Hello friends, let’s build a gaming cult! Today we will review a new humorous tycoon management game out in Early Access! “Honey, I Joined a Cult” is the effort of two-man team Simon & Ed’s Sole Survivor Games and is similar to the likes of Prison Architect – and for the true Overage-Gamers – Theme Park & Theme Hospital!
Developer: Sole Survivor Games Publisher: Team17 Genre: Casual, Indie, Simulation, Strategy Release Date: 14 Sep 2021 Reviewed on: PC/Windows Available on: PC/Windows Link: Steam Gameplay Video: Youtube Review copy was provided.
You’re Space Commander Charlie Fishnut – Your first cult “Cult of the Space Fish” is busted by Asst. Director Taylor of “Special Observation Bureau”. You’re now off to build a new cult – as there was no incriminating evidence you got away – after cosmetic surgery (same as any self-respected cult leader)!
Welcome to the “Overage-Gaming” cult then! High Priest Static welcomes you, Aging Gamers! Our divine being “Lord Gabe” wants your love and money – so grab your relics “Holy Joysticks” and meet me in the “Man Cave” holy room!
This game allows you to create, maintain and run your cult, recruit followers, and ultimately make money by selling dubious therapies all while keeping the cult and assets running. Under its beautiful skin, you will find extensive management systems for followers, buildings, and missions.
But first, you need to build the foundation of each structure (with options such as brick, concrete, grey, metal, wood, etc.), add walls (with similar options), and doors. Then you get to choose the room designation (Bedroom, Bathroom, Canteen, Lobby, etc.) then fill the rooms with equipment, furniture, and décor ornaments. Everything to keep your followers happy and from starving! You can move or delete any object in the rooms if you wish to, too.
Additionally, you can build paths between the structures keeping the followers from stepping on any bees – we wouldn’t want that to happen!
You should also build a “Lobby” room. Potential followers need to visit the lobby and hopefully get recruited after you brainwas… erm talk them through the cult’s principles.
Researching is also taking a large part of your job as a cult leader – you need to research more therapies, rooms, etc. to keep the follower’s interest up. Research rooms will eventually add more rooms and equipment such as Energy Spa, Spirit Chamber, to Recreational Rooms. Research trees are rather fun and extensive for your perusal and maximum earning potential!
Sending members to missions into the city, recruiting more followers is an integral part of the game. Missions provide rewards and benefits such as unlocking new objects and providing more resources – but beware! personnel will not return from missions until you view the result of the mission itself.
You need to keep heat as low as possible to avoid authorities – they do not take an organization like ours lightly. Heat increases if people leave the cult, die or fail missions. You need to make sure that you send your most competent followers to the task, as there’s always the chance that the mission fails – and heat is drawn to the cult. Different locations need different people to maximize potential recruits, such as the Casino or outside the City Hall.
The included tutorial is very good at explaining things and presents the main points of the game quite nicely all while giving you enough room to experiment with things.
Usability is high as well, something welcome in management games like this one. The layout of the various menus you need to navigate is simple, easy to understand, and quite intuitive but the button to close the window on the top right corner could use a makeover – it is quite small and seems out-of-style with the rest of the menus. Various statistics -such as room stats, people stats, etc. – are presented in a nice colorful way.
The graphics are cutesy cartoon-like and have a 70s-80s vibe to them with plenty of details for the various rooms, followers, and items (I love the haircuts!). On the other hand, there are not many sound effects, but the music has again an old-school vibe to it, and it is pleasant to listen to while you manage your cult. All in all, the visual and auditory aspect of the game is very nice and complement the gameplay.
If you like management games like SimCity, Prison Architect, Theme Park, or Theme Hospital, this game is recommended, and I think you will love it. Humor is abundant and it is full of sarcasm, making this a very funny and pleasant experience.
Graphics: 8 Sound: 7 Gameplay: 8 Fun Factor: 8,5 Final Verdict/Overall: 8,1