Quickly cure patients with a variety of questionable methods to avoid being unmasked as a quack doctor hiding in a medieval village, in Plague M.D.
Format: PC via Steam
First playthrough time: 1.5 hours
Finding this review helpful? Consider following to see more!
Plague M.D. is a time-management game about memorizing treatment and curing patients as quickly as possible. There are three difficulty levels and the option to play with only one life. By default the game deletes the player’s save file only after they achieve one of the three canonical endings. There are 11 levels for the player to complete, each with some minor characters and story choices that can have both immediate effects and guide the player toward a particular ending.
The story of Plague M.D. focuses on a thief that has to pretend to be a village’s new healer to avoid getting caught. Using the books left behind by the prior healer, he learns to diagnose and treat a number of illnesses. There are a few reoccurring characters in the game, such as the village chief and each has a mini story-arc to complete. To keep their identity under wraps, the player will have to keep suspicion about their true identity from rising, possibly even buying off others. If they reveal the player’s true identity, they’ll be put to death.
In order to cure villagers and keep from being discovered, players will have to read and memorize the symptoms and cures for up to 11 ailments. Patients won’t wait long, so preparing the right treatment quickly is key. Each failed attempt raises the suspicion meter, but successfully delivering cures will not bring it back down. Instead, players get an amount of currency relative to how fast the cure was given that they can use at the end of each level to buy better equipment, payoff suspicion, or improve their stress levels. Random events will also happen at the beginning of each day allowing the player to make choices, sometimes with tradeoffs.
I love the art style of Plague M.D. Much of the flavor of the game comes from the distinct visual style. Yet the items and symptoms are easy to identify at a quick glance which makes the fast pace of the game feel smooth. I did however wish that the Drunk and Beggar special effects had visuals for when they were activated because I would often flounder in my flow and it felt like a bug when I couldn’t do expected actions. I also did experience one bug where I couldn’t throw away a piece of cloth that ended up on the cutting board, forcing me to restart the level.
Overall, I found Plague M.D. to be an enjoyable time management time. I really loved the visuals, though I didn’t find the game to be as long or complex as other time-management games. Though I did enjoy the touch of having random events with consequences and the option of multiple endings. I recommend Plague M.D. for players looking for a casual time-management game, especially if they enjoy the art style.