Chinese Parents from Coconut Island Games is a life sim game in which you follow the journey of a kid from birth to adulthood. Check our Chinese Parents review!
In life sim game Chinese Parents from Coconut Island Games, you’ll be following along the journey of a kid from birth to adulthood, growing under the careful watch of Chinese parents – hence the game’s name. Once the kid reaches 18 years of age, it will be time for one final challenge: taking the Gaokao exam. The Gaokao exam could be compared to the standardized SAT exam used in the US for college admissions, so you can imagine how important it is to get a good grade!
The game stars when you press the A button to open your eyes, right after you’re born! That’s right, you’ll start aa a baby and will have 48 turns to select your actions between being born and the time when you’re old enough to take the Gaokao. There’s no easy mode in life, so you’ll need to make every action count so that you can make the most of your time! You’ll start with 50 Knowledge Points, as well as 100 out 150 Action Points. You’ll be able to tap on Fragments to absorb it and gain stats, and every boost will allow you to grow in a specific skill and path. Your character stats include IQ, EQ, Memory, Imagination, Constitution, Charm, and Face. All of these stats will be displayed on the left side of the screen.
Absorbing a fragment will require that you spend some Action Points. Common Fragments cost 10 action points to absorb. Once you have used up all of your Action Points to boost your stats, you must tap on Schedule to start your next turn, as you wait for your Action Points to replenish. When in the Schedule, you must set the different activities to perform under the Study tab. Since you start as a baby, at first, all you’ll be able to do is crawl. You could also check the Entertainment tab to see what activities are available for amusement and relaxation – clapping to the music is the first option. Each activity you select will have an effect on your stats, and can also alter your mood, so be sure to pay attention so that you don’t end up studying too hard!
As your day progresses and you perform the actions you’ve selected, random events will pop up. These could include just chilling and relaxing, or, say, having tummy trouble because your dad fell asleep the night before and forgot to tuck you in, so you catch a chill that leaves you with an upset stomach, thus lowering your EQ and Charm. The more actions you perform, the more proficient you’ll become at some activities branches, which will, in turn, open up new options for you to add to your schedule. You need to learn how to crawl before you can walk!
You won’t be able to just learn new skills immediately. First, you will need to pay the associated Knowledge cost so that you can add a new skill to your repertoire. The Knowledge Points cost for each new skill will depend on your current stats. Take, for example, the walk skill. It will first cost 97 Knowledge Points. But if you wait a bit as you boost your Constitution stat, you can lower that to way more affordable 47 Knowledge Points. Some skills will be affected by more than one stat. You could also spend some of your Action Points to absorb a Knowledge Fragment, which will grant you a boost to your Knowledge Points.
You can also collect Enhanced Fragments to reach the next mind map in your path while also recovering some Action Points. There will also be special Talent Fragments for you to absorb, which will increase the number of turns for you to boost each particular stat, which makes them very important because of the goals you have to complete. You see, your parents will have goals for you to complete, and you will have a set number of turns to reach said milestones before you end up disappointing them! You could, for instance, have a five turns limit to increase your IQ to 100 or more… but you could sometimes be working towards completing more than one goal, so you’ll have to balance things out as needed. Complete a goal to claim its reward as soon as you meet the requirements!
While doing everything I’ve previously outlined, you should always be aware of your current mood. If you’re at ease, then everything is going to be OK. But your mood can also swing into good and bad moods, which will affect things when you absorb Fragments. If you’re happy, then you could get an extra two Action Points when absorbing a Fragment. But if you’re feeling anxious, then absorbing a fragment will cost an extra 15 Action Points, which is certainly not a good way of doing things!
And then, there are special events. These will pop up in your schedule every now and then, and you must first complete them before you can continue with your daily routine. For example, and as to not spoil things too much, one of these special events during the first handful of turns will be taken during a trip to a children’s park. Once your parents take you there, you have to decide how you’ll react after hearing an ear-splitting sound. Do you cry for attention? Will you hug your dad? Or will you decide to hug your mom? The choice you make will have a consequence and will affect your stats, so be careful!
You will also run into what are called Face Duels, in which you must show your superior Traits and skills in order to save face and make your family proud. For these, you will use the Traits you’ve unlocked so that you can deal damage to your opponent. Whoever ends up with the most remaining hit points at the end of battle will win the duel! If a distant cousin of your mother visits and starts to taunt her with this or that achievement, or by taking digs at her current life, you must use the Traits you’ve unlocked to show her that your family is better!
As you grow older and complete the goals set by your parents, they will show how pleased they are with your progress by granting you a request. You can select from the available list of requests under events and pick something from there as long as your Face stat is high enough to cover its cost. Making a request does not mean they will grant it right away, since each request will have a success rate for you to consider. The higher the success rate, the better your odds of getting what you’ve asked for!
Get to elementary school, and you’ll start to get pocket money to spend at the store! You can also select to do some work at the Events section to gain some extra money. The money you have can be spent on things such as a lollipop or some toffee, new form of entertainment such as an imported doll or anime merchandise, or you could even learn new skills by buying a book or two! Start by sweeping the floor or doing the dishes, and you can gain a lot of extra money if you put a bit of extra energy into it!
Chinese Parents has a very pick up and play nature, allowing you to play by either using the Nintendo Switch Joy-Con or the console’s touchscreen. The game will introduce new gameplay mechanics at a steady pace as to not overwhelm gamers, with a gameplay loop that is fun and engaging. In fact, completing the game is not the end of the road, because you can then have a kid of your own to start the cycle again! The new kid will inherit some of the traits and stat bonuses from the parents, which will speed up the next run considerably. Chinese Parents was a pleasant surprise on Nintendo Switch, and it’s one you should check out given its $12.99 asking price.
This Chinese Parents review is based on a Nintendo Switch code provided by Coconut Island Games.