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Multiplayer Game Reviews

December 31, 2010

Doodle Devil

Filed under: Free, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsJosh @ 18:10

Be a Doodle Devil. Destroy the world.

For those of you who remember, I reviewed a game called Doodle God a while back (if you don’t remember, you can click on the link to read the review.) It was a crazy unique puzzler that asked you to build 114 things out of just four elements. (Basically, you were supposed to built the entire world.) Well now there is as sequel, Doodle Devil, and you get to be the devil this time. Instead of building the world, you must ruin it by creating your own brand of demonic mayhem. You combine many of the elements you made in the first game to make things like deadly sins, war, chaos, and spooky creatures like Cthulhu and Frankenstein’s monster.

There are 100 elements total when you finish. That is, if you ever do finish. Just like its predecessor, Doodle Devil is a mind-bender. Many of the element combinations are fairly obvious, like fire plus water equals steam, and others are a bit of a stretch (seeds plus energy equals coffee.) Other combinations are just completely bizarre (coffee plus tobacco equals poison?) while some are completely hilarious (Frankenstein’s monster plus Cthulhu equals friendship.) However, by the last 30 or so elements, you will most likely just be trying random combinations hoping something happens. But you are in luck. There is a light-bulb at the bottom of the screen that you can click on every four minutes to get a hint. You will most likely be using this magical hint-giving light-bulb many times on your journey toward the destruction of all that is right and good.

Now, I must admit that one of the most enjoyable parts of both Doodle God and Doodle Devil is reading the player comments. You will find a wide range of suggested combinations, many of which will have you laughing out loud.

Doodle Devil doesn’t have quite as many possibilities as its predecessor, but it will still take a considerable amount of time to figure out every one. And while you are working those brain muscles, you will be treated to little tidbits of wisdom from philosophers, writers, and comedians. If you are like me and enjoyed the first game in this great series, you should find the sequel pretty damn satisfying.

Every list should contain a cyborg somewhere.

Doodle Devil

 ★★★★☆ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★★ 
You built the world out of four elements in Doodle God. Now destroy it in the sequel.

Game: Doodle Devil | Developer: Avaloid

December 30, 2010

Ripples

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, Free, Girl's Choice, Simulation, WindowsNina S. @ 05:07

Ripples is another game from the new genre I’m trying not to become addicted to. Of course, I’m failing horribly but that isn’t really the point.

The real point here is that I am indeed falling in love with these games and the reason being is simple: they’re awesome. Now, to be fair Ripples isn’t exactly a Dating Sim. Instead it’s classified as a Visual Novel, which is often placed in the same category because of the similarities between the game play styles. The difference being that Visual Novels are more like reading a book (I know, go figure). You make very limited choices in conversations and actions which can affect the end of the game but ultimately you’re more the passanger on a journey as opposed to a player. It’s not for everyone but I don’t mind the style.

Still, even by Visual Novel standards this isn’t a very long game. In fact, it’s probably the shortest game I’ve ever played. It took me about fifteen minutes to finish it completely but I didn’t mind the limited length. Nor did I mind the fact that you play the game from the viewpoint of a man. The game runs for somewhere between three days and ultimately doesn’t give you any choices to change the story one way or the other.

Still, if you’re just getting started in the genre this isn’t a bad place to pick up. The “game” is very relaxing and offers and interesting story that makes you want to know what happens, makes you want to stick around and play other games like it. The art is beautiful, the music is sweet and mellowing and this one has voice actors.

Now, it’s my understanding that this game was thrown together fairly quickly so I wasn’t expecting much from the actors but they really didn’t do a bad job. They spoke with passion and direction which always adds to the feel and overall enjoyment of the game.

Once again I have to label this game a Ladies Choice. The reason being isn’t because I don’t think males would enjoy it, but rather there’s no typical male action in it. No one dies or gets bloodied, so I’m not sure how interested a male would be in sitting down and just relaxing with a nice, short story. Still, I hope that this is one that anyone will take a look at. It’s short, sweet, and sure to brighten your day.

Ripples

 ★★★★☆ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
A Short Story

Game: Ripples | Developer: Sake Visual

December 29, 2010

Demons Took My Daughter

Filed under: Free, Strategy, WindowsJosh @ 16:53

There is quite a traffic jam building up behind that pillar of Dual Blocks.

OK. Nerdook makes awesome games. Remember Zombies Took My Daughter? How about Monster Slayers? Or Vertical Drop Heroes? Well, folks, he’s done it again with Demons Took My Daughter. (Wait, that name sounds familiar!) In this defense game, you must protect your daughter’s stuffed animals from being snatched by demons, while trying to rescue her.

You are not completely defenseless though. You have a gigantic sword (which the character swings automatically whenever demons are near) and a stack of blocks with various powers. These blocks are placed in the path of the demons to hinder their progress as they hover across the level in search of stuffed animals. You must purchase these blocks with souls, which you acquire by slaying demons in each of seven sets of levels (one for each of the seven deadly sins, with pride being the final boss.) You can also go to Splurgatory to spend those special gold souls you earn by clearing a level with a perfect score. And once you finish all seven sets, you unlock a special survival mode in which you must survive 25 waves of demons while bosses come out to turn your hard earned blocks into cheese.  Crazy, right?

Splurgatory is where you buy stuff.

I must admit that I’m a little bit confused about the theology behind this game. The main character is an angel? Who is his daughter then? Why does he have a huge Final Fantasy sword? What use could all these demons possibly have for her stuffed animals? And apparently this all takes place in Hell? I’m guessing this game was designed with a specific motif in mind rather than some unbending bible of lore, so it’s probably better to just not ask those types of questions. It doesn’t have to make sense as long as it’s awesome.

And awesome it is. If you’ve ever played a Nerdook game before, a lot of it will be familiar: the cartoony visual style, the quaint soundtrack, the new twist on familiar genres. This game has everything you’d expect from old Nerdook.

Demons Took My Daughter is a defense game that is more than a bit weird, but still manages to be (dare I say it?) cool as hell.

Aw, cute. Pink demons!

Demons Took My Daughter

 ★★★★☆ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
A unique defense-style game.

Game: Demons Took My Daughter | Developer: Nerdook

December 28, 2010

Doc Clock: The Toasted Sandwich of Time

Filed under: Other, Paid, Puzzle & Casual, XBoxNina S. @ 09:18

Doc Clock is a cute and funny puzzle adventure game that a friend suggested to me. He knew how crazy I am about games with strong storylines and so he knew I’d love this, and he was right. Doc Clock is a game about an inventor/mad scientist who accidentally turns his cat into this weird (but awesome) cactus creature while trying to find a new way to toast sandwiches. Poor man, right? No. Don’t feel pity for him, because he didn’t learn his lesson after that.

Instead of working on fixing his cat or just letting it go, our hero decides that his best option at this point is to invent a time machine to go back and fix this problem he’s created. Unfortunately, as the players, we are stuck watching this fiasco go down. We know that people who mess up simple things like toaster ovens shouldn’t try to dabble in time, but all the screaming at the screen we do doesn’t do a single bit of good. So, we sit helplessly while the Doc thrusts himself into another bat of trouble.

Instead of going a few days in the past he finds himself thrust thousands of years into the future. To top off his mountain of problems, his time machine breaks and the pieces are scattered to the wind. That’s where we come in!

Our main goal in this game is to reassemble the parts so that we can get back home. There are various obstacles standing between us and each piece but never fear, we’re playing as a genius! Right? Not quite. The Doc isn’t very good at physical actions, so more often than not he has to use his brain to get around those hurdles most people would just jump over. In addition, he’s got a few tricks up his sleeves that can help the player out when his own shortcomings become apparent.

I thought this was a great game. It was funny, smart, and at times refreshingly clumsy. If you’re like me you’ll quickly find yourself caring about the bumbling Doc and his cat, even when you’re getting frustrated at the sticky controls of some of his more interesting gadgets. Still, it’s a game that I would recommend highly to anyone who likes action, puzzles, and laughter in their games.

Oh, and a little bit of MacGyver action. You’d be surprised at the things the Doc can come up with when he needs to think fast on his toes.

Doc Clock: The Toasted Sandwich of Time

 ★★★★¾ 

Gameplay:★★★★★ 
Technical:★★★★½ 
A quest for sandwiches and cactus cats!

Game: Doc Clock: The Toasted Sandwich of Time | Developer: Stickmen Studios

December 25, 2010

All We Need Is Brain

Filed under: OtherJosh @ 05:57

A nice little zombie maze...

All We Need Is Brain is a zombie-killing puzzler which has you lure zombies to their demises by dropping brains in strategic locations. Don’t ask where these brains came from; you probably don’t want to know.

Is it just me, or does this look like a 13?

Each level has at least one zombie-filled graved. Its inhabitant will rise upon detecting the scent (which is disturbingly green) of fresh brain. You have a certain amount of brains at your disposal, so use them carefully. You will lead these unwitting creatures off cliffs, over land mines, and in front of targeted walls where you can shoot at them. You will be rewarded, of course, with getting to see these undead critters be drown, crushed, or splattered against a wall. (Really, what would a zombie game be without a little gore?)

All We Need Is Brain isn’t too terribly difficult, but there are a few levels that will challenge veterans of these puzzle-type games. In fact, there were a couple times where the first glance at a level made me scratch my head in bewilderment. However, after a few attempts I was able to figure out even the toughest of these.

The look of this game balances between the almost cute and the gory. I know it’s a fine line, but I think it works in this particular instance. And the music matches. It’s a little creepy, but not in a horror film type way. More of a Halloween episode of your favorite Cartoon Network show.

I have one complaint about this game, and it’s probably a little bit nit-picky. In the upper corner of the screen, there is a number letting you know how many brains you have left at your disposal. Great, this is a handy thing to have. But this number is preceded by a / (so if you have 3 left, it will say /3), and this mark looks a lot like a 1. So it always looks like you have 10 more brains than you really do. It’s a small flaw, and it’s forgivable. it just annoyed me.

All We Need Is Brain is a fresh twist on the puzzle genre. While it’s not a horror game by any stretch of the imagination, it may still satisfy zombie fans, if only for a half hour or so.

This poor guy has met his cruel end.

All We Need Is Brain

 ★★★¼☆ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★☆☆ 
A puzzler that has you kill zombies in a very interesting method.

Game: All We Need Is Brain | Developer: VladG

December 24, 2010

DeathSpank

Filed under: Action & Shooter, Adventure & RPG, Macintosh, Other, Paid, Playstation, Windows, XBoxNina S. @ 05:11

The same developer who made Monkey Island made Deathspank. That really should be enough of a reason to play it but I did not actually know that the first time I picked it up. To be honest, the real reason I bought this game (yes, I do mean bought) is because it was beautiful. I was flipping through a number of screenshots and just, on a whim, ended up looking through these. I have been proven wrong quite a few times but I still believe that no one would make a game look this beautiful, take that much time, and then give me a crappy end product. Therefore, I took a chance and bought it.

Boy, am I happy I did. Deathspank was a wonderful game filled with charmingly funny characters, interesting conversation, and a fighting system that did not bore me to tears.

Now, if you did play Monkey Island you probably expect a certain degree of humor for this game. I do not know what I would have done if the game had not been funny (I probably would have cried myself to sleep) but thankfully, we don’t have to find out. The game continues with that wit and fail that we all know and love.

Now, besides the aesthetics and the humor this is still a fantastic game. You play as a person named Deathspank (go figure), who is on a quest to find an Artifact. The way he goes about doing this is somewhat different from what you may expect from an RPG. It is not so much hacking apart a few bosses and gathering items as much as it is…doing people favors. Some of which involve hacking up monsters, but that is unimportant.

I am not entirely sure if I am disappointed that our hero in this game is not really much of a hero or if I find the change refreshing. I think, for the most part, I am glad that Deathspank is a little bit more of himself and a bit less…well, Link. Strong characters are hard to find these days but I think we have found one for sure within our hapless Deathspank.

The world that Deathspank lives in is a great wide one. You can find dozens of side quests, though they do get a little monotonous after a while, hook up with friends, or just wander around killing things. Which doesn’t really further the story but I enjoy a little mindless death from time to time, so take that evil unicorn!

DeathSpank

 ★★★★★ 

Gameplay:★★★★★ 
Technical:★★★★¾ 
Humor and carnage, what’s better than that?

Game: DeathSpank | Developer: Hothead Games

December 22, 2010

Anika’s Odyssey: Land of the Taniwha

Filed under: Puzzle & CasualJosh @ 06:58

Anika meets all sorts of strange creatures during her adventure.

Anika’s Odyssey: Land of the Taniwha tells the story of a young girl who goes out to fetch a pail of water and winds up embarking on a fantastical adventure. You see, while she’s out in the back yard, her stuffed bunny gets stolen by a hawk. Anika leaps the electric fence dividing her yard and the world beyond. Thus begins her adventure.

You must guide Anika through a unique fantasy world filled with mushrooms, bizarre critters, strange machines, and of course, puzzles. Like in most point-and-click games, everything is done with the mouse. Just click on things to make Anika interact with them.

The artwork in this game is phenomenal. It has a beautiful, insanely detailed, hand-drawn look that makes this a real treat. In fact, I think the best part of the whole experience is just looking at it.

There isn’t much of a soundtrack, just an incredibly simple intro track.  But it almost has an Animal Crossing vibe to it: minimalistic but somehow ambient and catchy. It’s a perfect fit.

The game is fairly easy, and besides a few spots where you might struggle a little, the puzzles are pretty simple to figure out. Just click enough things and you’ll usually make it through. But Anika’s Odyssey isn’t supposed to be challenging, it’s supposed to be detailed and artistic.

I do have one complaint about Anika’s Odyssey, but it’s nothing game-breaking. In most point-and-click games, if you click an area on the landscape, the character will walk to that spot. In Anika’s Odyssey, that isn’t the cast. You must actually click on an interactive object in order for her to move. I know it’s a fairly small detail, but there were a few places where I really could have used that option.

Anika’s Odyssey: Land of the Taniwha is a stylistic game that allows you to enter into a breathtakingly gorgeous fantasy land. While it probably won’t challenge your wits, it definitely accomplishes what it sets out to do: please you with an artistic world and a fun storyline. If the fact that this game has a subtitle (in addition to its title) is an indication that there will be more games in this series, then I am excited to see what other crazy creatures I’ll discover just outside Anika’s back yard.

Yeah. Pushing mountain goats is generally a bad idea.

Anika’s Odyssey: Land of the Taniwha

 ★★★★½ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★★ 
A gorgeous, hand-drawn point-and-click adventure.

Game: Anika’s Odyssey | Developer: Trickysheep

December 21, 2010

Night

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, OtherNina S. @ 05:48

I picked Night for one reason and one reason only…the screenshots looked cool. Now, I know that is not a very good reason to devote a few hours of my life to something but honestly, I feel like it was a good start. Still, I did not get much by way of story while playing the nice, shiny demo.

You appear to play as what I see as a werewolf, just out for a midnight run. However, of course, you are not just hopping around on your wolfish paws, getting from point A to point B. That would be boring. As to be expected, you have a full buffet of obstacles and clever ways to get around them in Night.

The one actual problem I had with this game was the control placements. This game requires you to use the trigger button to jump (which you do a lot) while simultaneously needing you to use your other hand for joystick control and button mashing. It was not terrible, just as my husband put it “a little awkward.” For me it made my progress slow going, but with a little practice the flow of the controller to game relationship gets better.

Visually, Night is beautiful. Soft colors, a soothing back glow, and shadows hugging every screen gives it a romantic air. The music choices were fitting as well, calming and little mysterious, just like this story-less demo.

Despite the fact that the movements are little, slippery (you jump onto a narrow ledge and immediately have to pull back, lest ye slide into the fathomless deeps of a fail death), I enjoyed playing Night. It is a venture through a different version of the setting when the sun goes down. Instead of something cold and scary, here is a game that offers a sweet, soothing view of night and one of the things (if you are indeed a werewolf) that move through it. A truly artistic game that offers a charming playing experience.

Night

 ★★★½☆ 

 
Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★☆☆ 
Walking at night.

Game: Night | Developer: Sisao

December 20, 2010

The Trader of Stories

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, Free, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsJosh @ 05:30

This enfeebled old woman may hold some secrets about the identity of the mysterious Derrida.

The Trader of Stories is not any old point-and-click adventure; it is a doorway into a fascinating world. Take on the role of Myosotis, a story-teller with a problem. Her Husk-drawn cart (a Husk is something like a giant turtle) has a broken wheel, and she needs it fixed. The blacksmith of a nearby village will fix it, but for the price of fifty acorns. (Acorns are what these people use for currency.) The mayor of this village offers her a hefty sum if she can piece together the story of a mysterious man named Derrida.

The quest to uncover Derrida’s past is riddled with classic point-and-click puzzles. Discovering new information causes pictures and words to appear in the storybook Myosotis carries with her. She also has a notebook full of information about the inhabitants of this strange land. If reading isn’t really your thing, you can just forget about these notes, since they don’t really contain any necessary information. But if you want to know as much as possible about this world, the notes will fill you in.

Probably the best thing about The Trader of Stories is the artwork. It’s absolutely gorgeous. The hand-drawn look of the game is absolutely perfect, and you’ll most likely find it difficult to look away. Add the mysterious music on top of that, and you’ll get sucked right into this fantastic story.

The lore of this game is incredibly rich and detailed. However, it seems a little odd to me that a lot of this lore had no real purpose in the game except to show that you’re in a fantastical setting. The Butterfly tribe, for example, is a mere footnote in the story, yet we learn so much about them from Myosotis’s notes. I’m crossing my fingers, and hoping all of this information was given to us to prepare us for a sequel.

The Trader of Stories is a top-notch point-and-click tale. The world it presents is beautiful, and I certainly hope to return to it in a sequel someday.

Um... Weird question. Does your name happen to be Derrida, by any chance?

The Trader of Stories

 ★★★★½ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★★ 
A gorgeous point-and-click fantasy tale.

Game: The Trader of Stories | Developer: Pastel Games


This seems like such a peaceful place.


This enfeebled old woman may hold some secrets to the identity of the mysterious Derrida.


Uh. Hello there sir?

December 19, 2010

Clones

Filed under: Other, Paid, Strategy, WindowsNina S. @ 05:52

I picked up this game called Clones, mostly because I had heard that the developers spent a great deal of time on the project itself. I, being a person whose mind frequently goes from point A to point Q without any explanations to anyone (including myself sometimes), assumed that this would mean that the game itself would be fabulous. I am not sure if I was right but I did enjoy the game, for the most part.

The game art itself is charming. It is kind of a smoother version of 2D, if that makes sense. It is almost 3D but not quite, though it does manage to confuse my eyes into thinking it is every occasionally. The music choices that were made are solid, lending to the overall world building that is the game. Overall, it is a lovely game, aesthetically speaking.

You play as a clone that has the ability to shift into various tools in order to solve and get through puzzles. We are talking about ending up with abilities that allow you to drill, puff, and spin, depending on what you need to get through a particular kind of trap.

Now, I played the single player mode for this game as well as the multiplayer, so let us start with the campaign. The story is interesting. You play as a clone who is trying to gather a medallion. You do this by beating Elder clones in battles of wits, solving puzzles and finally beating them head to head. The puzzles range in difficulty but ultimately they are not impossible if you are willing to take some time to get them.

I would strongly suggest playing through the story before attempting to do any real playing in the multiplayer setting, as you can learn a lot by way of strategy and mechanics through the story mode. Another suggestion would be to get a group of friends to join you while you play. This has the obvious advantages: making sure, you are all on the same level, fun, and good old-fashioned interaction.

This game also boasts a nice bit of level edited content. You can even try your hand at making your own level, but I had more fun just playing around on the levels created by other players than I did anything else.

All in all, this was a good game. The campaign only took me a few hours to finish but afterward there is a lot to do because of the multiplayer option as well as the costume content. I tend to steer away from multiplayer games but this one was a pleasure. Worth looking at.

Clones

 ★★★½☆ 

Gameplay:★★★☆☆ 
Technical:★★★☆☆ 
Multiplayer:★★★★★ 
The magic of the Clonemasters at the tips of your fingers!

Game: Clones | Developer: tomkorp

December 18, 2010

VVVVVV

Well, I suppose a badly damaged ship is better than a non-intact one.

VVVVVV is a game that brings a nostalgic tear to my eye. It’s the exact sort of game I grew up playing, so I can relate to it. I fully understand what it is trying to accomplish, and not only is it successful at this, it is executed brilliantly and beautifully.

The premise is simple: you take control of the captain of a damaged spaceship and try to find the five other crew members who have been scattered across the ship (all of whom have names beginning with the letter V.) Instead of jumping, you have the ability to reverse the direction of gravity at will. So you will spend about half your time upside-down.

Now let’s talk about the difficulty. This game is hard. ridiculously hard. Now, when it comes to platform games, I’m not so shabby. But before I played this game for a single hour, I had managed to rack up over 600 deaths (yes, the game keeps track.) That’s over 10 deaths per minute. That means I died at least once every six seconds. And if you think that’s bad, by the time I hit the three hour mark I was getting close to 2,000. The gravity-reversal gameplay style is a little awkward at first. I guarantee you will find yourself attempting to jump over and over again, only to be hurled feet-first toward the ceiling. But you will eventually get used to it. And when you do, a brand new world of vintage gaming opens up to you.

I'm embarrassed to admit how many times I died here.

But with VVVVVV, the difficulty isn’t a flaw. In fact, it is part of the charm. You may die a lot, but you have an unlimited supply of lives and you respawn almost instantly at the last checkpoint you hit. The checkpoints are close enough together that dying won’t ever set you back very far.

Any vintage gamer will tell you that these graphics are beautiful. 8-bit simplicity. None of this 3d engine, virtual world bullcrap. And the soundtrack is so good that just thinking about it makes me start to sweat with excitement. Yeah, it gets a little repetitive after a while, but you’ll probably be swearing too loudly to hear it since you will be dying so much. If you do manage to keep yourself composed without being completely overtaken with fits of nerdrage, you will be treated to a delectable orchestra of 8-bit melodies.

If you grew up playing 8-bit NES games and long for a time when gameplay was king, VVVVVV is perfect. OK, let me restate that without the unnecessary modifying phrases: VVVVVV is perfect.

Spikes and platforms. Spikes and platforms.

VVVVVV

 ★★★★★ 

Gameplay:★★★★★ 
Technical:★★★★★ 
An unnecessarily brutal 8-bit platformer.

Game: VVVVVV | Developer: Distractionware

December 17, 2010

Gravi Dot

Filed under: Other, Paid, Puzzle & Casual, XBoxNina S. @ 05:43

Gravi Dot is a family game that I bought because I was having a party and wanted something for the kids to do while the grown ups played board games (oh yes, you know I throw the wild ones). Anyway, I bought the game and left the rug rats to it. After a little while, I began to notice that the adults in my party had begun to vanish. Turns out, they ended up going into the other living room with the kids and thus the party was drastically changed. In addition, my self-esteem as a party thrower was completely demolished, but that is all right.

Now, the first thing I want to say about Gravi Dot is the fact that it is extremely colorful. If you are playing with young children, they do not really even have to play in order to have a good time. Knowing what is going on is totally optional for them. There are bright colors, cheerful happy faces, and the absolute best background pictures of big eyed animals and sea creatures that I have ever seen. Add all that to popping balloons, bubbles, and you are good as far as the kids are concerned.

The adults are a different story but they are covered here too. The game itself is actually pretty interesting. It is a simple enough concept, you have a big tank of bubbles and the objective of the game is to get them popped. You do this by directing the flow of the bubbles, which bounce along with the help of gravity. You want to guide them into the point of destruction that you get to set.

Because of how cute the game is it’s easy to think it won’t be much of a challenge. The fact of the matter is that it’s actually not as simple as you would think. The bubbles aren’t hard to direct if you have an infinite amount of “gravis” to direct them with. The difficulty comes in when you realize that you have to complete the game with only so many of these direction changing devices. In addition  you have to set up one single point in order to get the bubbles to pop. Only one.

The game is a good family game. It’s nice to have around when you want a surprisingly tough game to have fun with. It’s definitely not just for kids.

Gravi Dot

 ★★★★☆ 

Gameplay:★★★¾☆ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
Multiplayer:★★★★☆ 
Popping bubbles and taking names!

Game: Gravi Dot | Developer: Cyber Edge Studios

December 16, 2010

Johnny Why Are You Late?

Filed under: Free, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsJosh @ 05:43

I can already tell this is going to be a bad day.

Johnny Why Are You Late? is a point-and-click adventure about Johnny’s typical morning.

Johnny is late for work. Again. And now he has to explain his tardiness to his boss. The story is a lot more complicated than the normal, everyday running late tale, and by the end of it, I’m sure you’ll feel a bit sorry for this guy. You see, Johnny is a prisoner in his own home. His wife and child call the shots in his life, and they keep all the doors in the house locked. So getting off to work in the morning is a walking-on-eggshells game of deception and puzzle-solving. Johnny must do some awful and degrading things in order to get out the door.

The puzzles in this game range from the simple (climb on a chair to reach the crowbar on the top shelf) to the completely bizarre (eat the hotdog-on-a-stick you find in the alley so you can use the stick to catch a spider.) Some of these will leave you scratching your head and saying “Why didn’t Johnny just…” But being frustrated is what this game is all about. By the end, you’ll be able to sympathize with poor old Johnny.

Johnny Why Are You Late? has an intentionally dull look to it, which underscores the fact that Johnny’s life is such a drain on him. The soundtrack is slow and relaxing, providing the perfect ironic contrast with how this poor fellow must be feeling. There is also a digital timer in the bottom corner of the screen which let’s you see just how much time you are wasting. And to further this frustration, Johnny provides some sarcastic commentary along the way that you’ll want to pay attention to. For example, after getting the alarm clock taken care of (by tossing it out the window), Johnny says, “At last my ears are at ease, until I see my wife.”

Johnny Why Are You Late? is a clever little point-and-click adventure that could be a lot of fun on a day off. Just don’t play it if you’re having a bad day, or if you are getting ready for work.

No, he's not dead. He's just sleeping. (Actually, he's been knocked unconscious, but don't tell anyone, okay?)

Johnny Why Are You Late?

 ★★★☆☆ 

Gameplay:★★★½☆ 
Technical:★★★☆☆ 
A point-and-click adventure that takes you through an incredibly frustrating morning.

Game: Johnny Why Are You Late? | Developer: keybol

December 14, 2010

Fishing Girl

Filed under: Girl's Choice, Other, Paid, Puzzle & Casual, XBoxNina S. @ 05:36

Now, I wasn’t feeling very well so I wanted to play something relaxing and fun without being too complicated. I spent a little bit of time searching and ran into Fishing Girl, a simple ten minute game that consists mostly of a mini-game that enables you to…you guessed it, fish.

Fishing Girl has a little plot line to it. For a ten minute game I don’t think it does a bad job at all. The story here is that you’re one of two lovers separated by the ocean. You have to get them back together and the only way to do so is by casting your fishing line all the way to the opposite land mass and reeling it closer. A little far-fetched but hey, it’s a video game, we’re not going to be picky. Now, the question you find yourself asking is how can I get my tiny little fishing pole strong enough to reel in an entire island?

You can upgrade your fishing rod by catching fish. You have to get the strongest possible pole in order to complete the Herculean task of catching an island. The more and bigger fish you catch the stronger your pole becomes, more or less.


There are three sizes of fish. They come in small, medium, and large. They also come in three different levels of commonality. The first is common, the second is uncommon, and the last is rare. Lastly, they can be either ugly or beautiful, which can affect how much they are worth in the long run. If you add all of those possibilities you usually get a fish that is, for example: Medium Uncommon (Ugly). This lets you know how much the fish is worth.

To catch fish of a particular size you use a slightly smaller bait, just like with regular fishing in real life. If you want to catch a large fish you have to use a medium fish to draw it. If you want to catch a medium fish you have to us a small one. If you hook a fish kind that isn’t meant for your bait your line will break and you will have to begin the chain or catching process all over again.

The game play sounds a lot more complicated than it really is. Once you get into the game you’ll see it’s pretty much common sense. The art style is nice and calming as well as pleasing and the music fits right in. This is really a game that set the tone for relaxation and an easy while wasting time. I would recommend this to anyone who has ten minutes on their hands and wants that happy buzz after.

Fishing Girl

 ★★★★☆ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
Quick, Simple, Fun.

Game: Fishing Girl | Developer: Errcw

December 12, 2010

Company of Heroes Online

Filed under: Free, Linux, Macintosh, Strategy, WindowsHeath @ 05:56

Company of Heroes Online

Once More Into the Breach!

I loooooove free stuff. That’s why I write about flash games. I loooove getting awesome games for free, which is why I am practically jumping for joy because of ‘Company of Heroes Online.’ It’s a MMO with the same graphics as the other games. For free.

Gameplay

This is pretty much the same game as the single player games, but you are playing against real live people. You choose between an Axis or Ally team, each of which has its own commander, which you train.

The total gameplay is far beyond the scope of this article, and one of the things that is special about this game is how complex it is. You have to worry about buildings, resources and items. Your men get tired and need to recharge.

You can train different types of commanders each of which has their own ability. Some can call in artillery attacks and stuff like that.

The cool part about this is that you can level up. Yup. A RTS MMO that is based around leveling up and learning new skills and buying new items. Equip these items to your guys to give them abilities.

Get those Nazis!

Technical

This game is a technical masterpiece. Seriously. The original Company of Heroes was released in 2006 and it is widely considered to be one of the best RTS games of all time. Now add the element of a tech tree and multiplayer battles and this game is from another planet.

Although the game is tough to learn, the training missions are in depth. You’ll learn about controlling squads and stuff like that. Seriously, you’ll be able to control armour divisions. ARMOUR DIVISIONS!

The one thing is that you need about 30 gigs of space to install this bad boy. Yeah, this is 2010, but that is still a lot of money.

Multiplayer

Multiplayer is just crazy.  You win when you destroy the other guys’ buildings or reduce their side points to zero. You can play with teams of 4 players, meaning an 8 player mega-battle.

Yes, there is single player mode. BUT, the only way to get better items is to level up by playing multiplayer. Genius.

Final Verdict

Are you kidding me? Remember when you were 12 and you were like, man I want to play that game but it costs too much. Well now you can reach back in time, and show yourself that life is awesome and you can get a 100% free and complete real time strategy game FOR FREE.

Company of Heroes Online

 ★★★★★ 

Gameplay:★★★★★ 
Technical:★★★★★ 
Multiplayer:★★★★★ 
Re-play WWII in the comfort and safety of your own home.

Game: Company of Heroes | Developer: Relic

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