Spirited Away meets Overcooked!
Following a successful Kickstarter campaign from developer Waking Oni Games back in 2019, Onsen Master, a co-op hot spring strategy game described as being Spirited Away meets Overcooked, is finally making its way over to Nintendo Switch. It will be published by Whitehorn Games and is set for release sometime in Summer 2022 (that’s any day now). Check out more info on Onsen Master below via the press release and watch the latest trailer above.
The concept for Onsen Master dates back to 2015, when Waking Oni Games founder Derrick Fields was inspired by his regular rewatches of Spirited Away, specifically a section of the film in which the protagonist is working with spirits at a bathhouse. This formed the basis of Onsen Master’s hot spring customer management gameplay, and also the Japanese setting and aesthetic of the game. After five years of development, a successful Kickstarter campaign and beta period, and the partnership with Whitethorn Games, Onsen Master is finally ready to release this month.
“As a publisher, we always try to find unique games that can appeal to anyone and everyone,” said Dr. Matthew White, CEO of Whitethorn Games. “Onsen Master fits that criteria, and we’re really proud of everyone at Waking Oni Games for the work they’re doing to bring the game to the finish line.”
“Our studio prioritizes lifting up underrepresented voices, and one of the ways we do that is by working with developers of color,” said Derrick Fields, Founder of Waking Oni Games. “It was great to find a publisher that has the same core beliefs that we do, and it helped reaffirm our mission of representation and cultural intersection.”
A dark cloud hangs over the island of Izajima, its effects weighing heavily on the inhabitants. Mischievous spirits called yokai are running amok within the island’s hot springs. And the great Onsen Master, keeper of the hot springs and healer of ailments, has mysteriously vanished. Players will take on the role of his apprentice, Mu, in order to restore balance and uncover what happened to the Onsen Master.
Onsen Master features arcade-style single and two-player co-op, where players must manage the customers of their hot springs, and prepare and put together the correct ingredients to cure their ailments. Running around the hot springs, wrangling wandering customers, and putting the right concoctions into the right baths can be hectic enough already, but troublesome yokai look to impede players’ excellent service as well. Can Mu overcome obstacles to revitalize and reconnect the communities of Izajima? Spring into action and find out!