Craft Potions, Use Spells, Grow Critter Companions, Meet Ghostly Locals, and Explore a Mysterious Island
Much like our beloved Potions Paws and Little Witch in the Woods, Critter Crops: Mystery of Mullery Mansion is a game where you happen upon an abandoned magical place where you can cultivate the land.
You play as a young banished witch named Sylvie and grow crops that become critter companions, as well as explore and gather resources for potion-making. While uncovering the mysteries of Mutter Island, you’ll meet outcasts looking to find refuge from the Otherworld and you can offer them a place to stay. Befriend the ghostly inhabitants there and help them revitalize Mur Mur Town.
As for the aforementioned creature companions, all of them are Halloween-themed crops. For example, there’s a blueberry bat, a pumpkin cat, a mummified mushroom, and more! However, like Drake Hollow, you’ll have to be ready to defend your children from nasty Weeaters with spells.
Available in Q4 2022 on Steam and Q3 2023 on Epic Games and Switch
Critter Crops: Mystery of Mullery Mansion is developed by Skyreach Studio and published by Freedom Games. You can Wishlist this adorably spooky farming simulation RPG on Steam here or Epic Games here. If you want to back it on Kickstarter go here. The game is already funded but there’s still time to reach that Nintendo Switch port Stretch Goal! Don’t forget to try the demo while you’re there! *UPDATE: Switch confirmed 2023*
PuffPals: Island Skies is indeed fluffy and puffy! This farming simulation game is all about living your best life on magical floating islands. Like Garden Paws, your neighbours are talking animals that you can’t help but get to know better. Interacting with them is definitely an option, but you’ll also be able do quests and play mini-games with them.
You can create and design your own farm and plant various flowers, trees, and crops. When some of your crops are ready to harvest, they come to life and follow you around like in Ooblets! Not only can you customize the exterior layout of your land, but you can also decorate inside your home. When customizing your own character, there are many choices of skin color, outfits, accessories, hair styles, and other traits that aren’t even human!
You’ll live in a main hub town but you’ll get the chance to do a lot of exploring and foraging at several unique connecting biomes. It will be every collector’s dream to discover new items and to even uncover artifacts.
Kickstarter Campaign Available Now
Backers for PuffPals: Island Skies will have Alpha access to the game for PC fairly soon. There’s still time now to contribute to the Kickstarter Campaign here! Although they have already surpassed their main goals, there are stretch goals that include a Nintendo Switch version and even mobile! The developers behind the game, FluffNest, are also selling adorable plush toys of their characters here. *UPDATE: New trailer and info. Coming to PC, Switch, iOS, and Android in 2025*
Frogsong is a wholesome upcoming adventure game featuring frogs and bugs. Indie game developer Brandon Braun is both devloping and publishing the game. The planned release date for the game is Autumn 2022. The game is currently being developed for PC.
In Frogsong, you play as Chorus, a small frog with big dreams of protecting the world. However, Chorus is a tree frog, and is expected to devote his life to religious studies. Another barrier to Chorus achieving his goals is his small smize; no one will take him seriously!
But Chorus is dead serious and decides to move to a village named Boreala. There, he begins to train as a member of the Defense Guild with the help of a wise old veteran. Chorus soon realises that things are going to be trickier than anticipated. A powerful army and mysterious rumour are both on the rise. Can Chorus learn how to protect his loved ones before it’s too late?
Forge friendships and fight foes in this unique hand-drawn 2D adventure game.
Converse with the cute and kooky characters that you encounter in the world of Salia.
Explore five unique areas, each containing their own monsters, villages, and bosses.
Assist your friends in their day to day lives.
Pay a visit to the blacksmith’s shop to improve your attacks on enemies.
Engage with a heartfelt narrative covering themes of hope, friends and family, and the true meaning of being important.
Aim to make the world around you even just a bit better.
Chorus is a young frog with a strong desire to protect the people around them. The other warriors of the village make fun of Chorus for their small size, but this just makes Chorus more determined to prove they matter too.
Elder Bufo is the kindhearted leader of Boreala and a veteran member of the Defense Guild. Unable to fight now due to his old age and amputation, he provides advice to the warriors of his village.
Lord Lithos is the tyrannical ruler of the Taural Empire. Suffering from an unknown illness, he seeks to cure death and expand his empire at any cost – if he can’t live forever, the next best thing is a legacy.
Basalt is the captain of the Defense Guild, a spot well earned. She’s a skilled warrior and has been fighting monsters for years. It’s going to take something really impressive for her to take Chorus seriously.
Espo is a strange treasure hunter Chorus meets on their travels. He’s traveling the land of Salia, discovering all sorts of strange artifacts from a forgotten time.
More About Frogsong
A crowdfunding campaign for Frogsong went live on Indiegogo on May 18th, 2020. Whilst the release of the game is still quite a way off, the developers of Frogsong are fortunately giving regular updates about the progress of the game. You can follow the game’s progress on Twitter, Indiegogo, and on Steam. An alpha demo of Frogsong is also playable on Steam.
But even more impressive is the amount of new features and exciting updates he shares in each devlog, with the August one being no exception. With updates and features such as gardening and expressions in the 4th Steam Hokko Life devlog, we just had to share the devlog’s content. But before we dive into the game’s 4th devlog, here’s some background on the game and a synopsis of what we know so far!
About Hokko Life
Hokko Life is described as a ‘cosy, creativity filled community sim game’. The game is being developed by Robert Tatnell who runs his own indie game dev company, Wonderscope. Initially, Wonderscope intended to both develop and publish Hokko Life. However, this is an understandably big feat for one person.
Therefore in April 2020, Wonderscope revealed that they would ‘team’ up (sorry not sorry) with Team 17, who will now publish Hokko Life. Team 17 are notorious for publishing highly regarded games such as My Time at Portia, Overcooked, and Yooka-Laylee. Initially, Hokko Life was expected to release on Steam later in 2020; The impact of COVID-19, however, could (like many games), delay this. The release date for the game on Steam is currently TBA. The price of the game is also not yet known.
Hokko Life begins with your player stepping off of a train. Having taken over your very own (albeit a little dusty and old) workshop, you are free to craft and create to your heart’s content.
The quiet village which you now call home needs your design expertise. Help create an endearing town for its inhabitants. Armed with paint and tools, you can design, build and decorate new homes for your new furry friends.
Players can craft materials and combine them as they wish. Combining them creates amazing new furniture and items for the town. By collecting flowers and mixing paints, you can then design wallpapers, flooring and even clothing.
With an abundance of choice, you can design items from fetching floral wallpaper to interesting urban-industrial furniture. Whatever your taste, with a workshop at hand, you have complete freedom whilst designing the town.
Hokko Life Devlog 4 – What’s New?
First on the list of developments in Hokko Life is the introduction of facial expressions. Robert updated the avatar’s head shader to make this happen. With this new Avatar head mesh the team behind Hokko Life set up the texturing in a way that meant details on the face would be handled with different textures. This means that Robert can swap out individual facial features, such as a nose or a mouth, and provide different expressions. Robert also spent this month editing the head shader especially for this as well as adding three new emotions to Hokko Life, which include happy, straining, and winking.
Robert had been contemplating for a while whether to add a stamina-like system to the game. He decided to trial a first implementation of one this month in order to see if a stamina system suited Hokko Life. He gave a player a finite amount of energy that depletes when doing tasks such as chopping down trees.
When your energy is depleted, your player needs to rest to recharge. Taking a break only replenishes a small amount of energy, so you’ll need to eat food or take a longer rest if you want to do more work. However, your energy bar will never be completely empty and therefore won’t prevent you from working altogether. Robert wanted a nice balance: to reward players for preparing adequately before heading out to gather resources, but to not penalize them in the event that they do run out of energy.
The next addition brought to Hokko Life by Robert is a bridge design blueprint. This gives players the ability to design their very own bridges and then place them out in the world.
Farming was one of the priorities for Robert this mont. He intended to expand a bit upon the simple pre-existing base.
He also decided to add fertilizer to the game;. Players craft fertlizer using the various resources found in the world. If you put fertilizer on tilled soil, it improves the likelihood of growing high quality crops. High quality crops can be sold for money and may occasionally be requested by characters. The fertilizer will only work on a patch of soil for a certain period of time and anything planted there during that timeframe has a better chance of being high quality crops.
Robert also added templates for two new characters. One of them is the farmer character who will induct you on farming and provide you with crafting recipes for your first pieces of equipment. When you’re more adept at farming, the farmer sells a variety of seeds, as well as some farming crafting recipes. The seconf character provides your player with farming challenges. The challenges are essentially requests but with deadlines.
And talking about making your farming life easier brings us onto the next update. Sprinklers. Robert added two types of sprinklers to Hokko Life. The first sprinkler waters in a ring, whilst the second waters in a line. You can own both of the sprinklers by purchasing the sprinkler crafting recipe from the farmer. The sprinklers can then can crafted with just a handful of resources and will hands down make your farming life a whole lot easier.
Intended to tie in with farming, Robert recently added gardening to the game. With this new feature, players can grow plants and flowers in the world from seeds. Whilst plants and flowers did exist previously, they would sprout in random locations. Additionally, players couldn’t really move them. As a result of the recent gardening update, players can now dig holes and plant trees and flowers as seeds. They are more low maintenance than crops too. Seeds don’t need water and grow nicely on their own. Additionally, plants and trees are movable. (even whilst still growing). The only exception is big trees, which need to be chopped down if you want rid of them.
As well as allowing players to be more creative and have more control over their town, flowers serve another purpose besides looking pretty: They can also be used in some crafting recipes.
Largely because of the new farmer character providing players with an abundance of seeds and other goods, Robert decided to make a system in the UI where players can see detailed information about items. This new feature is more helpful than you might think. One example is that players need to know how long a seed takes to grow. A second example is that players need to know the required resources to craft a recipe.
And the final new addition to Hokko Life is Piece Packs.
Once you are further into the game you will unlock more pieces. Pieces are used to design items with. In August, Robert implemented the necessary things to make this work. This brings us on to his introduction of “Piece Packs”. Piece packs are essentially collections of pieces to use when designing. Piece Packs are unlocked as a bundle for a set price.
As Piece Packs are purchased items, Robert updated the Design Tool so the packs show as groups. He also added filter buttons. which allow the player to show or hide different packs based on the materials needed.
Hokko Life is described as a ‘cosy, creativity filled community sim game’. The game is being developed by Robert Tatnell who runs his own indie game dev company, Wonderscope. Initially, Wonderscope intended to both develop and publish Hokko Life. However, this is an understandably big feat for one person. Therefore in April 2020, Wonderscope revealed that they would ‘team’ up (sorry not sorry) with Team 17, who will now publish Hokko Life. Team 17 are notorious for publishing highly regarded games such as My Time at Portia, Overcooked, and Yooka-Laylee. Initially, Hokko Life was expected to release on Steam later in 2020; The impact of COVID-19, however, could (like many games), delay this. The release date for the game on Steam is currently TBA. The price of the game is also not yet known.
Hokko Life begins with you stepping off of a train. Now the proud owner of a kinda dusty old workshop, you are free to craft and create to your heart’s content. The quiet village you’ve moved to, needs your help to create an endearing town for its residents. Armed with plenty of paint and tools, design, build and decorate new homes for your neighbours.
Players can craft materials and combine them as they wish. Combining them creates amazing new furniture and items for the town. By collecting flowers and mixing paints, you can then design wallpapers, flooring and even clothing. With an abundance of choice, you can design items from fetching floral wallpaper to interesting urban-industrial furniture. Whatever your taste, with a workshop at hand, you have complete freedom whilst designing the town.
July Hokko Life Update – Gone Fishin’ 🐠
The first game element to be discussed in the July Hokko Life update is fishing. It’s already been announced that fishing will be a feature for players to look forward to. For example, the game’s Steam page informs us that the fish have unique habits. The advice therefore given is to switch up your approach, and to anticipate each catch presenting unique challenges when reeled in.
The game’s fishing feature, however, has since been switched up. And we’re ‘searious’ when we say it’s possibly one of the best updates yet. We’re not even ‘squidding’!
It’s ‘Ofishal’, In Hokko Life You Get An ‘Oppor-tuna-ty’ To Fish. But There’s A Catch: Actually Catching Fish… 🐟🎮
The majority of Wonderscope’s work this month has been dedicated to working on and improving the fishing gameplay. Robert from Wonderscope has kindly decided to walk people through how fishing works in Hokko Life to show how far the game has come!
After re-starting the inventory, Robert was able to add bait to the game! Players can attach the bait to an equipped fishing rod. Having bait on your fishing rod will alter your chances of reeling in certain fish. Players can craft bait using different resources found in the game: but only once you’ve unlocked the crafting recipes.
If you right click on a certain type of bait in your backpack, you will then be prompted by a message. The message will give you the option of attaching the bait to your fishing rod:
Cast your line so that your bait and hook are in the water. It’s then just a matter of waiting for a fish to spot them. Resist the urge to try to reel in the fish as soon as it nibbles. The fish could take quite a few nibbles at the bait before being hooked, so patience is key. You’ll know when the fish has taken the last bite as the action UI will pop up. When this occurs, you have a short amount of time to press ‘Interact’ to hook the fish before it gets away.
Come On Guys You’re Just ‘Krilling’ It Now! 💀💫
But because nothing in life is easy right? Wanting to make Hokko Life that bit more challenging, Wonderscope have added another step which players must complete before that fishy is theirs. That next step, or challenge is the fishing mini game. The aim of the game is to keep the fish in the ring until it reaches the goal line. Naturally, the fish have minds of their own and the pests will try and swim away. This means you’ll need to position your rod left and right, and press ‘interact’ to reel a fish back into the ring.
If the fiendish fish remains outside of the ring for too long, it’ll get away and you’ll fail the mini game… 😒
On the other hand, there’s a chance that a chest could emerge in the mini game. If you manage to guide the frustrating fishy through this chest, it’ll pop open! And voila! You’ll get your fish and a random reward!
Robert said that he recently tried out a “diorama” look for the fishing mini game. He decided upon building a little scene to make the mini game look more appealing and generally aesthetic. The dev confessed to the mini game originally resembling a boring rectangle and likes the cuter direction he has taken with the fishing aspect. Robert also excitedly added that depending on the location you fish in, the diorama will change in accordance with it!
Oh For Cod’s Hake! I’m Not Shore I Wanna Buy The Game Now! I’m Gonna Have To Mullet Over! 😂🎣
Fishing challenges were also added to the game more recently. These challenges will unlock for players after they’ve been fishing for a while. Furthermore, Hokko Life will offer a weekly challenge where players can get bonus rewards.
These challenges are generated once an (in-game) week and necessitate players to catch a specified amount of fish within a certain time. These can either be specific fish, or any type of fish. The time limit varies and is based on the rarity of the fish, as well as if there are any nearby. But don’t worry, if you fail you can always go back and retry! Also, things can occur behind the scenes too, making sure that you have a chance of winning the challenge. I smell something fishy there. 🤔
Robert wanted more variation in the challenges, but explained that setting them up and getting them to work took considerably longer than expected, so he decided to settle with just one type for now. On the plus side, he excitingly added that the system is now there for challenge types to be added in the future.
Whilst the fishing update was the most prominent part of July’s Hokko Life devlog, other updates were also covered. These include:
Brief Updates On Avatars (Because Apparently They Looked Ugly). RUDE. ☹️😂
Spending more time working on the animation system
Improving how equipping and un-equipping tools works behind the scenes, among other things.
Attempting to make changes so that the system is less buggy
Simultaneously aiming to improve the game’s overall appearance whilst de-bugging
Changing simple things like adding an acceleration to the player to make the transition from standing to running look nicer.
Adding equip animation variations to fit the different ways the player can hold an item.
Working on some of the avatars animations. Mostly focusing on improving their weighting and timing.
Finally, Hokko Life Devlog #3 contained some brief updates on improvements to other avatar assets and features. These include face and head shapes, tweaks to hair styles, and deleting ‘ugly’ old clothing items and old avatar assets. Robert said deleting the old ugly stuff felt good, so we’ll take his word for it. But seriously though, please give the basic avatar assets some clothes and features before showing them to us. Especially when they seem to be crazily wielding weapons of some kind… #NightmareFuel 😱😂
Make sure to stay tuned for our coverage of Hokko Life Devlog #4! The game is really shaping up, with some new features and updates you won’t want to miss! 😊
Click here to check out an exclusive interview with the game’s solo developer.
For more info on the game be sure to take a peek at this article
Garden Story is an upcoming social simulation/adventure RPG where you play as a grape called Concord. The game is in development by Picogram and will be published by Rose City Games and VIZ Media for PC via Steam. Whilst a Spring 2020 release for Garden Story was hoped for, Picogram are still finetuning the game. They have however, released a demo version of the game entitled Garden Story: Autumn Town, which you can play here.
Players assume the role of Concord, who is a recently appointed village guardian. However, you will definitely be kept on your toes. Whether it be neighbours requiring assistance, or the sudden appearance of a strange rot that has seeped into the foundations of the once thriving island, Concord has his work cut out. Fortunately, he is not alone.
If you help friends with their problems, they’ll help you with yours. Care for the environment, explore new regions, solve puzzles, make new friends, and ultimately, help restore the grove to its former glory.
Whilst restoring a run down island, players are also able to explore and cultivate the islands four regions as ‘Concord the Grape’.
By fulfilling residents’ requests, fostering relationships with others, and making friends with fruity people, you may find that these people will help you out in return.
Take care of garden plots, gather resources, and ensure to upgrade your tools to allow you to take good care of your home.
Whilst solving puzzles and defending yourself against the insidious rot, you may slowly unral the mystery behind the island’s broken past
By depositing and cataloguing resources you can create a library featuring the island’s lore.
At your own pace, you are able to care for garden plots each day, choose to take a walk in the evening, or you can concentrate on completing favors. The choice is yours!
Experience new things and fill your scrapbook with usable perks and traits.
You can visit the game’s website here. Alternatively, you can check out their Twitter account here.
The people behind Garden Story recently gave an update on how the game is progressing. This is what’s new to Garden Story:
Labels have been added to jars so players know what type of dew a jar stores.
The in-game map, which shows the name and coordinates of each area, now has a handy Concord pin to show you where they are.
The game’s combat has been updated to be more satisfying. The pick art has more detail and the animation ‘packs a little bit more punch’.
The request board now has a floating bubble to alert you of new quests. In addition to the request board, there are general indicators above areas of interest as well. This helps players know where to explore if stuck.
Whilst harder to show, the team have been hard at work finetuneing the game’s storyline and ‘squashing bugs’.
And finally, Garden Story featured in the first ever Wholesome Direct. They described this as “an event that celebrated cozy vibes and kindness”. If you missed the Direct, don’t worry! You can watch the whole video here.
For regular updates, you can join the Garden Story Discord or follow them on Twitter.
Roots of Pacha is an upcoming farming/life sim that takes place at the dawn of mankind.
I can’t help but get super excited at the prospect of a new farming or life simulation game. No matter what, there is always something new and unique to experience as we enjoy this genre from the eyes of many different developers and artists.
Roots of Pacha certainly has an all new adventure for us to partake, as we explore, discover and create all the things that make the world what it is today. Build the world from the ground up, quite literally.
From discovering irrigation techniques for more sustainable farming, to domesticating wild plants to create an array of healthy vegetation; Roots of Pacha is sure to give the feel of living life at the beginning of our race.
Some great features to expect in Roots of Pacha
The developers mention taking inspiration from our classic favorite farming/life sim game like Stardew Valley and Story of Seasons, but with a hint of Civilization and Age of Empires. So we can expect to see some of the classic features that we have grown to love over the years.
Do some cave exploring to harvest materials for higher grade tools and simple machines, after inventing them of course. How about fishing to help add variety to your diet and help you stay fit for all your community building endeavors.
After helping to build your community, get to know those who have come to inhabit it. Develop lasting relationships, and maybe even fall in love. There will be much to do by way of social life when not tending the crops or deep sea fishing.
The developers have also mentioned having built the game from the ground up with multiplayer in mind. Play with a friend from the start, and share everything. Live in the same home, go fishing together, frolic at festivals and even participate in cutscenes all in local co-op.
Roots of Pacha is currently in development by a small indie studio comprised of just three people, two brothers and their good friend. The game is being developed for PC, but there is mention of brining the it to all major platforms somewhere down the line. There is no set release date.
For those of you that haven’t been following the developer on Twitch, so far she’s worked on the animations, emotes and textures of the bunnies, added characteristics, behaviors, and personalities for each bunny, and added lots of decorations! All you have to do is customize your park and watch as your bunnies run around, reacting to your snacks and toys! I don’t think I’ll be able to stop myself from collecting all of these little cuties and giving everything their little hearts desire!
About Bunny Park
Play as a bunny park manager! Restore the park after a spooky tornado scared all of the bunnies away and left the park a mess! Bring the bunnies back home by improving and expanding your park!
Build and decorate your own natural park!
Care for your bunnies with snacks and toys!
Improve your park’s popularity, coziness and cuteness!
Find all of the lost bunnies and complete your collection!