Sean   United States
Workin' for The Man.
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6.3 Hours played
Clocking in at about 5-6 hours in length, The Big Con is an enjoyable, easy-to-swallow casual adventure game. Set in the height of the '90s, we follow Ali, a plucky 17-year-old small town girl whose mother is in deep debt with some shady loan-shark types that plan to buy out and close down her beloved family-owned video rental store. Desperate for the funds to save the shop, Ali befriends a shifty young conman, and decides to skip out on band camp in order to travel the country with her new friend, learning how to hustle along the way. There's also a rad ghost and everyone has backwards baseball caps.

Gameplay in the Big Con is isometric, and driven by keyboard or controller. The game is linear, and divided into about 6 areas, including a shopping mall, a crowded train, and a casino. In each area, your objective is generally to scrape together enough funds to get to the next one. Ali can eavesdrop on conversations, lie to people, and play people against each other in order to obtain information and cash. Additionally, most NPCs in the game can be pickpocketed via a simple (and relatively easy) minigame. Various hidden items and collectibles are also scattered around each area, which can be sold to the highest bidder or used to complete certain objectives. There's also quite a large number of just-for-fun cosmetic items you can find as well, which let you walk around with silly hats, fake mustaches, and the like. The best quests in the game are the ones that span multiple areas, and these are the most missable ones, so take your time and explore if you decide to play the game - Call your best friend at every opportunity for a sweet little story, encourage the fashion designer obsessed with periwinkle, be nice to the collector, etc, as being persistent with these throughlines definitely all have payoffs at the end.

The aesthetic is a major highlight of the game, as the game looks and feels very "90's cartoon", down to the geometric patterns in the out-of-bounds borders or the closeup conversations (I loved this). The plot feels ripped right out of a straight-to-television Disney film from that era, a statement I intend as a compliment. The soundtrack also hits this vibe perfectly, though while the whole soundtrack is decent, I wish all of it rose to the level of the opening and credits themes, which are fantastic. There is also an optional "laugh track" feature which is disabled by default, but I enabled it for my playthrough and felt it added to the experience.

On the more negative side of things, at this time the game does seem to suffer from a few bugs; none of the ones I experienced are game-breaking, but they were pretty noticeable. Some NPCs decided to stand in inaccessible areas, some quests could be completed out of the intended sequence, and some conversations could be repeated even when they were intended as being one-time-only. One NPC in particular is scripted to walk away/vanish after you complete his quest, but he also comments on a nearby object, If you interact with the object after he walks away, he blinks back into existence, letting you turn in the quest again and again for effectively unlimited rewards. The autosave also doesn't save very frequently, as a heads-up, you may want to trigger it manually by periodically hitting "save and continue" from the menu. These bugs may be addressed in future patches.

Overall, this is a fun game and I really liked it, even if it is a simple game without a huge amount of substance. The current asking price of $15 may be a tad high for the amount of content on offer, but this is a developer that I will be keeping on my radar.
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Gloria Peerboom Dec 24, 2023 @ 10:52am 
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--Burger Cat-- Active Again! Jun 23, 2023 @ 12:44am 
Just wanted to say thank you. You made a post on a point and click game a few years ago for Hair Of The Dog and you shared a heap of free good point and click games. Thanks so much for the list. :pinkheart:
Gloria Peerboom Dec 31, 2021 @ 3:44am 
𝐇𝐚𝐩𝐩𝐲 𝐍𝐞𝐰 𝐘𝐞𝐚𝐫 𝐦𝐲 𝐟𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐝!
𝐖𝐢𝐬𝐡 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐯𝐞𝐫𝐲 𝐛𝐞𝐬𝐭 𝐧𝐞𝐱𝐭 𝐲𝐞𝐚𝐫! :Jodies_Teddy_Bear::BourgeoisieHeart::bd2_gloria:
Gloria Peerboom Dec 23, 2021 @ 1:21pm 
⋱ ⋮ ⋰⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ✰
⋯✰⋯⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ☾ ¸.•´´•.¸ ☾
⋰ ⋮ ⋱⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀ ✸ ¸.•´❍.•´´•.¸ ✸
….|...._▄▄_⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀✫ ¸.•´´•.¸´•.¸❍´•.¸ ✫
….|....(◑ჴ◑)⠀⠀⠀ ⠀ ✸ ¸.•´ ¸.•´ ❍.•´´•.¸´•.¸ ✸
….|....▶★◀⠀⠀⠀⠀✸ ¸.•´❍´•.¸¸.•´¸.•´´❍•.¸´•.¸ ✸
….|..(_____)⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀||||||
⠀𝑀𝑒𝑟𝑟𝑦 𝐶ℎ𝑟𝑖𝑠𝑡𝑚𝑎𝑠! :twopointcured:
Gloria Peerboom Dec 4, 2021 @ 12:31am 
:leafoffriendship::Jodies_Teddy_Bear::lovegrenade: Have a wonderful weekend!! :bd2_gloria:
Gloria Peerboom Nov 13, 2021 @ 5:51am 
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......... :leafoffriendship:𝓗𝓪𝓿𝓮 𝓪 𝓰𝓻𝓮𝓪𝓽 𝔀𝓮𝓮𝓴𝓮𝓷𝓭 :leafoffriendship:........
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