Review – Weapon Shop Fantasy – The RPG Store Sim
One of the great things about indie games is the originality that one often finds in a new indie title. Weapon Shop Fantasy is one such title. The premise of the game is simple, you’re a vampire who has been chased out of his castle by a vampire hunter. You’re then setup in your very own weapon shop by a fellow vampire, so that you can payback a debt you may or may not owe. It all may sound simple enough but the game has many moving parts as you build your weapon retail empire.
Weapon Shop Fantasy blurring the line between sim and role-playing game
The game can be a little confusing on the surface. Is it a shop sim with role-playing elements, or is it a role-playing game with shop sim elements? The shop aspect is really the core of the game, but there are in fact some role-playing game elements incorporated into the game.
When you first start the game, you’re taken through a useful tutorial. Once you’re done with the tutorial you need to start building inventory for your shop. There are a few steps involved here, for starters you need the right tools. You’ll need a furnace to smelt materials, a blacksmith to make some weapons and armor, a craft table to make potions and wands, an enchanter to add magical properties to weapons and armor, a stable so that your staff can go collect materials, and a staff to do all the work.
All the stations are easy to get you just need to purchase them with gold. Upgrading a station cost significantly more than just gold. Nothing in Weapon Shop Fantasy would be possible without your staff. Getting staff in the game works a lot like classic RPG’s you must do or meet certain conditions and once you do someone will join your staff.
Staff members have their own stats which you can grow by leveling them up. Staff come with six stats Strength, Vitality, Dexterity, Intelligence, Luck, and Hit Points. These stats each correspond to a specific job in the shop. For instance, a character with a high strength stat is better suited to work the forge as opposed to the craft table. A character with high hit points will be better suited for adventuring than doing work inside the shop.
Speaking of adventuring it’s a very important aspect of Weapon Shop Fantasy, it also happens to be my favorite part of the game. To get the materials that you will need to make inventory for your store. You’ll need to send members of your staff out on adventures to collect them.
Sending staff out on an adventure will go one of three ways. The adventure can be a success in which case you’ll walk away with a lot of materials and some stat increases. The adventure will end in failure and you get nothing. You can also choose to retreat in which case you will get to keep everything you have earned up to that point.
Before sending members of your staff out on an adventure you first need to gear them up with weapons and armor. Luckily you own a weapon shop and can make all the equipment that your staff will ever need. Once you start an adventure you can do nothing to control your staff member except to call a retreat. If you fail an adventure no worries you can just get right back on the horse and try again. Personally, I feel there should be a cooldown if a staff member has failed an adventure, before they can be sent out again.
Being that you’re running a shop it should go without saying that money plays a huge role in the game. Everything you do in the game requires money, you must pay your staff for every task they perform. Items not only cost materials to make but, gold as well. This makes money without a doubt the most important resource in the entire game.
Another key aspect of the game are the quests that you will be undertaking. Quest fall into one of three categories, story, shop, and staff. Story quest work to advance the main plot of the game, paying back your loan. Shop quest are all about doing business, such as filling an order. While staff quest all relate to your workers inside of the shop. Completing quests will offer you a variety of rewards. These range from new maps, recipes, gold, or new staff members.
While the game was enjoyable, there are a couple areas that could use a little work. A prime example of this is the adventure system. Enemies even on the starter maps or either to easy or extremely hard, there’s no middle ground to speak of. The second area that could use some improvement is the recipes. More specifically the drop rate of certain recipes. To make new tiers of items you often must learn how to smelt new metals. It took me forever to get the copper ingot recipe, which is the recipe for smelting copper ore into a useable material.
This became increasingly frustrating as I was given new recipes for rewards that required copper ingots. Yet I couldn’t get the copper ingot recipe to drop no matter what I did. Finally, a quest became available that ended up giving me the recipe. Having to wait so long for a crucial recipe was a bit of a bummer.
Despite the gripes, I had with the game Weapon Shop Fantasy was enjoyable. It was a far cry from the sort of titles that I normally play. I think that’s why I enjoyed it as much as I did. The game does a solid job of weaving the role-playing game and shop sim elements together. If you want to try out something new and different I highly recommend you give Weapon Shop Fantasy a try.