Game: Wilmot’s Warehouse
Genre: Puzzle, management
System: iOS ( also on Steam and Nintendo Switch)
Developer|Publisher: Hollow Ponds|Richard Hogg| Finji
Age Rating: EU 4+ | US: E
Price: USD $ 4.99|EU € 5,49
Release Date: 21th May 2020 (released 2019 on the other platforms)
Review code used, with many thanks to Finji!
Organizing things is fun!
I love to organize stuff in my regular games. I can really enjoy the end of the game day when I let myself spend time to organize in games like Rune Factory, Animal Crossing and My Time at Portia. Making sure chests, pockets, cupboards, really anything that holds stock, are in tip top shape. I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in that urge as the comments I received on an earlier article about that (which you can read here) shows. There are more gamers out there who get a kick out of that!
For those of you who recognize that feeling, there’s Wilmot’s Warehouse!
Minimalistic game design for a Zen feeling
Almost everything in this management game is minimalistic. Black and white drawings, the only color is in the wares you have to organize and store.
You start out in the A5 Logistics Warehouse on a big black canvas with some columns drawn in, a counter and a loading hatch. Wilmot is a white square with a little face on it. Simple, but man, can he work! A little instruction follows on how Wilmot can drag or push things and how much of a load he can move like that. The items you need to organize and deliver are colored squares, each with a depiction on it. For some, it’s clear that it’s an apple or a heart, others are left to your imagination to judge what it means to you.
The objective is to store them so you can easily find them again when a customer asks for it. That’s easy at the start, but with 200 possible items in stock it gets to be essential that you remember where it’s stored. After all, earning stars to level up only happens when you deliver to your customers as quickly as you can.
Wilmot’s job description
The game has a cycle that it repeats until you’ve mastered all 200 items. There’s the delivery phase, when a truckload of goods comes in. Up to you (well, Wilmot actually) to drag the goods to a place in the warehouse. Then it’s time for the requests in the service phase: co-workers at the other end of your warehouse ask for a number of items, and you earn stars the quicker you can deliver them.
The stars are needed to buy more upgrades. Upgrades like making Wilmot faster or enabling him to tow more items. And after some rounds: upgrades to take out the big useless columns in the warehouse, making for more storing space. Which you will desperately need.
After a successful round, new items are added to the stock. You can see the items you have on the Manifest. If you want, you can arrange your items here too, to have ample time to make connections that work for you. There are some fun things added to the Manifest, like stats as to what items you have most and a fun zone where all items float across the screen. Clock off at the counter, and it’s time again to get into the action.
Then, there’s a stock-taking phase that lasts just as long as you want it to.
Take Stock of what you have
I think stock taking is key to earning as much stars as you can in delivering the items. it sort of works like the well known game of memory cards: what connection do you make allowing you to find items later on? Do you store all food items next to each other, all hearts of various size together? And does lipstick go near paint rollers and paint brushes? Or would you choose to sort it all on color? The thing is, when you remember where to get it quickly and efficiently once it’s ordered, you’ll then do it in record time!
There is no timer during Stock Taking. Not happy with how you’ve stacked it all? Go ahead and change it, take as long as you want to. You can understand I love this phase, I can tinker around as much as I want to. The other phases do have timers, to earn the maximum of stars. I never like that, in fact, I hate being rushed in games (well, in real life too, lol) but it’s no problem here. Okay, so I’ll earn less stars? No matter, I’ll take my time!
Unlike any game I ever played
I didn’t even know there were games like this one, where organizing is what it’s all about. The background music gives off a Jean Michel Jarre vibe (Equinoxe, or is this betraying my age?). It’s soothing, along with the gameplay itself.
Wilmot’s Warehouse isn’t for everyone, you must really love the kind of gameplay I outlined. No action, no shooting, no creating or storyline. But if you follow what I’m saying about the organising part, I can wholeheartedly recommend this game.
I seriously considered buying it on my Switch, as this is my gaming device of choice. Plus, the Switch version sports co-op multiplayer, which must be a cool addition. The price however on Nintendo’s console is much higher then on mobile (Switch $ 14.99, iOS $ 4.99) So If you want to give it a try, I’d say go for this mobile version!
Final Verdict: Two Thumbs Up!