The idea behind the TouchArcade Game of the Week is that every Friday afternoon we post the one game that came out this week that we think is worth giving a special nod to. Now, before anyone goes over-thinking this, it doesn’t necessarily mean our Game of the Week pick is the highest scoring game in a review, the game with the best graphics, or really any other quantifiable “best" thing. Instead, it’s more just us picking out the single game out of the week’s releases that we think is the most noteworthy, surprising, interesting, or really any other hard to describe quality that makes it worth having if you were just going to pick up one.
These picks might be controversial, and that’s OK. If you disagree with what we’ve chosen, let’s try to use the comments of these articles to have conversations about what game is your game of the week and why.
Without further ado…
The Greater Good
Sam Enright’s indie RPG The Greater Good originally caught my attention just for the simple fact that it looked like something different for a change. Sure, lots of developers grew up playing RPGs in the ’80s and ’90s and now in their adult lives they want to make the types of games that they loved back then. This means there is no shortage of top-down pixel art RPGs that are a throwback to that classic era. Which is FINE, don’t get me wrong, but wouldn’t it be cool if someone could somehow catch the “feel" of those classic RPGs but deliver it in a package that felt more modern and unique? That’s exactly what The Greater Good does.
So what’s so unique about it? First off, this is a 2D side-scrolling game, which you don’t often come across in the RPG genre. It takes place in a futuristic fantasy world and actually, at least so far, has a really compelling set of characters and story that doesn’t just tick all the usual tropes. The combat is all turn-based and, while the UI itself isn’t exactly gorgeous, it does the job just fine. In fact most of the UI and menus in The Greater Good are pretty clunky, but once you figure out what you’re doing it’s not so bad. There’s certainly some “a single person made this" rough edges to the game, but that’s also a big part of its charm.
The goal of The Greater Good was to make an RPG that was somehow relaxing instead of stressful or tedious, and that’s exactly what Enright has pulled off here. Perhaps that is because he’s an electronic musician by trade, and the soundtrack in this game is absolutely stunning and feels like it’s an intrinsic part of the experience. It’s mostly chill beats, and coupled with the simple but clean visual style you really get the “futuristic" vibe that the game is going for. I just LIKE hanging out in this world, you know? I find myself excited to see what I’m going to come across next.
I can’t promise that The Greater Good will be for everyone. That’s pretty much true of any game. What I can promise though is that this is something different from what we normally get in the RPG genre. You can tell this is the passion project of someone who grew up loving RPGs, and it would be incredibly impressive work for a small indie studio, never mind just a single person. It’s also a fully premium game with no free to play crap to worry about, which is another thing that’s not all that common in the RPG genre on mobile. As someone who isn’t head over heels in love with RPGs, occasionally one will do all the right things to suck me in, and this time around that game is The Greater Good.