|a game by||Love7|
|Editor Rating:||9/10, based on 1 review|
|User Rating:||10.0/10 - 1 vote|
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|See also:||RPGs, 2D Platformer Games, Download Simulator Games, Download Open World Games, Best Indie Games, Download Life Simulation Games, Food Games, Love and Romance Games|
If you’ve ever felt that other life simulation video games didn’t give you sufficient freedom to work menial jobs and scrape together savings for your dream life, then look no further than Graduated, by developer Love7. In this particular RPG, you get to a be recent graduate who passes up on a white-collar job, instead opting to move with their friends to Houhai Town, a settlement on a small island, full of opportunity and choice.
While Graduated is a game about options, it makes sure to keep you challenged by incorporating a card battle game into certain social interactions, where your available cards are influenced by your choices in the life simulation sections of the game. Think games such as Persona 5, where your ability to make friends and deepen relationships directly affects how well you fight monsters in the dungeon sections.
Other mechanics in the game focus heavily on exploration and resource gathering as well as a few fetch-quest elements. Each one of the jobs you can select to work has its own requirements, and beyond that you can chop trees, fish, rear domesticated animals such as chickens and cows, clear and reclaim land, buy and decorate houses and much more. There is a lot to do and little guidance on how to do it, which also removed any expectations about doing things the “right way”. I found that this made the game relaxing and enjoyable to play.
Graduated makes use of an interesting and quite appealing 2D art style, like Hollow Knight where the characters look like articulated paper dolls. The environments are bright and welcoming and change based on the weather and season. Regardless of the weather however, the game succeeds at maintaining a cozy feel throughout, drawing you in and selling the concept of the advantageous and fulfilling “simple life.”
There is no one story when it comes to this game. You are thrust into a very open environment from the start, with context reminiscent of Stardew Valley. You had a cushy office job, but the blue glare of the work screen wore you down until you couldn’t stand it. An opportunity arises to move to a small seaside town and you do so, knowing you’ll have to take a pay cut, but satisfied that you’ll be doing work that’s either more fulfilling or at least simpler, as you save up for your dream quiet life, in half the time it would have taken at your previous job.
What choices you make thereon are entirely up to you and the game offers a lot of variety not only when it comes to the job you choose, but also the house you live in, who you choose to spend your time with, both in a platonic and romantic context, and what you do with your free time. The story is truly yours to craft, which I found to be a refreshing improvement on other games that label themselves as life simulators.
Taking a break from real-life to simulate a slightly nicer life in Graduated felt like a relaxing break. Even with a few repetitive tasks, nothing felt tedious or unattainable.
That said, the game is still in early access, so I’m excited to see new developments and features get added as time goes on.
- Free-roam from the very beginning with tremendous amounts of choice
- Relaxing and fun to play
- Only partially translated in English, so navigating the UI can be difficult at times
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP