Steam's First Indie JRPG Is a Hit

Tom Goldman

Crying on the inside.
Aug 17, 2009
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Steam's First Indie JRPG Is a Hit



An obscure JRPG that follows the pre-teen owner of an item shop has become a hit thanks to digital distribution.

Digital distribution has once again proven itself as a platform that can help the smaller guys, and more off-beat titles, survive. Not long after Zeboyd Games Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/103836-1-Xbox-Live-Indie-RPG-Successfully-Sells-30K] is a hit one month after being released on Steam, Gamers Gate, and Impulse.

Notably, Recettear is the first independently made title from Japan to be released on Steam. This experiment has apparently been a success, because Carpe Fulgur says Recettear has sold 26,000 copies (between all distributors) in three weeks of sales and one week of pre-orders. And that number is continuing to grow.

At $19.99, Recettear wasn't exactly an easy sell as a title developed by Japanese studio EasyGameStation and completely unknown to anyone outside of Japan until recently. Players take on the role of a little girl that is forced to run an item shop to pay back a loan of her father's. While managing multiple aspects of the shop, players also control various different adventures in randomized dungeon crawls.

As usual, 26,000 might not sound like a lot. However, due to being sold on platforms like Steam, Carpe Fulgur says: "Recettear has done what we had barely dared to hope it would do: in a month it has secured the future of Carpe Fulgur by allowing all of its members to make wages comparable to 'proper' jobs in the industry for an entire year." The company says they are now able to "continue with other projects with very little concern for the immediate future," and plans to localize more Japanese titles for overseas audiences.

Combine these two successes with even bigger stories such as the Minecraft developer making $350,000 a day [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/103828-MineCraft-Makes-350-000-a-Day], and I don't think anybody has to worry about more unique titles being swallowed up by big-budget run-of-the-mill games anytime soon. For those of us that enjoy games that don't necessarily appeal directly to the mainstream, this is a very good thing indeed.

Source: Carpe Fulgur [http://www.carpefulgur.com/]

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wooty

Vi Britannia
Aug 1, 2009
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I saw this on the steam news feed a while back, wasnt sure what to make of it and now might have a look into it. Congrats to the devs though for breaking into the market with a success.
 
Jul 22, 2009
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I played the demo and it is really amazing...

However I don't have £13 to spend... and I don't like Steam... I'll be patient.
 

Disembodied_Dave

The Could-Have-Been-King
Feb 5, 2009
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This game is awesome. I'm not sure if I'd call it a "jrpg," as its really more of a business sim then anything else.
 

Beryl77

New member
Mar 26, 2010
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I'm always pleased to see an Indie developer having success, though I'm not so sure if I'd like that game.
 

Onyx Oblivion

Borderlands Addict. Again.
Sep 9, 2008
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Add another sale...I finally tried the demo.

Good. The PC could use some quality JRPGs.
 

TsunamiWombat

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Sep 6, 2008
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If you have a high tolerance for "japanese" stuff and anime, you can enjoy this game. It has more standard anime cliche tropes then you can shake a baseball bat at, and it's humor is only occasionally amusing, but the gameplay it's set over is solid 'Sim' mechanics, and the dungeon gameplay is an interesting diversion. The game at least, doesn't take itself too seriously, with dozens of self referencing gags.

Mind, I only played the Demo, so I don't know how repetetive the game might get. Also, it is HARD to make that first gold deadline..I dunno if it gets easier, but I had to sell like a MOFO to get it done and was left with absolutly nothing. Then the Demo ended.
 

Tom Phoenix

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Mar 28, 2009
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While I applaud this success, I do still hope to eventually see a retail release of this. Sort of like how Audiosurf went retail after it was a hit on Steam.

Anyway, congratulations to Carpe Fulgur! I wish them the best of luck in the future.
 

Disembodied_Dave

The Could-Have-Been-King
Feb 5, 2009
491
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TsunamiWombat said:
If you have a high tolerance for "japanese" stuff and anime, you can enjoy this game. It has more standard anime cliche tropes then you can shake a baseball bat at, and it's humor is only occasionally amusing, but the gameplay it's set over is solid 'Sim' mechanics, and the dungeon gameplay is an interesting diversion. The game at least, doesn't take itself too seriously, with dozens of self referencing gags.

Mind, I only played the Demo, so I don't know how repetetive the game might get. Also, it is HARD to make that first gold deadline..I dunno if it gets easier, but I had to sell like a MOFO to get it done and was left with absolutly nothing. Then the Demo ended.
During the full game, if you fail a deadline then it goes into this "It was all a dream!" bit and the story starts over but keep all your items and level. It's an interesting mechanic later on and thank god there's a skip button.
 

Armored Prayer

New member
Mar 10, 2009
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I congratulate the developers on their success.

While I'll probably never play this game, its good to see its selling well.
 

Evilsanta

New member
Apr 12, 2010
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I need to congratulate them on thier succes.

As for myself i really love the game it's funny and addictive.

Just need to sell one more item...
 

Torque669

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Apr 21, 2009
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I cant buy games off Steam and Psn etc and I think a publisher should get 5 of the years best indie titles and put them on a disc. For the people who dont have internet or cant buy of Steam or any other online store.

Could make some more money and bigger profits for the Indie's too. Even if that would make a sell-out.

However, more on topic, congratulations to them. Good to see alot of new developers starting up.
 

nitat

New member
Apr 10, 2010
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I bought the game and I find it very amusing.
I'm glad that developpers are bieng rewarded for the effort.
 

Buccura

New member
Aug 13, 2009
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The demo is really fun, and once I get a job this will be on my list of games to get. I'm glad to hear it's doing well :D
 

Timbydude

Crime-Solving Rank 11 Paladin
Jul 15, 2009
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I played the demo and enjoyed it. I'll probably buy it when Steam inevitably cuts the price a bit.
 

Catalyst6

Dapper Fellow
Apr 21, 2010
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It was a surprisingly fun game, I'll probably pick it up when I have more dough to push around.

Capitalism, ho!
 

Worgen

Follower of the Glorious Sun Butt.
Legacy
Apr 1, 2009
13,499
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Whatever, just wash your hands.
the demo of it was pretty fun, but since cash is tight right now Im gonna have to wait till its on steam sale