The Signage of Karamelle

Karamelle is a world unlike almost any other that we've seen. No, you won't see some of the wondrous landscapes of other worlds and yes, there's a little bit of a cookie-cutter feel to some of the different areas. But it's unique in its own way. One of its strengths, not only in being true to the world's theme but also in making us laugh and take a second look at things, is its many signs. Warning - this post contains some story spoilers if you haven't finished Karamelle yet.

As Advertised

Since Karamelle is a sort of amusement park full of attractions for residents from across the Spiral, it's only natural that they'd need to advertise, even within the world itself. You'll notice it right away - you enter and pass through a tunnel plastered with framed signs on either side in a city full of shops. Your first instance quest will be inside the Glockenspiel with a hanging sign reading "Clocktower Tours."

Karamelle gets all of the usual things you might expect from an amusement park. There are overhead signs for rides and attractions with estimates wait times (despite no visible lines). There are instances and doors marked "Staff Only." There are gates, hanging signs, and town and city names on overhead archways. There are food stands, too!

One of the later additions (or maybe I just missed it the first time around) are maps with overhead views of Karamelle (they used the 3D model and marked several spots on the brochure) laying around. I also love the map stands.

Something Normal

Karamelle introduces a lot of things we might take for granted in real life and don't think much about in the game. For example, there are trash cans near all of the major attractions in Karamelle. But even more significant than the trash cans are... bathrooms!? Where our wizard (or anyone else, for that matter) takes care of business hasn't ever crossed most of our minds, but there are a few bathrooms throughout Karamelle (one of which has a long line).

Window Shopping

It wouldn't be an amusement park without souvenirs! And you'd better believe there are a lot of shops in Karamelle. Some are simple and generic like Toys & Gifts. Others are obvious rip-offs of existing restaurants, like Karl's Sr. Das Burger Shoppe. Some even feature in quests, including a chocolate shop in Nibbleheim and Les Bon-Bon Mots in Sweetzburg, where wizards will likely return for farming after finishing the world. If you look very closely, you'll see small Nana figures and other goodies inside some of the shops.

As much as Nana might want you in some of these shops, there are other areas she'd rather you not visit. For example, in the Gumdrop Forest, we run into signs instructing patrons not to eat any of the gumdrops, some of which are being gathered in crates for use in making gummies. Other signs read "No Guest Access" and use hedges to discourage wizards from venturing further into the location. But fear not, we'll trample on any grass and violate any rules for our quests.

Internal Affairs

As we discover throughout our journey in Karamelle, everything is not what it seems! While areas intended for guest access have happy, exciting posters and promotional materials, some of the private, off-limits areas are a little more intimidating. "WWND (What Would Nana Do?)," "Be Nana," and "Smile Like Your Life Depends on It" signs show the darker side of the corporatized world of Karamelle.

It turns out that training Nanas and keeping Karamelle workers in line isn't the only thing to look out for. A series of side quests explain more about the surveys conducted by the Good Will Ambassador and Karamelle's quest for five-star reviews. While these signs are a little bit more difficult to find without questing through this side chain, they're worth checking out for sure!

Counter Advertising

Advertising isn't just a tool for our corporate overlords. It's also used by the resistance, a.k.a. the witches, or W.I.T.C.H.E.S. You'll first notice their logo as floor decor in a rally led by Gerhart. It's also used on the door of the Witch's Treehouse.

The Happiest World in the Spiral

Outside of what you might expect from an amusement park, Karamelle has a lot of fun bonuses to offer. The main Karamelle logo gets some sub-branding with different labels for the Gutenstadt Security Department, for example. And the Gobblers come up with their own take on the sign for their "Healthy-ish Karamelle Delights." We also can't forget that the loading screen for all zones in Karamelle is itself an advertisement.

Making Your Own Marketing

There are so many cool signs in Karamelle that it'd be a real shame if we didn't get to take any home! Fortunately, that's not the case. Although rare, there are a fair number of sign drops (and other furniture items) throughout the world. Additionally, there are crafted signs available from the recipe vendor in Karamelle City!

All in all, these designs are a little bit different from the sort of things KingsIsle is used to making, and that's worth a little extra attention.

What did you think of Karamelle's signs?

Thanks for reading and see you in the Spiral!

No comments

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.