Game: Passpartout 2: The Lost Artist
Genre: Indie, Simulation, Exploration
System: Steam (Windows) also available on macOS
Developers | Publishers: Flamebait Games
Controller Support: Keyboard & Mouse
Price: US $24.99 | UK £20.99| EU € 24,99
Release Date: April 4th, 2023
Review code used, with many thanks to Flamebait Games.
Passpartout 2: The Lost Artist is the second Passpartout game to be released; it’s a point-and-click simulation game. Yvonne reviewed the first game, Passpartout: The Starving Artist, on Nintendo Switch in 2018.
So now it’s my turn to be a fledging artist in this fun simulation game. But how did I get on? Were the critics nice about my artistic attempts on canvas, or were they mean and not impressed? Let’s find out.
Passpartout the French Artiste
In Passpartout 2: The Lost Artist, you play as Passpartout, a French artiste who seems to have previously been famous and has now lost his way.
When the game starts, we see Paspartout in an old, run-down house with no artist’s equipment or cash. Poor Passpartout is down on his luck, and things go from bad to worse when he is evicted from his house and sent back to the mainland with no possessions.
Passpartout arrives in Phénix, a bustling town with a closed museum and an art store, just what Passpartour needs to get some art supplies. But unfortunately, he is penniless. Luckily for Passpartout, he first meets Benjamin, the local art supplies store owner. So, after a chat with Benjamin, he is given an easel, a round brush and a basic palette.
So begins your exploration around Phénix as you help Passpartout become a famous artist who dreams of owning his own art studio. In addition, you’ll also complete quests for the NPCs, such as designing a town flag or drawing a simple warning sign. As well as take on the challenge of the Museum of the Masters in the art-starved town of Phénix.
You’ll do all that by drawing and selling your art to the locals. Passpartout carries an easel, and with a press of the mouse button, he can set the easel up anywhere in town for you to draw.
As mentioned, you start with three essential art tools; as you progress and earn money, you can buy more tools. Soon you’ll have crayons, pastels, spray cans and more. In addition, there are various shapes of paper to buy, from square and round to heart-shaped.
Furthermore, you have a table which can be placed anywhere in town to sell your art to the locals. The town NPCs are your harshest critics; each one will have something to say about the art you create. Not all of them will be pleasant or complimentary, but it is usually humorous.
You’ll meet Banky, the graffiti artist who really wants in with the local gang of punks who have been evicted from their building, eccentric sailor Harry and many more. All the characters are quirky and funny; they populate the world and really bring it to life.
Everyone is an Art Critic
I felt sorry for Passportout as I don’t have a creative bone in my body, nor can I draw very well. This was very obvious when I outlined a cat. Upon viewing my creation, Benjamin leapt back in horror and said, “perhaps a tool upgrade would help”.
Other comments they have made on my art, of which there have been many go like this.
“Not bad but not good either” ” Does it have to be so dark.”
Change of Tactics
Since my simple cat drawing didn’t appeal, I changed tactics and rebelled; I’ll give those art critics something even more horrible to be critical of. So was born the abomination that you can see above, my evil black cat. The NPC weren’t any less critical of it, either, and I had to draw over it as it wouldn’t sell.
There seems to be little rhyme or reason as to why an NPC will buy a painting from Passpartout. I’ve messed around with the art using all the colours and every art tool. On seeing the finished art, one NPC will adore it, and another won’t like it at all. However, I guess it’s much like that in real life for artists; some folk like your work and others do not.
The Expensive Business of Creating Art
You will have to sell plenty of art if you want to get anywhere in Phénix. It will be a long slog if your art isn’t up to the NPC’s standards, as you won’t make much money. You see, to fulfil Passpartout’s dream of owning his art studio, you’ll need €1499. Also, to progress in the town, you must pay to open up areas; for example, it is $2000 to fix a pothole to access a new part of town.
If your art only earns a pittance in pennies, it will take a long time to get anywhere in the game as things are so expensive. On top of that, you have to buy your art supplies, which costs money.
Visuals and Controls
Visually the 3D graphics look excellent, and all of the characters look like they were modelled out of clay. There are lots of little details to see around town, such as Bull Street, which is brimming with savvy business-folk.
The game ran well on my laptop when I first started playing Passpartout 2: The Lost Artist for this review. Using the mouse to draw with was fun, and it worked pretty well, even if my attempts at art were not up to scratch. However, quite recently, it had an update, and I’m not sure what happened, but now the mouse lags as I move it across the page. While my drawings were bad before, the mouse pointer lagging does not help improve them any.
Passpartout 2: The Lost Artist is a sequel; however, you don’t have to have played the first game to enjoy Passpartout 2; you can jump right in. The overarching plot involving the Museum of the Masters is enjoyable. Though I think you would have to be creative and really enjoy art and design to have fun and get the most out of the game.
Final Verdict: I Like it