Developer: The Game Atelier
Release Date: October 7th, 2013 (Mobile), October 29th, 2013 (Vita)
Available on: Mobile, Playstation Vita
Reviewer’s Note: I played the Playstation Vita version of this game. There may be differences between versions.
One interesting thing about the Playstation Vita is that it’s starting to see some free to play games. One of the recent ones was Crazy Market: A game that places you in the role of a cashier that works at, well… a crazy market. The question is if it’s fun crazy or if it drives you crazy.
Gameplay in Crazy Market is very simple: You simply have to grab items from the belt, swipe them over the scanner, then move it back to the belt. Easy. Scan enough items and you’ll build up combos for points and earn coins to help you buy things you may need later. If this was all there was to the game I couldn’t recommend it, but luckily there’s enough elements thrown at you to keep the game entertaining. Some of the stuff is pretty simple: sometimes the scanner will fail to work and you’ll have to swipe the item again. Or sometimes you’ll have you punch in the four digit product code to get the item to register (something that will also take out all similar items on the belt.)
Still doesn’t sound crazy enough? That’s okay. Maybe you can try one of the item boxes, which could either give you a nice bonus like a hand scanner to quickly scan the items on the belt. Or it could screw you over by speeding the belt up. Hitting the item box is always a risk as you could seriously either get something beneficial or mess yourself up pretty badly. You really don’t want to be messed up either: the game is rather strict in the fact that you can only accidentally miss one item before you lose. It’s not hard at first but the later levels really pile on the challenge.
Oh, the crazy. Right. Later levels also feature things that aren’t supposed to be on your conveyor belt, well… ending up on your conveyor belt. People will somehow lose babies and puppies and that will require you to grab them and give them back to the respective mother/owner. Even weirder is when a bomb shows up, forcing you to toss it off the belt before it blows up. They’re extra challenge to help spice up the levels, though they do get annoying after a while.
Since it’s a free-to-play game Crazy Market does put a limit to what you can do. To play any of the game’s 60 levels you need to spend a cup of coffee. You start off with ten, and you can get one every time you earn three stars on a level. You also get them back at a rate of one every 30 minutes, but you can only hold 3 at a time if you do this. As such, if you want it to remain free you will be playing Crazy Market in short bursts. You can spend the money you earn on more coffee, or you can buy an unlimited use vitamin pack for about $4 if you enjoy the game. It’s a pretty fair system that lets you keep the game free if you wish.
Crazy Market is a fun little diversion. It’s good for quick sessions and its free to play system always feels fair. It’s not a super in depth game, but you can get some enjoyable fun on the side without much commitment.