Ripped Pants At Work
We’ve Had This Dream Before
You never know what you’re going to find when you browse the “Upcoming” tab on Steam’s storefront. Sometimes you don’t find anything that seems worth a second look, but other times…other times you come across really fun stuff.
Ripped Pants At Work is a charming stealth-lite game by Scott Ethington. Nearly everything about this game is an absolute delight: from the bright, vibrant color palette, the randomized character models, intuitive controls and upbeat, acoustic guitar tracks, RPaW lets you know that it doesn’t take itself too seriously and lets you have all the fun you want with it.
The premise of the game is really straightforward. It’s your first day on the job, and you want to make a great first impression on your new boss and coworkers. But after an unfortunate trouser explosion, you’re forced to flee the office and find new pants within the city. RPaW‘s mechanics make the game a breeze to pick up and learn. There’s an embarrassment meter that appears whenever someone spots your royal pantslessness. The more people who see you in all your glory, the faster it fills; if it fills all the way, you’re fired and start the game as a new character. There’s another neat mechanic that’s tied to the embarrassment meter: the more embarrassed you get, the faster you move. If you build up enough speed, players can burst through weakened barriers to find new hiding places and access hidden pants. During our blind live stream, it wasn’t as apparent that the character moves faster as the meter fills. But Ethington has implemented a patch to make it a little more obvious.
There are plenty of secrets to be found as well. There are three metal pieces scattered throughout the map that, when combined, create a pretty rad item. The AI characters that fill out the city have all kinds of funny quips that are a joy to read. The History of Pants museum has plenty to discover on your quest for more durable pants, and if you can find your way into the park, you’re in for a good laugh.
For all it’s charm and humor, there are a few flaws in RPaW. The area of the map near the hotel feels as though it doesn’t have enough cover to help you hide as you make your way across the parking lot. And the fields of view don’t feel very consistent at times. There’s an area near the main office where you can hide among some fencing and dumpsters; sometimes passersby don’t notice you at all while others, they spot you instantly and players are trapped in smelly, half-naked hell. It’s not a huge issue, but it is frustrating when you think you’re safe to make a mad dash for some trousers or more cover, only to be fired because some guy saw your fun bits from far away.
“Nearly everything about this game is an absolute delight…”
If you’re looking for a really fun little game to wile away an hour or so with, RPaW is definitely worth a look. There’s a nice little screen at the end of a session where you successfully find pants which keeps track of all the trousers you’ve found. This makes it really easy to see which areas of the map you haven’t fully explored yet and find new digs. It’s a great little game, and it’s easy to see Ethington had as much of a blast making it as it is to play.