Five Nights at Freddy’s is no stranger to stealth launches. After the first game in the series launched in 2014, four more were quick to follow within the next two years. It’s popularity even earned the series a movie deal. More than a year since the last mainline entry, a new spinoff called Freddy Fazbear’s Pizzeria Simulator was released for free Tuesday.
Based on its description on the Steam store, this spinoff is a “fun Five Nights at Freddy’s adventure with a lighter touch for the holidays.” Unlike previous entries, this simulator puts players in charge of developing their own pizza restaurant. Players earn high scores by designing pizzas and feeding them to kids.
At first glance, Freddy Fazbear’s Pizzeria Simulator features a simple and low-res look resembling a classic Atari game. Appearances can be deceiving, however, and it doesn’t take long for things to go off the rails. What started out as a restaurant-management sim might as well be called Five Nights at Freddy’s 6.
According to Polygon, series creator Scott Cawthon first signaled the release of Pizzeria Simulator in June, after he announced that he had stopped working on a sixth mainline entry of Five Nights at Freddy’s.
“With each game’s release, I think the expectations get higher and higher for the next, and rightfully so. Each game SHOULD be better than the last,” said Cawthon. “But that pressure starts to mount, and I fear that I’ve been neglecting other things in my life for the sake of trying to keep up with those mounting expectations.”
Many fans assumed the statement was some sort of publicity stunt or prank, but a follow-up post on Steam clarified his comment. “Yes, I need a break,” he said. “No, it’s not a troll. (Would I ever troll you guys?”
As fans are aware of, this isn’t the first time the series has received a spinoff. In January 2016, the series was adapted as an RPG titled FNaF World. Characters from the first four games could fight enemies and progress by unlocking certain perks and items. After some post-launch backlash, the game was taken down only to release a few weeks later for free.
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