Now Playing: The trials of fatherhood in Princess Maker 2

Graham Smith at

princessmaker2

This article was originally published in PC Gamer UK 226.

My daughter was delivered to me by a deity when she was 10 years old. I named her Mount-Everest Acebomb and sent her to work in a restaurant.

Think football management is hard? Trying manipulating the statistics of a teenaged girl in a fantasy medieval world. Princess Maker 2 has you controlling every aspect of your daughter’s life with creepy focus. You set her schedule, choose with whom she socialises, arrange her diet, buy her clothes and have only brief father-daughter chats. "I wonder what my mother was like?" she asks. I say nothing.

In month one, she does terribly at the restaurant. In month two I send her for magic lessons for ten days, but the money runs out after four and she’s sent back by the teacher. After three months, food bills have put us into debt. In month four, I ignore the warnings of my winged, horse-legged butler, and watched as Everest becomes a delinquent. By month five, she’s run away from home.

She came back the next month, but the following years aren’t any easier on either of us. I’d send her on adventures, hoping to shape my progeny into a strong, empowered woman. She’d get beaten up by a giant condor. She’d ask for pocket money, and when I couldn’t afford the 100 gold, would call me a cheapskate.

The only way to satisfy her need for money - and food - was to send her to work. I can’t get a job; I’m far too busy standing in her bedroom all day, staring at her. But after a year, Everest found her niche in that restaurant. She’s 13 now, and her cooking skill is 103. A fortune teller predicts she’ll grow up to be a housewife.

But I still hold out hope for a more exciting life, pouring the money she earns into more magic lessons. When I ask her about her studies, she responds with, "I’m pretty good at cleaning!". I say nothing.

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