Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop!? Review

Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop!? is a surprisingly deep commerce simulation game that’s loaded with humor.

Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop!? on PC

Do you like puns, simulation games, and micromanagement? If so, I’ve got just the thing for you: Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop!? by Daylight Studios is a humor-filled commerce-centric sim game in which you play a young potato who’s recently taken on ownership of his grandfather’s weapon shop. Players must hire smiths, build up their shop, and forge weapons for sale to adventurers. With rich systems that include keeping your employees happy, managing finances to ensure you’re not short on payday, and a fame factor that’s based on customer satisfaction with your wares, there’s plenty to keep players busy.

Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop!? is a full-featured simulation with a surprising amount of detail put into it considering the cartoonish presentation. Filled with spud-centric puns and referential humor, it still packs in a ton of things to keep track of. Objectives range from simple contracts to forge a weapon to certain specifications to reaching a certain level of fame through positive customer reviews of your crafted weapons. While the bulk of the game is, of course, focused on the forging of these weapons, there’s still plenty of other tasks to keep your smiths busy, including exploration, shopping for materials, and much-needed vacation time for your hard-working staff.

As the most important part of the Holy Potatoes! experience, the forging system is relatively easy to get the hang of. When you begin a project, you’ll choose one of the weapons from your available repertoire. Each of these requires certain materials to create; once you’ve made your choice, the work begins immediately. Each of your smiths is assigned to a workstation that focuses on one of the four weapon stats: power, speed, accuracy, and magic. Smiths, too, have certain roles that dictate which stat they’re best suited to improve, and different types of weapons will require focus on a different stat as the preferred primary. Once your weapon is made, you can send a smith to a nearby area to sell it to the heroes waiting there, who all have character classes that will determine what sorts of weapons they prefer. The better your weapon, the more XP an adventurer will gain by using it, and the better rating they’ll give it.

Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop!?

Your basic starting shop, with four workstations for your smiths to man during the forging process.

Aside from the forging and selling of weapons, Holy Potatoes! offers several other tasks to keep your smiths busy. They’re able to be sent out on shopping trips to pick up much-needed materials, exploration missions that reap materials and relics, researching of new weapon types, and vacations to help keep them happy and working hard when they’re back at the shop. Research is one of the most important things to keep up on, since you’ll need better weapons to keep impressing heroes as you go. Researching any weapon will require the use of relics collected during exploration, a bit of currency — called $tarch — and the devoted attention of one of your dutiful employees. Along with their forging stats, smiths can gain levels in exploration and merchant skills that increase the rewards they’ll bring back from performing related tasks.

The simplistic visuals and sound design of Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop!? may make the game seem aimed at a younger audience. Make no mistake, though, the gameplay has plenty of depth and complexity. Along with keeping your smiths happy, you’ll need to manage finances to ensure you’re able to keep them paid, buy the materials you’ll need to keep forging, and continue to advance research projects to supply the latest in weapon technology. You’ll get a one-time pass from the Guild if you’re short on payday, but another shortage means game-ending foreclosure. In addition to the employees, players also have to make sure profits are high enough to satisfy the elusive and somewhat sinister-seeming Agent 23, the business partner who owns a portion of the shop and seems to exist solely for stopping by to pick up his cut every so often.

As players progress through Holy Potatoes!, they’ll also unlock new regions that offer better shop upgrades, new places to explore, and more. This progression helps ensure that things stay fresh as players keep hammering away at the task of running their shop, and means there’s plenty of play time to get through if you want to see everything. The depth of gameplay and time that it takes to experience it all more than meets the $14.99 price on Steam, and if you’re a fan of commerce-focused simulation games, you owe it to yourself to give this one a glance. While it may lack the impressive scope and graphical detail of others in the genre, this is a fully-loaded spud with plenty to offer that’s also a blast to play and easy to get the hang of.

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