A Gamedev You’ll Love: Flipline Studios!

In the deepest ruminations of my complicated and entirely illogical mind, I have been throwing around the idea of doing game developer profiles. Lost in the annals of time, I did a blog on the creative group “2DArray,” because they’re generally awesome and have put out some of the best flash games ever (yadda yadda, so on and so forth). But NOW, I have decided to make a catchy title that will be present in all of my Gamedev profiles. It’s not an instant classic, like “Two-Minute Tuesday” or “Sado-Masochism Saturday,” but it’ll do! So, whenever you see “A Gamedev You’ll Love,” you’ll know that it means there are plenty of games and examples here for you to play (and hopefully you won’t have to pay any money for them! Hooray internet!).

Moving on entirely: FLIPLINE STUDIOS! Woohoo! Imagine anything you’ve ever really wanted to go out and eat when you’re stoned. I assume that anyone reading my blog is a fine, upstanding citizen that has never touched the highly illegal substance named “marijuana,” but I’m asking you to imagine that you have the munchies. I have never had the munchies, but you spend long enough in college and you begin to have a breadth of knowledge about this sort of things. So, do you have all your ideal munchie foods in your head? Imagine a game for each of them. Tacos? Yep. Pizza? Yep. Burgers? Pancakes? Yep! They even have a smoothie game. Basically, they have created a whole bunch of games featuring a mysterious Italian chef named “Papa,” (sounds almost like another name for the Godfather) that all center around multitasking to create orders of (insert food here) for your customers. The number of different ingredients you use, the number of customers per day, and the number of different orders they give you all increase over the course of the game, making for a pretty fun (and crazy) learning curve.

This is a great time to do the gamer profile on these folks, because they JUST released the game “Papa’s Wingeria,” a new (and slightly more awesome) to the Papa’s series. But, in a bout of dedication and work ethic, I’m writing this blog instead of playing it. But you, dear reader, can play it here: (along with all the other games of the series)

 A digital competitor for Wingstop? Perhaps.

And the others:

Papa’s Pizzeria: The game that started it all.

Papa’s Burgeria: At least they look tasty.

Papa’s Taco Mia: Because Taqueria is a real word.

Papa’s Freezeria: It’s TROPICAL!

Papa’s Pancakeria: Now we’re just getting silly.

So there you go, take your pick! At the beginning of each game, “Papa” somehow tricks you into showing up, and then leaves you running a new restaurant franchise for him. What a guy! You don’t really have to play all of them, as they’re quite similar. However, in the span of a couple years, Flipline has IMPROVED their concept a lot, and that’s honestly why I keep playing. While it may be satisfying to look at deliciously-made virtual wings/pancakes/pizza/whatever, the idea that they’re constantly looking for new ways to make their games better impresses me. For instance: the advent of using your tips to buy upgrades. “Closers,” which are the last customer of the day; harder to please, but they tip better. Achievements in the form of a “parade” that grows as you unlock more floats. Minigames that unlock extra features. And, in the newest game, you now have a customizable character! While it may seem cluttered and needlessly complex, Flipline excels at creating a doable learning curve, introducing things to you at a just-manageable level. There are those who are tired of the series because they find it TOO similar, but there are plenty of people (myself included) that enjoy it just the same!

Now, while Flipline Studios’ meat and potatoes is the Papa’s series (they even made a platformer), their crowning achievement is certainly their free MMORPG: Remnants of Skystone.

I’m not seeing much resemblance to Papa’s Pizzeria, here.

The very idea that they created an MMORPG in the first place is pretty impressive, even if it’s bad. And… well… Remnants of Skystone isn’t all that bad. It’s an action-platformer, it’s pretty smooth, it’s got some nice graphics. A lot of it is quite similar to Metroid in its gameplay, and I suppose (while not exactly original) that’s a good thing too. That’s about as charitable as I can be to this game. It’s fun to play, and it’s an interesting concept (with some unique twists), but on the whole it’s just too complicated and clunky to really be a great game. There are LOTS of options (like in Final Fantasy 8 for those who remembers), but they never really become a lot easier to get used to. It’s often difficult to navigate, as in the important things are not always more prominent. Imagine having to really hunt for the save button or the print button in Microsoft Word. Almost (but not quite) as annoying as that damn paperclip.

Also, there is the whole “Pay-to-play” concept, which is quite at the heart of RoS. I’ve never been a fan of it, even in small doses, but in this case it is a really huge turnoff. The game becomes VASTLY more enjoyable when you shell out a little money for it, but if you’re going to shell out money for it, just go buy a game that’s actually worth it. My motto is: if it’s not worth paying to play it, don’t charge people for it. There’s no middle ground, in my opinion.

So there’s a little good and evil in Flipline Studios. One series is wildly successful, their largest game was not. The world is a strange and illogical place. But, all in all, I’d say that their games are certainly worth playing and enjoying. Now, if you’ll excuse me, it’s time to make some WINGERIA!!

~Another Gamer

P.S. They do have a third “series,” called Cactus McCoy. I never got into it, but it’s fun. And it has a sequel, for those with gratuitous amounts of time.

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About Isaac Smith

I write about music, technology, video games, and probably many other subjects that don't bear mentioning here. Either way, most of it's worth reading, and you may even enjoy yourself!

Posted on June 15, 2012, in Flash Games and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. This was a really great article – I’ve never heard of Flipline Studios, but I will have to check out their Papa series.

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