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Harvest Time Is Gamedec’s Free-To-Play Nightmare

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AnsharStudios have shared some new details about their upcoming cyberpunk detective game, Gamedec. In a recent video they’ve delved deep into the details of one of the free-to-play games that players will be able to explore, Harvest Time. Within Harvest Time there are some extremely familiar tropes that are ripped right from the free-to-play scene in 2020, but there are also a lot more troubling things lurking just under the surface. Check out the new video below and read on for more details.

Free-To-Play Your Life Away In Harvest Time

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In Harvest Time, players enter a virtual farming world. Gamedec’s world is dangerous, and people don’t often get the chance to interact with nature, not that they want to. This is the key appeal of Harvest Time, but it extends from there. Players can’t usually afford their own farm, so they work on other people’s in order to earn in-game currency. This is where the game gets scary, because there are people in the world who will take advantage of players, forcing them to work for pittance on their farms while they rake in the profits.

Free-to-play games can’t quite be used as this level of slavery in our world today, but how long is it before they can be? Many MMOs offer players who grind a lot the chance to earn some incredible rewards to use on their character. While the days when these rewards could be bought are gone for now, there is a lucrative market around outsourcing the grind for gear in gams like Destiny 2. Some players will spend hundreds of pounds for someone else to grind in a game for a certain piece of gear, usually because they don’t have enough time to do it themsleves. I’m baffled by this sort of behaviour, but for those with the money available, maybe that’s all they want.

The Death

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Bringing things back around to Gamedec, all this wouldn’t seem so sinister if there weren’t criminal elements in the game too. Reward chests can be purchased with real world money in Harvest Time, and it’s not uncommon to hear of players selling their houses for some. Gangs, using other players as a resource to farm coins from their virtual farms, buy these chests and offer them to other players. Here we could see a loan shark offering money for chests, but a player getting murdered because they couldn’t afford to pay the loan back. We may also see money being laundered through chests, with large numbers of them being exchanged in-game as part of real life transactions.

If someone spends too long in Harvest Time, they might just die. The game is so engrossing that people forget to eat or drink, and that could just lead to them dying after a long session. Some players could even die in-game if they’ve been awake for too long, something that’s been see in the real world before.

I’m even more excited about Gamedec having been given all of this new information. I love the parallels that it draws with real life, and I’m pretty worried about them moving into a new generation of games consoles.

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