Friday 24 September 2010

Adopt, adapt, improve

Recettear: An Item Shop’s Tale is proving to be quite a hit, flipping the usual RPG tropes by casting you as the owner of a shop selling items to bold adventurers, and of course successful games inspire others to tread in their footsteps (or, in the case of Zynga, mug them, steal their shoes, paint them a different colour and claim they’re their own), so you should soon be able to look forward to:

A Questgiver’s Tale: you play the role of an MMO quest giver, cast into the world with nothing but a giant punctuation mark to hold over your head. In Typing of the Dead style gameplay, you must type out some random hard luck story while adventurers stand in front of you, jump up and down and run in circles, and repeatedly click on you to try and make you talk faster before ignoring everything you said and looking up your name on a wiki to find the exact co-ordinates of the quest location. As you gain levels you acquire new abilities such as “Wander Around In A Random Pattern And Laugh When The Adventurer Goes Back To Where You Were But You’re Not There Any More” before finally getting the ultimate power, “Demand The Adventurer Keeps You Alive As You Inch Painfully Slowly From One Point To Another Aggroing Every Monster Within 6 Miles On The Way Not To Mention Spawning Nine Specific Ambushes Just As It Looked Like There Might Be A Chance To Recover Some Mana For Ten Seconds”.

A Trash Mob’s Tale: Dungeon Keeper let you play as an evil overlord sending minions to do your bidding, but what if you were one of those minions? In A Trash Mob’s Tale you get to fling yourself at adventurers you have absolutely no chance of defeating again and again and again and again and again, dispensing a couple of copper pieces or some lint when they inevitably smite you. The goal is to try and make the heroes discount you as a threat and try and just run past you, at which point you follow them, gathering similarly ineffectual allies along the way until either you get bored or the adventurer is delayed by something allowing you to mob them. Higher level abilities include the Heel Nip movement debuff, and the ever popular Stealth tree which culminates in the Bugged Invisible Mob uber-power.

A Class Trainer’s Tale: After mastering every aspect of your chosen class, you realise that the amount of money you can make battling dangerous foes pales in comparison to the rewards of training. Start by answering an advert on an obscure satellite channel: “Tired of your current job? Want to be your own boss and set your own hours? Why not become an Adventurer Instructor!” Perform a valuable service by offering observations such as “You know when you cast that Fireball 2 spell? Do that, but *more*. There. You know Fireball 3 now, that’ll be ten gold.” Eventually you can work your up to the ultra-lucrative Respec market, where you charge the adventurer for hitting them over the head with a hammer until they forget all their skills, then charge them again to teach them different skills! (Or almost exactly the same skills, but with one slightly different one because they clicked on the wrong thing that one time.)

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