Roots of Pacha is an absolutely adorable farming and life simulation game by developer Soda Den and publisher Crytivo. Players get to customize their very own character and be a member of a thriving stone age community. Discover ideas to improve the village, grow and harvest crops from seeds you find in the wild, befriend a variety of cute animals, get to know your fellow tribes mates, and much more.
Build Useful Tools and Meaningful Relationships
There’s no doubt that Stardew Valley really rocketed the farming and life sim genre into the limelight, though we can’t forget Harvest Moon in that either. There’s nothing more relaxing than taking control of your life and just farming the days away, after all. Following the success of both games, it’s only natural that more and more farm and life sims popped up to fulfill the desires of players, and not all are made equal. Then there’s the charming Roots of Pacha.
Set in a stone age where technology is rudimentary, you get to explore new ideas and invent new tools with the help of your fellow villagers. Discover the “solar dryer” for drying meats, fruits, and veggies, as well as the “smoker” to cook fish and meats. Or simply go to the kitchen and whip up a tasty salad or flavorful soup.
Of course, you get to befriend your fellow tribe mates, as well as romance some of the men and women. Deliver different gifts to discover each person’s likes and dislikes. Increase your relationship levels to unlock cute cut scenes, as well as the ability to dance with others as a sign of friendship. It’s a wholesome system of interactions with a cast of characters featuring a variety of personalities and quirks.
Farming, Animal Husbandry, and Fishing
What I truly enjoy about Roots of Pacha is the farming and the animal husbandry. Your grandfather shows you how to farm, then leaves it all to you. It’s your job to explore to collect seasonal seeds from wild crops. Those seeds can then be planted and eventually harvested. What I find really fun is that the whole thing is a blank slate. In Stardew Valley, the time it takes for a crop to grow is readily displayed, but here you don’t know. Each time you harvest a crop, your knowledge level about that crop increases, unlocking information like how long a crop grows. It adds a really fun bit of discovery to the game.
As for animals, you also find those in the wild while exploring. Using your flute, you play a short rhythm mini game to build a friendship with the animal. It takes a few days to tame an animal, but once you do, you can invite them to live in an animal hut in the village. Some animals are strictly pets and can live in your hut with you. The animals who live in the animal huts can produce various products like milk, eggs, and fur that can be used in food recipes or crafting items.
Roots of Pacha also has fishing, and I thoroughly enjoy it. Instead of trying to line up a bar with a a fish, you hover over the shadows of fish. Wait as the bar fills up and turns into “Catch now!” to successfully catch a fish. You can attempt to catch before that message appears, but risk losing the fish to your hastiness. This mini game allows for a relaxing fishing experience, I think, and I much prefer it to other fishing systems.
I don’t want to spoil everything as it’s worth it to play and discover your own, but Roots of Pacha has so much to offer. It’s not solely on the player to contribute and build up the village, which my be my favorite part. Improvements aren’t strictly on you to make, as it should be! Looking at you, Animal Crossing.
After certain amounts of Clan Prosperity are reached, villagers will complete beautification projects that really make the village feel alive and lived in. There’s also a cave system to mine in that holds some fun secrets and puzzling mysteries. Being able to decorate your hut and farm are absolutely a plus, too
Overall, Roots of Pacha takes common farming sim elements that people love, but improves them. Not to mention, there’s multiplayer, so you can play solo or with friends. It’s an adorable game with beautiful scenery and amusing activities. I’d recommend it to anyone looking for another farm and life sim to add to their library.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is bound to be the top of every Nintendo Switch owner’s game wishlist this month. However, here are four other great games that are also coming to the console this month.
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX is a remake of the 2005 matched pair of Pokémon games Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team and Red Rescue Team. The remake will release on Nintendo Switch on March 6th, and will be available to purchase as both a digital or physical copy for USD$59.99.
In Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX, you will wake up in a village as a Pokémon including the likes of Pikachi, Eevee, and Charmander. Whilst getting to explore a magnificent reimagined world, your objective is to solve a strange predicament and build a rescue team to find and rescue lost Pokémon from a variety of dangerous dungeons. The game can be downloaded from the Nintendo eShop for USD$59.99 or purchased as a physical copy.
Begin the game by taking a personality test to determine which of 16 Pokémon you will become.
Try out the first few levels of the game in the free demo version. If you want to continue playing, you can carryn over your save data to the full version of the game.
Experience living as a Pokémon in a bustling village and interact with other NPC’s living there.
Solve the mystery of your strange predicament by befriending others and taking on a variety of missions to find and rescue lost Pokémon from dungeons.
Build a rescue team who are up to the challenge of saving the world from a variety of natural disasters.
When not rescuing lost Pokémon from perilous dungeons, return to Pokémon Square to prepare for your next challenge.
Half Past Fate
Half Past Fate is an upcoming 3D Pixel-art-stylised rom-com adventure game developed by Serenity Forge and set to be published by Way Down Deep. The game is set to release on March 12th 2020 on a variety of platforms.
In the game, you follow the lives of 6 different individuals who find each other in unusual ways. Half Past Fate is described as a time-jumping saga, from eight days to eight years, that will change how you feel about fate forever. The game will release on a variety of platforms including PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, and of course, Nintendo Switch, where it can be downloaded for USD$19.99.
A heartwarming and relatable present day narrative.
Jump through time and discover how six ordinary people find each other in extraordinary ways over eight years.
Immerse yourself in a beautiful 3D Pixel-art-stylised world.
Change a flat tire, eat some spicy ramen, and learn the difference between green and black tea.
Most importantly, enjoy relatable stories about life and love, and how fate can bring people together.
A Street Cat’s Tale
A Street Cat’s Tale is an emotional pixel-art-stylised adventure game about the survival of a stray kitten. The game is both developed and published by feemodev, and was first released on PC and Mobile last year in 2019. The game will be published and available to download on the Nintendo Switch eShop by CFK for USD$7.99 on March 12th 2020.
A Street Cat’s tale is a game where you play as an orphaned kitten. The aim of the game is to survive thirteen days as a kitten on the streets alone, after the tragic death of your mother. In the game, you will have to find your own food (which can be healthy or unhealthy and affect your health) and forge relationships with other animals and humans. But beware, not all of the NPC’s you encounter will be nice. Will the poor little kitten survive? And will it end up continuing to roam the streets, or find a loving home?
Roam the streets as a stray kitten and obtain food in order to avoid starvation and survive.
The game features a variety of NPC’s each with their own personalities.
Like in real life, some NPC’s dislike strays and will get angry if you attempt to interact with them.
However, some people will like you and may give you something to eat.
If you get close enough to certain NPC’s, they may tell you details about themselves.
There are 11 different endings in this emotive narrative-driven adventure game.
Cooking Mama: Cookstar
Cooking Mama: Cookstar is the sixth mainline game of the cookery simulation-styled Cooking Mama series. Whilst a specific release date has not been announced, the game is set to release on Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 at some point in March 2020.
Cooking Mama: Cookstar is the first ever HD Cooking Mama game. It is also the first Cooking Mama game to release on a platform besides Nintendo or mobile. The game has been praised by PETA for featuring a vegetarian mode. screenshots of the game were first leaked back in August of 2019.
Live out your culinary dreams and become a virtual Cookstar with Mama as your mascot.
Collect and master over 90 brand new recipes.
Re-create a variety of dishes from previous games in the series.
Choose between traditional and vegetarian options for the first time ever.
Play by yourself or with a friend in the game’s multiplayer mode.
Take photos of your dishes and apply filters and stickers.
Share pics of your creations with friends and family on Facebook and 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.
There’s something really appealing about pixel art games. Their simplistic art-style induces nostalgic childhood memories of times when 8/16-bit games were the norm. From highly regarded releases such as Undertale and Stardew Valley, to the influx of upcoming pixel-art games in the making, such as Ikenfell and Eastward, it is evident that retro graphics are still highly in demand, and that pixel art is most certainly not dead. And so here’s our 8 favourite modern-day pixel-art games:
Littlewood is a new RPG where you play the role of a hero who has completed their quest of defeating the evil wizard, saved the world of Solemn, and is now trying to rebuild the town of Littlewood. Being developed by the indie developer Sean Young, Littlewood brings an interesting spin to the usual town building simulator by melding together aspects of familiar games like Minecraft and Animal Crossing. Littlewood is out on Steam for $14.99 and will soon be available on Nintendo Switch as well.
Peaceful days is an upcoming indie farming RPG game that aims to please fans of the cutsie, yet so engaging simulation game genre. In Peaceful Days you will meet new characters as you stroll through this beautifully crafted town, make new friends or catch up with lifelong buddies – the choice is always yours. Head over here for some more info on the upcoming Peaceful Days game.
Originally released for Windows, Stardew Valley was highly regarded for features such as complex characters, diversity in character customisation and dating, and the game’s enigmas and secrets. Its overwhelming success leads to its release on other platforms including Mac, Linux, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PS Vita. The popular farming sim is also available for Android and iOS. With Multiplayer now available on Steam and Nintendo Switch – soon PS4 and Xbox One, you can also enjoy farming with your friends.
Celeste is a narrative-driven adventure platformer featuring pixel graphics. The aim of the game is to help Madeline survive her inner demons on her journey to the top of Celeste Mountain. with over 700 screens of platforming challenges and secrets, and over 2 hours of original music featuring live piano and catchy synth beats, it’s no surprise that the game was given a 92% rating by Metacritic upon its release for Switch back in January. At just $14.99, the game undoubtedly offers good value for money.
Terraria is an indie 2D Action-Adventure game developed by Re-Logic. The game was initiall released for Windows in 2011, but has since been released on various other consoles and devices. Often compared to Minecraft, features of the game include exploration, crafting, building, and combat with a myriad of different creatures. The game has ‘overwhelmingly positive’ reviews on Steam, and as of September 2019, has sold 25 million copies across all platforms. At only $9.99 on Steam, the game is affordable and offers pretty good value for money.
Undertale is a story-rich RPG by tobyfox with ‘Overwhelmingly Positive’ reviews. Described as ‘The RPG where you don’t have to destroy anyone’, Undertale is story-rich due to your character’s journey, and also due to player choices affecting the game. You play as a human child who has fallen underground into the realm of monsters and thus, tries to find their way home. You encounter both good monsters and bad along the way, which you can choose to spare or fight. There are a variety of puzzles to complete in order to progress, and a variety of interesting areas to explore.
Rakuen is a beautiful adventure game that features a hospitalised boy, who travels to the fantasy world of Rakuen with his mother. Upon its release on 10th May of last year, Rakuen was a firm favorite here at MPG, despite flying under the radar a little. Since then, however, it has obtained a well-deserved overwhelmingly positive review score on Steam, and captured the hearts of many. Priced at $4.99, the game offers very good value for money. A mini TV series entitled ‘The Farmer In The Sky’, which is based on the world of Rakuen, is currently in development.
Moon Hunters is an indie action RPG game developed and published by Kitfox Games. The game was initially released for Windows, Mac and Linux through Steam on March 10th 2016. It has since been released for PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. Described as a 1-4 player co-operative personality test, players can create their very own legend. Explore a mysterious Mesopotamian-inspired world which changes every time you play. The Steam version of the game (which is a reasonably-priced $9.99) contains a free expansion pack entitled Eternal Echoes.
Owlboy is a story-driven platform adventure game for Windows, PS4, Switch, Linux, Mac, and Xbox One. Notorious for its long development cycle, Owlboy was started in 2007 and completed in 2016. Playing as Otus, who is part owl and part human, players can fly and explore an exciting world above the clouds. Gather Otus’ friends to join you on your journey as you explore the open skies. Eliminate enemies and overcome obstacles in a game deemed “worth the wait” by Destructoid. The game was first released on Steam on November 1st 2016, where it can be currently purchased for $24.99.
Crossing Souls is an indie pixel art action-adventure game set in 1986 (retro vibesss!). After a group of friends discover an unusual pink stone which allows them to travel between two worlds, they become involved in a government conspiracy. Control five kids with special skills on summer vacation whilst fighting and solving puzzles in order to save the world. Released on 13th February 2018, the game which costs $9.99 on Steam has received ‘very positive’ reviews.
Golf Story is an interesting take on an RPG. It is a pixel based RPG that revolves around the sport of Golf. It is from a new developer called SideBar Games. Besides a really fun and easy to learn Golf play, the game also features a story mode with tons of fun characters to meet. For the green thumb people, there is also some gardening aspect to the game. For only $14.99 this game offers many hours of fun, especially thanks to the multiplayer portion, the game has great deployability.
Hearthstead is an upcoming farming and life RPG game with all the elements needed to make for an engaging experience. Games like Stardew Valley and Harvest Moon have redefined the farming and lime simulation genre, with marriage relationships, seasonal events and just so much more to do. The fantasy setting allows the game to take different paths with very little to no creative restrictions. I am thinking fairies, mermaids and garden gnomes who can help with chores! Head over here for some more info on Hearthstead.
.Age ( Yes, dotAge )
In .Age, you are the village elder in a town that has cursed with an apocalyptic curse. This causes all kinds of trouble for you and the villagers that you must protect while growing your village. You will need to gather resources and do research as your town grows, which will aid in the health and wealth of your citizens. If you are as excited as me, check out the latest on .Age here.
This list is by no means exhaustive as there are loads of other great Pixel-Art-Stylised games out there. Let us know in the comments what your favourite pixel art game is!?
Fans of Harry Potter and Little Witch Academia will be pleased to hear that there are currently two very exciting magic school games in development. Whilst Chucklefish’s game, which has the working title of ‘Witchbrook’ is still in its early stages, Ikenfell is much further in development. Ikenfell is expected to be released around June 2018.
Interestingly, both games use pixel game art, are simulation games, and are (obviously) set in a magic school. However, they both have unique art styles, with Chucklefish’s game Witchbrook having visual similarities to their very popular game, Stardew Valley.
Ikenfell is a JRPG game which utilises turn-based and timing-based battle mechanics. These mechanics enhance it’s variety of characters and story development. It’ creator has said it’s art style was influenced by a plethora of games such as Paper Mario, Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, Earthbound (Witchbrook, Starbound, Earthbound, Warbound, everything-bound!), and Robotrek. The game also takes i nspiration from fictional teen series such as Harry Potter and Carry On.
The game’s publisher is Humble Bundle, and its platforms are PC, Mac and possibly Linux. Humble Bundle are helping to polish the game, market it, and will soon add it to Steam.
An update from the game’s founder talks of the release of a new game trailer at the beginning of 2018, so look out for that!
Currently, the game takes around 20 hours to complete (possibly more for less experienced players).
Safina is invited to the magical school of Ikenfell for witches and wizards, leaving behind her slightly embittered sister Maritte, who doesn’t have magic powers. Safina soon becomes one of the school’s most notorious students.
However, Safina doesn’t return home one summer. She has gone missing alongside the school’s headmistress.
You play as Maritte, who goes to Ikenfell to find her sister and discover the truth of what exactly is going on.
The expansive school is full of ‘magic, mysteries, secret passages, hidden rooms, and many strange characters’ for you to explore.
Magical duels within an original turn-based RPG battle system
The ability to time your hits to increase spellpower and to block incoming attacks
An expansive magic school, containing mysteries and secrets
A variety of strange and interesting characters
Hidden spell, items and equipment to aid you
Friendship, rivalry and romance
Witchbrook is an up and coming RPG turn-based strategy simulation game in development by Chucklefish, the creators of Wargroove and publishers of Stardew Valley. Finn Brice, the founder and director of the game says that a formal announcement is “maybe quite a way off”. He also suggests that the game is around a three-to-four year project. The working title Witchbrook came from Chucklefish’s game Wargroove’s working title, Warbound.
Influences on the game include a variety of old Nintendo console games (Earthbound again perhaps?), as well as games such as Stardew Valley, Harvest Moon and 2D Zelda games. Although not the intention of Chucklefish, many people compare the game’s graphics to Little Witch Academia. However, Brice has said that Ghibli films such as Kiki’s delivery service (which look similar to Little Witch Academia) did influence the game’s art style.
A day and night cycle
Magic classes to attend
Folkore and exciting areas to explore
Undisclosed “interesting gameplay twists.”
However, unlike Ikenfell, which is heavily story based, the developers want Witchbrook to have the appeal of Stardew Valley where players can simply enjoy being inside a charming world and make it their own.
Similar to Ikenfell, Witchbrook allows players to have relationships with other characters and to go on dates with them. However, these don’t always go to plan, making the game more true-to-life, as opposed to the idealised romance often portrayed in other forms of media.
However, Brice reassures players that even though the developers want to hit home and capture what it’s like to be in school, they want to provide a nice kind of nostalgia for players. Therefore, interactions with other characters won’t be too difficult or ‘horrific’.
Ikenfell has been pretty much complete since late 2016, with the kickstarter campaign being set up to mainly fund:
Vocals for battle and vocalists for some music tracks
Additional battle animations and story animations
Additional artwork for cut scenes and critical moments
Any additional software and licences required for the above
However, Witchbrook still has plenty of room for development, influences and features.
Last year, you may remember us announcing a 3D animated series based on the heartwarming adventure game of Rakuen.
Rakuen is a beautiful adventure game that features a hospitalised boy, who travels to the fantasy world of Rakuen with his mother. Upon its release, Rakuen was a firm favorite here at MPG, despite flying under the radar a little at first. Since then, however, the game has received overwhelmingly positive reviews on Steam, earned a rating of 9.5/10 on Polygon, and received a Metascore of 84/100 by Metacritic. Priced at £6.99/USD$9.99, the game offers very good value for money.
On August 10th 2018, Laura Shigihara (the developer and publisher of Rakuen), posted a surprising and exciting trailer to her channel, announcing the future release of a 3D animated Rakuen series, entitled The Farmer in the Sky.
The cute trailer gave us a sneak-peak of what to expect in the animated series, which is set in the whimsical world of Rakuen. Since the trailer’s release, The Farmer in the Sky has been in development by Laura Shigihara and animator Slamacow.
However, fans of Rakuen will be pleased to know that the wait is over, as the first episode of the series, (entitled ‘Too Many Minimoris’) was posted on the YouTube channel of Morizora Studios three days ago on the 13th May. The Rakuen Steam page has confirmed that there will be more future episodes, and therefore to subscribe to the channel.
[dropcap]F[/dropcap]orager is an upcoming indie game that is being developed by HopFrog and will be published by Humble Bundle, who will also publish Ikenfell and Mineko’s Night Market. Forager was initially released for free on itch.io, where it was well received. After a year of development, the game will soon be available to buy from Steam, the Humble Store and the Nintendo eShop. Whilst no set release date has been specified, the game is scheduled for release during fall 2018, meaning we should hopefully be able to play it very soon!
Described as an “idle game that you want to actively keep playing”, Forager is a 2D open world game inspired by exploration, farming and crafting games such as Stardew Valley, Terraria and Zelda. The game contains a variety of lands and biomes to explore and players can craft, gather resources, uncover secrets and even build a base.
Gather, collect and manage resources.
Craft useful items & structures.
Build and grow a base out of nothing. Buy land to expand and explore.
Level up and learn new skills, abilities, and blueprints.
Solve puzzles, find secrets and raid dungeons!
Achieve anything you want! The choice is yours, you set your own goals to work towards!
New lands and biomes (Deserts, Graveyards, Snowy Mountains, Volcanoes, and more!)
Combat mechanics have been added! (Dungeons, Bosses, Raids, Night time invasions, etc).
NPC interaction. Find quirky companions to trade or talk with.
Farming mechanics, including caring for animals and the harvesting of all sorts of crops and herbs.
Archaeology mechanics. Play as a professional secret-finder as you raid ruins, dig for artifacts and display your findings in your own museum!
Alchemy & Rune Inscription mechanics. Allowing you to go all in on the crazy wizard fantasy, destroying big masses of resources with a single bomb or creating trees out of nothing with a powerful spellbook.
16+ new skills to learn and master, in a free-form upgrade system that allows you to customize your experience as you see fit. This brings the number of skills up to 64 total, each unlocking new items, structures or gameplay modifiers!
Random events have finally been added!
New resources, objects, structures, animals, puzzles, secrets and more! More EVERYTHING!
[dropcap]I[/dropcap]t’s no secret that pixel-art-stylized games are popular right now (we even recently wrote an article about our favourites). Pixel-art-stylized video game fans will be pleased to hear that there is another game in development. Developer’s Aloft Studios are currently working on a Zelda-inspired game entitled Hazelnut Bastille, which they hope will bring some retro vibes and SNES magic to the Nintendo Switch console.
Hazelnut Bastille is an upcoming Zelda-esque 16-bit JRPGMetroidvania game that has been confirmed for PC, Mac, Linux, and more recently, Nintendo Switch. The game has been compared to Chrono Trigger and Golden Sun. It currently has a tentative mid to late 2020 release window.
Aloft Studios is a small indie game studio who have emphasised that quality is of utmost importance to them.
Additionally, composer Horoki Kikuta (who is known for his work on Secret of Mana) has joined the Hazelnut Bastille team as a celebrity guest composer.
Aloft Studios have given the following information about the game in a previous interview with Nintendo Life:
“The timescale for this release will either be simultaneous with our PC / Mac / Linux release, or following some months after, as funding and development time ultimately allows, but we would very much like to see a release across all four of our starter platforms if it proves possible!”
“Hazelnut Bastille, for PC, Mac, and Linux, and now Nintendo Switch, is a lush, topdownMetroidvania in a 16bitJRPG style, which seeks to continue the great lineage of superior design from the mid 90’s- the moment in time when mainstream 2D titles reached arguably their greatest level of refinement, in titles such as Super Metroid and Link to the Past. We seek to emulate this period in most ways, from graphic presentation to audio production, to general level design philosophy. Hazelnut Bastille tells the story of a young woman who travels to a foreign shore on the outskirts of her world, in order to seek out the promised gifts of mythological ancients, in hopes of retrieving something which was lost to her. On the way, her story becomes irrevocably intertwined with the lives of those living in this far off land.”