Friday, 4 December 2015

New Style Boutique 2


new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game

There are a lot of simulation games out there, but none have kept me going for long, because the job wasn't really that interesting, and the things to do are too repetitive. Of course, if you give me a beautiful and cute game with a good title, I'd still give it a go, so when Nintendo released their New Style Boutique 2, which allows players to not only dress people up but also do their hair and make-up, I was certainly up for it (the really really cute graphics are irresistible too!), although I wasn't expecting the game to provide a lot of content.

After playing the game on our new Nintendo 3DS for a day, however, I was hooked, and knew then that this game, unlike other simulation games, will last. It has a lot more to offer than just a shop manager who does a bit of hair styling and make-up. There is a lot more (way more!) to it, which has kept my mind occupied, and since each customer is different, I never felt that I was doing the same thing over and over again! What more can you ask for from a job, right? I've played it for over a week now and there are still lots for me to unlock. And every time I unlocked something new, it made me feel like I was playing a new game, so it is definitely keeping me interested!

I got so carried away with taking pictures (everything is so pretty!), it took me a very long time to sort them out! Hopefully there are enough pictures to show you what the game is like, but not too much to confuse you!

If you like what you see, you can also try the demo game yourself, which can be downloaded from Nintendo's eShop for free.


new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
You can download add-on items from the Internet to use in the game
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
It has a beautiful background story
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Creating mini Me
In Nintendo's New Style Boutique 2 (pegi 3; RRP £34.99, new Nintendo 3DS bundle available, Look Fantastic gift voucher offers available) players play as a human girl who has inherited a magical doll room, which is connected to a city where doll-sized people live. Players are then turned into a doll-sized girl (you will be given the opportunity to personalise yourself) before entering the city themselves, to bring back fashion and excitement to it.


I absolutely love my character! You can personalise most of their features, and there are enough choices to create your unique self. You will be able to style them differently too so if you are someone who likes to change their look frequently, you can do that in this game.

Players will also be given the opportunity to name their character, add a birthday date and select a currency for the game during the tutorial stage. Maybe I should change the currency to USD, GBP makes everything feel so expensive!

Just a quick tip, the game won't save until the initial tutorial is over and players are given the "Save" option.


new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Right: Map of Beaumonde City
Initially, only The Avenue where the boutique and player's flat is located, will be unlocked to the players. The more you play, the more places and shops will be available for you to visit.


Boutique and Customers:

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Inside the boutique
Right: Touch screen showing customers in the shop players can talk to (the right one is looking at the window display)
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Left: New customer      Right: Existing customer
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Left: Clothes available in the shop     Right: Criteria search
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Before and after outfits
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Cut-scenes when you confidently recommend an outfit and the customer loves it
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
When you recommend the wrong outfit
Recommending Outfits:
Although there are a lot of jobs available for the players to do, the game surrounds the fashion industry, and since the biggest income comes from selling whole outfits to customers, the store is definitely my main focus.

Initially you'll be finding a piece of outfit that the customer ask for. Happy customers will slowly put their trust on you and eventually will let you recommend a complete outfit for them. You will also get to know your existing customers more (their profile will be stored and there will be a reminder on the screen when you click on them) so that you can recommend a more fitting outfit for them.

Sometimes you don't have anything suitable to recommend to the customer, after agreeing to help them. It's not a problem at all and players are given the choice to apologise to the customer. They have been really polite about it so far! It does help by keeping the stock level up though.

Criteria Search:
When a customer is being a bit more specific, using the criteria search can help control your creativity a bit. For example, I use the Image search most as I tend to mix and match too much. However, I also find it quite limiting, so I will give another matching style (especially the basics range that can go with anything) a look as well to complete an outfit. You can do it anyway you like of course, just bear in mind that the customers doesn't really like overly mixed styles (even though they look good together in my opinion!).

Recommend with Confidence:
Initially you can only ask the customers to "Take a Look" at what you recommend. Later on, you'll be able to act more confident by telling them to "Try it On!". The effect will be different, although don't expect any tips for finding the perfect outfit! It will help you later on when you've unlocked the Fashion Show though, as impressed customers will be buying tickets for the show (more about this later).


new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Another payment going through
(it's time to shop!)
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Exhibition Hall where all the suppliers are
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Left: Touch screen of the Exhibition Hall, showing all the brands
Right: A new brand opened up shop
Restock:
With all the money coming in and stock level going down, it's time to restock! All the brands are in the Exhibition Hall, and players, the fashion trend setters, will be given the task to bring in the next new style into the city, which unlocks new suppliers in the hall.

New items are added daily, so it's worth spending some time each day to go back and take a look. You do have all that space in the store room after all. But watch your purse, because some brands can be very expensive to restock!


At the beginning it's quite difficult to judge what you should stock more on. It gets easier later on, especially when you have unlocked other features that will attract particular customers in.


new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
A new special customer with no criteria
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
After scanning Princess Peach, she visited the boutique
Abby's Mii character?!
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Added to my wardrobe (not the shop's storage)
Special Customers and amiibo:
Sometimes the screen will go to a cut-scene where a customer walks into the boutique. This means that there is something special about this customer, and it's worth paying a bit more attention to them, because some will unlock new features. 

New Style Boutique 2 doesn't have their own amiibo figure, but there are other amiibo figures that are compatible with the game, for example, Princess Peach. You should give them a bit more attention as well because they might have something to give you in return for your fantastic recommendation! 

The amiibo characters doesn't appear as I thought they would though, and we chuckled when we saw Abby's Mii character in the game! She also said something that's so fitting to the amiibo figure that made me laugh!
 

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Top right outfit created by Abby. I love it!
Self Styling:
As the store manager, you should look the part as well and be the life advertisement for the boutique (and change for fun too of course!). Clothes are completely free to wear and does not affect your boutique's stock level, as these are brands' samples (I want her wardrobe!), and apart from the odd times when you have to wear something specific, you can change into whatever and as often as you like (mix and match to your heart's content!).


new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
My first fashion show is ready to start!
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
The 3 models, outfit put together by moi
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
You can make your character pose during the catwalk, and throw in some special effects too!
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Left: gift from a fan    Right: Tickets for the second show is already selling right after the first!
Fashion Show:
I told you this game is big! Not only are you a boutique store manager who sets new trends in the city, you also get to hold your own fashion show! How awesome is that?! I was absolutely thrilled when I found out (seriously), and was working really hard towards it. I even felt the excitement when they did the catwalk!

Players' job is to style a number of outfits, fit to the theme, for the fashion show (it's good to stock up on that particular style), and impress enough customers (boutique, hair and make-up. More about the last 2 later) to sell the show tickets. Players and other models will then feature the styles on the catwalk, and this is when I kept hitting the button for the in-game camera to snap pictures. I just couldn't help it because the show is so pretty! I'm really impressed with the characters' movements by the way, which is even more obvious during the catwalk, because it's really smooth and realistic!

After the successful show, the next show's theme will be revealed, so it's good to use this information to stock some of the relevant items so you have plenty of opportunity to style it.

The good thing about a fashion show is that customers will start coming into the boutique, asking for outfits that fits the show's theme. So don't forget to keep the stock level up for these as well. This is also the time when customers trust you completely to style their whole outfit for them, so money will come in much faster. Just remember to keep an eye on all the criteria and limitations.


Boutique front that can be customised
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Changing the window display
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Manage the boutique and window display
Window Display:
Another way to attract customers and sell complete outfits is to dress the mannequin on your window display once it's unlocked. 

Players can also dress the rest of the window display by changing the background and place decorative items next to the mannequin. The decorative items are miniature items used for something else too. See below for further details.

Apart from the windows display, players can also change the interior and exterior design for their boutique, and change the background music as well to fit the theme.

 
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Miniatures and Poster Shop
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Get miniature items as a gift
Miniature Items:
These items are doll-sized items used for decoration by the already doll-sized people. So they are extra tiny! Apart from using them for decorating the boutique (inside and window display), they play a much bigger part in the Caprice Chalet (see further below).

Players initially were given some miniature items, and random customers on the street will give you some too. Later on players can buy them from the shop, as well as create posters.

I haven't tried creating a poster yet as I forgot what it was for. It could be for posters up in the city (more advertising opportunities!), so I should really give it a go!

 
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
The phone is an important gadget for the players
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Profiles for people you've met.
Phone:
As a busy boutique manager who does a lot of side-lines as well, your phone has to be your best friend (it allows you to save the game as well, so it's definitely your best friend!).

Players can access all sorts of information including the photo album, colour palette (more about this later), emails, To-Do list, customer profiles which tells you what each customer like, import amiibo characters, and learn the all important Fashion world words! The game is almost like a fun way to train you up as a real fashionista!

Players can also connect with other players through Miiverse and participate in competitions for the best styles. Normally I wouldn't use Miiverse, but it has proven really really useful (look at all the nice pictures!). It takes a bit of time to load but the quality is much better than the in-game camera, which is smaller. So perhaps I'll check this feature out too! 


Caprice Chalet and Interior Design:

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Caprice Chalet Night and Day
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Left: Magical Doll House           Right: One of the designed rooms
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Right: Touch screen indicates that 2 rooms are rented out
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
To design a room, simply add furnishings to the plan.
Caprice Chalet has certainly complicated the story a bit. It's basically a big house in the dolls' world (so a doll house in your world) connected to a doll house of the dolls' world (so er, a doll house for a doll house?) located in the attic.

The doll house is magical and whatever the player put in each room, it will appear in the big house as well, which the citizens can rent for a stay. They will pay you well for the night, so it's another good source for money. It also gives you the opportunity to have a go at interior design!

Players can also swap their nicely decorated rooms with other players, which will make their room appear in your game. Players can then buy items from those rooms!


Other Jobs:
As mentioned before, players will also get an opportunity to work in other areas within the industry. 

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Customer's need
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Left: Choose a style and maybe a fringe as well
Right: Colour the hair and maybe give it a highlight too
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Unlocking new styles after getting more experience with hair styling
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Left: Getting a new style    Right: Wigs
Hairdresser:
To style customers' or your own hair, simply visit the salon and either ask the hairdresser to do your hair for you (you can choose free style, custom style or wig, which is hairstyles you have customised for your own character before), or cut the hair for other customers based on what they want. You do have the freedom to colour their hair, even if they didn't ask for it. Most of my customers like them. I'm assuming that, after a few more try, they will start giving you a bit more freedom with the styling as well.

The more experience you earn from styling customers' hair, the more hair styles you can unlock too. I just like to change my hair style and colour to match my character's outfit. I wish I can do that in real life too!

     
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Left: 1-click Make-up sets    Right: Custom make-up
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
My favourite make-up turned into sets
The effect is fairly realistic, wish I have her perfect complexion though!
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Inside the Beauty Salon
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Players can design the make-up set display in the beauty salon as well
Make-Up Artist and Collaborator:
When make-up feature was unlocked at the beginning, players were only given one makeup set, which allows you to put on make-up with one click, but it wasn't really my style, so I always went for Custom make-up where you have to apply each step every time. As it's playing with colour I really didn't mind, and you can see what matches and what doesn't, so it was fun playing with it.

Later on, the Make-Up Lab will be unlocked in the Beauty Salon, where you are invited to help create different make-up sets. These will appear in your flat as well so you can apply your favourite make-up style with 1 click, which is handy for when you want the same combination.

Again, players can apply make-up for customers as well inside the beauty salon. It's not something I do often (there is so many things to do!), so I'm not sure if things has changed after the fashion show, but the last time I went in, my customers were still asking me to copy exact make-up looks from pictures. I had some problems with it because I didn't have all the colours in my palette. This is where Rainbow and her colour capturing skill comes in.

 
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game

Colour Palette:
Remember the colour palette players can check in their phone? Colours can be unlocked in the game, but players will have to find them by taking pictures (using the in-game camera) of different scenes in different seasons and time of the day, and show them to Rainbow, who can be found in the park. If she spot a new colour from the picture, she will give it to the player and it will be added to their colour palette, which will unlock the colour for both hair and make-up. So even though it's a hit and miss, it's worth the time to unlock as many as you can!

 
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game

Hints:
Sometimes people around the city might say something that will give you clues to where to find special things, such as colour, new places and even items. So it's worth talking to as many people as you can!

 
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game

Modelling:
I haven't unlocked this job yet, but I'm really looking forward to it! At the moment I'm just paying to get my portraits done. I can easily take pictures using the in-game camera and Miiverse, but my character does different poses that are quite nice too! I'm not sure what I can do with the pictures though?

 
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
First job is to design a stripey T-shirt! I have 6 days!
Fashion Designer:
I've only just unlocked this before writing this post! I haven't started working on the project yet, but I will be as soon as I have the time! I'm really looking forward to this job because this is when you can really play with your creativity, and see for yourself what you can come up with! Of course it's not entirely the same as in real life, but it's good enough for me, and it's certainly a great start!

Scenery:

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game

As mentioned before, part of the reason why I love the game so much is because of how beautiful it is. Not only are the characters pretty and adorable, all the other places are just stunning, whether it's during the day or night. I'm looking forward to check the places out in different seasons (it's a bit like Animal Crossing but with dolls isn't it?), and discover more colours too of course!


Outside Beaumonde City:

new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Region Map
new Style Boutique 2, new Nintendo 3DS, fashion and beauty game
Other places are accessible by train
Apparently the game isn't limited to Beaumonde City only! I have been getting hints from customers of places that's not within the city, but I didn't realise it will be like this, it's just so nice! I only just unlocked this as well, so I haven't explore them yet. I can't wait to see what each place has to offer apart from more beautiful colours!


Overall:
Just a bit over a week's play and I've already unlocked so many different things (and there are still many to unlock!)! As you can see, it's not just any fashion simulation game, this game has far more features and details than that, and it will certainly keep you playing for a very long time.

I also noticed that the characters are more interactive than in other games. When you design an outfit, because it's base on your opinion, the result is always different, so there are games where they will just say that the style is good, for example, without really giving you more feedback about it. But I had customers telling me that they love the yellow and blue combination (how did they know?!), or that the additional stripey pattern is also their favourite, etc. I love seeing this kind of responses, which makes the game more realistic!

At the moment my favourite thing to do is to put together more nice outfits. There is so many combinations you can play with, and a lot will work in real life too. I also get to come out from my comfort zone and play with outfits that I'd totally not wear in real life.

I'm also looking forward to designing my own clothing. Without this opportunity given by Nintendo, I really wouldn't know what I can do! That makes me think that this game is absolutely perfect for those who has an interest in fashion, hair, make-up, fashion design and even modelling! It really opens up an opportunity for them to try it out without taking an actual course first! I also think that it'll be a fantastic game for people who are already in the industry, to expand the areas they are thinking of working on, and get some inspirations for their next project.

I think I will be playing the game quite a lot, especially during the holidays, and I'll definitely let Abby and my niece have a go!

If you like what you've seen and read here, don't forget that you can give the game a try for free as well, as long as you have access to the Nintendo eShop and a new Nintendo 3DS (the 3D graphics is lovely as well, and you can import the fun amiibo characters!). Or you can check out the New Nintendo 3DS New Style Boutique 2 bundle, which comes with the game, a white new Nintendo 3DS, and a really really pretty cover plate! I want the cover plate! I hope that they will release the cover plates on their own, ideally with other luxury colour choices like black and midnight blue because my new Nintendo 3DS is black. Fingers crossed!

Anyway, I really think that the bundle will make the perfect Christmas present for the fashion and beauty minded people! The bundle currently comes with a £10 Look Fantastic gift voucher as well. Aren't they thoughtful?