Merek's Market | PS4 Review
Updated: Nov 19, 2021
Merek's Market is a shop owner simulation with crafting elements, much similar to the likes of Overcooked! but without the food aspect. It is developed and published by Big Village Games and is available to buy on Windows PC, PlayStation, and XBox. For the purposes of this review, myself and Tina were playing the game on the PlayStation 4 using the two player local co-op with both of us on the same screen. You can have up to 4 players if you choose.
If you have played Overcooked! then you will have a pretty rough idea of what's in store for you here with Merek's Market. You are running the little medieval shop, with the customers queueing up and the orders requiring your fast actions in the crafting area. You can be set to task crafting all sorts of items, from gloves and belts, to armoured helmets and swords, with some added bonus levels containing cart making. Trying to juggle serving the customers as well as constructing the cart can be tricky, but with some extra hands on the job, the task at hand is eased, and you can manage to keep the customers happy as well as progressing yourself through to the next stage, withing the alloted time limit.
The layout of the game and play style is very similar to Overcooked! You do get a short and sweet tutorial at the start to get you familiar with what goes where and how to use the tools as well as the anvil and furnace. Each level requires different and more challenging items to be made, and only when you reach the minimum bronze level requirement can you move on to the next stage. There are also boss levels as mentioned previously. You have the option to haggle with the customers, which involved some button pressing sequence and if you do this incorrectly then you do not receive any tip for the work carried out. Patience is a strong requirement, particularly in the multiplayer, as you are required to work as a team in order to produce the good promptly. There is also an added obstacle of moving barrels in some of the levels, which can send certain people (Tina) over the edge! The barrels also block certain areas of the shop floor so that only certain characters can access certain parts of the shop.
The visuals in Merek's Market are cute, especially the various costumed characters that arrive in the shop. Obstacles aside, the game is not very difficult, as there is a manual on screen, where you can consult for the components for each item required to craft. It's all about time management and getting everything done in order, balancing the roles between you, and keeping those customers happy at the end of the day. The controls are very straight forward to use, and because there is a lot of repetition in the game, it does not take long to master.
To sum up, if you are a fan of Overcooked! you will really enjoy Merek's Market. There is a lot of fun here, especially if played with friends. Unfortunately it does not really bring much to the (crafting) table in regards to new and refreshing content, as the premise has already been done before, and not just with the cooking options. Nevertheless, it would still be worth adding Merek's Market to your collection. g1a5w3g1an's Rating: 3 whacks on the anvil out of 5.
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