Dragon Fin Soup Empowers Women, Alcoholics

Dragon Fin Soup Empowers Women, Alcoholics

robin

Red Robin isn't exactly Little Red Riding Hood. This Dragon Fin Soup protagonist is more Drunken Master than Damsel in Distress, something developer Grimm Bros has no problem emphasizing.

After asking for $24,000 on Kickstarter, the fledgling Grimm Bros games studio found that it more than quadrupled its ask, ending up successfully funding with nearly $120,000. I hadn't heard much at all about it prior to meeting with the Grimm Bros team at PAX 2014, but I was duly impressed with the lengthy demo I played, as well as the other features that I didn't get hands on with, but saw in action.

Approaching the booth, I took a few minutes to watch the Labyrinth mode being shown off, which takes your character and drops you into an endless, procedurally generated maze to see how long you can survive. You'll slash your way through enemies, meander through an infinite labyrinth, and rack up points along the way. You only get one life to live, though, so you better play it safe when you encounter the baddies. The gameplay is a blend of roguelike and RPG. Every action you take is basically a turn, so swinging your weapon, moving one space, or firing your shotgun all give the enemies a chance to act.

I'm not personally experienced with roguelikes, so this was a fairly new experience for me, but I am quite experienced with classic-styled RPGs, and the character progression and customization is expansive, as you might hope. You've got numerous stats to tinker with, seemingly allowing some very crazy min/maxed builds. Your stats increase as your character levels up, and you'll collect weapons and items along your journey.

undead

There's additionally a detailed crafting system, which will let you craft everything from a delicious meal to equippable items. I only saw the intro, so I'm not sure how deep it goes, but you are able to experiment with mixing reagents to see what concoction you come up with.

The demo I played was basically the first 30-45 minutes of the game. It begins in a dream sequence, and basically ends with an undead invasion of Red Robin's town, where she is forced to fend off a slew of shambling zombies. Red Robin doesn't particularly fit any of the preconceptions you might have for game protagonists. She's not a loner, enjoying the company and conversation with her townsfolk. She's not angsty, she's just looking for her next job so she can get a little coin. She's also an unrepenting alcoholic.

I played on a touch screen - it'll be launching on PC and PS4 before it makes its way to mobile - and it controlled fairly well, though the touch-interface is still a work in progress, since it's not always intuitive where exactly you need to touch for certain actions. I'll almost certainly be playing with a controller on release, though, since it lends itself to slightly better control for more tactical choices during combat.


Despite being a classic isometric view, the graphics are gorgeous, and I'm told will be full HD. Taking a dark twist on fairy tale tropes, Dragon Fin Soup is looking like a grim story in oddly cheerful trappings. The game's website has a Beta tab labeled "coming soon," so keep an eye out if a roguelike JRPG sounds like it might be up your alley.

Dragon Fin Soup is targeting either holiday 2014 or Spring 2015 for release across PS3, PS4, PS Vita, PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android.

Permalink

I'm kind of sick of the modern, dark takes on the Grimms fairy tales but this seems like it remembers to have a laugh and i'm all for spunky, adventuring tom-boys.

Hang on... the worlds on the back of a giant turtle... huh.

Why Little Red? Aside from the studio name I'm not seeing anything that references fairy tales (ok, a quick still pic @ :58 could be snow white but there's no indication that's not just concept art they threw in). The game title (Dragon Fin Soup, wtf does that mean?), enemies, and world all seem to be completely original so cribbing Little Red just seems lazy to me.

Also, is the alcoholism just character flavor? Because from the article title and that "Drunken Master" claim I'm expecting it to be integrated into the game mechanics.

I tried this at PAX East, it was on the outermost row of the main hall, kinda close to the giant hamster ball + oculus VR thing. It was a pretty typical roguelike, in a good way. A bit on the comedic side, but gameplay wise it was typical roguelike plus the crafting system you've mentioned.

Looking forward to it, but I'm a fan of roguelikes.

So...basically, A Wizard's Lizard, but with what looks like an actual budget, and not done in Flash.

Ah sweet, a drunken fantasy character. Now that is a premise I can get behind.

Got a very Lara Craft kind of empowerment thing going on. I dig it.

I've seen this game before. It looks very interesting. Her design is pretty icky, though - the whole hips to the side, big bust, heels and short skirt thing. In and of itself, seems fine enough (thought the heels are bit odd). But I just don't think we need more of it and the rest of the game looks interesting enough for this to be a detractor.

Rocket Girl:
I've seen this game before. It looks very interesting. Her design is pretty icky, though - the whole hips to the side, big bust, heels and short shorts thing.

Actually, she appears to be wearing a short skirt.

OT: Anyway, this reminds me a little bit of the 2000 released isometric action game "Nox" for dark, humorous fantasy, but that had a more realistic aesthetic. The more recent Bastion has similar cartoon aesthetics and more original setting, sans most of the laughs, just add feels.

The roguelike twist is the only reason I could see interest in this title, but not from me.

UberPubert:

Rocket Girl:
I've seen this game before. It looks very interesting. Her design is pretty icky, though - the whole hips to the side, big bust, heels and short shorts thing.

Actually, she appears to be wearing a short skirt.

OT: Anyway, this reminds me a little bit of the 2000 released isometric action game "Nox" for dark, humorous fantasy, but that had a more realistic aesthetic. The more recent Bastion has similar cartoon aesthetics and more original setting, sans most of the laughs, just add feels.

The roguelike twist is the only reason I could see interest in this title, but not from me.

You're right. Thanks for pointing that out. I'll edit my previous post.

Encaen:
Dragon Fin Soup Empowers Women, Alcoholics[/a]

Encaen:
Empowers Women, Alcoholics

Encaen:
Empowers Women

Excuse me where? I, off course, don't any sexism, but neither do I see any sort of empowerment. Or is nowadays alcoholism + women = empowerment of the latter?

kael013:
Why Little Red? Aside from the studio name I'm not seeing anything that references fairy tales (ok, a quick still pic @ :58 could be snow white but there's no indication that's not just concept art they threw in). The game title (Dragon Fin Soup, wtf does that mean?), enemies, and world all seem to be completely original so cribbing Little Red just seems lazy to me.

Also, is the alcoholism just character flavor? Because from the article title and that "Drunken Master" claim I'm expecting it to be integrated into the game mechanics.

...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Red_Riding_Hood

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dungeon_Crawl_Stone_Soup

Oh and yea - completely fucking original. Not that mash is bad, but it's utterly stupid to think, that just because designers mashed up thousand details in one doesn't mean it's original.

Roguelikes don't empower anybody.
They just turn you into a quivering mess of regret.

Empowering or not, it seems like a fun game with interesting mechanics and a cool art style. I'll have to keep an eye on this.

pretty certain the main character is a direct rip off of grace helbig

http://www.reactiongifs.com/grace-helbig/

piscian:
pretty certain the main character is a direct rip off of grace helbig

http://www.reactiongifs.com/grace-helbig/

Yes, because this "Grace Helbig" person created the idea of animated gifs on a short loop.

Antigonius:
Excuse me where? I, off course, don't any sexism, but neither do I see any sort of empowerment. Or is nowadays alcoholism + women = empowerment of the latter?

Don't mind The Escapist, they've been bitten by the clickbait bug the past few weeks or so. Hopefully it'll pass, because I'm honestly getting tired of reading news articles that are only tangentially related to the interesting-looking header.

That said though, Red Robin is a strong action character who isn't overtly sexualized. I suppose we could debate about what a character needs to be "empowering", but as compared to the usual fare of female leads who need to be ultra sexy and/or ditsy (Bayonetta, Lollipop Chainsaw, Classic Tomb Raider - even if it was mostly in promo material), she is at least a step in the right direction if nothing else. Of course, give Anita time. She'll find some reason that Red Robin is blatantly sexist in her portrayal.

WhiteTigerShiro:

piscian:
pretty certain the main character is a direct rip off of grace helbig

http://www.reactiongifs.com/grace-helbig/

Yes, because this "Grace Helbig" person created the idea of animated gifs on a short loop.

:/ it was a joke becuase the gif was doing a goofy hip swivel.

Antigonius:
Excuse me where? I, off course, don't any sexism, but neither do I see any sort of empowerment. Or is nowadays alcoholism + women = empowerment of the latter?

It's a hot topic to talk about nowadays. It's an exploitable topic.

Antigonius:

kael013:
Why Little Red? Aside from the studio name I'm not seeing anything that references fairy tales (ok, a quick still pic @ :58 could be snow white but there's no indication that's not just concept art they threw in). The game title (Dragon Fin Soup, wtf does that mean?), enemies, and world all seem to be completely original so cribbing Little Red just seems lazy to me.

Also, is the alcoholism just character flavor? Because from the article title and that "Drunken Master" claim I'm expecting it to be integrated into the game mechanics.

...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Red_Riding_Hood

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dungeon_Crawl_Stone_Soup

Oh and yea - completely fucking original. Not that mash is bad, but it's utterly stupid to think, that just because designers mashed up thousand details in one doesn't mean it's original.

Well I didn't know about Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup, so excuse me. Don't know why you linked to the Little Red Riding Hood article though, my whole question revolved around the inclusion of that character.

1) "Empowers women" in the title.
2) Never mentioned in the rest of the article about HOW it actually does that.
3) If the character was male then I doubt this article would even exist.

Escapist please stop. I know click-baiting is the cool thing to do in journalism these days, but I have stopped visiting too many sites which do this. Please don't join the parade : /

Wait...this totally reminds me of (character design wise) Little Red Riding Hood's Zombie BBQ.

Huh...maybe I'll check it out, just for that.

Sorry, but the internet activists aren't going to be content with this character design.

Looks like just another rogue-like game with graphics, only this time with only a hot chick for a PC.

This looks really cool, thanks for the detailed preview!

EDIT: Just realised the headline is pure clickbait lol, could've just said something like drunk Red Riding Hood-like.

"It asked for 24,000 then got 120,000"

I am truly shocked it got to demo stage. Nearly any person who asks for less then 100,000 to make a game with the slightest amount of depth is generally extremely inexperienced, knows very little about budgeting or is a scam artist.

WhiteTigerShiro:

Antigonius:
Excuse me where? I, off course, don't any sexism, but neither do I see any sort of empowerment. Or is nowadays alcoholism + women = empowerment of the latter?

Don't mind The Escapist, they've been bitten by the clickbait bug the past few weeks or so. Hopefully it'll pass, because I'm honestly getting tired of reading news articles that are only tangentially related to the interesting-looking header.

That said though, Red Robin is a strong action character who isn't overtly sexualized. I suppose we could debate about what a character needs to be "empowering", but as compared to the usual fare of female leads who need to be ultra sexy and/or ditsy (Bayonetta, Lollipop Chainsaw, Classic Tomb Raider - even if it was mostly in promo material), she is at least a step in the right direction if nothing else. Of course, give Anita time. She'll find some reason that Red Robin is blatantly sexist in her portrayal.

"For the past few weeks"

Ever since about the start of 2013, I have never seen a single time when Escapist didn't have at least two click bait articles on the front page. Really, if its not written by Jim Sterling or Yahtzee, Escapist is awful at news and reviews. Its a fantastic forum and its got a bunch of enjoyable shows, but its shite at journalism.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here