STAFF REVIEW of Marenian Tavern Story: Patty and the Hungry God (Xbox One)

Saturday, June 22, 2019.
by John Elliott

Marenian Tavern Story: Patty and the Hungry God Box art What initially drew me Marenian Tavern Story was when I saw a brief trailer showing off the grid-based combat similar to Final Fantasy Tactics or Fire Emblem, both series that I am still huge fans of to this day. Digging into it I learned that it had more in common with games like Stardew Valley or the Harvest Moon series where there is a combination of running a tavern, harvesting crops in the nearby areas and even a bit of gardening.

The story starts off with Patty, her little brother and their butler making a trip to one of their homes. At one point the little boy runs into a statue which happens to unlock the God of Poverty. who in turn starts a series of unfortunate events. The family loses their home, their tavern and all of their wealth with a snap of the fingers. Luckily, there is nearby rundown tavern that the mayor has allowed Patty to take ownership to run and rebuild their fortune. At the same time, they figure out that the God of Poverty powers will weaken when he is fed yummy meals and treats.

Combat is grid based and isn’t overly complicated, save for some boss battle, as you can easily hit the "Auto" button to speed up the combat and let it blast through it as quick as possible. If you do get into a boss battle it is mainly so that you can control when you heal or use certain types of magic, because in the Auto mode it doesn’t seem to work as well. It’s a typical grid based where you select your target, choose the action and repeat.

Exploring the areas, you will come across trees, shrubs, grassy areas, and more that you can harvest food to use as ingredients, and there will of course be some precious treasure hidden in some areas that you have to solve basic puzzles to get to.

After you have gone through all the combat and exploration, which for some reason you can only explore one area per in game day, you are off to your tavern to make some food. There are really two ways to create food: by recipe or create your own food.

Recipes are gathered through exploration (off of book shelves or scraps of paper on tables) or by talking to locals to get the favourites of the area. Recipes are by far the easiest and safest way to create food. In come cases you don’t get the full recipe and make an educated guess. For example, you will get a recipe for Egg Bread and the ingredients will list a pan, bread and "????". Obviously, the final ingredient will be an Egg, however if you put the wrong ingredient you will lose everything you put into it but you will gain a little knowledge for the recipe. Crafting your own food is pretty much selecting ingredients you think will create some food and hope that it will unlock something you can sell on your menu. The recipe system is the highlight of the systems they have in place and is full of depth that you normally don’t see in a 'food' crafting system.

After you have put out your menu you are ready to open for the day which will have a small cut scene of patrons coming to your establishment. Afterwards you will get the final results of your sales for the day. You can use this money to buy recipes, new kitchen equipment, weapons and armour to help you in your quest of getting out of poverty. This is the game in a nutshell and is quite repetitive in nature.

The cities may change, you will upgrade your establishments over time and gain more and more money, however, the essence of the gameplay is doing the same thing over and over again. For some this will be quite addicting, for others it may be quite boring, so keep that in mind if you try to give Marenian Tavern Story: Patty and the Hungry God a shot.

Overall: 7.0 / 10
Gameplay: 7.0 / 10
Visuals: 7.0 / 10
Sound: 7.0 / 10


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