Shoppe Keep takes the simple idea of running your own store, and adds a first-person perspective to it allowing you to get your hands dirty, and up close and personal with the customers rather than managing your store from the skies.
I was browsing through Utomik the other day and saw, “Shoppe Keep” was listed. I jumped with glee. Well, I did in my mind. Similar to how people usually scoff to themselves rather than actually LOL!
Now, I have Shoppe Keep on my Steam account from back in 2015, and with the Steam version of the game, there’s some technical doo-diddy that links your Steam account to the game by plastering your username on the shop’s signage outside. So I was interested in seeing how the game uses the Utomik platform to play.
After Utomik had downloaded 428MB of the game, I launched into the title and saw that there was only one real difference to the Steam version. It was that the shop doesn’t have your Steam Username on the sign above the front doors, leaving a disgusting blank area sat overhead. I’m surprised the game didn’t just nab your Utomik username instead.
Anyway, that was pretty much all that was different, so I continued on to play the game.
For those unaware, Shoppe Keep takes on a different approach to shop management in that it puts you on the ground, in the shoes of a shopkeeper, up close to the customers. Most titles with a focus on management that I’ve played tend to be from the classic top-down or even an isometric viewpoint. Shoppe Keep is played in the first-person viewpoint.
The whole goal of the title is to create a thriving shop, bringing in an incredible amount of income, setting prices of fantasy themed items, keeping on top of furniture repairs, cleaning the floors, and stopping thieves from running off with your items.
It can get more challenging as time goes on, and sadly time does go by slowly. When you first start the game you only have enough money to pop up a few stands and some potions with the little amount of money you have. You can assign the prices of your items that you’re selling to be higher or lower than what you’ve paid to order it in. If you’re turning over a profit, great, you can buy more things and sell those.
The trouble is, turning a profit is a long-winded game. Customers take forever to walk to your store, and sometimes it can take a long time before anyone actually steps foot in your store. When things do get going though – especially with a more diverse selection of items, and especially with some of the suggested items you can find in a list in the backroom – it can get busier, and harder to keep on top of everything.
Interestingly, Tutorials can’t be disabled unless you read the tutorial. So really you become forced to read up on how to play the game. Something I’m not entirely sure on. I can figure most games out, and if I need help, or tips, I’ll look it up, in-game or Online. Having messages saying that you can turn off the hints by reading a tutorial is a bit irritating.
It’s a good single-player experience though and offers a good way to keep players gripped by offering store expansions, and better items to sell, eventually leading to feeding the greed. Strange Fire are due to launch the sequel in April which will bring Online co-op to the game, as well as more customisation.
But as for the original, I have a feeling that it won’t fade into the ether as the sequel grows because of the strength, and enjoyment that comes from the feeling of playing Shoppe Keep. It’s fun, simple, and a challenge to manage and I enjoy it. I can’t wait to see how the sequel plays, and also if it makes its way onto Utomik.
A Utomik code was provided to complete this review