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Recettear (demo)

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Rating: 4.8/5 (71 votes)
Comments (33) | Views (10,926)

Weekend Download

JohnBOriginally released in Japan back in 2007, Recettear is the story of an item shop, a girl, and a fairy. Recette's father took out a loan and then skipped town, leaving her to pay off the debt. Soon, she meets Tear, a fairy who is as persistent as she is... well, persistent. She teaches Recette to run an item shop out of her house, purchasing stock for adventurers who head out into the world to slay monsters. Buy and sell swords, shields, food products and more, haggling with each customer and placing items in ideal locations to attract business.

recettear.jpgWorking with customers and managing your item shop would be enough to qualify Recettear as a complete (and awesome) game, but the simulation part isn't all it has to offer. To get more goods to sell, you can recruit an adventurer to head into a randomly-generated dungeon with you, working your way through traps, enemies, and the whole gamut of adventure-related fare. When you get back to town, there's a host of interesting characters to meet as well, adding a nice RPG slant to the whole experience.

Recettear is packed with charm, from the dialogue to the characters and their attitudes to the game design itself. We've all played role playing games and have bought items from the store, but this game dares to turn the tables and show you what goes on behind the scenes of the shop, allowing you to manage just about every aspect of selling. It's almost like a parody unto itself, though a very playable parody that's more enjoyable than many of the games it dares to poke fun at.

The full game is now available. Be sure to read our review: Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale.

This version Recettear is an English-localized demo, the full retail version is still being worked on. This teaser is so great, though, it's worth getting your hands on now. The demo is surprisingly long and will provide several hours of item haggling, complete with story cutscenes and all the humor Tear can provide. You can be sure that when the full version of this game hits, we'll be all over it. Until then, play and enjoy the demo (save games can be copied to the full version once released) and marvel at what fun an original game concept can be!

Download the demo

Mac OS XMac OS X:
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Try Boot Camp or Parallels or CrossOver Games.


I've heard of this game! On Youtube you can see a Let's Play of the Japanese version. I thought it was cool, but I didn't really watch because I couldn't understand it. Now I'm gonna go play this!


Oh wait it's a demo. Nevermind.

caprine July 31, 2010 4:07 PM

The demo is still about 2-3 hours of play, and you can convert your save file to the full game when it's released.

Evergreen July 31, 2010 4:14 PM

The demo is already more than worth playing. It's amazingly fun to mug some monsters for treasure in a dungeon, then go home and display the loot proudly in your store window.

It's not quite clear from the review, but the dungeons are full-fledged action-RPG affairs, with traps that require quick reflexes, monsters with individual attack patterns and such. I recommend saving the game before the first dungeon, because the action part of the game is surprisingly unforgiving. Lots of fun, though, once you get used to it.

I also like how your merchant level goes up, gradually introducing new gameplay complications, like tracking down specific items for customers and fusing items together. The adventurers level up on their own as they gain experience, too, and they all have their own quirky personalities.

It's really a great game. Can't wait for the full version.

Jaqueres July 31, 2010 6:40 PM

Wow o.o this game is awesome. The Demo was great. I love the funny story, the great merchant system, the action combat system. I wanna play the full version q.q


There's a surprising amount of replay value in the eight days of the demo... apparently some people managed to unlock item fusion and the second adventurer.

That's... kind of ridiculous.

(Um, and there are three bosses in it, too!)


I have to say, some of the dialog in the game actually made me laugh. I am definitely getting this when it comes out.


Don't let the fact that this is a demo deter you.
Also, don't let the anime look scare you off.

Recettear is really well done, it's laugh out loud funny at parts, and the gameplay is surprisingly engaging. I was tipped off to it on another site, and despite my reservations I checked it out. Even though I'm not too into typical 'anime' style games or games in this general vein (diner dash, etc) this is actually a game I plan to purchase, and I'm not someone who regularly purchases games online.

The localization team (the guys who translate it into english and make the language palatable for western audiences), Carpe Fulgur, have done an outstanding job, a half a year's worth of work on this. They're saying that if they get enough sales, they'll work to bring other outstanding japanese indie games to the western market in the same way. I recommend trying the demo at the very least, and buying the game.


oh man oh man oh man! I've heard about this game, it sounded soooo cool, I can't believe it's being translated to English! How exciting!


Its a great combination of sim and RPG. Haven't seem this kinda of combination since Actraiser


After playing the game I highly recommend it, though in adventuring I think the hitbox is kind of ridiculous.


Oh, haha, wow.
I just found out about this game and thought it'd be great to have JiG review it.
Guess I was too late.


I tried the demo, and this is pretty fun! My stats are just about this: 3k monies left, level 3 Merchant, the first dungeon is done, with the first adventurer level 5. Can't wait until it's full version.

JiG fan since 2005 August 1, 2010 2:08 AM

Weekend Download was my favorite regular feature here at JiG, and had been the high point of the week. Tonight I was expecting to find the usual three or four new, fun, freeware games...
Instead, I find just one demo.
This is a big disappointment.
It might be the best demo that's ever existed in the entire history of demonstration for all I know. It's still just...

[Actually, there are 2 freeware games representing this week's Weekend Download feature, and instead of short little blurbs you got 2 full reviews. I'm sorry that you're disappointed. -Jay]

Evergreen August 1, 2010 4:50 AM

Wow. That is just a terrible attitude, JiG Fan. This one demo easily offers as much entertainment value as any three random freeware games, and Frogatto is one of the most high-profile freeware releases in a long time. This was a banner week for Weekend Download.


This game needs to go mobile (DS and PSP) ASAP.

Curiouser August 1, 2010 4:37 PM

I've replayed this Demo about three times now. Last time, I finished the first three dungeons, with about 1K left, and a lot of loot.

I need this game very much. Oh so much.

Mallomar August 1, 2010 6:15 PM

What a great demo. It's like the Torneko chapter of DQIV expanded into an awesome full game with roguelike elements.

Too bad the full game won't be here until the fall.


OK, maybe I'm missing something... but how do you LEAVE a dungeon - short of 'Failing'? (which I've done twice)

It was bad enough having to guess what to press to start the game (i.e. "Z").


Is it just me or is this game really slow paced? Even at the highest text speed, and slamming the "go" button constantly, its an endless slog through slowly, slowly popping-up text boxes and little talking static images constantly sliding in and out of view. Am I missing something about how to make the text go by faster, or does this game simply require more patience than I have?


I thoroughly enjoyed this game, and can't wait for the full version.

Alex, is your computer a bit on the old side? (Like, 18 whole months!) I had no trouble making the text go away instantly, although personally I enjoyed reading it. I think you can skip exposition, too.


The dungeons appear to be the highlight of this game, but the only problem is, the fps of my game when I am in a dungeon drops from around 40-45, to about 5, making the dungeons nearly impossible to play :/


I, for one, am VERY glad that someone has finally seriously considered translating any of EasyGameStation's works. They do top-notch games - of course, this goes same for a lot of Comiket games, but still. While all their games/demos are playable... well, playable is a very vague word (you need to know how to set your Windows to Japanese), and the language barrier is semi-high for many of their games (you can play it, but you don't know what you need to do for it).

It should be mentioned to all that custom.exe is your friend, and should be run first before playing the game. If only to know the "normal" (for quite a lot of these indie games) controls of ZXCV + Arrows.

You just need to play further. Once you clear the Hall of Trials, Tear will tell you about the Domekodo... I mean, magic doors that appear every 5th level (For those not into Japanese stuff - Tear made a Doremon reference). Just be careful - Louis may be brave, but you get what you pay for. Monsters deal a lot more damage than the HP he gains each level, so feeding him food becomes important for survival.

@Alex and Lukex115
I have a pretty old computer (2.00 GHz, 512 MB RAM, Athlon XP 2400+) but I can still run the program fine (60 fps on average) - granted, I can't run any other program at the same time, including web browsers. You can press ESC to skip text, or Button 2 (X) to make it so text doesn't need you to stop. This is only meant for repeated runs though :(.

And while dungeons are a very fun part of the experience, it is, in the end, an item shop sim. Yes, profit is 100% more than mere trading, but dungeons are not really the highlight. *trying to say that with a straight face*

Enjoy, have fun, and I hope that more Japan only indie games get translated. I'm purchasing this day 1 of release :P.

Iskandar August 3, 2010 2:05 AM

Second the "purchasing this the first day of release" or, more specifically, the first hour of that day that I am awake.

Holy crap, that was fun.

darkendofall August 7, 2010 12:40 PM

Normaly, I come on here for the browser games, but this sounds interesting. Downloading it now.

Tofunaga August 8, 2010 3:55 AM

I can't wait until the full version comes out!

You need to rely on adventuring to beat the demo. Here's what I did:

On day 3, adventure to the Hall of Trials with Louise. You may wish to buy weapons and equip him with some better equipments. But remember to bring food, so you won't die. You can't save and you need to clear the entire dungeon to get out.

For a very easy level-up, stay on the first floor until no more spawns come out. Because the green slimes are your only opponent (apart from blue slimes from traps), chains will go up to around 10x, which makes your leveling easy. You can go up to level 3 here.

continue on to the upper floors until you reach the top floor and leave the dungeon. Keep running around and measure distances so you won't get hit while you attack. Also, keep attacking everyone until no more spawns come out. By the time you reach the 3rd to 4th floor, that's when your bag will be full and you'll need to discard items with lower selling prices. This is, after all, a "merchant" game.

On Day 4, I sold my stuff the whole day and leveled up to Merchant Level 3-4. When selling, you'll get more experience if you get the price right on the first try. My experience is that it's very easy to sell 30% mark up to the young man. It's harder to sell to old men and little girls. Louise and the Guildmaster are okay with 20% mark up. You can also sell the equipment you bought for Louise since more items would show up once you reach level 4 or so.

By this time, you can buy "more items" in the guild and at the market, so around Day 5 or 6, you can buy better stuff for Louise (don't forget food!) and head off to Jade Way for adventuring. Strategy is the same, but what I can add here are tips for the boss battles.

The King Slime is easy, just keep hacking him and avoid his stomps.

For the big rat (I totally forgot his name), mushrooms will pop up for him to eat. The red ones regain his health, so feel free to kill them. The purple ones would cause him to faint, so save them for him to eat. When he's down, just attack him a few times.

For the last battle, charme the lady thief, just avoid her attacks and combos, and attack after her. Damage is quite low, but she's fast, so check your health.

After that, continue selling your stuff and eventually you'll get around more than 10,000pix by Day 8.


Okay, normally I don't like to download demos, but three things have convinced me I need to give this one a shot:

1. The overwhelming positive response in the comments.
2. This game appears to cater to my love of shop sims.
3. This game appears to cater to my love of action-RPG dungeon-crawler games.

Add a good translation/localization team and cute graphics? I'm in!


Okay, so I'm playing the game demo. 'Tis great! But I'm a little confused on using food in dungeons. >.> Am I supposed to equip Louie with those or am I supposed to keep those?

Lovin' it August 22, 2010 5:01 AM

This demo is one of the better things I've played all year.
I'm actually contemplating getting my hands on the Japanese version since I'm learning the language. That's how good this demo is.

A tip on merchant levels;
'Just right' sales (sales that the other side doesn't haggle for) start off at a 2exp bonus, and increases by doubling. This can turn out to be a huge amount by the end if you've been keeping a combo. I've managed to get up to a 256 exp bonus.

Anonymous August 22, 2010 8:20 AM

As a heads up for people who are interested, and this is taken from Carpe Fulger's website:

After a month of hand-wringing, we are pleased to announce that Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale will be sold on Stardock's Impulse platform. Stardock has been a supporter of independent software development for over a decade and we're thrilled to be going up on Impulse.

Recettear will be available for purchase on Impulse for the price of 20 USD in North America, 15 Euros in the European Union and 13 GBP in Great Britain, and is tentatively scheduled for release on September 10th, 2010. This date may change slightly depending on certain factors involved with the QA process for both Carpe Fulgur and Impulse, but that is the current target date.


For those who haven't heard, some news:

- Sept. 10 seems to be pretty much confirmed now.

- Recettear is coming out on Steam, GamersGate, and Impulse for 20 USD.

- Yes. I just said Steam. No, you are not dreaming. The Steam version will have DRM, but others will not.

Fans, rejoice. Someone out there heard us. :)


the steam version won't have any drm that isn't expected from steam, just the standard 'load up steam, click game' thing you have for everything there. Odds are that for this game you won't even have to load up steam, just make a shortcut to the game location.


@Tofunaga: No, you don't actually need to adventure to beat the demo. I got up to 10,000 by day seven, even after a day wasted on a failed dungeon run.

You *do* need to be aggressive with the minimum price of items in your front window. If you've only got higher priced items in the window, the customers who come in seem to be more willing to buy expensive items.

This can result in a few days where you don't make any money overall because you've been trading up to the point where you can afford to stock several expensive items.


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