Isn’t Christmas wonderful? A time when we show kindness to each other, help those in need, and put effort in the love for our fellow humans and animals. Unfortunately, Christmas has also become heavily commercialized and due to this, why not look at a game that is all about a world so corrupt that you can pay your enemies to be defeated? Ironically, for only 1 dollar.
It’s a living, funny enough
Waking up in a bed you don’t even remember falling asleep in, you are a businessman, ready to graduate and start your life as a working member of society. While your fellow colleagues didn’t get a chance and unfortunately got both fired and fried, you thankfully are assigned for a job at the Office district. It’s just how business works in this world and from here starts a chain of events that begins small and minor, but gets grander and more important as you venture further.
From start to finish, you are taken on a journey that is bizarre and interesting. While it certainly has a message about how money can control the world or make it bleak, it is more humorous with its setup and cracks many jokes. One of my personal highlights was that the simple water-coolers were the important conversation starters or how the B court in the Law district, was assigned for a basketball you could fight. This humor is also presented through in-game elements, such as how weapons are daily office equipment like suitcases and staples, or how you don’t level up, but get promoted. Adding to this charm, is the dialogue you can easily miss from non-important conversations. They are intriguing and it made me search out for every person to talk to, even if they did not reward me with anything other than a smile. There are also some very fitting cameos, such as characters from Off, and all are nice nods that feel like they could have been a part of this world.
Some of the humor doesn’t hit right on and can be blatant and direct, but these are rare and even then, the concept of the jokes is good, just not as well delivered as the others. What really shocked me, is how it makes its story seem like it just wants to present a surreal journey with a focus on the world and the inhabitants themselves, and then subtly drags you in a huge plot that escalates. This is very impressive and takes you off guard easily. The progression also neglects filler, unless you go off the main-path in search for more dialogue or events, as it should be. Not to mention, should you search out for optional conversations, a smile is guaranteed. Completing this journey is an ending that at first was abrupt, but fantastic and I don’t dare to spoil it.
Story score: 9/10
Straight to the point
Being made with RPG-maker, this is a turn based RPG with random battles, a world to explore and no overworld-maps to travel on. Suits is a fairly linear game where you will be simply asked to go and do biddings for different characters, or if you choose so: explore to find optional quests and boss fights. As an RPG, you can equip items for a boost in stats, such as paper hats and suits for defense, staplers as a weapon and so on. They will, like in other RPG’s, be helpful assets against fighting the enemies you will encounter randomly. In battles, you can choose to attack, use a special attack, guard, or use an item. Nothing is new here, but what is interesting if familiar, is the TP-meter. Your main character, as well as one optional one you can acquire, has a TP-meter that charges as you attack the opponent, which can be used for special attacks. One other character you can find, has a FU-meter which is basically a mana-meter and can only be recharged by consuming bottled water.
The turn based battles are standard, but enjoyable. They start out fairly easy before becoming more difficult, but as long as you remember to search out for more party-members and extra goodies, the game will be at best decently challenging. The game became rarely difficult as one member had the ability to stun other enemies and despite it only had a chance of doing it, it became an important part of my strategy. If you decide to neglect the side-activities, you are going to have a hard time and might have to grind a lot, which is far from ideal. The enemies can hit hard on you and some can inflict status-illnesses, such as less HP or poison.
This is actually a nice way to make grinding optional by giving you a better chance if you do the sidequests. While this is nothing new and common for RPG’s, due to how inviting it is to search out for more dialogue and bizarre events, you will easily forget that you did something that saves you some grinding, due to how fun exploring is. Should you still go up against a hard boss, you can simply pay a large amount of money to win, which is effective, but never necessary and will cost you big time. What is also interesting, is that there are shops, but no form of inns. You have to purchase sandwiches to restore health or water-bottles to restore FU. This also suits the game itself, as no one wants you to sleep on your job. A minor complaint that I felt was rather odd, was that I could not open boxes from every side. I simply had to go around, so it was never a huge problem, but just weird.
The game contains 5 areas to explore and despite being only 2-3 hours long, it does contain enough telephones for saving your game at any time. Even if it was short, I felt I got everything I wished from it. Suits knows how to make itself interesting and engaging, due to sidequests being rewarding and fun battles. The fights could be too easy at times because I could paralyze foes, but the character with this ability must be found and the enemies could deal serious damage on you even with him on board.
Gameplay score: 7/10
Just like my paperwork
Let me ask you this: when you were at school or a job that involved paperwork, did you ever doodle or draw pictures just to relax a little bit? This is the kind of artstyle Suits builds upon, with drawn pencil-marks on a white sheet of paper. Having the game in total black and white with clear marks and uneven shapes, is quite intriguing and unsettling. While it is definitely crude and no technical marvel, it is a style I really appreciate as it is very fitting. It isn’t meant to be pretty, but rather in tone with what we all probably did once in awhile.
This also goes for the characters, as they are not just crudely drawn, but also contains creative variety to their designs, such as literal loan sharks, coffee mugs, staplers, and references that are fitting. Unfortunately, the main-characters and those who don’t sit, are pixelated in contrast with the hand drawn visuals. They are a clear part of this world, but even if they sport some walking-animations, it doesn’t add much. Actually, the walking-animation only moves their feet with, at best, 3 frames, which is not pretty. It also bothers me that small elements aren’t taken in consideration, such as how packages aren’t open when I just opened them myself. The animations are generally stiff, but the cutscenes fair much better. With huge drawn pictures, they work well in conveying atmosphere, and in fights only the special-attacks animated, making them feel more powerful and unique.
The monotone music with emphasis on trumpets, is very fitting and makes the already colorless world more effective. They drive in a work-motion, almost like drums on a dragonboat, but there are also some tracks to convey a different atmosphere depending on the area you are in. Hallways can have an eerie echo or even choir to convey loneliness, or bit-music that is placed in a fitting area that I won’t spoil. The variation of tracks is great and have different styles, but all fitting the different colorless worlds. Although the general battle-music can be draining and there is one exclusive song for a fight that has literally “dinosaur” as 90% of the lyrics, which is more annoying than odd and includes screams that aren’t pleasant or add to any atmosphere. The sound effects are great and effective. I love how the sound of typing is a part of most sound effects for selecting, or when a phone rings and there is a complete silence, making me nervous for picking it up. The style is unique, but needs a bit more polish.
Presentation score: 7/10
Humorous doing business with you
As you might have noticed, the sidequests provide a lot of humor and the optional bosses are very entertaining and fun to fight against, despite some being easy. The sidequests feels like a clear, important part of the main game and while they provide some nice rewards, the fact that you will want to search out for all of them simply to read the dialogue, is an impressive achievement. You might find everything on your first try, but more because you want to rather than because of how easy it is.
Extra score: 9/10
Suits: A business RPG is a short and sweet experience, that focused more on giving a creative journey and make you interested in this bizarre place. It didn’t go beyond what it needed, but some polish in the presentation could have made this charming adventure a bit more stylish, and I wish paralyzing the enemy wasn’t as overpowered as it is here. Still, I had a pleasant time and for only a single dollar, you will definitely get your money’s worth. It is really a steal.