Indie Wonderland: Pixel Shopkeeper

Has there been any game about RPG shopkeeping since 2007 that landed quite as well as Recettear? I’m wondering. I know more games do exist in that particular hyper-specific niche: I remember playing Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop?! (review here), and I’m waiting for Moonlighter with pretty baited breath. But has anything so far made a similar splash?

I find myself thinking these things as I watch the Steam download bar for Pixel Prototype‘s Pixel Shopkeeper, the genre of which I think you can probably intuit now. I want another RPG shopkeeping game to make the same splash as Recettear, because Recettear ruled. Maybe Pixel Shopkeeper will be the one?

Only one way to find out.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, low. Mechanical, medium.)

(Game source: Bought it myself.)

After the break: Pixel Shopkeeper. Not a game about running a pixel shop, but… Actually, that’s pretty valid too. Take it however you want, I guess.

Ranneko Plays With Star Realms – Channel Update 2017-08-18

This week we finished up Massive Chalice. I had a great time with the game but it turns out it was a little shorter than I needed right now. The plan was to go from Massive Chalice to XCOM 2: War of the Chosen, but that doesn’t come out until the 29th.

Until then in the Mon/Wed/Fri slot, we are going to do something a little different. We are going to talk about Star Realms. Specifically, we are going to look at replays of Star Realms games and try to work out where the pivotal moments were. Where the initial mistakes were made that resulted in later victory or defeat. It is a little bit different from the other coverage of Star Realms on my channel and I hope people like it.

The Ransistance will return once War of the Chosen releases on the 29th of August. Firaxis has released a free demo that consists entirely of the photobooth, which means there is now a free tool anyone can use to create soldiers that can be imported into XCOM 2. This means I have revised the recruitment form. I have stripped out the overly long second page, if you want to be added you can either just specify a name and optionally a few other basic details. If you want a fully specified soldier, now you can create it yourself and then send me the file.

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Curious Ranpedition
Monday, Wednesday: Ranneko Plays Massive Chalice
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera
Friday: Let’s Dissect A Couple of Games of Star Realms

After the break, more about the videos that released last week!

Indie Shortieland: Tacoma

The gaming buzz on my social media timelines the past week or so has been pretty much all Tacoma. And with obvious reason: It’s the latest opus of Fullbright, they of the superlative Gone Home. As part of my general non-disclosure agreement with any and all games news I haven’t read much about Tacoma, but I have learned a few things: That it features gameplay much in the vein of Gone Home, that it has a character either called or named after Odin, that it’s set in space, and that people say it takes about three hours to complete, start-to-finish. Obviously, the latter seems like silly exaggeration, and after playing it for myself this weekend, I can confirm that that number is nowhere near accurate.

I completed it in two and a half hours.

It should be obvious that I can’t really use my regular review pattern with a game like Tacoma. Not only is it primarily narrative-driven, which is always a dicey prospect, but if I did my usual ‘I’m playing through the first half hour or so and what is this’ shtick, that’d essentially spoil outright almost a sixth of the game. I do want to talk about what made Tacoma work for me as it did, though. So you all get a Shortieland. I know you were probably clamoring for another 7000-word epic after last week, but I hope we can all agree that it’s for the best I leave some of this game intact.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, low. Mechanical, high-ishl.)

(Game source: Bought it myself

After the break: Tacoma, or What In The Name Of Space Happened Here.

Ranneko Plays Camping – Channel Update 2017-08-11

This week I am away! Camping on Gotland for Medeltidveckan (medieval week). As such there isn’t too much to discuss right now, I have been trying to record enough to stay ahead because I keep having small trips which is making it harder than I would like to maintain a buffer.

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Curious Ranpedition
Monday, Wednesday and Friday: Ranneko Plays Massive Chalice
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera

After the break, more about the videos that released last week!

Indie Wonderland: Pyre

I’m guessing approximately zero of you are surprised I’ve been looking forward to Pyre. In case you are, let me give you some crucial backstory: Pyre is made by Supergiant Games.

That’s it. That’s the backstory. Supergiant Games has made two games before Pyre, and both Bastion and Transistor (which I reviewed here) were great fun, and masterclass studies of the use of innovative design techniques. I loved both games and still rate them very highly; that I was going to try and dive into Pyre as soon as possible was basically a foregone conclusion. In fact, I’ve gone even further than my usual ‘try to go in as blind as possible’ approach: I’ve pursued an active campaign of non-information against Pyre. All I know so far is that it’s… an RPG? Or a sports game? Or both?

Or maybe neither? I’ve been really thorough about not knowing anything.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, low. Mechanical, medium-high.)

(Game source: Bought it myself.)

After the break: Pyre, I game I’ve been avoiding news of so studiously I might almost have missed that it exists.

Ranneko Plays A Curious Expedition – Channel Update 2017-08-04

Time to start a new game on Saturdays, let’s go with one that takes place during the age of exploration, where the player has to embark on 6 expeditions and compete to gather the most fame. A very novel concept and definitely not one seen on the channel before.

On a more serious note, it was actually Curious Expedition that got me to play Renowned Explorers, a friend had been playing the former and I realised I owned a very similar game in the latter. I have played around with it a little bit before and watched my friend, which means I’m not going onto Curious Expedition completely blind, but I have never successfully finished a run. Hopefully I will learn over the course of the series.

As always, I am still soliciting feedback on the schedule I will move to once I have some tips recorded, and Curious Expedition is complete. Any feedback or suggestions are very welcome.

Here is the schedule I am currently angling toward:
Mon/Wed/Fri: Long Game Slot
Tuesday: Tips
Thurs/Sun: Shorter Game or Oneshot
Sat: Syfro Saturdays

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Curious Ranpedition
Monday, Wednesday and Friday: Ranneko Plays Massive Chalice
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera

After the break, more about the videos that released last fortnight!

Ranneko Plays Finishing Up Renowned Explorers 2017-07-28

This week marks the exit of Renowned Explorers. I finally managed to make it through a full set of expeditions, though frankly, the last one was a victory lap. It turns out that you really only need to get more than 2500 fame, I assumed that there would be some kind of incentive other than score chasing to keep me going on that last outing.

I know that there is still plenty of content left to see, and heck there is even another expansion I could buy, but I would prefer to move on to something completely fresh rather than slowly find new bits amongst the repetition.

So from the 30th, I will release episodes of something completely different on the channel. A let’s play of a roguelike, age of exploration game, where the goal is to gather the most fame possible over a series of expeditions!

Also, I am still seeking feedback on the proposed new schedule. Finishing up the Curious Expedition would have been the perfect time to implement it, but I chickened out, I think I should spend some time and prep 4 or 5 tips so that once I am ready I know I don’t have to worry about the well running dry only a couple of weeks into the new schedule. It would be a lot easier if I had people who regularly commented, as I could potentially use viewers to provide ideas for tips, but frankly, comments are rarer than hen’s teeth which makes any plans relying on getting them fairly foolish.

Here is the schedule I am currently angling toward:
Mon/Wed/Fri: Long Game Slot
Tuesday: Tips
Thurs/Sun: Shorter Game or Oneshot
Sat: Syfro Saturdays

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Ranowned Explorers: International Society
Monday, Wednesday and Friday: Ranneko Plays Massive Chalice
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera

After the break, more about the videos that released last fortnight!

Indie Wonderland: Golem Creation Kit

We interrupt this regularly scheduled treatise on the games on my to-play list to bring you a sudden and unexpected look at Illuminated GamesGolem Creation Kit, a game that I just sort of spotted on the Steam front page one day. The preview materials show all the aesthetic and graphical appeal of a Flash-based hidden object game, and I’m 90% sure the title is primarily a play on Fallout‘s GECK. I wouldn’t be able to tell you what made me look at this game and immediately decide ‘yes, this is what I want to review next week’.

But all the same, that’s totally what happened.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, medium. Mechanical, high.)

(Game source: Impulse-bought it myself.)

After the break: Golem Creation Kit. Could it just be that I’m really into the idea of shaping inert materials into rad magical beings? Because if that’s the case, I have to wonder why I didn’t go into robotics instead of human-technology interaction.

Ranneko Plays Trying to Get Feedback 2017-07-21

I am still seeking feedback on the proposed new schedule. If I get myself organised I could potentially move to the new version early next month.

Here is the schedule I am currently angling toward:
Mon/Wed/Fri: Long Game Slot
Tuesday: Tips
Thurs/Sun: Shorter Game or Oneshot
Sat: Syfro Saturdays

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Ranowned Explorers: International Society
Monday, Wednesday and Friday: Ranneko Plays Massive Chalice
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera

After the break, more about the videos that released last fortnight!

Indie Wonderland: Unexplored

In this week’s continuation of the Desktop Text File Games, I have my eye on Ludomotion‘s Unexplored. A game that, I’ll be honest, I initially didn’t pay too much attention to. Can you blame me, in the endless barrage of quality games that is 2017? But then by chance I saw this article by Jack de Quidt. And that changed things, because…

Well, here’s the thing: I haven’t actually read the article yet. I want to, because Jack is a cool person and a good writer. But at this point in time I did already have Unexplored tagged as ‘possibly an Indie Wonderland game’. And you know what that means: Total media blackout until I can play it as blind as possible, to form my own opinion.

And thus, on the list it went. And here we are. I really hope that article is worth the wait.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, low. Mechanical, medium.)

(Game source: Patreon funds.)

After the break: Also, I hope that Unexplored is good, but that should go without saying. I hope all games always are good.