Review by jamesishere

Reviewed: 10/18/03

The Drugstore: A strange mixture of several Sim-games thats does not work out well

The Drugstore is a ''budget'' type game that was sold for very little in Japan. Although it is in Japanese, it is possible for English-speaking users to get the gist of it.

Story: N/A
The Drugstore has no obvious story, except that you are trying to beat all of your competitors in the dog-eat-dog world of convenience store managing. Not having a story doesn't really hamper the game anymore than it already is, but there should've been something to motivate you to win the game.

Graphics: 3/10
The whole game is in two-dimensional isometric view, but it pulls this off poorly. There are about 10 colors used total, five shades of pink and five shades of green, which meld terribly. The products that line your shelves in your store are light blue.

The only redeeming part of the graphics are the character models, which look very funny and detailed. It is clear this is where a lot of effort went in, but it still doesn't help the rest of the game out.

Gameplay: 5/10

The game starts with you selecting your character (boy or girl) and naming yourself. Next, you design your company logo. This is actually rather fun, and you get a lot of room to work with. You also get many preset logos which you can use or even edit.

After selecting everything about yourself, you are presented with this ugly pixilated helicopter view of a random city, and a moving icon shows you where your first convenience store is placed. You can move a cursor around the 'city' with the directional pad, and click spaces to build new stores or edit existing ones.

The editing stores screen is where you'll be spending a lot of time. It is fairly straightforward, and has many pictures to help you out when you can't infer what is happening from the Japanese text. Moving around your store is very awkward, unfortunately. You move around a cursor using the d-pad, but the isometric view causes it to be much harder to execute than necessary. It's like Theme Hospital, but of much lower quality. Another problem with being inside the store is when you turn on the clock. People move tile by tile with no walking animation, so all you see are moving blips. It is especially difficult to understand what is going on when there fifteen people walking about a store that is five by five tiles wide.

Really, the only actual gameplay involved in this game is selecting options in menus and clicking on different items throughout the city and your store. You can't even change which products your store sells.

Sound: 2/10
There are about two songs in this entire game and both are so annoying you want to kill yourself after hearing them for 10 seconds. It is just really high pitched synthesized sounds that are thrown together in seemingly random order. The only good thing to say about the sound in this game are when the people in the stores speak, it is just very funny when they say their random quotes intermittently.

Overall: 3/10
I guess it really is boring to pretend you are running a convenience store. Who would of thought?

Rating:   1.5 - Bad

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