I have to admit that my perception of Devolver Digital is somewhat limited. Until last week, I knew the company mainly for the cane-printed logo with the Old West script, the eye-catching E3 presentations with Chief Synergy Officer Nina Struthers, and a handful of games that were mostly violent top-down shooters. I knew it for Hotline Miami, Titanium soulsAnd similar games. There's nothing wrong with these titles – in fact, I adore one of the two I've just performed – but it's clear I had a narrow view of the publisher. Devolver Digital offers so much more than these types of games. Last week in San Francisco, I saw first-hand the variety of games that the publisher gives its name to.
Weedcraft Inc. is an upcoming adventure game by developer Vile Monarch, known for Destroy your enemiesand game writer Scott Alexander. It's the first game commissioned by Devolver Digital. Far from the violent top-down shooters I usually associate with. Weedcraft is a business sim that challenges players to build a weed empire while dealing with the complications associated with conducting an unauthorized business. Alexander, who works with the development team remotely, explained that to me Weedcraft It's not just a stupid marijuana game as you find it on the phone called Wiz Khalifa. This is a legitimate view of the weed business.
"The idea was, we looked at this market and saw that there were games around the grass, everyone loves grass," says Alexander, "but most of the games are cartoons of Stoners. Cheech & Chong, Pineapple ExpressWay of thinking. This is a really weird, interesting system, and a tycoon game is the perfect way to express it. You can just play it right now, and the whole interesting thing will naturally fall out. "
Creating interesting situations is something Alexander knows about. He is the writer behind the shadow warrior reboots Hard West, Serious Sam 3and destructive favorite Super hotalthough he has no merit for the spectacular gameplay of this title. His previous titles contained well-designed worlds that embellished with something fantastic. Weedcraft They could have gone in a similar direction as they tried to charm or adore the rise of a drug dealer, but Alexander and Vile Monarch strive for a more authentic tone that is uniquely American. Since Vile Monarch is a Polish company in which recreational cannabis is illegal, but medical marijuana is legal, Alexander had to help curate the experience that corresponds to the reality of growing and selling weeds in the United States.
"As we evolved the gameplay, in the US I was not just talking about grass, but also grass," he says. So when they come back with "So we want this mechanic to work," we would be like this would not work. "
Finding out how it works here is a tough nut to crack for even Americans. Local, state, and federal laws can affect each other, something that California learns the hard way. When researching the story, Alexander tells that he spoke to a multitude of people who make up the many different facets of the marijuana industry to clarify the facts. These included people running pharmacies, black marketers, Wall Street brokers and even graphic designers.
"It's an industry that spans every part of the country," he explains. "So there's the whole user base, which is far wider than anybody else would – not just stoner and college kids – and then all the industries they serve, it's a trillion-dollar industry that shows within To be illegal for 10 years, which is crazy, a kind of combination of the end of the ban and the gold rush that are mixed together, creating an immense wealth created for him and for many people the industry being squashed "
What's chewed up is what players want to avoid Weedcraft when they start to move their product. I learn pretty quickly that the game has no place for the benevolent drug dealer. It's killing or being killed, and for me to take part, I take control of two brothers who come to the store after their father's death in Flint, Michigan. One of the brothers has a business background and the other is a breeder. Together, they must build their empire in the midst of the glove of the US, while staying one step ahead of the competition and one step ahead of the police.
My demo is just about the tutorial that players will experience when the last game starts. I quickly set up a plant in the basement of my dead father, start producing skunky weed and opening a shop on a street corner. The actual gameplay of growing weeds is simple enough for any simulation fan to understand. Weeds require light, water and frequent trimming to achieve the very best. The more you trim the weeds, the more you can water them, and these two factors, combined with the chemical composition of the soil, result in better weeds that can be sold at higher prices.
In the beginning, prices make the difference in the world. As a new seller on the scene, my only clients are homeless, college jocks and occasional smokers, who have a hard price limit on spending. My prices, like the quality of my doping, start low, but since I sell and complete goals, I can buy higher quality equipment and varieties. Manufacturing and implementing products are not the only issues I have to deal with. There are also electricity costs that create a front for my deployment and increase the presence of the police in my area.
Policemen can be paid and made reasonable, which I can not say about my competition. At the beginning of my antics, I find a rival merchant who wants to take me out of town. If I am later in a similar situation, I have various ways to deal with it. For the first hour, my only option is to drastically undercut its price until it's unprofitable for them to sell in the same room as me. Once they are gone, I will rebuild my prices.
As soon as the money starts, I start to invest in my business. I buy new equipment, a new strain, and hire my first employee to deal with the growing side of things, so I can concentrate on selling the lint and keeping my tail. Weedcraft provides a verbose conversation feature that allows system players to free themselves from problems or at the mercy of another provider. The policeman hanging around my neck is easy to handle, but it gets harder and more costly for me to stay in business when my business grows, or when Biggie means money or problems. This plays in one of the many systems players must follow in the game.
"We have a kind of quasi-alignment system so you can work legally or illegally," says Alexander. "Even in a legal market, you can work illegally and you can act either indefinitely or decently, so you can be legally decent, legally absent, illegally decent, or illegally outrageous." Legal decency would be like medical marijuana pharmacies Illegal decency would be like those compassionate caregivers who were arrested by exposing poti brownies to AIDS patients, their illegal rogue would be like a discreet drug dealer, and a legal rogue would be like John Boehner, who fought for years against legalization in Congress and as soon as he leaves He joins the board of the largest US cannabis company. "
Alexander and Vile Monarch had different options to deal with your business, and made an incredibly smart choice with the scenario of this first scenario. Michigan has only recently fully legalized the use of marijuana in the state, and voters have agreed to regulate the drug as well as alcohol.
The campaign in Flint, which lasts about ten hours, according to Alexander, is one of two that will be included in the final (a third will be provided as a free update after launch). The second campaign is the more convincing of the two for me. It is a black man – the population most affected by America's racist drug laws – who is released from jail after being released for the sale of weeds. His business partners managed to stay out of jail and now have several years' advantage over the man as he tries to rebuild his weed empire.
The first scenario of the thriving brothers shows the likeable angle of a sick father, an image that was crucial to turn opinions into legalized marijuana, even if it was just for medical purposes. The second scenario is certainly a much more common reality, especially for people with color, and this is one that does not necessarily make headlines or receive ballot papers in national newspapers and magazines. Think of all the glowing articles you've read about people growing potency for a sick parent or child, and try to remember the last time you read a favorable message about a black guy who broke down is because he has grown and sold weeds, and that's just it he has earned his livelihood.
And that really seems to be the end goal of Weedcraft: to present the purchase and sale of marijuana as another business in America. Long ago, the days are from Reefer Madness and Cheech & Chong Movies. This is not what weeds are anymore, that's not what a majority of people think we are. It is legal for medical purposes in 33 states. In 10 states it is legal for leisure. Hemp, the sort of drug you certainly do not want to smoke, was legalized in the Farm Bill, signed by President Trump late last year. Times are changing and the weeds are becoming mainstream no matter if people like it or not.
"People seem to take pot more seriously today than in the past," says Alexander. "They come to the fact that this industry is not what it used to be, we had to deal with the perception problem, there is a prejudice against marijuana that is somehow corrosive to the society, we had a few branches saying that they will not cover the game, where it's literally just a remnant of garbage recollection where you could release a game about a beer baron or a whiskey tycoon and that there would be no similar cultural backlash. "
This simulation is as close as I'll ever be able to sell weeds because I'm a huge square. I do not even smoke the stuff, though it's absolutely legal in California. But I fully support its legalization throughout the country, and I believe that the only way to 100% legalization, apart from the dying of all the old people who hate them, is that the many media outlets have the conversations we have to change over weeds Weedcraft is doing just that by eliminating the stigma surrounding smoking and selling weeds and presenting the industry as it really is: a highly profitable market where the rich can become wealthier when using the government's connections, to smash the little men who have been campaigning for legalization for decades. And I can not imagine anything more American.
Weedcraft Inc. starts this spring on PC and Mac. Alexander says the developer is looking at other platforms, but there is currently nothing to report. I will say that this game would work great on any touchscreen device (Note Note).
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