We sort-of posted about Pyordactyl’s indie opus The A.Typical RPG during that whole Indie Supper-Singing Thing (which we should probably do again some time), but now it’s actually an existent thing, with a demo and everything. Reminder to all indie games – make a demo. It really, really, really, really, really, really helps.
Anyway, A.Typical is an RPG set in the real world, covering student longing, loathing and lodgings. Boss fights against college jocks, dialogue trees about revealing your true feelings for The Girl, levelling up your social abilities – that sort of thing. Scott Pilgrim by way of Kudos by way of D&D, if you will.
The demo is, unless I’m missing something, incredibly brief, but acts as a proof of concept for A.Typical’s unusual combat and dialogue mechanics. The former is, alas, quicktime events. I’m not an objective witness for those, generally loathing them to the pit of my stomach unless they’re within a very closely-aligned context (e.g. Guitar Hero). The fight in here is pretty easy if a bit long-winded, so I don’t know how it’s going to evolve across the game. Conversation I’m more positive about, as it revolves around arranging your attitude in a manner that you think will suitably impress/intimidate/arouse/etc the character you’re chatting to. In the demo build I worry your choices are based more upon not having enough time than they are gauging the other character, but I don’t know the system well yet and it’s obviously a very early version of the game. The concept, I dig – as the game observes, it’s akin to how, in real life, you tailor your manner as well as your words according to what you believe of your co-chatter.
Both conversation and fighting apparently hinge on mental acuity as much as they do stats, so there’s a lot of scope for surprising situations and challenges. Definitely curious to see more, most especially in terms of the actions and consequences of conversation. Though I remain worried by the combat.
What else? The hand-drawn graphics are sweet, the general tone seems pleasantly self-aware and I’m charmed by the promise of applying boss fights and epic quests to every day situations. Obviously, the Pilgrim element is hard to push out of one’s mind, but it’s got its own voice as far as I can tell. The demo’s here, and there’s much more in this here video:
If you’re already so taken with it, you can preorder at Desura for a mere £1.99, or £2.99 for the Extra Cheese With Lightning Bolts Edition, which throws in alternate dialogue options and making of goodies. Also, more info on the official site.