PEGBRJE: plant daddy and Hot Pot Panic

BEHOLD, MY EMPIRE.

plant daddy is a relaxation simulation created by Brady Soglin, indie developer and publisher through Overfull Games. Having installed themselves in a nice yet bare living space, players can live the life that they’ve always wanted; a two window abode that can fit plants on it.

This casual experience allows for players to simply grow their plants in the background while they to other things, much like actual plant growing. Players will start by growing a singular plant in their window sill, watering and caring for it, while slowly building up their collection and decorating their room as they do. To grow a plant, players must simply ensure that it has enough light at all times to continue its growing cycle indicated by a progress bar. Once filled, players can collect items from the plants and then water them to allow them to grow further. This is ‘it’, as it were, for gameplay — it’s about the art of patience and waiting for the beauty of plantlife to shine.

Instead of money, the currency for purchasing plants and cosmetics are those items collected from the plants in the form of leaves and blossoms. Leaves are only harvested in the early years of a plant, while blossoms are collected when they reach maturity and are a constant source from there. These blossoms are necessary for most of the cosmetic additions and upgrades to the game, such as extra shelving units, light sources, watering cans, new places to put plants, art pieces and more. Since blossoming plants don’t give leaves in any large capacity, and they are still necessary to purchase new plants, ensuring that players are always growing new ones to add to their collection is critical to continue the expansion of the adorable living space. Now there are additional ways to gain these currencies thanks to the ‘To-Do List’, a way of giving players a minor sense of direction and progression if they so choose. It mainly rewards blossoms for doing certain actions, but can be completely avoided if players wish to simply grow at their own pace.

plant daddy isn’t meant to be a foreground game that demands all of your attention as the player, much as plants don’t require it all the same. It’s a game to run in the background, listening to the weather ambiance as you toil away at other events in your life before tabbing back to quickly collect some blossoms and water some plants. There’s no urgency to it, as it’s a game of peaceful relaxation while customizing a living space to ensure that it looks aesthetically the way you choose to compliment the plants, or it’s a massive wall of flora that covers all of the living space. Who knows? It’s up to you to decide as you go. Good luck, and happy planting!

PS: It can be played in browser as well if you don’t want to download it. Works wonders there too.

Hot Pot Panic is a food-centric arcade game made by Keane Ng, a solo indie dev based out of the United States. Players are out at an all-you-can-eat hot pot restaurant, which sounds utterly fantastic as the player is starving. There is one minor issue, however; we’re out with our friend, and we’re trying our best not to make it look like we’re only here to eat. Time to juggle social conversations with binge eating!

How Hot Pot Panic simulates this social situation is simple; players need to eat enough food to fill their bellies before they run out of conversation topics. To do so, players will click on the assortment of foods to put it in the hot pot, and await the cooking process to eat the delectable food when it’s just right. Let it sit too long, and it will burn and taste awful; thankfully the food begins to sizzle loudly when it becomes ready, which is a nice touch when having to deal with the social cues. See, since there’s no voice acting players need to actually read what their friend is saying when they prompt a question, meaning that they need to look up from the food to listen. This is where the difficulty begins, because when looking up to see their conversation that means that players are unable to eat the food out of the hotpot without looking back down. Now this wouldn’t be so bad, but the friend will ask for the player’s input after giving an answer, and failure to give feedback that makes sense will tip the friend off that the player hasn’t been paying attention. This constant back and forth is what drives the game’s energy, where players will constantly be ordering more food and seeing how much they can throw in to the hot pot to eat in rapid succession, all while fraternizing with a friend none the wiser.

Hot Pot Panic does its job of simulating a quirky situation of attempting to hold a conversation with someone when you know that your heart is more invested in the food. Successfully stuffing your face will allow you to move onward, perhaps to better and more confusing conversations, but perhaps its for the best if you come clean with your friend. We’re clearly just there for the food, and that isn’t necessarily terrible. Unless you want that high score, then I hope you’ve prepped your memory to answer questions while half paying attention; you’ll need it to eat all that food before you’ve run out of topics. Good luck!

Links

Game Dev who decided to take on the monumental task of giving an overview of all 59 pages in the bundle for Racial Justice and Equality. We keep going.