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Saturday Morning RPG is an episodic JRPG set in world heavily inspired by 1980s Saturday morning cartoons and pop culture. Players take the role of Martin "Marty" Michael Hall, an average high-school student who has just been granted an incredible power - a power that ultimately leads him to attract the ire of the world's most...
Release Date: Jan 29, 2014
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February 8th Update!

February 8th, 2014

We've just rolled out an update for Saturday Morning RPG that adds the following things:

- Several fixes to community reported bugs
- Ability to rebind controller buttons
- Ability to set a universal volume for the game

If you have any issues with the new update, please post your bug finds on the Community Hub in the "Saturday Morning RPG Troubleshooting" thread. We will do our best to fix any and all issues you are having with the game! In the meantime, we're hard at work on Episode 5 - we hope you all are enjoying the game! Thanks for the support so far.

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Reviews

“Saturday Morning RPG is a steal for anyone who grew up with 80′s cartoons. The references will keep you smiling and the interesting combat will keep you playing. I can’t suggest it enough.”
9/10 – ZTGD

“Nailing those references and that innocently-entertaining atmosphere is precisely what makes Saturday Morning RPG so special. If you merely existed in the eighties, or have experienced things from that time, you’ll likely appreciate most every single bit of this love-letter to the era.”
8/10 – Hardcore Gamer

“I find that I want to play more episodes and can’t get enough.”
9/10 – Root Gamer

Steam Greenlight

About the Game

Saturday Morning RPG is an episodic JRPG set in world heavily inspired by 1980s Saturday morning cartoons and pop culture. Players take the role of Martin "Marty" Michael Hall, an average high-school student who has just been granted an incredible power - a power that ultimately leads him to attract the ire of the world's most notorious villain, Commander Hood! Saturday Morning RPG features a full soundtrack by legendary composer Vince DiCola (Transformers: The Animated Movie, Rocky IV) and his composing partner, Kenny Meriedeth (contributor for DuckTales, Power Rangers, X-Men, and others).

TECH SPECS:


  • Episodic Gameplay: The story and gameplay of Saturday Morning RPG takes place across several episodes, each of which tells a complete self-contained story. Players can play any episode in any order, at any time! All of your stats and items carry between episodes. It’s a unique spin on the tried and true New Game Plus mode. On top of that, small decisions made in some episodes will carry forth into others – adding a layer of replay to each episode. Four episodes are currently included, with a fifth coming later in a free update!

  • Active Turn-Based Combat: Saturday Morning RPG draws quite a bit of inspiration from games like Nintendo’s Paper Mario series. Battles in the game are turn-based, but the player is always participating by actively defending against attacks and completing reflex tests to power up their own assaults.

  • Defeat Enemies With Regular Stuff: Marty fights all his battles in the game by channeling magic through everyday objects. Use a pack of striped gum to summon rainbow zebras that trample your foes – or call upon a transforming action figure to morph you into a semi-truck!

  • Nostalgia Fueled Everything: Everything in Saturday Morning RPG centers on nostalgia. Marty receives his magical abilities thanks to a certain kind of garish plastic notebook, he can equip scratch ‘n sniff stickers to get statistical boosts, and he’ll traverse worlds inspired by the entire gamut of Saturday morning cartoons.

  • Endless Battle Mode: Take on wave after wave of enemies in an endless survival mode where resource management becomes everything!

  • Optional Arena Battles: Take on powerful enemies in optional arena battles. Two fights are currently included, with more coming as free updates.

  • Controller Support: Full support for game controllers.

  • Steam Achievements and Trading Cards: Earn over 70 achievements and collect 8 trading cards.

PC System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP or higher
    • Processor: Pentium 4 or equivalent - 2 GHz or higher
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Any DirectX 9.0c Compatible Card from 2006 onwards.
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space

Mac System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: OSX 10.6 or higher
    • Processor: Intel based processor - 2 GHz or higher
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0+ compatible video card
    • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space

Linux System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • Processor: Pentium 4 or equivalent - 2 GHz or higher
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0+ compatible video card
    • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space
Helpful customer reviews
56 of 63 people (89%) found this review helpful
1,518 products in account
36 reviews
12.2 hrs on record
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OHzrUCTYolY&feature=youtu.be

Nostalgia is a powerful force and one look at what's currently on the market for gamers can attest to what a soft spot consumers have for it. The downloadable market is flooded with games that emulate everything from 16-bit RPGs to 2d platformers. Kickstarter has brought us updates and sequels to the games we grew up on and some of the key titles that defined the childhoods of 90's gamers have received HD re-releases. While some games simply play the nostalgia card to give us the warm fuzzy feelings that get us to open our wallets faster than an inebriated middle aged man at a strip joint, others use nostalgia as a vehicle for humor and personality. Saturday morning RPG falls into the latter category.

Following an interesting episodic structure, Saturday Morning RPG places players in the role of Marty, an average teenager who is given a magic trapper keeper by a power glove clad figure called The Wizard in order to face off with Commander Hood. It waste's no time conjuring images of Fred Savage and a certain band of real American Heroes. Each episode plays out like an episode of your favorite 1980's cartoon with some sort of malicious force attempting to carry out a destructive plan and your Hero's journey to thwart their efforts. The episodic structure is actually quite interesting, your level and inventory carries over between episodes and players can go back to previous episodes to uncover missed items and sidequests. Also there are a couple minor cases where something that your character does in one episode carries over in another. The narrative elements are minimalistic but some characters carry over between episodes creating a bit of continuity. The problem is that characters have very little personality, they instead lean too heavily on what they are supposed to reference. Players who are unfamiliar with the source material used to create these characters will find little interest in them and some of the jokes centered around some of these characters read like overused memes.

Unlike most RPGs, Saturday Morning RPG doesn't dwell too much on it's narrative and in instead a bit more focused on combat and it managed to offer a surprisingly robust system for a small budget title. Aside from sharing an acronym with Super Mario RPG, Saturday Morning RPG borrows heavily from the timing based combat system in Mario's first role playing outing. Timing button presses during attacks yields greater damage and timing a button press at the last second can help players avoid major damage. Almost every special attack has some sort of mini game that requires a bit of skill and dexterity to make the most of. In addition, turns can be sacrificed in order to charge Marty up, giving him a damage multiplier. The charge function can be used in one of three ways, the first and most effective requires players to rapidly press buttons to build the multiplier, another requires timed button presses to make the most of the multiplier's potential and finally there is a charge function that requires no interaction but yields the smallest multiplier. Being able to dish out five times the damage in a single turn makes it well worth foregoing an action. Additionally, there are dozens of items and up to five can be equipped--each giving Marty a new special attack. Their abilities recall the abilities that Final Fantasy's Blue Mages are capable of learning and provide a mix of offensive and defensive skills.

The final piece of the combat puzzle comes in the form of stickers and covers for Marty's magic trapper keeper. The cover can be swapped out for a stat buff and up to five scratch and sniff stickers can adorn the front. At the onset of each battle, a fixed period of time is allotted for players to scratch each one of these stickers. Doing so can further buff Marty's stats or debuff your foes. The catch is that the more rewarding the buff or debuff, the more time it takes to scratch the sticker so finding the most beneficial combination of stickers that you can feasibly and consistently activate before each battle adds an appreciable degree of strategy.

The problem with this whole system is two fold, the first of which is that fact that it can make the game exhausting to play. Starting each and every battle furiously smashing our analog stick back and forth to scratch stickers then mashing the A button like a coked out woodpecker in order to gain the highest multiplier become taxing. It should be noted that Saturday Morning RPG was originally designed with phones and tablets in mind so some control input issues are not surprising. The other, more serious problem however is that the game is simply too easy. Anyone who is reasonably quick and has respectable timing will breeze through the game largely unopposed. It is completely feasible to build a multiplier in one turn and knock a boss out with your second action. There is one fight however that is an appreciable test of your skills and ability to strategize to be uncovered.

Rounding out the trip down memory lane, Saturday Morning RPG features a hodgepodge of graphical elements to recall games of the past. Characters are composed of 16 bit style sprites but inhabit a 3d world recalling the look of Paper Mario. The environments are rendered in simple 3D with a cartoonish aesthetic. Unfortunately the environments can appear too simplistic at times with blocky geometry and flat textures. Being a mobile device port, it's not surprising that the tech isn't up to scratch but a little more spit and polish for the PC release could have really given Saturday Morning RPG an invigorating style. Audio is generally strong however with a soundtrack composed by Vince DiCola of Rocky IV fame and Kenny Meriedeth.

Saturday Morning RPG a solid and enjoyable game for those familiar with the pop culture of the 1980's and early 1990's but gamers unfamiliar with the bag from which it pulls it's gags are less likely to be tickled by it's appeal to nostalgia. Even so, the robust combat system and episodic gameplay make it really enjoyable to play and if you feel so inclined, replay. It's just unfortunate that players who want a bit of a challenge have to dig for secret boss fights to find it and that your favorite input device may fall victim to the harsh stick waggleing and button mashing required to play. Even still with a budget price, four complete episodes to enjoy and a fifth and sixth on the way, the good exceeds the bad and if you are of the right temperament, you may even find the experience totally righteous.
Posted: February 24th, 2014
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61 of 81 people (75%) found this review helpful
315 products in account
35 reviews
6.7 hrs on record
This game is better then I expected. It's got that nice classy arcade graphics with that 80's cartoon twist. I understand the references even though I was not born in the 80's. It has a lot of creative RPG elements in the game which I didn't expect so much. If you are a big RPG fan, I would defintely recommend getting this game. It's fun and I could go on for hours. :) 9.5/10
Posted: January 29th, 2014
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33 of 41 people (80%) found this review helpful
648 products in account
197 reviews
7.5 hrs on record
Genre - Western Nostalgic JRPG
I played a couple of episodes this on the ipod touch and I loved it because of the massive nostalgia/humour factor. It is actually fun to play with many weapons types and subtle tactics to use to win fights. Please bear in mind that this was a phone app originally and came to Steam via Greenlight so it is not a state of the art game. If you are in your 30s though you will definately find something in this game that brings a tear to your eye either of laughter or a memory of your youth...
Posted: January 30th, 2014
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39 of 54 people (72%) found this review helpful
645 products in account
100 reviews
3.7 hrs on record
Saturday Morning RPG is a nostalgia based RPG with timing and button mashing battles. It is a love letter to 80s cartoons, full of nostalgia.

It feels incredibly unique for a RPG with a style all its own. You get a trapper keeper that you can put stickers on it for buffs. Well a chance at buffs. You can put 5 stickers on the trapper keeper, but when a battle starts, you have a certain amount of time to scratch the stickers for buffs in battle. The battles are incredibly simple, yet take far too long. You have powers, none of which feels powerful. Each power has a limited amount of uses per battle, but it replenishes after each battle. The battle has a timeline. Depending on what attack you're going to use determines where you are on the timeline. Certain attacks like the pencil put you first. When a battle starts, the enemy always goes first. No matter how many times the game bluntly tells you 'sneak attack,' they'll always attack first. It feels like a glitch. Most abilities have button timings to do more damage.

Because your abilities and attacks do little damage, you have the ability to 'charge your battery' which will become a damage multiplier for your next ability or attack. You can keep charging until its 9.9x. You have a variety of ways to charge the battery, either by spamming a button to charge it, being accurate on a slide bar or just picking a default 2.8x. I got tired of button mashing, so I just always selected the default 2.8x.

You can get more abilities by finding them or purchasing them in vending machines. You have to do something with the gold you collect. Like the stickers, you can only have 5 abilities equipped at once, but that's enough. I made it through the entire game without buying an extra ability. I would visit the vending machines, see everything laid out and there wouldn't be any descriptions. Sure I could buy the abilities and equip them to see what they did, but my first episode abilities were good enough to take me through the entirety of the game.

Most of the abilities and attacks all have a timing to them. I never really liked timing based attacks, because you quickly get the hang of it and exploit it. However, the powers can only be used X amount of times in battle. After each battle you're fully recharged. HP, MP, powers and everything. You never get any other characters, its just you against Cobra soldiers, He Man lizard men and Transformer robots.

You can block / dodge attacks by pushing a button at the right time, but even though it tells you that you defended, it sometimes damages you more than an undefended attack. I'm not sure if that's a bug. The timing with some things seems off where I know that I've missed a perfect time window, but it still counted as perfect. It is also odd hearing a boss laugh about how you fool energy attacks only make me stronger, right after I energy attack him, right before he dies after saying that. It is also odd that I can get a 'sneak attack' on an enemy where it bluntly tells me sneak attack, yet the enemies get to go first. Enemy battles aren't random. You'll see the enemies on the map, so there are no random battles. Enemies don't respawn, so you can't really grind. The enemies and battlers aren't varied enough and eventually just feel like a chore. Another cluster of 3 soldiers, another pair of red transformers. Even moving into episode 3, you'll still find the same soldiers from episode 2.

If you die, then you just restart the battle or from the last checkpoint. That keeps you playing with no real consequence for losing. To top that off, there is an arrow that bluntly points you in the direction of your current quest. You will beat this game if you keep playing.

The overhead map uses 2D sprites on a 3D map... yep. You heart that right. The 2D 16 bit sprites on a 3D map with millions of colors. It just looks out of place. The sprites aren't that impressive, but the 3D has a good look to it. It makes me think this game was rushed or cheap. They could have done 3D modeled characters, because the entire world is 3D modeled, but nothing is animated outside of the 2D sprites.

The game has four 'episodes' *cough* levels *cough* and they're pretty quick within 40 - 50 minutes each. There is usually one puzzle per dungeon / episode. The puzzles show some interesting stuff, other than the fact there is only one puzzle per episode. The final episode was a disappointment and just felt quick with no challenge, the final boss was a sad pushover.

The game takes a brief 3 hours or so to complete it. There are side quests, an endless battle mode and an arena mode. I just can't justify the $7 for this game. I've played other games that I really enjoyed that last only 3 hours, but this isn't one of them.

This game just seems rushed and shallow. More like a set of awful mini games disguised as a RPG. Battles are extremely repetitive and you feel very underpowered. You'll button mash far too much to buff yourself so you can actually damage enemies. Each attack takes way too long due to attack animations and killing animations. It also feels pretty linear even if episode 2 opens up into a less linear area, which is entirely inside of a school.

Avoid this game.
Posted: April 9th, 2014
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30 of 40 people (75%) found this review helpful
161 products in account
3 reviews
4.7 hrs on record
Saturday Morning RPG is a love letter to 80s nostalgia while at the same time playing homage to the timed-hits style battle system that has shown up before in RPGs. While I wasn't an 80s kid so I was never the biggest G.I. Joe or Transformer fan, I do know a lot about the pop culture of the time and I'm a huge fan of films from the decade.The real draw here was the game's battle system to me. I'm a huge Super Mario RPG fan, and this game draws inspiration from the series that follow it up: Paper Mario. It's also been used in Costume Quest (which the game is more similar to in design), and will even be in the upcoming South Park: The Stick of Truth. So as a fan of the genre, I felt it was nesscary to toss down the cash on it.

And I enjoyed it. The game isn't the best RPG I've ever played (of all time...ever), but it's the writing, humor, and references that made me want to keep playing. Now, I've heard people saying this is a short game. Well, not really. You aren't going to beat this game quickly unless you skip all the side-quests and head straight from point A to point B. I don't suggest this. You'll miss out on a lot of a fun events, like when you find a Mogwai-esque creature and have the choice to feed it and get it wet before giving it back to Phoebe Cates herself. There IS a point around the third episode where the battles started to feel repetitive, but that soon went away as I found myself smashing Transformers with a freakin' axe. Not everyone is going to like it, but there are enough options in battle to keep situations fresh if need be. Better healing options (I didn't find a single GREAT healing item in my run) and more PCs (or a Paper Mario-esque helper) would have spiced up the battles, but if you're a fan of this type of battle system then you'll enjoy it.

You'll spend almost 5 hours with the first four episodes of Saturday Morning RPG. Another five more if you go back for achievements or try a hand at the other game modes. And for $7, it's in a good price range where a blind buy isn't risky if you're a fan of the genre and have just a little knowledge of the 80s. It's not the best RPG of all time, but it's a great indie effort and I'm always happy to see more of these.

(7/10)

Recommended If You Like:

Paper Mario
Costume Quest
80s movies, cartoon, and general pop culture
Posted: January 30th, 2014
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Awards


Official selection for the PAX East 2013 Indie Showcase.