By Chris Picone, 03 April 2023
Don't let the RPG Maker graphics fool you; Final Profit is worth checking out. It's a JRPG crossed with a shop simulator, and features a stack of unusual mechanics and concepts that make this game play out differently than what you're probably expecting.
On the surface, this looks like any other RPG Maker game, with the expected character and art styles and UI Layout. I mean, they all look nice enough, but they scream RPG Maker, and I know that sends some people running. Don't get me wrong, I love RPG Maker for what it is and there are some great RPG Maker games out there, but there are just soooo many, and they tend to be all very similar and frequently grindy. Final Profit is something else entirely.
Initially you have to painfully craft everything and manually stock your shelves, but as you progress each of these systems gradually become easier and/or automated, allowing you to focus on finding new products and so on. And some of these opportunities are pretty wild - sure, you will sell traditional items like coffees and hats, but later quests will have you making exploring dungeons to make contracts with demons in order to secure their product. The shop management aspect of the game controls your progression - the more products you sell, the more XP you gain, which in turn triggers various events that either provide you with new opportunities for exploration or advance your shop, or push the story forward. Having said that, managing your shop is only one aspect of the game and I'd say overall the game plays more like a traditional JRPG than any other single genre. You'll spend most of your time exploring the world, talking to NPCs, trying to solve puzzles, playing minigames, solving quests, and making decisions as you go that affect the outcome of the game.
I loved it. I played through around 10 hours in my first sitting; the dopamine was hitting faster than the grind and I found it very hard to put down - and I'm not done with it yet. So I'm very happy to recommend it, I'm just not sure who to? It plays more like a JRPG than any other genre, but has a shop sim instead of a battle system, so that might deter that crowd? Likewise, although it features shop management, the game's far more than that, so maybe shop simmers aren't the crowd either? All I can suggest is, if what you've seen has made you curious, give it a go.