No one likes paying taxes. Unfortunately, it’s something we all have to do and wilfully committing tax evasion is not something we would ever encourage anyone to do. Isn’t it wonderful, then, that you can evade as much tax as you like in Turnip Boy Commits Tax Evasion, an action-RPG from developer Snoozy Kazoo. It may well be one of the cutest games you play all year, but it’s also one of the strongest examples of the genre in recent times.
Taking clear inspiration from classic Legend of Zelda titles, you take on the role of the eponymous Turnip Boy, who must undertake a various quests in order to pay off his massive debt to Mayor Onion. From this point on, the whole ‘tax evasion’ aspect of the narrative mostly takes a backseat in terms of gameplay, with the quests themselves resembling more classic RPG tropes; i.e. go here, collect this super-important item, bring it back. You gain a number of new items and abilities as you roam the land, and in the main these are utilised remarkably well.
The gameplay itself feels relatively pleasant for the most part. Early in the game, Turnip Boy obtains a ‘soil sword’ along with a watering can. The sword can be used to defend against fearsome snails, piglets, and other such animals, but utilising it feels a bit ‘floaty’ at times. Swinging the sword doesn’t feel as intuitive as it does in A Link to the Past, for instance. On the flip side, the watering can is an extremely useful tool throughout the game, and can be used to create bombs to open new areas, and even portals for transportation and puzzle completion. Flipping between items using ‘L’ and ‘R’ is easy, but you can also access your complete inventory by holding down ‘Y’.
As good as the gameplay is, it almost always plays second fiddle to the game’s outstanding tone and dialogue. You’ll come across a wide cast of characters during your travels, all of which comprise different fruits or vegetables — strawberries, avocados and the like. The writing is consistently strong throughout, and while the modern dialect and heavy reliance on social media references may not vibe with some folks, there’s plenty here that made us smile and giggle.
Although Turnip Boy Commits Tax Evasion is not an overly difficult game, by any means, some of the boss battles may well pose a challenge. The game alleviates this in obvious ways like introducing new abilities and granting you extra health as you naturally progress through the story, but if you still happen to be struggling, you can alter the accessibility options to boost your attack power. You can even go a step further and toggle ‘God Mode’, which effectively makes you invulnerable; it’s a great option for more casual gamers.
Turnip Boy Commits Tax Evasion is a delight. Its gameplay is not quite on the same level as some of the more top tier examples of the top-down ARPG genre, but it boasts an outstanding tone and utterly ridiculous characters that drive the narrative beautifully. If you’re after a breezy, cheerful palate cleanser, then look no further; this is a great way to get more veggies into your gaming diet.