From Toadwater Guide
|Developer(s)||Toadwater Development Group|
|Publisher(s)||Boring Games Entertainment|
|Distributor(s)||Boring Games Entertainment|
|Designer(s)|| Jason King|
|Release date(s)||June 2002|
|Genre(s)||online farming simulation game|
|Rating(s)|| unrated |
10+ recommended for the game
17+ for the official forums (language)
|Media||direct download client from official site|
|Requirements|| Pentium or better |
4MB drive space
Toadwater (abbreviated TW) is a 2D multiplayer game played online. Access to the game is via a small client downloaded from the game's website and run in Windows. Technically the game does not become multiplayer until one has played for several days/weeks which gives one time to decide if it is something one might enjoy. At first playing just a few minutes per day or per week is all that is needed while longtime players can spend many hours a day playing.
TW is free to download and free to play -- one only needs an email address and an internet connection. After playing for a few weeks/months, many players become offical members by donating US$5 to get access to additional game content.
The game was conceptualized and programmed by Jason King. Aided by Matthew Delello, the game was designed. King was the lone programmer until the arrival of BoonZee (real name unknown) who designed the first Toadwater Client (TWC). In November 2005, King sold the game to Delello with Matt Siegman acting as Lead Programmer and developer of future versions of the TWC.
Although there is little roleplaying, the player assumes the role of a humble dwarf who starts by growing balsam fir trees with the hope of working up to other trees and crops. The storyline of TW is played through quests available to longtime players who donated US$5 to become members. Combat is not part of the game although completing quests enables players to use a "combat lasso" to catch another player for defensive purposes (like protecting one's trees). The game is conducted in real-time, using a 2D top-down viewpoint. Players grow and craft to level up their character and gain better items.
The skill-based TW emphasizes planting, harvesting, crafting, and trading. It has been likened to online knitting due to its repetitive nature.
It is unusual compared with many online roleplaying games in its lack of violence. It is not possible to harm another player in this game -- although vindictive players can force others to hurt themselves. Nearly every action ingame costs health and if a player's health drops below zero, the player dies causing "death penalties" including loss of gold (ingame currency) and items. Health can be replenished many ways and death penalties may be reduced.
Like many open-ended online roleplaying games, TW cannot be won -- each player is free to do what gives them a feeling of accomplishment provided it is within the boundaries stated in the Terms of Service agreed to when making an account. There are no classes in TW but players have several options including focusing on becoming a humble farmer who contentedly works the land, a greedy land baron who focuses on amassing more land, a vengeful raider who leeches off the hard work of others, a shrewd trader who is always looking for the next good deal, a skilled orator who spends more time on the offical discussion forums than playing the game, or some combination of these roles.
A player in the top 10 is considered a Toadwater god and receives benefits including an ingame statue that all players can buy. There are other records that can be broken for bragging rights including the special "tree lordship" which confers benefits as a tree lord. The game does not reset so essentially many months of playing are required in order to unseat a god or break a record.
Players are expected to build a base of operations. Bases typically have at least 3 layers of player-built fencing. Efficient base design is critical to defend against other players from raiding the base with the object of stealing items.
The ingame clock (and calendar) are based on a metric system for measuring time. Although the 10 hours per day, 100 minutes per hour, and 100 seconds per minute are odd at first, most players are able to learn the system.