Friday, 20 July 2012

Recettear: an item shop's tale

It's adorable! 

Recettear is a JRPG. Because it originated in Japan, it has your typical Japanese art style to it. What I really love is the fact there is a storyline- Recette is a young girl whose father has disappeared and left her massive debts. Tear, a fairy, appears to collect these debts- when she sees Recette, she ends up giving her the option of paying bit-by-bit rather than taking her house away, thus Recettear is born. Recettear is, by the way, Recette's item shop.

The Recettear logo

Now, to actually get to the controls menu you need to know the controls. They aren't massively complicated, and make the game seem like it was originally aiming to be a Gameboy game. It uses an up,down,left,right,A,B control system (A is Z and B is X). This system allows you to make decisions in the game, as well as fighting.

As you might imagine from the title, the main gameplay revolves around selling items. Tear explains this to Recette pretty well. But there is another element to the gameplay- dungeon crawling. After all, Recette has to get her items somehow and the merchant's guild/ marketplace don't sell things for free! The first adventure is free, but as your adventurer levels up you have to pay a fee.

Dungeon crawling

Dungeon crawling, though remarkably simple, is quite fun. Rather than a game about buying and selling items, which would get tedious, the dungeon crawling adds a new level to the game and stops it from becoming dull.

Debt and repayment

As I have mentioned, Recette has opened her shop in order to pay off her fathers' debts. The first week, you pay 10,000pix. In order to raise the money, you have to sell items to make the set amount. The debt gets repaid at the end of the week. If you can't pay, you end up living in a cardboard box- however, Tear finds you and you get to go back to the shop and try to work off the debt with your merchant levels and stock in tact.
Selling an item

Levelling systems

There are 2 main levelling systems in the game- Recette's merchant level and the adventurer level. Recette's merchant level increases slightly when you sell well or buy off customers and these levels unlock new skills as well as giving you the ability to decorate the shop to make it more appealing. The adventurer gains XP in the usual way- through fighting monsters. This not only increases the price of hiring the adventurer, it also enables the adventurer to cause more damage and opens item slots.

My thoughts on the game

I really love this game. It's adorable Japanese art style, storyline and gameplay are beautiful and simple. I also love that the speaking of the characters is still in Japanese, as this adds to the feel of the game. I would recommend this game to people that play regular RPGs and are in need of something other than the usual MO of RPGs.


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