“Dogs are our link to paradise. They don’t know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring, it was peace.” – Milan Kundera
Pupperazzi is a super cute collectathon-style game about taking pictures of adorable doggos in order to improve photography skills and equipment and to gain social media following. Its simple premise belies the multiple fun and engaging aspects of the game and there is plenty for players to do!
Developer: Sundae Month
Released: 20th January 2022
Price: £15.49 – £15.99
This game is being reviewed as part of the Indie Game Collective (IGC) showcase.
At its simplest, Pupperazzi is a game in which you must take photos of dogs and selectively post them to social media in order to gain a following. However, there are a range of elements that make this much more engaging and interactive than it may first appear. The most prominent of which are the objectives that are set as players visit each area during different times of the day. Most of the objectives involve taking photos of dogs which various things specified such as the dog’s activity or the style of picture, however, there are also other tasks prescribed such as cleaning the skate park or sneaking into an arcade! Completing objectives can provide rewards such as currency or unlocked abilities.
The social media aspect requires players to share their best photos and gain numbers from an assortment of follower categories (art kids, traditional, etc.) who provide feedback on the images. There is a limit on how many photos can be posted per area visit before the images are seen as spam and will not yield more followers meaning it is important to consider posts carefully.
The collectathon part of Pupperazzi is largely facilitated by the ‘Puppypedia’, a catalogue of dog species and activities for the player to capture on film. This is quite extensive and completion will definitely provide a bit of a challenge.
There are loose objects dotted around the various environments that can be used to engage with the curious canines, these include sticks, frisbees, balls and snacks and add an extra level of casual interactivity. Eventually, players are able to redress dogs and have fun picking their outfits and accessories. This makes for some fun open-world additions to the gameplay. Players can also collect and win bonks, an in-game currency that looks like bones and can be spent on camera upgrades such as different films and lenses.
Narrative and Styling
Pupperazzi features an upbeat and jaunty soundtrack and while the music is fairly simplistic and lacking in variety it is implemented in such a way that it does not get annoying or intrusive and just adds to the jolly overall feel of the game. The sound effects are similarly jovial, with happy dog barks and yaps layered over gentle ambient sounds such as those at the beach.
The low-poly art style is vibrant and works well to emphasise the cuteness of the different types of dogs. Changes in the time of day and the availability of camera filters add to the variety and allow for some very atmospheric and dynamic visuals.
The narrative elements of Pupperazzi are quite limited. The protagonist’s photographic ambitions and desire to gain social media following make up the bulk of the overarching story with small tidbits of information about the personalities of individual dogs or breeds that compliment this.
Totally family-friendly and ideal for short bursts of play, or longer sessions Pupperazzi has a wide appeal and is easy to recommend. I personally find the social media aspect of the game a bit cringe-worthy in the same way I find most ‘influencers’ somewhat tasteless but the simplicity of the mechanic and the types of feedback given helps minimise any qualms with this and it remains a jolly and uplifting game overall. Pupperazzi is a delightful and casual gaming experience, its low-stress gameplay along with the cute themes and aesthetic make it very calm and enjoyable. It has enough elements to keep things interesting and provide a challenge where desired but will not push players beyond their comfort zone and is relaxing throughout.
If you’d like another doggy game review why not take a look at:
Dogs Organised Neatly – Like Tetris but Cuter and More Relaxing!
If you’re more of a cat person you might prefer to check out these games:
Fisti-Fluffs: Feline Fighting Fun in Cat-tastic New Combat Game – Purrgatory – Explore the After Life in this Casual New Visual Novel – Purrfect Date – Romance and Research on Cat Island