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Potion Craft, a cosy and relaxing potion brewing management game.
Unleash your inner alchemist in a captivating journey of potion brewing and intensive bottle labelling.
Potion Craft is a captivating game that allows you to step into the shoes of an alchemist. With its visually stunning world, you'll embark on a journey of potion brewing, research and fulfilling customer requests.
Tags: [singleplayer] [crafting] [relaxing]
The premise of the game is rather straight-forward: pick herbs from your garden, grind them into powder, combine them to brew a potion, sell it to the customers in your shop, get money, rinse, repeat.
The way the potion brewing works is quite interesting.
To brew a potion, you add ingredients. Each ingredient has a “path” that will move the brew on the potion map. To discover more elements, you have to move your potion around into the undiscovered parts of the map. You do that by combining more ingredients you find in your garden or buy from merchants.
It’s a very static game, in the sense that the whole shebang is literally five screens in which you gather, brew and sell potions — but it really works. This is one of those games that stands out in its simplicity.
But what made my heart soar the most is this little gimmick: potion labelling.
Every potion you brew can be customised. You can set a name, the type of bottle it comes in, the shape of the label on it, the icon on the label, the icon’s colours, and be as organised, chaotic and creative as you want! This adds absolutely nothing to the value of the potion, customers won’t compliment you on your design and nobody will ever know — it’s just for you. And I love it.
After a potion has been brewed, you may (or may not) sell it to a customer. Unlike many other potion brewing games, where you just stuff your potion on a shelf and wait for someone to be interested, the selling mechanic in Potion Craft is request-based. A customer comes in, explains their situation and you get to suggest a potion. For a “my husband stubbed his toe”, you might suggest a healing potion, while the customer coming in with “my husbandis cheating on me" might be looking for a poison. Anything goes. But beware: helping thieves steal better with swift potions or handing over poison willingly to bandits who mean to harm others with it, will cost you reputation!
You can haggle prices, unlock skills, expand your garden. In the end it’s a repetitive game but the good kind of repetitive. Expand until you unlock everything and are the best potion-crafter in the world. Or at least this area.
There is a bit of a storyline, but the game isn’t very story-heavy.
There are some returning NPCs with whom you’ll see some sort of continuation, but overall the focus of the game really isn’t on storytelling, it’s on receiving dopamine hits from brewing potions.
Visuals & music
What first drew my attention to Potion Craft is the sketchy look and feel the game has. I’ve never seen a game like it, visually, and it really got me hooked just on how simple yet effective this drawing style is. It really sets the tone for the game, reminding you of old recipes and dusty tomes
Visuals-wise, what you see is what you get. It has a very simple style, you know exactly where to click and just looking at the cute parchment scribbles makes me want to look at it more.
The soundtrack is just one loop of what you would expect to hear in a medieval pub. Very relaxing and fits the mood perfectly.
The game isn’t very complicated so it doesn’t need much tutorial, though the tutorial it gets is top notch. Detailed, straight-forward, does exactly what it needs to do. And a handy “skip tutorial”-button for your 156785th replay, too.
Yes, absolutely — a resounding maximum rating!
This game tickles my brain in every way it loves to be: interesting visuals, a simple enough yet enjoyably repetitive gameplay, a good tutorial, an immersive soundtrack and lots of customisation options.
There’s nothing I don’t love!
Another game that gave me the same brooding feeling of being a witch slaving over dusty tomes and medicinal plants, is Strange Horticulture. It’s technically plants and not potion-making, so it didn’t make it into this review set, though in spirit, it should have. Maybe that’s a game for another review?
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