you are making enough weapons and selling them at a high enough price to cover costs.
The further on in the game you go the more Smiths you are allowed to hire so the hirer your monthly wages will be.
That is not all though.
Your Smiths might live and breath their job but they get bored and upset too. So there is a great deal of time management involved, especially as side quests pop up out of nowhere with only 2 days to complete for extra $tarch (the game currency) and 2 days equates about 2 minutes in real life. You unlock that ability to send the Spuds on holiday to make them happy, which you’ll have to do from time to time, as well sending them to explore for materials to make the better weapons. All the time you need to be building weapons to sell them, sending someone off to research new weapons and sending someone to sell them.
Starting to sound more complicated right?
On top of this your Smiths can change their job (so change the stat they are best at) but when you change them they won’t be as efficient as before, even if its to up the skill instead of a new one they’ll drop a little so your weapons won’t be as good.
Now that might all sound really confusing now but it isn’t. When you play the game its all explained in such good humour and presented in such a pretty way that its simplistic still but not simple enough to make the game boring.
Grinding away CAN get tedious and its a game I’d recommend you play whilst watching something on TV, or reading a book, or drawing. It isn’t a game that you can play for 7 hours straight without doing something else. The dialogue gets reused a lot and moving from area to area whilst fun tends to put you back to square one grinding away at the same four items once more to sell it to the same four Potatoes waiting for another World to unlock.
Its a game where when you finally get to the end, and hopefully the mystery of your grandfather, you’ll feel you’ve really accomplished something. Until then its a grind.
The soundtrack is lovely and relaxing if you are playing it with nothing else on.
My favourite part is the humour though. Its a very funny game with lots of “in-jokes” when it comes to Weapons and Weapon shops in games and movies. You get legendary Spuds come and see you like “Claude” the games version of Cloud from FFVII who want you to create their legendary weapons and your Potato, being quite young and gobby, will have hilarious conversations with them. The names of the Smiths are all Potato puns of famous people too which gives you a chuckle when they pop up.
Personally I really recommend this game. It isn’t a great game for gamers, its a game you’d play when you want to do something with your hands as well as watch TV or a film or read a book.
It IS a great game for someone who has concentration problems like me.
Highly addictive and fun.
Shame it isn’t a mobile game though, I’d love to have paid £10 and be able to play it on my mobile. Then again it would feel much too cluttered on a smaller screen.
1. Life is Strange – 8.5
2. Final Fantasy VII – 8
= Sam & Max Season 1 – 8
3. Kingdom Hearts 1.5 – 7.5
4. Sam & Max Season 2 – 7
5. Sam & Max Season 3 – 6
6. Kingdom Hearts 2.5 – 5
= Secret of Monkey Island – 5
7. Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep – 4
= Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop?! – 4
8. Monkey Island 2 : LeChucks Revenge – 3
In no way is a 4 a bad score for it.
Its addictive, its fun, its a good time waster. Its great if you have a kid who just needs something to concentrate on, its good for playing when you are doing something else.
The story line whilst fun is repetitive though and instead of being given better quests and stories the further on you go the more it kind of repeats itself or else just slows down. I think I’m kind of in the middle of the game so maybe there is something around the corner which will bump it up a peg or two but not right now.
Its easy to play but then at the same time its easy to play.
So its a good average game, possibly not going to be worth £10 to everyone but I don’t begrudge a penny spent on it, it suffers from being something you really need to grind for AND repetitiveness.
There is a challenge but it doesn’t really present a challenge to a adult. Which is fine. A good game though.