Games

Stay awhile and listen!

creator: x14km2d | build: 2021-12-30 | update: 2022-01-18

The Ratchelor, A Dating Sim by Algorat

I’ve never played a dating sim before because most of them didn’t suit my taste. But The Ratchelor is very different, because the drawings are super alternative and authentic. I like the complete design, the monologues of the suitors rats and the results. I have played the game for the third time now and if there were archivements, this super sweete dating sim would be a 100% candidate. I give five out of five hearts for

The Ratchelor, A Dating Sim by Algorat

Powerlanguage: Wordle

Finally a nice browser game, which you can play in between a break. In Worlde you have to guess a word from five letters and you have six tries. For each entered word that exists in the database, the letters are displayed in three different colors. Gray means that the letter does not exist in the searched word. Yellow means that the letter exists, but it is in the wrong place. Green means that the letter exists and is also in the right place. Since English words are searched, this is a good training for a non-native English speaker. Besides, the game is fun and relaxes the brain. At the end statistics are displayed, which I find really good. Every day there is a new word.

Powerlanguage: Worlde

Melvor Idle: Males

The idl RPG Melvor Idl is the first game with which I spend my time. At first glance, everything looks complex and confusing, but once you’ve spent a few minutes getting to know the user interface, everything becomes clear by itself. The idl game is thematically based on classic fantasy elements. There are mages, goblins, dungeons and a lot of farming Trees, fish, fire, mining, etc. It looks like the developer was inspired by the classic OSRS. The game is great if you want to study or learn on the side. Since the game does not have its own music, you have to get it from an external source. A very relaxing pastime.

Melvor Idle: Males

Pillars of Eternity: Obsidian Entertainment

I played through the first big project for this year and what can I say. It was a really very good 90.6 hours of intense role-playing entertainment. There are so many positives. The music and the stories have been really well conceived and even though the project had a bumpy start, you can see how much love and hard work the developers have put into Pillars of Eternity. The battle system is balanced and the battles don’t get boring. there are so many good points that I don’t want to list them all here because I think the game is worth buying. If you like Baldur’s Gate, you should take a look at this classic role-playing game. No experiments, no new ideas, but simply a well thought-out fantasy adventure. I also liked the fact that you can expand a fortress, even if it contributed less to the actual story. It was worth it. Pillars of Eternity has made it to number five of my favourite games.

Pillars of Eternity: Obsidian Entertainment

Predynastic Egypt: Clarus Victoria

My first impression of the game: Predynastic Egypt from Clarus Victoria was that it is a typical mobile game city building game. Here you have a house, a farmer. Next step, a metropolis of millions. Not really. You play with cards on a board game-like terrain. The setting is the upper and lower part of the Nile Delta in the ancient pre-Egyptian stage. You have to complete various quests, build temples and keep the economy going. The historical context is kept realistic and, like Age of Empires 1, there are always little texts with real references to the story. It is a pretty good and balanced turn-based strategy game. The purchase was worth it and for the fact that I only wanted to test it “briefly”, I played a four-hour round. Good entertainment for a fair price. I could really imagine the game as a board game, should the developers read this entry. The artwork and game design should transfer very well.

Predynastic Egypt: Clarus Victoria

CHANGE: A Homeless Survival Experience: Delve Interactive

I started crying 28 minutes into the first experience…that has never happened to me before in a computer game.

CHANGE: A Homeless Survival Experience: Delve Interactive

Perfect Vermin: Maceo bob Mair, Angad Matharoo, ItsTheMaceo

This first person game is absurd and entertaining in its entirety. You have to destroy all the appliances, chairs, copiers, toilets and much more with a sledgehammer in a 3D environment. In between, objects break in a gore splatter. An office person sits in the foreground and wiggles until you’re done. Somehow you are supposed to get back to the lift and supposedly time is running out. But maybe that was just a lie, because somehow I don’t understand the game. I like it anyway.

Perfect Vermin: Maceo bob Mair, Angad Matharoo, ItsTheMaceo

Cab Ride: Powersaurus

I like the fact that there are so many experimental game developers in the Pico-8 community. Cab Ride is a really wonderful implementation of an interesting idea. In this simulation art game, you are a tram driver who lets people on and off at stops. You can relax to relaxing chiptune music and look at the lovingly designed pixel art. Since the game goes on forever, there is no goal that you absolutely have to reach. This game is simply beautiful.

Cab Ride: Powersaurus

Circle Empires: Luminous, Iceberg Interactive

Circle Empires is a real-time strategy game with simple 2D flash graphics. But that doesn’t matter, because when you go on missions to grind, you don’t have to play in epic graphics. You start on a simple island floating above the clouds and then try to conquer the next island with soldiers, archers and knights. In order to have enough resources to build your army, you need farmers, banks and food. You can upgrade your weapons and clothing, build special units and build defence facilities. The game has different strategies, but I prefer to hunt the enemy hero casually. There are a lot of missions, which you can also grind in between. The intro speaker has a really great voice.

Circle Empires: Luminous, Iceberg Interactive

The Choice of Life: Middle Ages, Blazing Planet Studio

The Choice of Life: Middle Ages is a super beautiful and interesting choice adventure. You are born in a small village in the Middle Ages and have to make your way through various decisions until you save the kingdom. You have to choose between two cards for each decision. It is not always obvious at first whether it is a bad or a good decision, for example, when you have to choose a potion according to its colour in the alchemist’s house. What is the difference between a red or a colourless potion? I won’t reveal anything about the main story here because that would spoil everything. Overall, the game is incredibly fun, has really wonderful illustrations and even the music is really fitting. For such a small price you get an incredible amount of entertainment. This random grab was really worth it.

The Choice of Life: Middle Ages, Blazing Planet Studio

Plague Inc: Evolved, Ndemic Creations

What could be more cynical than sitting in a lockdown during a pandemic and playing a computer game about forcing the world into mass death with deadly diseases? I had the game on my list for a long time but kept forgetting to buy it. I really like the graphics, the mood and the music. Plaque Inc. is not suitable for long hours of play, but tends to be more of an in-between game. For example, when you’re waiting for the bathtub or have to wait a few minutes until you’ve downloaded the latest game from the shop, or when you’re just too tired to play something serious. I also like these kinds of games. Madagascar is infected.

Plague Inc: Evolved, Ndemic Creations

ATOM RPG, AtomTeam

Atom RPG is a post apocalyptic indie game set in post Soviet Union wasteland. It is immediately apparent that the game was inspired by well-known classics such as the Fallout series. Unlike Fallout, however, technology has been introduced and the protagonists, NPCs and parts of the map are in 3D. Nevertheless, you can play it in the classic Iso perspective. Even though the project is still in a very young phase, you get a complete game that is continuously being worked on. The menu fortunately offers no surprises and experienced RPG players will find their way around within seconds. There is a crafting menu which I personally like very much. The story is well known. Nuclear war. Russia is affected just like all the other countries. People have survived and are forming new civilisations. The lore is deeply rooted in Russian culture and from signs in Cyrillic to Russian names, you can find everything that fits the theme. In many places you notice the indie game roots, but this is a big part of the game’s charm. The game developers don’t make a big deal about what they were inspired by, if you understand the in game jokes with Mad Max and Fallout New Vegas. There are no problems with the combat system and you get through the game well and you can also expand your team with more Comrades. Atom RPG is worth the price if you like a 90’ end time roleplay game and you can spend hours finding the very last brick behind an old shack.

ATOM RPG, AtomTeam

Graveyard Keeper, Lazy Bear Games

I had played Graveyard Keeper at some point, but never wrote a review about it. I seem to have somehow overlooked. Yet you really shouldn’t overlook such a super great game. Graveyard Keeper is a beautifully pixelated simulation role-playing video game. The intro is quickly told. You come home from work and buy a carton of milk. While crossing the street, the protagonist is still texting with his wife and unfortunately gets run over. He wakes up in a whole new world where he has been appointed a gravedigger. The game is funny and has ultra many allusions to various nerd themes. The medieval world has been populated with interesting protagonists and NPCs. Overall, you can tell that the developers had fun making it. Music, artwork and story telling fit together very well. Unlike other games, the quests are grind-harden and therefore less suitable for casual players. Graveyard Keeper is suitable for people who are stuck in a lockdown with nothing else to do but spend many hours in a computer game. The days came two new DLCs which add another 12 hours to the main game time.

Graveyard Keeper, Lazy Bear Games

Grim Legens: The Forsaken Bridge, Artifex Mundi

Grim Legens - The Forsaken Bridge is a really good start for a new hidden object series. I hadn’t bought this genre for a long time because it quickly became too repetitive. After a year I got interested again and decided to buy this new series. The setting is somewhere between classic fairy tales and fantasy. Your sister wants to get married, but complications arise with an evil adversary. As in all Artifex Muni games, everything doesn’t look as it should at the beginning and later develops into an exciting story. The drawings are great and the puzzles are even logical for once. Overall, the game is shorter than other parts and even if you play slowly, you’ll be entertained for about 6-7 hours. I’m looking forward to the next parts.

Grim Legens: The Forsaken Bridge, Artifex Mundi

## Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, 38 Studios

I bought Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning because it was on sale and I saw it in a stream. I liked the simple colorful game design of the fantasy action role-playing video game. Also, this game is a triple A production and you could assume that the project was properly executed. You can use four playable civilizations, such as civilized humans or a dark elf copy cat. You wake up as the protagonist in a morgue and can’t remember your past. In the next steps you go on a search for your own past. In the process, you experience some exciting quests, intrigues and fights between rival cultures. In addition, there is an epic battle between good and evil. Overall, the game is kept more like World of Warcraft, so with bright and powerful colors. The game is so good that I want to play through Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning again after a year. It’s a pretty relaxing RPG and well worth the price.

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, 38 Studios

Göf, egordorichev

Göf is a Christmas themed Pico-8 game. As Santa Claus you have to put all the Christmas presents under the tree, eat all the cookies and solve small puzzles. Among them are small quests, Sokoban-like puzzles or slider quests. The game is super innovative and cute. It also shows how much you can get out of the Pico-8 engine if you really try. You should be through in 15 minutes at the latest. The forest is confusing, but I like that kind of thing.

Göf, egordorichev

Poom, freds72

Poom is the port of the classic game DOOM for the Pico-8 system. Just like in the original you have to fight as the DOOM Guy on a Mars Base as the last human against the demons from the Hell Portal. The charm of this port is that the typical Pico-8 color palette gives the whole game a modern touch. The game can be played in the browser with an XBox controller. Who never has the chance to play the original should at least try Poom.

Poom, freds72

Cursor10, Nekogames

Cursor10 is a flash game and therefore nothing I would play. But somehow it appeared in my timeline and I tested it “just for a short time”. You have to click through 16 levels and interact with the mouse pointer. Additionally you have to cooperate with your own mouse pointer. Under time pressure. This is a pretty exciting idea, because in the beginning I understood 0% of what I had to do. Once you understand the concept, they are pretty simple puzzles, but afterwards you are always smarter. I like the minimal geometric black and white design. Have a look at the archive, because that’s where this was uploaded and you can play it in your browser.

Cursor10, Nekogames

Factorio - Stable - 1.1.34, Wube Software

Wow! Just wow! For a long time a game hasn’t captivated and entertained me so much. Factorio is a construction and management simulation game. The plot is explained quite simply. Just like in Rim World you are stranded on a foreign planet and have to collect raw materials. These raw materials are processed in factories, you upgrade the constructions and research technologies. You know everything from similar games. But what makes Factorio so special is the attention to detail. You immediately notice the allusions of the native aliens of Starcraft, the music makes you think of Stanley Kubrick (2001: A Space Odyssey) and Dibalo 1 and all in all everything is so lovingly designed. Factorio is so complex and you always discover something new. I love it, because then I don’t get bored so quickly. I also like to think in complex dimensions and when my ideas escalate in the game and I just try out strange ideas. The aliens didn’t have to be implemented by me, but you can also set them to peaceful. I also find the car rather uninteresting. It’s fun to build, develop and research. It is interesting enough to rebuild the factory again and again. I am an idle gamer. So far I still have so much to discover and could not yet look at the hundreds of mods, which are simply unbelievable from the quantity. Such a good game. The price of 25 monetary units is fair. The developers have earned it, because even the Linux Versuion is so cleanly programmed that there are no problems.

Factorio - Stable - 1.1.34, Wube Software

Contract Demon, NomNomNami

Whaaaa! Why are girls love visual novel so cute? The story of Kamilla the Demon and Eleni the Angel is made so super cute that I played through the game very quickly. This is not a big Story, but simply a loving flirt cuddle story between two protagonists. The Comic style is a bit inspired by the Anime but with Western influences. The colors are super well matched and fit the story. The dialogues are more for older teenagers, because sometimes there are already erotic allusions. Very well done game. I really enjoyed reading this story. Thanks to the short Story, it is also worth reading on the train or plane.

Contract Demon, NomNomNami

Autumn’s Journey, Apple Cider

Autumn’s Journey is a beautiful anime visual novel with a fantasy theme. The Knight Auralee finds an unknown man in a forest. After a conversation it turns out that this man is the dragon Keen. He wants to change back into his natural form and therefore has to visit a temple. This is the beginning of the heroic story of the two (+1) main protagonists, which is also suitable for children. The drawings are very beautifully designed and the colours also appeal to me. I find the SD cutscenes very exhilarating and give the game a funny touch. I liked the music very much. It is not obtrusive and fits very well into the game. Autumn’s Journey is also suitable for children between 10-14 years.

Autumn’s Journey, Apple Cider

Old School Runescape, Jagex Games Ltd.

I’ve played a lot of good games in the last few weeks and my list at my online game list is already full to bursting with 400 games. Unfortunately I haven’t found a good MMORPG yet, which I really liked. I was made aware of old school Runescape by a digital friend. That already fit to a small part to my requirements, because I can do without epic graphics, if the game simply makes fun and entertains me. After some online videos I installed the Runescape client for Arch Linux and completed the tutorial island in my spare time. So far I like everything about the game. The dialogues are funny and the NPCs have mostly references to nerd jokes that you can understand if you’ve been playing computer games for a long time. As I said above, the graphics are rather old school, but that makes this version so charming. I feel like I’m back in time when MMORPGs weren’t just action and overkill graphics. I just like to dive into a world, relax and maybe just farm levels. It’s also about the community and the background story. So far I haven’t played that long and haven’t started a real quest yet. I’ve been more concerned with the controls, the menus and the combat system. I don’t have so much time to play every day, but I’ll see if I can take a few days off a month. If we can see each other on a server due me gladly greet and say hello to me. The first quest is pretty simple (this is always so in a good computer game). The player has to get milk, flour and an egg for the cook of the Doge, because the cook has to bake a cake. You can find these ingredients near the castle and don’t have to search long. A little more difficult is the mill. But if you think intensively for a few minutes, you will quickly find the solution. After that I started to do a quest for the Master Wizard in the Wizard Tower. First you have to deliver a package, fight with bums, then go back to the wizard and so on. I liked it all very much and I’ll play all free to play quest and then see if I’m still interested. By the way I saw my first bot troop in the game and it looked kind of creepy.

Old School Runescape, Jagex Games Ltd.

Fox! Hen! Bag!, Nilfheim

Fox! Hen! Bag! Is the well-known puzzle of how to get all three across a river. The hen must not eat the grain and the fox must not eat the hen. The game is implemented in low poly and has funny dialogues. Altogether it is a really good production, even if the game can be finished after some minutes. Nevertheless it can be exciting and interesting for children. I liked it anyway.

Fox! Hen! Bag!, Nilfheim

Monster Sanctuary, Moi Rai Games

Actually, I never wanted to write a review about a game in the alpha phase, because most of the time too many bugs and errors still need to be improved and only in very few cases the game works well and is fun to play. I had already tested Monster Sanctuary a year ago and even then I really liked it. You play in a side scrolling pixel-art world a Monster Keeper who, as the name suggests, has to collect monsters. Just like in similar titles you can fight against other monsters or champions. A real story only exists in the background and you can safely ignore it. I think it’s ok if I can play the game for five hours next to a stream to relax after my work. The monsters are cute, the music is good and in my opinion you can develop the game in that direction. Since I’ve been watching the game for a year now, I can also see a good process and apparently Team17 Digital has recognized this as a publisher. Two small things that bother me are the repetitive texts from NPCs on certain topics and that you can’t skip the intro. Otherwise it is worth buying the game and supporting the developer. You shouldn’t expect exceptional or epic graphics, but that’s not the goal of the game either. A well working concept is taken and enhanced with own ideas. Monster Sanctuary is a rock solid game, where the developer can’t do much wrong now. A very nice monster taming metroidvania.

Monster Sanctuary, Moi Rai Games

Smol Birb, Sonmos

Smol Birb is a beautifully drawn visual novel with a wonderfully story. The drawings are in pastel and underline the individual characters. Unlike most visual novels, the music is not strenuous. The story is very beautiful and tells the story of Zyablik, who is searching for missing stars with a mail fish. Actually he wants to meet his pen pal and has to fight other fish first. It was a lot of fun and the 30-40 minutes were worth it. Super sunday game.

Smol Birb, Sonmos

Terra Nil, vfqd, et .al

Actually, I was working on my own game today, but didn’t get anywhere. So I downloaded Terra Nil and am thrilled. I find it crass how high the demands are at Indie Games. Terra Nil. beautiful graphics, relaxing music and is very well constructed. The Pixel art harmonizes very well with the goal of the game. The game has Environmental Protection as its theme and you have to Green the Wasetelands again as a computer player. You start with water pumps, greenhousery, wind turbines and get better and more complex systems after each Level. Terra Nil is a mix of build strategy game with city Builder elements. If you had a stressful day (me), you should take a break and let yourself be taken into the world of Terra Nil. A really beautiful game in which everything has been developed wonderfully.

Terra Nil, vfqd, et .al

Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel, Micro Forté

In the last few weeks I took a few hours to play an old Retro Game again. This time came the third part of the games from the Fallout series, which were still developed in the isometric perspective. Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel was next to Diablo 1 for a long time a permanent racer in my game collection and I have played the game probably already ten times. The bad ends, the good Ends. I wanted to take as much of this game as possible because there are so many points I like. The Story, even if it is not in the Canon, is well developed. I also enjoyed playing the Brotherhood in the other parts. It is nice to experience a little of the arrogant and pretentious story. Overall, I find it a little unfortunate, because the role-playing aspects way many, but that’s ok. You can also play a game without thinking. The music is mercilessly great and also the Videos have an incomparable charm. Overall, I can definitely recommend the game and it cost me in the Gold Edition along with Fallout 1 and Fallout 2 only 2.99 monetary units. Can you really say no?

Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel, Micro Forté

Fallout 2: A Post Nuclear Role Playing Game, Black Isle Studios

After I had played through the first part quickly, I could finally turn to the successor of the series. We are a descendant of the legendary bunker inhabitant and have to save our home village from dying of thirst. This time we don’t need a waterchip, but the Garden Eden Creation Kit. (G.E.C.K.). On our journey we do side quests again and get to know new NPCs. We also meet old friends again. All in all the game is a wonderful successor of the first part, even if it has a time limit again. I think this was so common in old computer games at that time. The graphics are incredibly good and are supported by the highly professional music. If you like post apocalyptic games, you should definitely check out these classics.

Fallout 2: A Post Nuclear Role Playing Game, Black Isle Studios

Rising World, JIW-Games e.K.

Actually I decided at some point to not write reviews about Alpha games because they simply don’t offer enough in most cases. An exception is the computer game Rising World which is an a voxel based open-world sandbox game, featuring a procedurally generated world, playable in single and multi-player game. Rising World is like Minecraft, if you take away all the cubes. Only better. I like it very much and I have owned the game for a long time in my online library. The project was first introduced in 2014 and since then there are regular and very good updates. You can see that the game seems to be developed by a single person and it takes a little longer. But it seems to work quite well. Anyway, I installed Rising World again yesterday and took a look at some multiplayer maps. This is all very alpha, but it also has the charm of being unprofessional. Technically the game is already playable and you still have a lot of bugs and exploits but that doesn’t prevent you from spending some hours in the game. This review is my first recommendation for a trust this Alpha game investment. Of course you never know if the developer will eventually run out of ideas or if the project will overwhelm him, but if you buy it now you give a financial incentive to stay with the project. I am also of the opinion that individual developers should be put more into the focus of the game industry.

Rising World, JIW-Games e.K.

Minetest, Minetest Community

Minetest is the free copy cat from Minecraft. If you can’t buy Minecraft or just want to have a look into the concept, you can have a look at this free derivative. Minetest is on the level of the vanilla Minecraft. But there are also texture packages and mods like the professional brother. Among them armour, weapons, inventory extensions, better textures and much more. I installed Minetest because I want to see if you can build a cyberspace. Otherwise the game is relaxing and you can build for hours and have fun.

Minetest, Minetest Community

OpenTTD, OpenTTD Developer

OpenTTD is the best open source version of a computer game I have ever played. Transport Tycoon Deluxe is the intellectual forefather of this business simulation game. The game has entertained me for hours and can be downloaded for free on the website. What I really like is the still active community and the possibility to download A.Is, maps, music orgraphics afterwards. I also like the old school pixel type, which was used in almost every isometric game in the 90’. The game principle is quite simple. You play an owner of a transport company and have to transport passengers from A to B. You can do it with buses, trains, ships or air planes. The game may be a bit too complex for beginners, but if you are serious about OpenTTD you will have many interesting hours. If you feel safe enough after a few rounds, you should also try the multiplayer maps.

OpenTTD, OpenTTD Developer

Half Life 1, VALVE

Half Life 1 is one of the most interesting games I have ever played in my life. In 1998 the graphics were convincing enough to buy this game. In 2020 I bought and played the game again because it was available for a very reasonable price online. All in all I was fascinated by the story about Gordon Freeman and the alien. The G-Man was the personification of a mystical villain and also the scientists had their own personality, because some of them looked quite similar to Albert Einstein. Overall the game has an incredibly exciting story and allusions to other genres. The GoldSRC engine was one of the best projects at that time, which was also used for other well-known projects. Half Life 1 is a mixture of a science-fiction and alien horror game. HL1 does not focus on scare jumps, but rather on deep and exciting horror. If you don’t know the game yet and are interested in an old school classic, you should definitely take a look at Half Life 1.

Half Life 1, VALVE

Grim Dawn, Crate Entertainment

Grim Dawn is a role action game which can be called a secret successor of Diablo 2. The setting takes place in an apocalyptic fantasy world in which evil powers reach out to mankind. There are many items, grinding and level possibilities. The main story is good against evil. In contrast to other ARPGS there are also guns and some maps have an interesting west feeling. This is maybe a bit too modern for some classic players. Apart from that there are also the classic monsters, with org and spiders. The Boss Monsters are good and can be used to grind. Altogether you can play the game for hundreds of hours.

Grim Dawn, Crate Entertainment

Niche: A genetics survival game, Stray Fawn Studio

Niche, as the name suggests, is a genetic survival game. You play on islands in a turn based game with cute animals. The main goal is to collect food and nest material. You explore the islands in search of new partners to raise the next generations. You always have to face the dangers of nature, storm, drought, heat, cold and hunger are just some of the things that can kill your children. Also other wild animals can hunt your offspring. Genes play an important role for Niche, because they determine how well your child will survive. There are all sorts of albinism, fur types and special characteristics and the choice is huge. All in all, the game is very enjoyable, because it is both quiet and exciting.

Niche: A genetics survival game, Stray Fawn Studio

Little Mouse’s Encyclopaedia, Circus Atos

The game is suitable for children who like to play with things from nature. You walk with a mouse through different biomes and discover nature, around the burrow, the forest, the pond or the garden. You can discover animals, plants and insects. These are then described with detailed fact cards. The drawings are beautiful and also the music fits perfectly to the game. Children will learn a lot when they play this game. Even adults can learn that certain plants can be used to make medicinal teas or that oak apples can be made into ink. The game is from the same studio that produced Under Leaves.

Little Mouse’s Encyclopaedia, Circus Atos

The Eldar Scrolls III: Morrowind, Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks

Morrowind is the third part, after Arena and Daggerfall of the Eldar Scrolls series and at 18 years of age also a retro game. Nevertheless, you can already see how much effort Bethesda has put into this game, because it is still fun. If you like open world role playing games with a deep story, lots of lyrics, a lot of side quests and incredibly good music, you should definitely buy this game. The 3D graphics are good for the age accordingly. There are many mods, with which the game can be massively upgraded. You should also buy the DLCs Bloodmoon and Tribunal to get more story around Tamriel. Also 2020 still a really great game. If you have already played through the game, you can also deal with the exploits.

The Eldar Scrolls III: Morrowind, Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks

Flare - Empyrean Campaign, Flare Team

Flare: Empyrean Campaign is the best Diablo 1 inspired open source, 2D action RPG I have ever seen. The fantasycore art style used is dark fantasy, and contains depictions of violence, blood, and mild gore. The game is built on the Flare engine, which is developed by the Flare team. It is very much based on Diablo 1, with new graphics and a completely new engine to include a completely new game with its own background story, missions, side quests and enemies. The game is classic and you explore caves, dungeons and jungles. Besides you trade with traders, collect as much loot as possible and can distinguish between three classes. The character graphics are not 100% perfect, but you can see how much love was put into the detail. This is a game I missed for years and I am happy to have found this gem on the internet, with which I will have a lot of fun for a few more days.

Flare - Empyrean Campaign, Flare Team

Butterfly Soup, Brianna Lei

This is the first time I had installed a visual novel and I’m really excited about how much love you can put into wonderful stories. Butterfly Soup is about a love story between two girlfriends who find each other in a baseball game. Brianna draws the characters in Korean comic style and warm pastel colours. Also, the story is really well thought out and thrilling until the end. There are hundreds of passages, meme and ambiguous jokes where I really had to laugh out loud. Even when topics like everyday racism are considered, this is done without a moral index finger. The user interface and mouse control are first class and even chatting on the smartphone was well presented. The music is not intrusive and you can see the good cooperation with the musicians. I liked the Metal breaks, which made the scenes exciting. Even if you read very fast, you have four to six hours of first-class entertainment. Wonderful gaming experience, an interesting topic and sometimes very rough jokes make this project a game changer. And last but not least, I liked the serious parts that made me think. I’m really excited and looking forward to more titles from Brianna Lei.

Butterfly Soup, Brianna Lei

It’s Spring again, Baba Yaga Games, Sometimes You

After I had started It’s Spring again, I was reminded by the unusual drawing style, which reminds me of the children’s book The Very Hungry Caterpillar which I loved very much as a child. Also the female speaker is very pleasant and gives simple texts again which children at the age of 4-6 years can understand well. The aim of the game is not intuitive and you have to think a little bit about it or listen to the speaker to know what to do. The figures and illustrations are lovingly designed and supported by beautiful sounds. The individual stories look at the four different seasons and what happens in nature. Everything is logically structured and when clouds snow, they become smaller and smaller after some time until all the snow lies on the trees. It’s Spring again is child-friendly and free of violence and I could imagine this title as a tablet port in a mobile version. I would also like to collect the fantastic animals as merch (cuddly toys). Altogether I liked this short game so much that I put the other title of the developers on my wish list.

It’s Spring again, Baba Yaga Games, Sometimes You

Frequent Flyer, Coldwild Games

Frequent Flyer is a top view flight independent action shoot em up with retro 16bit pixel art graphics. My first impression was rather reserved, because I haven’t played a shoot em up for years. But I was really positively impressed. The game has really good music, the graphics are pixelated in detail and the controls are well programmed. You play an air plane which you can choose from 10 different models. Some, however, only after you have unlocked them. With this you have to shoot waves from different opponents, e.g. rockets, minelayers and Zeppelins. You can collect all kinds of bonus weapons, power ups or special bonuses. I couldn’t find out how many levels there are yet, but there are more than 19. There are also different game modes, including missions, infinite, organized and time attack! You can understand the gameplay immediately because the developers don’t experiment and focus on what shoot em ups are. Fast and exciting action that doesn’t leave you any time to think about it, but always demands your attention. You should take at least two hours to play in peace, because you die quite often and fast. I love Frequent Flyer and even consider buying an Xbox One controller. A classic game from an arcade machine. Please insert new coin.

Frequent Flyer, Coldwild Games

Space Elite Force, Moraes Studio

For Space Elite Force I bought a new XBox One controller, which was recognized by the game without any problems. It’s been almost 20 years since I played a side scroller shoot em up. At that time it was an arcade machine that had to be paid with German marks. Who likes explosions, rockets, lasers, hordes of opponents and 16 bit pixel graphics will love this game. In the background, first class music is played, which makes the one hour playing time fly by (pun). There are some weapons and three skill trees, which have been expanded quite quickly. The game is worth it just because of the Star Wars hints and from this point on the developers convinced me. There can be a second part of Space Elite Force that I would buy immediately.

Space Elite Force, Moraes Studio

Lieve Oma, Florian Veltman

There are games that leave such an incredible impression on me because of their beautiful atmosphere that I am completely surprised when the story ends. There’s so much I’ve noticed that positively that I don’t know where to start. As it is a lone wolf production the graphics and the maps are kept simple and remind a bit of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Everything is kept in pleasant autumn colours which transports the story into a successful setting. Altogether Florian seems to have a talent for mood and details, because in some places sensitive details appear, which you only saw with your second glance. Lieve Oma has also been professionally implemented from a technical point of view and can be played either with the keyboard or a controller. The camera and the movements of the character are neatly implemented and there are no interruptions that could tear the player out of the story. The dialogues are profound and well thought out and therefore seem authentic. I don’t want to say anything about the story here, because even with very few words you would spoil most of it. It’s a homage to old people and Florin’s game Lieve Oma makes you think about it. This half hour of my important life time I invested gladly.

Lieve Oma, Florian Veltman

Lost Constellation, Finji, Bombsfall, Infinite Ammo

Whoa! Just wow! This point and click adventure just blew me away. Actually I only wanted to test it briefly if the game works on Linux and after three hours I played it through on a piece. I don’t know where to start, because everything, really everything was implemented so incredibly well. Let’s start with the graphics. Like a point and click adventure we see our protagonist from the side in 2D. With simple icons we have a limited number of interaction possibilities, so we can e.g.  talk to people or move objects. There are not many possibilities in this game, but they are even more beautiful. The graphics are kept in a gloomy and modern style, which always surprises the user with small details. The characters are all really well worked out and in many cases they have a background that makes them appear more authentic. Here Lost Constellation has revised some of my preliminaries, because my brain apparently couldn’t assign the gender of the characters and then just subconsciously set it to male. That made me smile. It’s a trap. I liked it very much. The story is more aimed at an intelligent adult audience, because the dialogues move between total profanity and highly spiritual philosophy. Maybe it’s just a guess, but did the developers watch the Dr. Who series? You shouldn’t just solve the very simple puzzles and hurry from task to task, but let the situations and dialogues take effect. At some passages there are a lot of possibilities for interpretation. Philosophy teachers in schools should use the game as teaching material, because in my opinion it is well suited for pedagogical teaching. The music changes again and again and adapts to the story. Thus individual sections of the game are underlaid with a suitable mood. From one place I have a catchy tune, which I will certainly keep for my whole life. All in all you must have played Lost Constellation if you like thoughtful and serious games that enchant you into a melancholic mood.

Lost Constellation, Finji, Bombsfall, Infinite Ammo

Archeos, Ibispi

Archeos is a really good mini point and click adventure in the graphic style of Monkey Island or Day of the Tentacle. Even the inventory concept has been completely taken over and that’s totally ok because the game is really lovingly pixelated. You only have about half an hour playing time, but that’s made up by the good short story. A professor of archaeology and his assistant land on the destroyed earth to explore it. The museum has to find different artefacts on the home planet. The dialogues between the assistant and his professor are spiked by many allusions, insider jokes or historical assumptions. Some Startup Guy and Apple once again made it as a reference into an adventure game I played. That really cheered me up. Archeos is a serious production. I really liked the game, just because of the beautiful details.

Archeos, Ibispi

Crusader Kings 2, Paradox

The game Crusader Kings 2 by Paradox was lying around in my online game account for almost three years without being played. I had started it once briefly and was shocked by all the micromanagement functions, because CK2 is a grand strategy game. You play a family dynasty that you have to bring through the centuries and stay alive as long as possible. Only the direct bloodline counts. In my first game I had the house Salian and had to take care of a duchy in Franconia/Hesse in the German Roman Empire. There are no big videos or animations. Alone a few game figures are moved on the map if one is in a conflict. Anything can happen to the current family member. Insanity, obesity and envy are some of the less good qualities, which the player can train by mistake. The church plays a role and other families seek power, wealth and better connections. Those of you who love Game of Thrones and history lessons in school will get their money’s worth because Crusader Kings 2 is based on real scenarios. Micromanagement is a big issue, because everything should be managed by yourself. Who is the jester or the chancellor? In three days I played a short round and invested almost 30 hours. This is only the basic game, because there is a large offer of DLCs and modifications. One of the best games in the last weeks which really excites me again. Crusader Kings 2, Paradox

One Eyed Kutkh, Baba Yaga Games

A few weeks ago I downloaded the computer game It’s Spring again from Baba Yaga Games for free from the internet. I liked it so much that I checked to see if the developers had developed another game. One Eyed Kutkh is about a pink alien who unfortunately has to make an emergency landing on a planet with his spaceship. The UFO breaks down and he has to go out to find the lost parts. In the following computer game, the player goes on a wondrous journey on the planet, explores labyrinths and can talk the sun and moon off a spare part. Unfortunately, this argues then within a submarine and the course of the day can no longer take place. A culture living on the planet notices this and sends a volunteer on a journey to solve the mystery. As you can see, the game is a saga and enchants the observers with beautiful drawings. The music is relaxing and the game can also be played by children. The puzzles are simple and abstract, so that even people who can’t read can understand them. One Eyed Kutkh should not be missing in any game collection.

One Eyed Kutkh, Baba Yaga Games

Hostil, Eteru Studio

Hostil is a classic indie game point and click adventure with hand-drawn digital drawings. The story is about an astronaut crashing onto a planet with his spaceship. To save himself from the planet, the astronaut must unravel a mysterious story. The music and sounds are well designed and even if the game has only about 60 minutes playing time Hostil is a professional product. The puzzles are not too difficult and there is no stress to solve them. I really liked the very atmospheric colour palette of the scenes, because the developers really tried hard to equip the story with suitable pictures.

Hostil, Eteru Studio

Under Leaves, Circus Atos

I love hidden object games and can spend hours playing this kind of games. Under Leaves is about finding hidden objects in a big scene. The game has great wallpapers and also the main theme is good. It’s about animals like foxes, crocodiles, flamingos, turtles and parrots. They live in different biomes and always ask for fish, worms or butterflies to search for. The game is more suitable for professional players and you can spend up to an hour in some scenes. The music and the sounds are ambient which contributes to a very good mood. This is supported by the sound of animals. The game can be used to recover from a stressful day.

Under Leaves, Circus Atos

Purgatory, Eduard Mirica, New Reality Games

This is a real gothic pixel art tactical turn based strategy game and I love it. I like the smeared and extra unclean style of the pixel design, because it fits incredibly well to the story. As a lonely undead hero with hordes of different soldiers you have to face the attack of other undead. Skeletons, hell-hounds and ghosts can be used in the individual battles. These are numerous and with almost 11 hours playing time you can slaughter your way through the map. Between the fights there is always background information about the story. There is a detailed and balancing long skill tree with which you can expand the individual skills of the player. Defence, attack and magic. All this is known from other tbs games and will not surprise experienced players. At some point it will be possible to summon your own creatures on the field. The music is quite good and Purgatory is well developed for an insider game. One sees the love for detail, if one looks at e.g. the designations for individual sections on the map. Sometimes you can also see insider jokes in the description texts. Just these small points I liked very much.

Purgatory, Eduard Mirica, New Reality Games

VIVA Mortis, Adam Strange

VIVA Mortis is a retro game as it should be. Only 16 colours, simple bit sounds and a game principle which you will understand immediately after 30 seconds. The graphics inspired by the Sinclair Spectrum ZX is a real feast for the eyes. The maps are in isometric view. The keyboard keys can be adjusted. Since a few minutes I’m having a lot of fun here and am even thinking about ordering an old Atari joystick. The story is simple. As Minion of Mr. De’Ath you have to find five runes to start a party. At first it sounds easier than it is, because there is a time limit and opponents who want to keep you from your goal. In my opinion this game should be the winner of the SyntaxBom competition. What does the Atari CX40 joystick cost?

VIVA Mortis, Adam Strange

Fragments of Euclid, NuSan

Fragments of Euclid is a puzzle game which stands out from its competitors due to its own design. The maps are in the style of the artist Maurits Cornelis Escher. With his curvilinear perspective and hyperbolic geometry he has left a milestone in the art world. This can also be seen in the maps developed by NuSan in this style. As a player you have to orientate yourself in the first minutes before you even have a clue where you are. The control is supported by the controller, which fits the game very well. All in all the puzzles are already demanding and in some places you have to think literally around the corner. Also the moving lines on the textures put the player in an exciting atmosphere. The game has been implemented in first person, but at one point…I don’t want to reveal too much here. Fragments of Euclid I can really imagine very well as a VR game. The possibility to have a look around in the maps would be fundamentally interesting.

Fragments of Euclid, NuSan

Detonation, cageist

When I started the Detonation game from cageist a few days ago, the colour palette strongly reminded me of my first game on Windows 4.0. Sokoban also had turquoise, pink and grey as colours. In addition there is a rhythmic old school chip tune, whose beat invites you to bounce along. All in all almost everything moves in time and even the little Dalek opponents always slide from tile to tile. The story is very simple, because you have to escape from a spaceship and solve puzzles. Sometimes it’s a bit tricky if you can’t see a small tunnel on the map. If I had more time I would do the game as a rhythm walk trough and record it as a video. I’d rather leave that to other players.

Enigmatis 2: The Mists of Ravenwood, Artifex Mundi

The Mists of Ravenwood is the successful successor of the first part. The graphics, animations and puzzles are even better. In addition, there is an exciting story that ties in with the events at Marple Creek and gives the story even more background. Also here we play the Detective from the first part, which by chance gets involved in a mystic adventure again, or is this no coincidence at all? There are a total of 36 achievements that you can unlock, plus some collectibles and a bonus adventure. The dialogues with the prisoner remind me a bit of the movie: The Silence of the Lambs. A dignified sequel to the first part. The developers really put a lot of effort into the music and the cut scenes.

Enigmatis 2: The Mists of Ravenwood, Artifex Mundi

Enigmatis 1: The Ghost of Maple Creek, Artifex Mundi

The Ghost of Maple Creek is the first part of the Enigmatis series and a detective hidden object game. This is the first time I bought a game from Artifex Mundi and I am thrilled. The graphics are perfectly drawn, the puzzles are logically structured and the music adapts to the scenes. The mood is mystically gloomy and as a detective you have to catch a serial killer. You get into Maple Creek, a small town destroyed by a storm. The hidden object pictures are really wondrous and the story is built up in an exciting way. Even though the story is more of a dark fantasy, this isn’t a horror game. I had a lot of fun playing the game and put the remaining parts on my wish list, because I will buy them in the near future.

Enigmatis 1: The Ghost of Maple Creek, Artifex Mundi

FARA, BrianIsCreative

Fara is a pretty excellent text-based Roguelike. The market for this kind of games has been saturated for years, but Fara stands out from the crowd. The colour palette shows a feeling for aesthetics and the user interface is really well built. You can play the game by mouse or classic with the terminal. There are so far 60 classes from the well-known soldier to the cat person. Mages, weapons and everything else you can find in a Roguelike. Your main quest is to collect key fragments to complete the astral key. The game is just as difficult as its competitors. Nevertheless, the excitement and fun on the track are popular. For me, FARA is a newcomer you should keep an eye on.

FARA, BrianIsCreative

Abyss: The Wraiths of Eden, Artifex Mundi

Abyss is a hidden object game with a mystical touch. The story is strongly based on the Bioshok series and has some jump scares that really scare the player. especially when you’re playing in the middle of the night and you really didn’t expect it. In contrast to other hidden object games, the puzzles are really simple and as a beginner you have no difficulty finding hidden objects. The art-work and design is really good. There is a map with which you can orientate yourself in the game world, which is quite practical in some places. The protagonists of Abyss: The Wraiths of Eden are designed in 3D. The playing time is about 4.8 hours and is therefore about half as short as other game titles. Story: The heroine has to find her husband who disappeared on a diving mission to the underwater world of Eden. You have to save prisoners of a evil power who are held captive by a demon. All in all a good production.

Abyss: The Wraiths of Eden, Artifex Mundi

Being Her Darkest Friend, Chronerion Entertainment

Whew! This point and click adventure is about half an hour long and I have to let it sink first. I actually thought it was a horror game, but after a few minutes it turned out that everything goes much deeper. I can’t say anything about the story here, because every single sentence would spoil the content. It’s about an artist. Everything else you have to find out for yourself. The game is generally very gloomy and seems intimidating in its oppressive atmosphere. Most of the scenes are in grey scale, so that the overall concept seems even more surreal. The music and the sound are great and support the playing atmosphere. Technically there is nothing wrong with the game, because everything works as it should in a good adventure game. An impressive indie game title.

Being Her Darkest Friend, Chronerion Entertainment

A Bewitching Revolution, Colestia

I am not a communist and I will never be one either, but I liked the game A Bewitching Revolution of Colestia very much. The design is very melancholic and has a well produced music. As a Witch you have to change the city controlled by police and state. You organize accommodation for the weekless, read questioning citizens from the cards so that they can change their views. The city is kept in cyberpunk style and in some places I had to think of the current societies. That’s why the computer game hits the nerve of the times and is a social criticism. Even if the message has a clear political message, it doesn’t come with a raised index finger to warn a person, because it is a fact that cities should provide more solar cells, food or living space for poorer people. With a playing time of one hour you are well entertained at short notice.

A Bewitching Revolution, Colestia

AER Memories of Old, Daedalic Entertainment, Forgotten Key

I have been looking for good low poly games in the last weeks and found AER Memorys of Old. The game is philosophical, has incredible graphics and atmosphere and enchanting music. You play the daughter of a tribe that explores the history of their ancestors on flying islands. She can turn into an eagle and fly from island to island. Sometimes you discover with your lamp the spirits of the deceased and the last dialogues. This is mostly melancholy and sad. Also the puzzles, stone tablets and the caves that can be discovered are sad in a certain way. All in all, the game doesn’t seem to have any real goal and the focus seems to be on discovering and exploring. I think that’s really good, because you can relax very well and sometimes just fly for minutes through the clouds. Technically, AER is very well implemented, because despite the graphics, the game is resource-saving and even on a mid-range Linux laptop there were no problems or jolts worth mentioning. If you like philosophical games with a touch archaeology you should buy AER - Memorys of Old.

AER Memories of Old, Daedalic Entertainment, Forgotten Key

Kingdom New Lands, Noio, Raw Fury

I am incredibly enthusiastic when games can convince with a simple playing technique. In Kingdom New Lands you ride your horse through a side scrolling kingdom and build it with the help of farmers and construction workers. The game is so simple that you don’t even have to work through a tutorial. I noticed the music and the sound scenery positively. All in all, the game is realized with a lot of love of the developers, that you can get lost in it for hours. Even if there are still other parts, I will play through them first, because what I have seen is the Kingdom Franchise as well as Asssins Creed, which is quite similar in content no matter which part you are currently playing.

Kingdom New Lands, Noio, Raw Fury

Pyramid Builder, standardcombo

Sometimes there are games that surprise me. Especially when it comes to ACSCII art games, which are almost extinct. You get the order to build a pyramid on the Nile. Therefore you have to build houses for the workers and cultivate fields. If there is enough material, ships will come and bring the necessary stones for the pyramid. There is a day and night change, you can adjust the speed and the music is simple, but not bad. You get a real retro feeling and I would have liked to have the game on a DOS computer back then. A very loving implementation and to the whole surprise the game is also fun. Since you only play for 30 days at the most, a mission doesn’t take very long. So the game still has potential and could be expanded. Rough ones rob your fields or a flood from the Nile floods everything and you have to start all over again.

Pyramid Builder, standardcombo

Pathway, Robotality, Chucklefish

There are computer games which are oriented to a certain topic which already existed in the cinema. The strategy RPG Pathway is Indiana Jones in great pixel graphics. It’s the year 1930 and the Nazis are looking for mystical artefacts in Egypt, Syria and the desert. You have to kill zombies, Nazi soldiers and skeletons. The game is incredibly lovingly designed and the details and allusions are a must for every Desert adventure fan. Technically brilliantly elaborated, Robotality and Chucklefish have once again published a masterpiece of the game’s history. Even though the cliché box was very deeply grasped, the Pathway is not bad at all. I love this game and start it again and again when I want to play something slower to enjoy a good story.

Pathway, Robotality, Chucklefish

Curse of the Lich King, Johan Peitz

This is the first Pico8 game I’ve played in two hours. Curse of the Lich King is a typical Rouge-like game with beautiful pixel-art graphics. The game is accompanied by Gruber music. There are floor spikes (into which you can also lure your opponents), treasure chests, food, daggers and mystical objects. Shelves and corpses can be searched and loot are automatically lifted. Opponents are rats, imps and trolls(?). As is the case with almost all Roguelike, we explore a dungeon with our character and find stairs at the end that lead to the next level. At the stairs I was briefly reminded of Diablo 1. You can also play the game on the web or in the mobile version. I’m thrilled how much you can get out of the Pico8 Fantasy Console and the game is just incredible fun.

Curse of the Lich King, Johan Peitz

Undertale, Toby Fox

I have to admit that the screen shots and videos of the game didn’t convince me in the first moment. Another RPG game? Pfft. The graphics were somehow interesting, but whether the whole game will be better? I bought it anyway and didn’t waste a minute of the game time. How good can a role play game be in 2019? Very good. Toby Fox brought in his very own style and published a first-class production as lone wolf developer. The self-irony with which the game satirizes other RPGs is amused. The music sometimes melancholic and in the next moment jazzy. All in all you will be surprised by the jokes, the allusions and the slapstick interludes anyway and just when you are a little older you will keep smiling because you understand the insiders. Also the puzzle and the fighting system is so brilliantly designed that I almost miss the words. And if in other computer games one or two characters are interesting, in Undertale it’s almost everybody. You have to have the game in your game collection.

Undertale, Toby Fox

Fallout, Interplay Productions

The first Fallout is like Age of Empires I. A good start for a series. Unfortunately with some technical weaknesses that we can ignore. Fallout from 1997 is the first post-nuclear RPG I ever played. Even then the story about the bunker inhabitant, the water chip, the ghoul, the master and the other inhabitants of this game universe was ultra exciting. I loved this game and I still do. Since I have always been more interested in technology, this game has pushed other fantasy RPGs off my CD shelf. In 2020 I played the game again with Wine to start the Fallout series from No. 1. If you like old school post nuclear games, you should definitely buy Fallout 1 on a CD.

Missed Messages, Angela He

Uff! Sometimes you don’t expect such a serious story. The visual novel Missed Messages by Angela He creates strong feelings. It’s about the subject of suicide, which you don’t notice at first because the computer game was incredibly beautifully developed. The first time I played the game I had the bad ending and had to let it sink for a few minutes. After that I played it again and could trigger the hope ending. Even if it’s a theme you’ve already heard about, everything fits together. The story is very well thought out, the music fits in all places and the drawings couldn’t be any better. Nothing looks like a typical picture and that’s why everything is so authentic in the story. At one point I even cried a little and that never happened to me before in a computer game.

Missed Messages, Angela He

Moon Hunters, Kitfox Games

Moon Hunters is a really interesting RPG with nice pixel graphics. You are chosen by your tribe to find the moon in five days. You will roam through different maps that are generated procedural. So they are always new. Interesting are the dialogues with inhabitants of the world and sometimes you even have to make decisions that influence the further journey. The dialogues are then made with incredibly beautiful characters, which form a strong contrast to the pixel-art. All in all the game is a lot of fun and since you have to face the boss after five days, you can also play it well in between. Also because there are more characters that you can unlock and you can play Moon Hunters with up to four people. Besides, the music and the speaker are very pleasant and underline the mystical atmosphere.

Moon Hunters, Kitfox Games

Curious Expedition, Maschinen-Mensch

This Roguelike is simply outstanding in all points. The music is interesting, the pixel-art blends in perfectly with the overall picture and the layers of the individual expeditions are adventurous. It is the 19th and you can discover the world with famous personalities. Among them e.g. Charles Darwin. One travels with the sailing ship to the expedition place, collects there all materials and goes into the jungle, desert or Arctic. You will meet native tribes with whom you can be friendly. If you have enough bonus points with the tribe, you can even recruit expedition participants. No matter what you do on the map, which is generated procedurally, you can have consequences for the journey. So you should only plunder a temple in an emergency. This computer game can be played again and again and doesn’t seem to get boring so quickly. All in all I am very satisfied with this game.

Curious Expedition, Maschinen-Mensch

Killer Chambers, Village Bench

Killer Chambers is more merciless than some other bullet hell games and that is a very positive statement. I’ve never played such a difficult but entertaining game in my life. You play the poor Brave Lord against Lord Grave. You experience individual chambers in successful pixel-art graphics. Arrows, flames, laser are only some of the obstacles that are thrown into these killer chambers to give the character a premature death. The game has different modes, collect hats or buy other extra features. The music is great, the story is really lovingly done and on request the developers have even released a Linux version. Killer Chambers is a really successful indie game which is still being updated. Even if you don’t like the game principle, you should definitely remember the indie game Studio Village Bench.

Killer Chambers, Village Bench

EXAPUNKS, Zachtronics

EXAPUNKS is a hacker logic puzzle game for a special target group. You should have some background knowledge about the assembly language, because you program the puzzles in a similar language. The single sequences then take place e.g. in a national bank or other servers. The maps are arranged in the isometric perspective and your single programs run as small spider robots over the map. This looks a lot like cyberpunk, but without rain, violet colours and keyboard background music. The story is told very quickly. It is 1997 and you are a junk who needs money for his medicine. Through a chat a guy is chatting to you and from then on you have to solve tasks. The breathed on pixel design is atmospheric and fits to what you imagine under a hacker setting. Tutorials can be read in Zines and you can already see that people from the programming and demo scene were involved in the game. All in all the game is for friends who like to stay good hacker puzzles and move in a cyberpunk setting.

EXAPUNKS, Zachtronics

Hacknet, Team Fractal Alligator, Fellow Traveller

Hacknet is an immersive, terminal-based hacking simulator and that kind of computer games have been around a lot… but Hacknet has some differences that make the game special. The graphics are very modern and bring the hacker feeling first class to the player so that you really feel like being in the setting. You can also play the game with the mouse and click on the individual tasks, but with the text console you are much faster and it creates an even better game realism. Anyway, if you program it yourself and know how to solve problems with the CLI. The story is as well as with EXAPUNKS rather conspiratorial and you are addressed by a person via mail. This person already seems to be dead and now you have to explore these backgrounds. Hacknet mixes computer games and reality pretty well, because if you move through other file systems, delete log files and old chat processes or read mails and have to deal with the individual ports again and again, you can quickly forget the time around you. The levels and commands are really different, get data, delete data or break into a certain server. There is quite a lot and Hacknet is very well worked out in terms of content. This game has also been developed for a certain target group and you should be interested in information technology.

Hacknet, Team Fractal Alligator, Fellow Traveller

Knights of Pen and Paper 2, Kyy Games, Paradox Interactive

Sometimes there are games you only want to test for a short time and after five hours you are surprised how fast time passes. Knights of Pen and Paper is such a candidate. The game takes the roles of players in well worked out pixel graphics on the grain. Instead of playing the heroes, as you always know them, we see the real players sitting at a table in front of the game master. There are rocker dwarves, hipster elves and cheerleader humans. As it is normal in a reel game, you can do different quests, farm gold or upgrade your chars. Wizards, warriors or thieves are some classes from which you can unlock even more later. Have you always wanted to play a ninja? Overall, Knights 2 is a parody of all the role-playing games in the world and doesn’t take itself too seriously when typical trolls, unicorns or sidekick characters appear from other computer games. so the game is incredibly funny and entertaining. Since I bought the game in the offer, I regret nothing and will play in the next weeks still some rounds. Maybe I won’t glue the tower with chewing gum.

Knights of Pen and Paper 2, Kyy Games, Paradox Interactive

Plug & Play, Mario von Rickenbach, Michael Frei, Etter Studio

Plug and Play is not a real game but rather a surreal story in black and white. You solve small puzzles here, but they are so simple that the story doesn’t suffer. This is really philosophical and questions love, relationships and other complications. Cables are connected and disconnected, people with plugs as heads run through the picture, change direction. You switch the light on and off and even if it seems random, Plug and Play has a depth you miss in many productions. It goes rather in the direction of art and is therefore nothing for the current average player. Players who like to think about it should invest in this 30 minutes playing time and add this little treasure to their collection, because the illustrations/animations are really professionally realized.

Plug & Play, Mario von Rickenbach, Michael Frei, Etter Studio

KIDS, Playables, Mario von Rickenbach, Michael Frei, Double Fine Presents

Maybe it’s because I can understand art to a certain degree or I’m just old enough for art in computer games. KIDS is like Plug & Play a computer game in black and white. Again very little is spoken and so the degree of interpretation is greatly increased. It’s about children and groups. Dynamics, constraints, directions and resistance. The sounds are highly professional, which makes it fun to listen to the game even with your eyes closed. In addition there are the fluid animations, professional game programming and the very good physics. KIDS isn’t really a computer game, but when a child plays KIDS isn’t it a computer game after all? Mario and Michael have again delivered a wonderful production here and it’s not surprising that the game has won so many indie game awards.

KIDS, Playables, Mario von Rickenbach, Michael Frei, Double Fine Presents

Moonlighter, Digital Sun, 11 bit studios

This action RPG stands out because of some graphical peculiarities of other game titles. First of all it has a beautiful pixel art, which introduces the player to the fantasy world with a very well coordinated colour palette. You don’t play only a hero, as in other games of this genre, but also a merchant. During the night you search dungeons, fight monsters and collect treasure chests. During the day you sell the Loot, have to improve the shop or settle other merchants in the city. A blacksmith who improves your armour or a herbalist who mixes healing potions. The mixture of economic simulation and role play game makes this game special. In addition there are the really good sounds and the music with which you can farm for hours and that’s what it comes down to in many places, because such an improved armour or a new shop case can cost a little more gold. So you have a few hours to spend with Moonlighter to prepare for the last final boss. All in all a very good production with entertainment value.

Moonlighter, Digital Sun, 11 bit studios

OVIVO, IzHard

In the last days I bought a lot of b/w games and didn’t regret it yet. OVIVO is a mesmerizing platformer which is already eye-catching due to its geometric aesthetics. The game is best controlled with the XBox controller. All in all it is based on a platformer and you hip through different surreal levels with a small ball. You can always switch from black to white by pressing a single button. This more than simple control makes the game intuitive and very easy to learn. Even if OVIVO looks like it’s very simple at first, the graphical depth is in the level and map design. The music moves in spherical dimensions and makes the player relax. If you are not sure whether you like the game or not, you can try the demo first and then decide for the main game. People who study design or architecture should be very happy with the game.

OVIVO, IzHard

Dungeon Warfare, Valsar

So far I had some prejudices about tower defence, because most of them are badly programmed, look bad graphically and in the end are no fun at all. Dungeon Warfare is the exact opposite of all these negative points. For little money you get loving pixel graphics and very good game mechanics. The concept of this genre is quite simple. Build traps (in a dungeon) and protect your portal from the enemy hordes. A lot of weapons, traps and extra bonuses will help you. You can even roll a huge stone (Indiana Jones says hello). The traps can be upgraded after successful missions. There are heroes, knights and other foot soldiers who want to challenge your dungeon. Lots of archives you can collect and once you’ve played through the whole game, you can even go into the endless mode. Even though it all sounds pretty simple, Dungeon Warfare is already suitable for professional players, as you have to think strategically to protect all dungeons. What I really like is that you can play single missions in between without having to think long and hard.

Dungeon Warfare, Valsar

Hard West, CreativeForge Games, Good Shepherd Entertainment

I was really positively surprised by Hard West, because never before have I played such a good tactical strategy game in western style. The story is dark and in some places really rough, because you play the son of a father who lost his wife. Within the story the son falls in love and travels with his new girlfriend to fight against bandits, Mexican bosses or other criminals. The maps are well structured, the fighting system is logically arranged and the user interface is beautifully designed. All in all, the design in the game accounts for 90% of this professional production. In order to stand up to the ever stronger opponents, there are countless weapons, special boni and ability, cards and collectables. To earn gold you have to dig in local mines or search for treasures. Farming doesn’t get boring in the long run, because you can upgrade your char in this direction. The characters in the game come across authentically and you believe their background story. If you’ve always liked strategic games like XCOM, you shouldn’t miss Hard West just because of this great noir western theme.

Hard West, CreativeForge Games, Good Shepherd Entertainment

Hyper Knights, Endless Loop Studios

What can you say about this game? The graphics are strongly oriented to Rim World and also fits to the theme of the game. You are a knight and have to build up your army, in recurring battles you level yourself to the top of the unnamed kingdom. One conquers castles, villages or whole country sections, kills enemy heroes in bloody battles. Due to its gore factor, Hyper Knights is more aimed at adults. This game doesn’t need a story, because that’s not what the game concept was designed for. Gather your army and go into battle with hundreds of your Minions, conquer outposts and enemy combat machines. All in one simple 2D world. The game can best be played with the XBox controller, as there are a lot of key combinations and special moves to help you win the next battle. The king is dead, long live the king. For the Horde!

Hyper Knights, Endless Loop Studios

Pixel Heroes: Byte & Magic, The Bitfather, Headup

I love this game. It’s like a pixel retro adventure on the Amiga 500. Did I just mention how I love Pixel Heroes? This is a classic adventure game. Collect your crew in a Tavern, do some things in town and you can accept the first quest. All clichés are served, the dwarf blacksmith, the stoner nature magician and the young elf lady. The whole thing is conceived as a side scroller and makes it wonderfully easy to play because there are only two directions. On the journey you meet super strange characters like an angry nerd or the red tentacle. As you can see here you won’t save on insider and nerd jokes. And if you don’t know the epic computer game Carc Dastle, you shouldn’t buy this game. Everyone else gets funny adventures with typical bit music and this is good for fighting skeletons, the Necronomicon or magicians on flying mushrooms.

Pixel Heroes: Byte & Magic, The Bitfather, Headup

Queen’s Quest 2: Stories of Forgotten Past, Brave Giant LTD, Artifex Mundi

Queens Quest 2 is a hidden object game with a big portion of fantasy and fairy tale. You are a famous alchemist who is supposed to solve a murder for King Robert. You have to question a hamster with the help of genetic engineering to examine the victim’s blood or to prove yourself in different puzzles. By using different magic potions you can transform yourself into a hamster, an eagle or a fish. During the journey you will meet famous figures like Robin Hood, Hansel and Gretel or the great magician Merlin. The levels are beautifully drawn and the stories are entertaining with their four hours. There is also a little bonus story that you can play through. If you want to solve the murder of Mr. Wolf and like fantastic stories, you should put Queens Quest 2: Stories of Forgotten Past on your wish list.

Queen’s Quest 2: Stories of Forgotten Past, Brave Giant LTD, Artifex Mundi

The Fertile Crescent, LincRead

I liked to play Age of Empires 1&2 and the second part was the best. Three was too 3D for me and so I just played through it lovelessly. The Fertile Crescent is a dignified sequel, but this game was created with an incredibly cute pixel art. Even though the developer still calls his project Alpha, in my opinion it is a completely finished game. Just like in the prototype you can play in the multiplayer, in the sandbox or against the computer. The music is really wonderful and super relaxing. The crafting system is complete so far and can only be extended. All in all the Fertile Crescent is a game you should download and if it is possible to support the developer with a little money.

The Fertile Crescent, LincRead

Queen’s Quest 3: The End of Dawn, Brave Giant LTD, Artifex Mundi

Actually I was expecting a sequel to the Queens Quest 2 story, but QQ3 is based on a story of its own. Again you are an alchemist, who just finished her education at the alchemistic academy. Unfortunately, the graduation ceremony is interrupted by a resurrected dragon that almost kills the magician Grandmaster and destroys half of the academy. The player completes various hidden object pictures and puzzles, which in contrast to the previous part are much easier and therefore the game can be played by children. The aim of the game is to kill the dragon and restore the balance of power. Since Artifex Mundi is specialized in hidden object games, the technique is worked out and the videos of the cut scenes are in a good resolution. The game enchants with a really beautiful eye candy of drawings, fantastic landscapes and interesting characters. The dealer is really funny and the situations with him were fun. This character can be re-released in another production. Queens Quest 3 has its own story and therefore stands out from the previous game, which doesn’t make it bad. Quite the opposite. QQ3 could be the beginning of a whole new saga.

Queen’s Quest 3: The End of Dawn, Brave Giant LTD, Artifex Mundi

Ze Field, lilou_cormic, Hamsterspit

Naaw! This game has been so beautifully developed. If you consider that it was only produced for a game jam there is so much love for the detail inside. It is well programmed, the graphics and illustration really meet my visual taste and the puzzles are well thought out. In this hidden object game you have to find all the stripes of Zera. You search through different scenes and solve puzzles. In the design I could even imagine a larger production.

Ze Field, lilou_cormic, Hamsterspit

Thirteen & Half Cats, Nekomatata Games

Thirteen & Half Cats is a 15 minutes mini adventure in low poly design. The game is characterized by its melancholic mood, very simple story and very pleasant music. The puzzles and the emotional experiences are suitable for children, if one learns the magic spells with the witch. With this you will surely find the 13 1/2 cats and solve the mystery.

Thirteen & Half Cats, Nekomatata Games

Himno, David Moralejo Sánchez, GrabTheGames

I’ve never seen such a peaceful 2D dungeon plat former before. There are no enemies to fight and you can simply collect glowing stones or loot vases. You jump, explore and look around in peace. No stress, no quest to complete and no goal to achieve. In procedural maps with incredibly relaxing electronic music, you can level up a bit or maybe reach the next level. Nothing must, everything can. Technically, the game is so clean that the developers even thought about installing a back jump move when you bend at a corner and can’t get any further. Nothing triggers stress or anger. A game to relax and think about, to relax and enjoy. Wonderful sound and graphic effects. And also completely for free. I am simply thrilled and love this game. A simply good work of art. I recommend headphones and a very large and good monitor.

Himno, David Moralejo Sánchez, GrabTheGames

Islanders, GrizzlyGames

At Islanders I wondered for a long time why this ultra ingenious low poly construction strategy game was not ported to Linux. My silent prayers have been answered and the developers have taken this step and in my opinion they will not regret it. Islanders has beautiful simple graphics that allow a player to concentrate on the game. There is no story to tell and the tutorial is so simple that you could have omitted it. The controls are so intuitive that even older or younger players have understood the game within a few minutes. You place buildings on an island and try to score as many points as possible. There are small rules that you have to follow because sometimes buildings influence each other negatively or positively. If you have reached a certain number of points on an island in explorer mode, you can explore the next island. If you don’t want to play a story, but only want to stay in the sandbox mode, you can do that and have a lot of fun. The game is relaxing and suitable for one round before going to sleep. I can even imagine Islanders as a version for the console.

Islanders, GrizzlyGames

0A.D., Wildfire Games

This is the unofficial successor to Age of Empires 2 and not this cheap comic production of AoE3. 0.A.D is what most players want from a historically correct build strategy game. Very good graphics, beautiful and realistic sounds and a balanced game principle. 0.A.D. is still in the alpha phase, but since it is an open source project, the bar is higher than at other game services. Therefore you can already count on a nice game and since it is for free, you have no damage if you don’t like it after all. Who is interested in history and strategy games and loved Age of Empires, will be really satisfied with 0.A.D. I love this game.

0A.D., Wildfire Games

One Night Stand, Kinmoku

One Night Stand is a really interesting and exciting visual novel, because it stands out from other titles of this genre. You wake up with a hangover in a strange woman’s bed and this is probably one of the most unpleasant situations I can imagine. Within one of the possible 12 narrative strands, you can sniff out the private stuff, just think about yourself or try to thaw the ice slowly. I really had a lot of strange feelings and in the end I was sent home by her. Even after the game you stay behind with a strong feeling and think about how you really would have reacted in such a situation. Lie naked in bed and talk to a strange woman about a trash novel? I don’t know if I could do that. Besides the game I liked the drawings very much and the setting was so natural. Not beautiful and perfect people, but real figures that authentically convey the situation. If you like visual novels, you should definitely have a look at this title.

One Night Stand, Kinmoku

Zenge, Michal Pawlowski, Hamster On Coke Games

Zenge is a really relaxing puzzle game in an ultra chic graphics and super relaxing music. So far I haven’t had that many puzzle games that I really liked, because most of them either have a bad design or are cheap copies. Zenge topples the bar and has challenging puzzles and mercilessly beautiful illustrations between levels. All in all, you’ll get through the game in two hours at the latest, but you pay less for it. If you haven’t gambled in casual games yet, you should start here.

Zenge, Michal Pawlowski, Hamster On Coke Games

Race The Sun, Flippfly LLC

Race the Sun is an extremely minimalistic speed racer that shines through its technical quality. I find the idea of the solar-powered craft super interesting and the fact that you have to avoid the shadows of a setting sun makes the maps that are generated every day interesting. First and foremost it’s about collecting archives and doing daily tasks. This is done with a really well balanced control and relaxing music. Even though I’m not a fan of racing games Race To The Sun was able to secure a place for my installed games and also because you can play the game without having to invest a lot of time.

Race The Sun, Flippfly LLC

Goat Simulator, Coffee Stain Studios

My grandmother thought that computer games were a waste of time and the Goat Simulator would probably have been right. That’s why this game is so ingenious. You run as a goat through different maps and destroy everything that gets in your way. People with head nuts hurtling through the area, setting cars on fire and messing up whole houses. You can collect archives if you put down an ingenious head spin, but otherwise there is no goal. Chaos. Just create chaos and have as much fun as possible. P.s. In multiplayer you have twice as much fun.

Goat Simulator, Coffee Stain Studios

Nightmares from the Deep 2: The Siren’s Call, Artifex Mundi

Finally another exciting story with the detective from the Maple Creek series, whose speaker I like so much. In this hidden object game you free a siren from the claws of a fish major. This siren is held captive on an island full of fish people to let a giant octopus attack ships. The background story is mysterious and shows that you shouldn’t make a pact with a sea devil. The music and sounds are exciting, the puzzles are simple and the drawings are outstandingly beautiful. The hidden object levels are a bit more difficult than the average, which I personally like very much. After the second part of the trilogy, I am looking forward to the third part.

Nightmares from the Deep 2: The Siren’s Call, Artifex Mundi

To the Moon, Freebird Games

To the Moon is a classic RPGMaker game with a generic aesthetic. You play two scientists who are supposed to fulfil a dying man’s last wish. There are a lot of twists, events and memories that ultimately lead to a completely different goal than it was planned. The story is free of violence and the puzzles are very simple. The focus in this computer game is on the really sad story. There are a lot of funny allusions to different themes. I had already bought the game in 2011 and played it again in 2019, because there is another game by the developer that was again developed with the two main protagonists. If you’ve never played a story driven RPG before, you should definitely start here, because the piano pieces alone are so incredibly beautiful.

To the Moon, Freebird Games

Modern Tales: Age of Invention, Orchid Games, Artifex Mundi

Modern tales: Age of Invention is a classic hidden object game, which is characterized by wonderful drawings, an exciting story and very well composed music. You play Emily Patterson, the daughter of a scientist who is abducted by a criminal investor. You move around in 19th-century Paris and then visit Switzerland to meet Albert Einstein by chance. Besides, one also gets to know Coco Channel and with these two companions one embarks on a long journey to Siberia. I liked the allusions to real scientists and the fact that the game doesn’t use 3D videos as cut scenes. A game you can also play with your children if you set the difficulty to casual.

Modern Tales: Age of Invention, Orchid Games, Artifex Mundi

FTL: Faster Than Light, Subset Games

Faster Than Light came out in 2012 and since then has lost nothing of its thrilling game play. The spaceship simulation Roguelike is kept in simple pixel style and more complex than it looks at first glance. You steer a spaceship through randomly created space and flee from the rebels. You can fight against pirates or other ships. Help wounded or refugees and refresh your supplies in shops. The game is also challenging on simple level and often you run out of oxygen or shields collapse until your own spaceship is destroyed. But if you defeat an enemy, you can plumb his remains and make another warp jump. Faster than light is suitable for a quick round in between.

FTL: Faster Than Light, Subset Games

Age of Wonders III, Triumph Studios, Paradox Interactive

This is the game I’ve been looking for weeks. A fantasy strategy game from a mixture of Heroes of Might and Magic and Civilisation. You start as the heiress of the elves to unite the decayed realm, you conquer castles, wage wars, practice diplomacy and unit management. On the journeys you can work magic, find treasures and resources and fight against gangs of robbers. The combat system is well structured and attacks are carried out per turn. The animations and effects are adapted to the fantasy genre and colourful. The control is intuitive and does not differ from other game titles from this sector. There are background stories that allow the player to dive deeper into the game. The drawings are ok and correspond to the simple quality standard. The music is wonderful and fits very well to the game. I positively noticed the speaker of the elf, who breathes life into the char with her voice. Age of Wonders 3 appears with balanced graphics and can keep players busy for up to several hours. I can already see that I will invest a lot of hours in this game.

Age of Wonders III, Triumph Studios, Paradox Interactive

Rise To Ruins, Raymond Doerr, SixtyGig Games

Rise To Ruins is a ultra epic village Sim in old school pixel-art and tower defence elements. If you like complex games that require a lot of effort, you will be well served here, because the learning curve at RTR is high. The controls are already intuitive and logical and you immediately notice that a professional developer is working on a great Alpha version. So many loving details, hints, texts, graphics and maps make this game a feast for the eyes of every fan of this kind of survival game. It’s nothing to play in between and you should bring a lot of time and patience with you to build your village in peace, to protect it with walls and to build towers against the hordes. The music is beautifully composed and fits this setting. All in all, Rise To Ruins is a buy recommendation, because the price alone is more than justified.

Rise To Ruins, Raymond Doerr, SixtyGig Games

Sword Daughter, Hanabira, Hanako Games

Sword Daughter is a 30 Min short chose your own adventure/visual novel game with a female protagonist. The game is characterized by wonderful artwork, pleasant music and very well elaborated backgrounds. The inspiration is definitely in the templates from the 80-90’ and is therefore a classic gamebook. If you want to experience a short adventure in between, Sword Daughter is a good choice. Personally I liked this indie game.

Sword Daughter, Hanabira, Hanako Games

Finding Paradise, Freebird Games

Finding Paradise is a classic 2D RPG with a deep and dramatic story. It’s hard for me to find a beginning because this game has been produced incredibly professionally in all facets. I had expected a sequel of To The Moon, because the two doctors were established as protagonists again. That’s not the case. Finding Paradise is an independent production and definitely stands out from the first game. Freebird Games has invested even more time and love into the music, the graphics and the story and every minute is exciting, heartbreaking and sad. Until the last minutes of the story you can only guess what it is all about and then experience an extremely exciting plot twist. Finding Paradise is incredibly melancholic and beautiful at the same time, that you can play the game a second time even after years.

Finding Paradise, Freebird Games

ICY: Frostbite Edition, Inner Void, Digital Tribe

ICY: Frostbite Edition is a narrative-driven post-apocalyptic survival RPG set in a new Ice Age. When I bought the game online, it didn’t look very good. The graphics in the screen shots weren’t that convincing and the videos looked like a cheap flash game. This impression is very deceptive, because ICY surprises with high quality graphics of the protagonists, maps and scenes. The inhabitants of the wastelands are always equipped with an individual story which seduces the game deeply and makes the chars more authentic. The dystopian end-time scenario comes across realistically and puts the player in a very good setting. The map is generously designed to accommodate the main story. The actual story is dark and brutal and more suitable for adult players. It’s about the sheer survival of your own family. Members die through accidents, snowstorms or bandits and sometimes you make new friends. In ICY you have a lot to read, which reminds the game of a visual novel, but here the answers always have a strong influence on the further story. The inventory and crafting system is incredibly intuitive and you can assemble weapons, tools or other materials within a few seconds. The sound and music are dark, psychedelic with blurred voices and distorted noises. The random encounters are elaborately designed and the combat system is manageable. Mutants, wolves or bandits are the most common opponents you encounter in white wasteland. Additionally you can collect experience points and level up your char. I only wanted to test the game for a short time and had played for three hours and the time passes quickly in ICY. If you want to play a dystopic ice wasteland story driven post-apocalyptic survival RPG you should buy the game as soon as possible. The price is more than justified.

ICY: Frostbite Edition, Inner Void, Digital Tribe

Sheltered, Unicube, Team 17 Digital Ltd

Sheltered is a deep and emotional survival management game in a loving pixel graphic. All in all there is a lot of attention to detail in the game. The game is about letting a family survive in a bunker. You have to manage the individual family members. Similar to Sims, the individual persons have to take a shower, shit and eat something. In addition, you always have to provide for supplies by going on missions to the surface. There you can plumb the depths, meet friendly or cruel people and sometimes have to fight against animals. Also the bunker has to be upgraded or a machine has to be repaired. This survival, post-apocalyptic, base building game with strategic elements can become very complicated and if you are still looking for a challenge, you should have a look at the worldwide leader boards. Maybe at some point you’ll manage to get a good place on these boards.

Sheltered, Unicube, Team 17 Digital Ltd

Neo Scavenger, Blue Bottle Games

Neo Scavenger is a 2D post-apocalyptic and survival turn-based RPG in old school retro graphics. You wake up with nothing but a hospital shirt and a talisman in a science lab. After defeating a dog man you go to the wastelands and have to survive. The computer game is characterized by a lack of grace. If you’re not wearing a backpack or cargo shorts you can only take two items with you. In the right and left hand. Looter Kings will have problems with the realistic inventory. If you have put on bad shoes, you will get blisters on your feet (you will only find one right or left shoe, very rarely two different ones). Cold, hunger, thirst, poisoning, a dog bite. If you have to fight, you are almost dead and mostly it is better to hide. You die so fast if you don’t pay attention. If you drink uncooked water, for example, you will get cholera after a while, etc. I love Neo Scavenger because it’s finally a game that challenges me and my record is one day and 17 hours. I still have a lot to learn. Will I ever reach Detroit?

Neo Scavenger, Blue Bottle Games

The Good Time Garden, James Carbutt, Will Todd

The Good Time Garden is not a game for children and not safe for work. Overall the game is super relaxing, very strange and wonderfully animated. The sounds and speakers for the individual characters are really well chosen. You are born as a small man in a strange world and have to do small tasks for a big mother. The sexual meta level in the good time garden is very high and even if you have played through the game within 20 minutes, a feels good man experience remains. A wonderful experience.

The Good Time Garden, James Carbutt, Will Todd

Paratopic, Arbitrary Metric

How to describe the game Paratopic? That’s a difficult question, because on the internet it’s declared as a horror game, which in my opinion isn’t really true. Thematically it’s more in the direction of mystery with some horror elements, aliens, many questions and few answers. You play a VHS cassette smuggler who is forced by his client to smuggle the goods across a border. There are night drives, strange hiking trips with a camera and sometimes you have the feeling to play a walking simulator. In addition there are the really strange dialogues, which you just have to accept. There is no concrete answer to anything and everything remains philosophically blurred. The graphics are very much based on Half Life 1 and thus very well reflect the mood of the scenario. In addition there are the very good sounds, voices and professional music. Even the cuts of the single scenes are more like a movie than a computer game and according to my opinion Paratopic should be nominated for an indie game award. Since there are no safe points you should take 1-2 hours. Play at night and turn off all the lights, because only then can this wonderful computer game unfold its true potential.

Paratopic, Arbitrary Metric

RimWorld, Ludeon Studios

I’ve been looking forward to RimWorld all year, because there are games that are simply unbelievably brilliant. In 2018 I had already tried the free download Alpha version and was immediately in love with the game principle. You end up in a near science fiction future with three survivors in rescue capsules on a planet and have to fight for survival there. You build a base, harvest food or go hunting. There are other tribes, slave traders or insects interacting with the player. Even if RimWorld was designed in simple 2D graphics, the complex micromanagement is convincing. The music is reminiscent of a space western. Overall the game is too complex to be fully described in a short review, so you should definitely buy the game.

RimWorld, Ludeon Studios

Tales of Maj’Eyal, Netcore Games

Tales of Maj’Eyal is an old school Roguelike RPG with turn-based tactics. The game is characterized by many classes to attribute its character traits. You enter the world of Eyal in turn-based battles in an incredibly big world. Like every Roguelike you should think about what you want to do before every step, because if you haven’t paid attention a quest can fail very fast. There also no saving of the game score helps, because this is not considered by the computer game. Just that, the loving graphics and the fact that the game is not a grinding game, makes Tales of Maj’Eyal a good choice to increase your game collection. For beginners the game is rather unsuitable because the statistics and descriptions are very detailed.

Tales of Maj’Eyal, Netcore Games

Hive Time, Cheeseness

Actually I wanted to test Hive Time only once for a short time, but then I played four hours in the first round. What an incredible good game. You build a hive as queen bee and have to manage it with your drones. How that also works in a real hive. You can assign different roles to the drones, from construction worker to sitter. You have to collect pollen and nectar to upgrade your hive. The game looks like a cheap mobile copy in the first moment and then develops into a very complex business simulation. You have to be careful that the bee Queen don’t die. It’s not as easy as you think and I had a lot of fun with the game. Very positive I noticed the drawings, music and texts which show a lot of love for detail. The game is very well suited for children.

Hive Time, Cheeseness

OpenArena, Free software community

OpenArena was released in 2005 as a port for Linux systems. Until then Quake III Arena was only available for non Linux systems. All in all, the project is well done and looks graphically very good. The playability is the same as the original and there are no bugs or changes that could have a negative influence on the game. There are only design changes, but these are normal because the project does not want to violate any licenses. So if you want to take a look at an old school FTP shooter but don’t want to spend any money, OpenArena is the right choice.

OpenArena, Free software community

Fallout: New Vegas, New Vegas - Bethesda Softworks

Fallout: new Vegas is one of my favourite Fallout titles. However, I have only played Fallout 1 & 2, Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel. I still have to catch up on the rest of the titles. I like everything about the game, even though it has been around for a few years now, I installed it yesterday. The story is wonderfully thought-out and the side quests are interesting. With the DLCs Gun Runners’ Arsenal and Courier’s Stash you can extend the game for some more hours. Also the MOD New California (Project Brazil) must be played. It is possible to mod the game very strongly and the community is still active. Music, sounds, graphics and the chars are lovingly designed. If you haven’t played Fallout: New Vegas before, you should definitely do so. If you want to check out some LestPlays, I recommend Gopher Gaming, who has released a modded version of the game as a video series. So far I have spent 89 hours in the game and there is still no end in sight.

Fallout: New Vegas, New Vegas - Bethesda Softworks


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