Developer Fictiorama Studios and publisher Joystick Ventures will release their second Monkey spin-off on May 25, 2023. Find out if this one is just as fun as the first Game in my review.
Action and Addiction:
At its core, Do Not Feed the Monkeys 2099 is about voyeurism. Cages are displayed on the player's monitor, which can be zoomed in individually to follow conversations, for example. Each cage is completely different, it can be an assembly line, an office or simply a view of a city in the airy heights. The more you progress, the more feeds you can buy, which is necessary for advancement in your club. If the required number of cages have not been purchased by a certain date, the members will be expelled, which will cause the game to fail, then it's game over for you. In Do Not Feed the Monkeys 2099, following what happens in each cage quickly becomes addictive. In the surveillance videos, yellow highlighted words and objects appear that you can click on to save them in a sort of virtual notebook. These keywords can then be looked up using the BeeScout search engine, which can lead to more highlighted topics and rabbit holes for you to pursue. The club occasionally offers a reward for answering certain questions, such as "What is the name of the primate that lives in Cage 4?"
Life simulation elements and earning moneyAlthough Do Not Feed the Monkeys 2099 is not as complex as games such as The Sims, it does include some life simulation elements when it comes to managing needs and resources. The game uses a 24-hour daily cycle and you'll have sleep, hunger and health indicators that are replenished by buying food and getting enough hours of sleep. If the hunger or health meter gets too low, the run ends with a visit to the doctor. There are also frequent visits from council bureaucrats to collect the humanity tax, and failure to comply will also end the game after a few days. To earn money, you can choose from a number of odd jobs posted on your doorstep every day, some paying better than others or having specific time periods or skill requirements. Plus, work consumes statistics, which means carefully balancing managing finances, food, and rest while trying to stay up to date on relevant feeds. Money can also be made through OMNIPAL, a digital assistant that helps invest in stock-like companies that can be better predicted by monitoring current events.
Feeding forbidden or not after all?
As the game title suggests, the main rule of the Primate Observation Club is simple: don't feed the monkeys, and don't interact with them. However, as with the first spin-off, things get much more interesting when you don't follow this rule. One of the main ways to do this is through an online marketplace, where items can be bought and sent to the subjects, potentially affecting the story's progression. But you can also engage directly with the primates and offer them useful information, or even show them recorded footage of themselves for personal gain. The way things turn out in each cage can be significantly affected by you, at least in most cases - some feeders have less to do than others. Even though the number of endings isn't as complex as in a game like The Quarry's 186, the storylines can vary in countless ways for both the primates and you as the player. Due to the nature of the game's loop, only a limited number of actions can be performed on each playthrough, which adds a lot of replay value. The camera settings you start the game with are different each time, and once you've made it through the game, tools such as speeding up time can make new discoveries easier.