A monotonous retail job could make for a rad rhythm game
April 14, 20191 min read
Most career-based games set out to either emulate a job to a T or build upon their most interesting tasks. For instance, American Truck Simulator sets out to simulate a delivery truck driver's experience as accurately as possible. Game Dev Tycoon streamlines and abstracts the game development process to focus on the industry's unique management challenges, such as striking a balance between art design and technology.
Unfortunately, retail work is notoriously monotonous and offers little (if any) that is intrinsically interesting. We have several games about running an entire storefront, but I've never seen one from the perspective of a minimum wage employee. For many in such work, it feels like the only way to shake off existential dread is to get into a mindless groove through their daily routine. Keeping that groove is the best defense those retail workers have against insanity, but so many unpredictable factors regularly throw that groove off.
The more I think about it, the more I think that retail is like a rhythm game, except the gameplay is as dull as a shopping cart that spent the entire holiday season at the bottom of a frozen lake. I want some daring developer to correct that by creating the most fun retail rhythm game to ever exist. Or at least the only one. Also, someone needs to get that cart out of the lake already.