Opinions Needed

Discussion in 'General Gaming Discussion' started by euanadixon, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. euanadixon

    euanadixon Advanced Member

    Aug 6, 2009
    Good day tempers,

    I have been a member for a good few years now but have posted very little....however the time has come to seek out your help once more.

    I have started dabbling in gaming reviews but have not shown anything to anyone.

    I trust this community greatly so I would like to hear what you think of my "work"

    Be gentle, I'm really new at this. The game I'm reviewing is Recettear: an item shops tale for PC. Treat it as more of a script/first draft thanks :)

    (Also, I'm not sure if this is in the right section, apologies if it is not)

    Cast your mind back to every rpg you’ve ever played, every final fantasy, every dragon quest hell, even every pokemon! Think about all those hours you burned trying to farm that seemingly impossible quantity of gold just so the smug little shopkeep could “relive you of its burden”. Seemed pretty unfair right? You busted your ass grinding and questing while he sat on his just waiting to rob you blind? Well if you dive into the wonderful world of Easygamestation’s Recettear: An item shop’s tale, you’ll see that the life of a merchant is not an easy one.

    Set in a fairly stereotypical JRPG town you assume the persona of Recette, the highly excitable and absent minded protagonist who has be lumbered with her fathers’ debt. Enter Tear, a flying pixie like creature to which your father owed money. Ever the kind soul, Tear understands that Recette lacks the appropriate funds to repay her. So the two come to an agreement and open Recettear item shop! It is with this the game begins.

    You the player are in charge of maintaining and running the store day to day taking advice fro Tear as you go. It is here where the game begins to intensify. Tear wants increasing weekly payments from recette and it is up to you to meet these deadlines.

    You start off with fairly limited funds which you will use to buy items at the merchants guild to sell on in the store. The act of selling is carried out through a haggling minigame in which you barter with the customer to get the best price. This is great fun and you get a feeling of genuine excitement when a customer enquires about a really valuable item or when the shields you bought on the cheap become trendy and valuable. However the system does have its share of flaws. Some customers are extremely stingy and wont buy at list price for you to break even, with no option to deny sale fairly, you will find yourself losing either money or getting penalised by the games levelling system. It seems a bit odd considering the merchant level is almost vital to success, but in all honesty it doesn’t break the game and you’ll very rarely feel cheated. Aside from using the every faithful merchants guild, there are a few other ways to obtain goods such as buying from customers direct and perhaps most notably from the adventurers.

    Very early in the game you are introduced to the adventure guild wherein you can hire mercs to take you and Tear dungeon crawling. This activity becomes a game within a game. Recette and Tear become human satchels protected by an invincible bubble (it’s a JRPG after all) while the player takes control of the hired goon questing multi levelled randomly generated areas, similar to that of pokemon mystery dungeon, slaying enemies and collection loot as you go. The game has a pretty basic yet satisfying levelling system ala hack, slash power attack, level up almost similar to the of the secrets of mana franchise. All in all it doesn’t break any moulds but it gets the job done and does well to keep your attention the majority of the time. If there is one area in which the gameplay is lacking it is definitely in the controls, the keyboard setup can feel clunky and unresponsive causing you to sometimes run into enemies unwillingly. If you have access to a gamepad, I recommend you use it.

    Graphically the game does well, the art style really compliments the games light hearted feel. The characters and items’ sprites are bright, vibrant and reminiscent of their 90’s JRPG counterparts.
    The artwork used in the cut scenes and character conversations are beautifully drawn and convey emotions well. The same unfortunately cannot be said about the enemies in the game, they seem to lack variety and appeal, some don’t look like they even belong in the game. This could just be a matter of opinion but it is worth noting none the less.

    In the sound department the game doesn’t break any records, the sound effects do the trick and character voices are fitting but there are little to no memorable songs. A game like this could have really benefited from a better soundtrack, don’t get me wrong, there are one or two infectious tunes but nothing you’re going to be humming to in the shower tomorrow.

    To sum up, Recettear is a great indie title offering hours of entertainment to those who wish to invest their time A half an hour session in this game can quickly turn in to a three hour marathon without you even noticing. With a better soundtrack, tighter controls and more attention to detail, Recettear could have been a timeless classic, but don’t let that put you off, this is still a great JRPG. You’d be nuts to pass.

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