It’s a cold, muddy morning as you stumble into another town with unfamiliar faces everywhere. Your family has been murdered, bounty hunters are on your tail, and you have barely enough coin to eat, let alone get a ride to the next town. There’s the odd job here and there, but the oldest profession still pays the best.
Bounty is a text adventure game being developed solely by Captain of the Guard. The game follows your player created character as you escape to a bordering country after your family was assaulted in a political assassination attempt, with your character being the sole survivor. After managing to avoid the assassins, you’re dropped randomly into a town, whereupon your journey begins. I’m currently playing the Alpha 4.0 build of the game, which naturally has a brevity of content along with some balance and performance issues, but I can see the groundwork for a great erotic text adventure beyond all that.
I would like to leave a quick disclaimer, though: I’d advise downloading the game to play it. There is an in-browser option, but it consistently crashed on Firefox and Chrome for me.
Upon opening the alpha, the player is greeted to a rather minimalist black box with the word Bounty presiding over the main menu. There are some minor cosmetic changes you can make in the configuration, such as heart-themed bars above and below the text area or different dice for the rolls. It’s not much, but it’s a nice bit of personality to make the alpha feel a bit more complete than it actually is.
Upon starting the game proper, the player is presented with a nice little map of the game world, complete with borders and country names. It tells you how many settlements you’ll have to pass through to reach the border, along with a small blurb summarizing the plot. Currently, you can only play on the easy difficulty setting, traveling from your home, the Republic of Vesta, to the Kingdom of Olyvia in the east, with 20 stops along the way. The map appears to be aged and has some surrounding countries that will likely be expanded upon in the future. It may be one of the only images in the game, but it’s highly important as it builds enough of a world for you to place yourself in. After selecting your sole difficulty out of a list of one, you’re thrust into the prologue of the game, in which you are attacked at night. Your family is slain and you fall out of your window, evading capture and giving yourself a concussion in the process. After waking up and coming to terms with the reality of the situation, you escape into another town where danger is hopefully far from you.
After the introduction, you can begin creating your character. Before exploring the character choices given, I will say that this part of the game should ideally be before the prologue. It would make more sense to create your character first so that you can better picture the person in the prologue’s events. Getting into the character creator itself, you’re first given the choice of what fantasy race to play as. The races do have different pros and cons though not all have visible benefits in this stage of development.
There are unique perks each race gets that yield certain bonuses, but it’s impossible to know what those are until you’ve played as the race long enough to unlock it. Hopefully in future updates, you can see a list of race-specific perks as I’d prefer to not go through the game as an orc just to find out their special perk is only a combat boost (to be fair, I should’ve seen that one coming). There’s also a virginity tracker in the game, as some race perks like the elf can only be accessed while retaining one’s virginity. Keeping your virginity is implied to be a goal in-game, but you can stray from that path at any point you wish. Besides, it’s fun playing around with how slutty you want to be; however, the game does keep an afflictions section to track STDs you might pick up, so be cautious.
The bulk of Bounty is spent traveling between various towns and whoring yourself out, making enough money to buy a trip to the next one until you reach the border. There’s a variety of places to visit in your journey and each one, for the most part, serves a unique purpose. There’re docks, universities, bathhouses, farms, barracks, commercial sectors, all spaced out amongst random events as you hitch a ride with some caravan between places. You are presented with a random selection of three locations each time you make a trip, with random names to distinguish two locations of the same type.
Time spent between towns is occasionally full of interesting events: for example, one event sees your caravan being attacked, the outcome of which can be influenced by your stats. Another event sees the player besieged by goblins: you might fend off the attackers if you have combat training or bought a weapon earlier, but if you have no experience at all, you could simply get raped. There’s one concrete event signaling the halfway mark of the game to help you keep track of how far in you’ve gotten, but it’s a little broken as you can’t scroll to read it all.
The selection of in-town options is varied, with options ranging from performing in an adult show or dancing at a brothel to much wilder options like joining a crew of sailors at a port and getting into a drunk gangbang. All the events will affect your stats in some way, which can be a boon or a curse depending on your build: for example, that gangbang will decrease your mood and cleanliness unless you have some perks that make gangbanging more appealing to you.
The best part of Bounty is the perk system. There’s a huge selection of perks that unlock, improving over older ones and unique ones turning up when combinations of other perks have been taken. As mentioned earlier, there are race-specific perks, with some giving bonuses if you’re still a virgin, while some are even retracted if you have sex. The perks add a lot to role-playing with your character, as you pick and choose what they’re good at to build their abilities over time. It’s a mechanically reinforced representation of your character building slutty experience over time. Self-imposed restrictions make the game even more enjoyable in its current state, as it’s very easy to abuse the system right now. I managed to break the game with charm scrolls you can buy in the university locations to give me too many customers, essentially giving me more money that I could possibly spend.
You have absolutely no reason to worry about any kind of combat or buying weapons and armor. It’s incredibly easy to cruise through the game as long as you stock up on soap to stay clean and get some perks that reduce or remove mood drops. Certainly, it can get stale quickly once you work out tricks like these, but the perks are fun and interesting. The locations you visit in Bounty all serve unique purposes, so you rarely feel like you can’t make any progress though there is the odd [Under Construction] tag like the training in the barracks. Combat is one of the features that is definitely not implemented in the game yet.
All things considered, Bounty is a promising text adventure. It’s pretty barebones at the moment, as you’ll be going through the same motions most of the time, but the core features are there. Bounty has a fun perk and leveling system, along with unique location types that you actually have to pay attention to. There’s a focused vision here and a distinct lack of feature creep to avoid ruining the experience. I have high hopes for future updates with more difficulties, better balance, and maybe some actual combat.
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