I’m so excited every time I get to share updates with you on Critter Cove, a town-building and exploration game by Gentleman Rat. The main focus of this update, Devblog 8, is the increasing variety of player character customization and a look at the changing island to which you’ll be meeting plenty of interesting characters. Critter Cove is still in early development so things are still subject to change as they progress.
Mix and Match Body Parts
We got to see a video of the early character creation featuring a human character and a fox character. As the developers have mentioned previously, you’ll be able to swap limbs and heads with any other animal options and change their colors. The mechanics are now in place and we have a good sample size of all of the animal variations with a video below. Looks like you can be a mouse, an owl, an otter, a lemur, a dinosaur, a raccoon, a beaver, and everything all at once! The list is still growing so I can’t wait to see what’s next.
Help Fix Up the Town
Previously, the town was barren and you had to build it up to make it great again. This is done by fulfilling requests from the villagers and befriending them. Villagers that will be going about their daily routines and reacting to things that you do and accomplish. The developers have decided to go another route with the town as it ” it looked and felt barren at the start.” Now all the buildings are already in place, however, they need major repairs. It’ll be a great way to know what you’ve fixed and how much work there’s left to do!
Next up, we get our first view of the interior of a shop run by an adorable raccoon critter. You’ll be able to physically view all of the shop items as they are and purchase them by walking up to and selecting them. Once purchased an item is sold out until it is restocked the next day. Shops can be upgraded to display more wares.
Rolling Hills, a village-sim game created by indie developer Catch & Release, has come a long way and gone through some changes since their previous updates that I covered. To date they’ve revamped their sushi-making interface and added Customer I.D. cards. Their most recent October Patreon post even shows us the latest on the town’s design. With that, I wanted to take a step back and take a look at everything we know about Rolling Hills so far!
In Rolling Hills, your restaurant will be placing dishes on a conveyor belt for your customers. This way, you can load up the belt with tasty dishes, then run outside to take care of other things. This includes: purchasing ingredients, gardening, fishing, interacting with other characters, and beautify the town, all while receiving updates on what’s happening in the restaurant. This doesn’t mean you can neglect your restaurant entirely however, check back to clean dishes, arrange your furniture, and get to know your customers to cater to their needs!
Create and Customize Your Character
Not only can you now customize your character’s skin color, hair type, and hair color, but now you can also change the appearance of your shoes and apron! Throughout the game you’ll have opportunities to collect cute aprons that you can add to your wardrobe. The developers add: “We think this is a super cool way to customize your character’s outfit while still making sure they remain on theme as a sushi chef.”
Shop for Ingredients
Take a look at one of the shop’s interior in Rolling Hills! At the Fresh Market you can purchase ingredients and condiments for use in your restaurant. The store’s inventory changes often so you have to make creative decisions about what to serve your customers with what you have! Prices fluctuate both randomly and based upon what you buy. Meaning, you can’t over-saturate the market and need to keep experimenting with alternative ingredients.
Roam the Town and Make New Friends
The adorable animals in this unique town are unseen mountain spirits known as muses that grant people the courage to follow their dreams. Your restaurant happens to be in the exact location where their shrine was a thousand years ago, so they mistake the first dish you serve as an offering to them. Help the human characters to reach those dreams by giving them your magically imbued sushi chock-full of bravery!
Make Your Own Sushi in Your Own Restaurant
There’s a lot more description and organization now in creating a new sushi dish. All the individual ingredients are listed as well as the overall quality and price. Your customers have unique personalities and will want very specifics things but also be on a budget.
Serve and Satisfy Customers
Whether a customer adores or despises a dish, it’s important to know why. These simple messages are very helpful if you pay attention! With receipts during check-out, you can take another look at which dishes the customers ate and the resulting bonuses received for their favorite dishes, serving them in a timely manner, and their mood based on certain factors like the environment.
One of the things that the developers are working on going forward is exactly how you can make a difference to the score. You can already pick up trash and place it in the recycling bin which will improve the town. Therefore, maybe there will be more mechanics added like this, such as watering flowers. Stay tuned as we learn more about Rolling Hills’ progress and what platforms we can expect (for now it’s probably Steam).
I’ve been following Robert Tatnell, the developer behind Hokko Life, as I love staying up-to-date with the progress of this adorable town-building simulation game inspired by Animal Crossing. The developer just recently published his Devlog: August 2019 post that includes work done to the avatars, environment, and daily activities. If you missed July’s update on crops and greetings, you can check out our article here.
More Hair Styles!
A few colorful and short hairstyles for your character have been added to your customization options, with more styles yet to come! For now we get to see blue mohawks, buns, and buzzcuts! There even appears to be some custom sliding scales for skin, eye, and hair color!
You can now have more control over placing flowers and plants by picking them up and placing them anywhere! Furthermore, you can use flowers as a resource by using your sickle and receiving petals for crafting. The other option is to use your shovel to uproot them completely so as not to damage the flowers. This will make decorating a lot simpler and more fun!
This adorable 3D mini-game is such as unique way to go fishing that it’s quite refreshing to see! It reminds me of Mario Party where you can scoop up some fish. There are even treasure chests added in the water that you can pick up too!
Planet of Lana, created by Wishfully, a game studio in Gothenburg, Sweden, caught my eye right away with the art style. With that, the rich story and the odd creatures, I find myself thinking about Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind! Moreover, Planet of Lana is a cinematic puzzle-adventure where you play a young child, determined to out-think an entire planet.
This game is the new debut game for this studio and is a joint venture between moving art studio Makers Only and technology company Fully Studios. It’s in early development and currently has a release window of 2022. See below for what we know so far about Planet of Lana. I’m already quite found of the adorable animal-thingy Mui!
About Planet of Lana
Welcome to a beautiful planet where humans, animals, and machines live side by side, in an upside-down food chain. Planet of Lana is a cinematic puzzle-adventure where you play a young child, determined to out-think an entire planet.
Besides the obvious terrors of cold-hearted machines and giant monsters, the planet itself is full of enigmatic and vast ecosystems. Lana will need to navigate deserts, taigas, mountains, and seas with no one except her tiny, canine-like friend Mui by her side.
In Mui, Lana finds an intelligent, unwavering companion. And thanks to their teamwork, the journey has promise.
Potionomics is a magical potions simulator and role playing game created by Voracious Games with the help of Atomhawk with digital art and designing. The developers have mentioned that they were inspired by shop-management game Recettear, and that the focus of Potionomics is on the business side of potion brewing. Potionomics is still in development but will be releasing on PC “soon-ish”.
Assume the role of a penniless witch named Sylvia who must save her debt-ridden potion shop from the clutches of greedy loan sharks.
Along the way, you will encounter mighty (and not-so-mighty) heroes, classic RPG creatures, and a genius economist trapped in an owl’s body. Potion brewing is as much a science as it is an art. Master your craft while learning new recipes along the way! As every aspiring entrepreneur knows; customers will be fickle, competition will be fierce, and prices never stay stable. Add in some magic and you have a recipe for a magnificent adventure unlike any you’ve ever played before.
Open for Business – Gather ingredients, light your cauldron, and brew up some potions! Master the art of running a potion shop in a fantastical world.
Wheel & Deal – Barter, haggle, and negotiate with a slew of demanding customers.
Profit from a Colorful Cast – Interact with fantastic (and not so fantastic) characters that can help you on your way to riches.
When you think about the fall season, you may picture spooky pumpkins, ghosts, and scarecrows. As we’ve seen with Potion Paws, not everything to do with Halloween is scary, but can be rather adorable! That’s the case with 2D platformer and patch-work style graphics, Haymakers, where you play as little Lottie the scarecrow! This game is still in development with no release date but you can try out a 15-20 minutes demo right here on itch.io (PC, Mac, Linux). See below for more information on Haymakers and follow the indie developers on Twitter here.
Haymakers is a 2D platformer. You play as Lottie the scarecrow who, with the help of her trusty ‘Hitchfork’, can hitch onto objects and enemies. When she’s hitched onto something, she can let go and launch herself at incredible speeds! She can use this ability to zoom through levels, break blocks, and fly through the air! Lottie will also meet a few friends along the way, including another scarecrow she can help by breaking him out of traps.
The game takes place in a land where scarecrows live. Most scarecrows like to farm, but some, like Lottie, seek adventure! One day after resting during one of her travels, she meets a young scarecrow named Bobby. The demo covers a series of mishaps with Bobby and some other scarecrows, but Lottie’s true adventure has yet to begin…
Cubemon is an open-world adventure RPG, created by a small indie team of 3 members, all about catching these adorable creatures in the shape of a cube. With over 50 Cubemons, different environments, countless quests, secrets to uncover, items to collect, abilities and spells to learn, the player will be busy for quite some time! Early Access to the game is planned for sometime in 2019 with console releases to come later. See below for what we know so far about this game and know that the translation of their website may give some slight inaccuracies.
Experience a spectacular adventure of a special kind. Discover the sun island and its inhabitants: The Cubemons. Travel with your little companion through great plains, dangerous places and mystical areas. Train your Cubemon and fight other wild Cubemons. Help locals and friends, explore caves, collect resources, open hidden chests, and move about freely wherever you want!
Pay enough attention to your Cubemon, feed it, collect resources, and teach it new abilities. Through battles and tasks, your Cubemon gains experience to level up. Your Cubemon may evolve into a new Cubemon as the game progresses. This requires a lot of tact and skill – well, and luck! Countless factors play a role in the development potential of your cube. So it is possible for you to create essences from rare resources. These essences can be given to your Cubemon, whereupon, for example, it can develop into a water Cubemon. But factors such as diet, exercise, fighting, and whereabouts also play an important role in developing your cube.
The developers of Critter Cove stressed with us last update the importance of the visual design for their underwater environments. You will be spending a large amount of the game exploring to depths of the sea as your main role is that of a salvage ship captain collecting fun and interesting resources below. The adorable critters that live on Critter Cove hire you to explore these beautiful underwater areas so that you can get what they need to upgrade their shops and homes, but also to make gifts for their friends.
Since our last update and interview with Gentleman Rat, the creators of Critter Cove, we have indeed been treated to beautiful animations of the sea and some diving on their Twitter page. We here at myPotatoGames were in such awe that we wanted to know exactly what they’ve been up to lately. The developers have been kind enough to send us the following information along with some quality screenshots!
New Toxic Biome
As you might already know, there will be a wide range of dive sites to explore including shipwrecks and ruins of sunken cities. Now we get to take a look at one of those dives sites currently in progress; a toxic biome! If you brave these hazardous environments you’ll gain access to special resources. Many dive sites will often have their own challenges to overcome by using the right equipment and special tools. For example, in order to dismantle an engine, the player must first acquire a wrench. You may have to go looking in several different locations like this in order to complete certain projects for the town.
How to Find and Prepare for Dive Sites
When you’re steering your ship around the open seas, you might notice clues on the surface indicating that there’s something directly below to discover. For example, an oil slick on the surface might indicate a sunken vessel below. When this happens, jump off your ship and start searching! After upgrading your ship later on, you’ll eventually be able to use a sonar device to help you with finding these treasures. You should also speak with the NPCs often as their will let you know of any rumors or tales which can lead to new locations. Finally, there are all sorts of charts and maps available for purchase from both legitimate and not-so-legitimate sources.
Find out what special outfits or equipment upgrades you will need for particular dive sites before you go exploring as some sites will be too deep, too cold, or too toxic. Rebreathers will help increase the time you can spend underwater and toxin sealed wetsuits can protect against poisonous and cold waters. Selecting the right equipment for a dive is essential to ensuring the dive’s success.
Don’t forget you can take some adorable companions as crew mates with you on these expeditions! Stay tuned with us as we learn more about Critter Cove which is currently in early development.