Unpause Asia

Gaming News, Reviews and Pew Pews

Indie Games

Strange Horticulture Blooms With Sequel – Strange Antiquities

One of the sleeper indie hits of 2022 has to be Strange Horticulture, a game where you play as the proprietor of a plant shop in the Lovecraftian town of Undermere. Now the game continues in another dark and mysterious sequel by Bad Viking and Iceberg Interactive with Strange Antiquities.

As the name suggests you won’t be a purveyor of botany this time around, but rather a custodian of Antiquities. Antiquities can range from trinkets to curious artifacts of immense power. Much like the previous game expect glimpses into the shadowy realm of the occult and discover and solve new mysteries in town. Strange occurrences plague Undermere and in the last game, you encountered forgotten rituals, arcane lore and even joined forces with a cult. Let’s see where Strange Antiquities will bring us next.

 

Strange Antiquities

Strange Antiquities takes place several years after the events of its predecessor. The protagonist this time around isn’t a botanist, but the apprentice of a mysterious figure known as a Thaumaturge – a master of the arcane. You inherit the mantle of running “Strange Antiquities,” a shop brimming with peculiar trinkets, forgotten relics, and powerful objects whispered about in hushed tones.

Your days are filled with helping the residents of Undermere with their various problems, as well as appraising curious artifacts brought in by the townsfolk. A farmer might seek an amulet to ward off a blight, while a scholar might request an enchanted compass to navigate a forgotten ruin. Each artifact carries a unique history, and unravelling its secrets becomes a core part of your journey.

 

A Town Steeped in Secrets

Those long years away have done nothing to quell the dark mist that surrounds the town of Undermere. The quaint, yet unsettling, atmosphere from Strange Horticulture is amplified here and maybe even a shade darker. The ever-present drizzle, the flickering gaslights, and the whispers of local legends all contribute to a sense of unease that hangs heavy in the air.

As strange occurrences begin to plague the town, a sinister mystery unfolds. Hundreds of ravens circle overhead, unsettling the townsfolk. An occult scholar named Verona Green seeks your expertise, and together you embark on a quest to uncover the source of the town’s woes.

As the Thaumaturge’s apprentice, you’ll be tasked with running a shop dealing in mysterious antiques, but when hundreds of ravens start circling over the town of Undermere, those in the know become concerned. Occult Scholar Verona Green plans to visit Strange Antiquities to inquire about this unnatural turn of events, however, before she can meet with you, things take a sinister turn…

 

A Blend of the Familiar and the New

Strange Antiquities retains the core puzzle-solving elements that made Strange Horticulture so engaging. Examining and identifying artifacts is a crucial aspect, requiring keen observation and a sharp mind. However, the focus shifts from botany to arcane lore. You’ll need to decipher cryptic symbols, consult dusty tomes, and piece together fragments of forgotten rituals to understand the true nature of the artifacts you encounter.

Expect Strange Antiquities to be a bigger game than the last with a bigger shop and more items to collate. The developers have said they’ve added more reference books to complicate the item identification puzzles, making the game feel more detective-like. “You might need to look up a symbol or a gemstone, or you might need to use the index in the back of the book to cross-reference against another entry,” they said.

The game also incorporates a narrative layer absent in the original. Unravelling the mystery of Undermere involves interacting with the townsfolk, each with their own stories and secrets. Building relationships and earning trust becomes paramount as you gather clues and seek allies.

 

A Darkly Enchanting Experience

Become the custodian of a store dealing in occult antiquities. Explore the quaint and gloomy town of Undermere, where strange goings-on and dark mysteries abound. Find and identify arcane artefacts, and use your collection to aid the townsfolk with their unusual problems. Release date to be announced, but you can wishlist it now on Steam.

Strange Antiquities promises to be a hauntingly beautiful experience. The developers have crafted a world brimming with atmosphere, where the line between reality and the supernatural blurs. You won’t necessarily need to play Strange Horticulture to play this one, but while we wait for the game’s release date you might as well check out our full review here.