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Multiplayer Game Reviews

January 31, 2011

Jolly Rover

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, Other, Paid, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsNina S. @ 06:42

I loved, loved, loved Jolly Rover. It is unbelievably adorable, funny, and actually interesting. This was not one of the games I got in a packet. My husband bought it on accident and I ended up playing it out of boredom. Now, I want to tell you guys how I feel about games and movies with animated animals. They freak me out. I will usually try them but I never really enjoy myself, just because of the creepy factor. The last book I enjoyed about animals that moved was Charlottes Web. The last movie? Rock-a-doodle (those of you who know that cartoon are awesome. Those of you who do not need to get on eBay). Anyway, that should tell how much this game had to wow me for it to give it a good rating.

First of all, the opening music for Jolly Rover was stirring. I was all but falling asleep and it woke me up. The starting scene was clever and funny, which always equates to another few minutes before I chuck it into my “I’ll finish this later…but probably not” pile. Jolly Rover did a fantastic thing after that: it held my interest.

You guys know I love? Item games. I gave them a witty name before but it has been so long since I have found one that was worth reviewing that I have forgotten what it was. These are the games where you have to find one item in room A, walk to room C and find a completely different item, combine those two items, and go to room B in order to let the parrot out of the cage. Jolly Rover is one of those games.

This game does that and does it well. It is not only a point and click adventure, though that is what I would label it as. It is also a charming little kind of…sim-esque game. What I mean is you run into bits of dialogue where you can respond to a particular problem. I have only been playing off and on for a few hours but I do not think they actually affect the score in the game. Still, they are funny and only add to the glory of the game.

This is a great game. I do not think I can make that any clearer. It is absolutely stunning in every way and I am really glad I ended up buying it. Try it, just try it, and see if you do not fall in love.

Jolly Rover

 ★★★★½ 

 
Gameplay:★★★★½ 
Technical:★★★★½ 
Insert witty pirate comment here.

Game: Jolly Rover| Developer: Brawesome

January 30, 2011

Weewar

Filed under: Free, Linux, Macintosh, StrategyHeath @ 05:38

A game.

Weewar

Fact: Hex-tile games are for nerds with neckbeards who live in their mom’s basements and come out every weekend to move thingies around for fun.

Actually, that’s a myth. Weewars is a fun, user-friendly game that you can play with little time commitment during the week. It’s not that bad to look at either.

Gameplay

You move your guys around by clicking on them and then clicking on the place where you want them to move. Then, to confirm, you click them again. Any bad guys you can blast appear in red. I honestly don’t understand how combat works at this point. Combat is, however, animated. And the terrain you are standing on affects this.

You get money by occupying bases. From those bases you also build units. You win when you occupy all of your opponents bases. Cool.

A SKULL!

Technical

There’s a lobby where you can choose your games. Yes, there is a ranking system which is based off of your wins/losses as well as how many games you have played. The thing that is really great about this game is that there are very few things that you can screw up.

Also, the game’s introduction does a pretty great job of explaining everything.

Multiplayer

The multiplayer is very well thought out. You choose your opponent and get to work. There is a 24 hour time limit for moves and when it is your turn you get an e-mail.

There is a chat client in the interface, so it’s pretty easy to communicate/heckle your opponent. I’ve found the community to be pretty chill and literate all told, so you don’t have to worry about deciphering the puberty-induced psychotic ramblings of unloved 12-year-olds.

Final Verdict

Great/casual game. You can gave a good time literally dedicating 3 minutes of your day to it. Spend your day mulling over strategy, only to have it blow up in your face when you log back in.

Weewar

 ★★★★★ 

Gameplay:★★★★★ 
Technical:★★★★★ 
Multiplayer:★★★★★ 
Hex-strategy game that’s not for nerds.

Game: WeeWar | Developer: EA2D

January 29, 2011

Sneaky Sniper

Filed under: Action & Shooter, Free, Macintosh, Other, Windowslewiscsdoe @ 05:10

Sniper Assassin has set the standard for all web based sniper games. There is a new one on the scene and to be honest it does a pretty good job of trying to match the SA series.

Sneaky sniper follows the same basic set of characteristics that made SA popular in the first place. The stick figures mean the game engine does not take forever to load, and this combined with pretty basic terrain and backgrounds makes for a very fast paced game.

Control is very simple, you move the scope around with your mouse and when you are confident that you have the right target you click to fire. The scope is not small, which is often a problem in sniper based games, and you can see plenty of what is going on in each level.

Use the mouse to move the scope over your targets

The levels work in a very simple way. You are given a clear brief at the start of each that tells you what you must or must not do to qualify for the next mission. Follow these instructions to the letter and you will quickly fly through the game. If you fail then you can have another go but you shouldn’t really because the lay out and design of each level is so basic.

The only problem is that there is no developed story line, which made the SA series popular. However, had this been included then the similarities may have been too similar and this would have taken emphasis away from the individuality of the game.

There is no annoying soundtrack, which you quite often get with action based shooting games. However, there is a gap for it in this game. The levels are really basic, which can make the game get quite boring and an upbeat and good track would help move things along.

Take out targets quickly before they can react

All in all Sneaky Sniper is a pretty good attempt at a sniper based web game. If you’re bored of work or revision then this is a great game. It will take your mind off of other things and keep you occupied for a good number of levels.

Sneaky Sniper

 ★★★☆☆ 

Gameplay: ★★★☆☆ 

Technical: ★★★☆☆ 

Sniper Assassin’s little brother

Game: Sneaky Sniper http://www.addictinggames.com/sneaky-sniper-game.html | Developer: Sniping Games http://www.snipinggames.net/

January 28, 2011

Diamond Dan

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, Other, Paid, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsNina S. @ 05:05

I loved Diamond Dan. It is a cute game with charming artwork, colorful scenes, and crisp lines. It sets the adventure theme with heart pumping music and a charming opening mini-movie. I was pretty much hooked after ninety seconds, which never really happens with me, but I was. After those first two minutes, I was still charmed by Diamond Dan. The story here is that you are a junior adventurer out to discover jewels and shiny gold coins with your mentor. The only problem with that is, of course, you do not want to wait for your mentor to go exploring!

You run off to pull your own impersonation of Indiana Jones and get into just as much trouble as poor Harrison Ford.

Diamond Dan is essentially a huge revolving 3D puzzle. It is always shifting, always changing, and you are caught in the middle of it, trying to navigate. Your goal is to gather not only lovely shiny things, but maps that will lead you to other lovely shiny things. Are you seeing the beautiful pattern here? I am. Shinies! There are many different traps and triggers you have to pull in order to collect your goals. This can make it quite difficult.

The idea here is that you are stuck in what I can only describe as an evil Rubix cube. The huge blocks can (and more than likely will) squish you if you stand still for too long or stand in the wrong place. At the same time, you can push them to the side if space allows. Even so, the problem with pushing them is that you may just push some of your shinies over the edge and lose them forever.

The game was cute and surprisingly hard. I had nightmares about evil temples after I finished playing. It was all very disturbing. Still, it was a lot of fun and even though the game is a puzzle game, it rather felt more like a platform adventure while I was playing. It is not really about outsmarting the temple as much as it’s about not getting dead before you can get to your shinies.

In addition to the general game play, the game allows you to replay temples. Now, this might not seem like a big thing, but you can go back and challenge yourself to get a better medal or to make sure you got absolutely everything. It really offers you the chance to play the game completely through.

Diamond Dan

 ★★★¾☆ 

Gameplay:★★★¾☆ 
Technical:★★★¾☆ 
Everyone likes shinies!

Game: Diamond Dan | Developer: Grendel Games

January 26, 2011

Dungeon Developer

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, Free, Simulation, Strategy, WindowsJosh @ 04:24

This dungeon might be scary if it wasn't so darned cute.

Nerdook strikes again with Dungeon Developer. This game allows you to run through a dungeon, collect treasure, and ultimately slay the Red Dragon. But here’s the catch: you get to build the dungeon.

You start out with a single floor with an entrance, an exit, and various obstacles scattered about. You have a limited amount of gold to spend on tiles to connect the entrance to the exit, and it’s completely up to you whether you want to try to bypass the obstacles or run your path directly through them. Once you are done building, you get to send a group of explorers through your creation. As this band of heroes progresses through the dungeon, you earn more gold, which you can spend purchasing additional floors and expanding your current floorplans.

You must carefully plan ahead, deciding which obstacles your adventurers pass through and which ones to avoid. If an adventurer passes through a monster, he will engage it in combat. If he wins, he will get additional gold and experience. But if he loses, he will be sent out of the dungeon and will lose gold. There are also traps that just take away HP and money. But the good news is that some tiles contain gems that increase your treasure horde, and chests that contain equip-able items. Getting through the dungeon in the least amount of time requires knowing which obstacles to hit and which ones to avoid. Unfortunately, in later dungeons hitting traps is inevitable.

There are 15 floors in all, and on the 15th is the Red Dragon. You win the game by slaying this dragon. Since every time your heroes run through the dungeon counts as one day, you want to get through in the least amount of days possible. Defeating the dragon in 25 days or less gives you a platinum score.

Of course, the game doesn’t just end when the dragon dies. Once you finish, you are rewarded with a catchy, Nerdook-style song, and an additional game mode: Dungeon Crawl. In this mode, you control a single adventurer who starts at level 0 and gets to explore the dungeon you already built. Your goal is to see how much gold you can collect before you are defeated. Of course, in Dungeon Crawl mode you can’t build anything, because that just wouldn’t be fair.

You can also export your dungeon online to allow other players to send their warriors through it, or import other dungeons and see if you can handle them. True adventurers can beat any dungeon!

Dungeon Developer is just one more amazing game in Nerdook’s ever-expanding universe. If you are already a Nerdook fan, then this game is a must-play. And if you aren’t yet, Dungeon Developer could very well win you over.

It's dragon-slayin' time!

Dungeon Developer

 ★★★★¼ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
Multiplayer:★★★★★ 
A dungeon crawler that lets you build the dungeons.

Game: Dungeon Developer | Developer: Nerdook

January 23, 2011

Steambirds: Survival

Filed under: Android, Free, Linux, Macintosh, Strategy, WindowsHeath @ 05:31

Run!

Steambirds: Survival

The original Steambirds is a prime contender for ‘best flash game of 2010′. The creators heard our pleas to make the game bigger. And they did.

Gameplay

The basic functions of the game are the same. You click and drag where you want your plane to go during 1 turn. You can control speed and direction. The same ’special’ weapons are available from the last game. However the similarities end there.

For starters, there are no ‘levels’ like the last time. Instead you start with a plane which has a preset amount of special weapons, and you have to survive for as long as possible, hence the name. Trust me, you want to take out the bad guys as quickly as you can, because the waves aren’t determined by how many are remaining, it’s at a preset schedule.

The planes that come in waves are random, and you start off with 3-4 allies that usually take out the first two planes (this is very useful because you probably wouldn’t stand a chance).

GL!

Technical

One thing that’s cool, if not unbelievable, is that every enemy plane that goes down leaves behind a special weapon. While in the previous version, it was worth it to save your specials for just the right moment, in survival, it is in your interest to you use your specials often.

With each feat that you accomplish you get copper. You then trade in copper to get new planes. At some point you have to start using planes multiple times in order to make enough to upgrade. This gets kind of annoying, but you really start to learn how to use the different planes and their weapons.

Final Verdict

All told, I think this was a pretty great ‘upgrade’ of the new game. Although I wish you were allowed to control multiple allies, and I wish you could get into some serious battles. Also, there’s a multiplayer version for the Android OS, but I haven’t tried that out yet. That would be seriously swell.

Steambirds Survival

 ★★★★★ 

Gameplay: ★★★★★ 

Technical: ★★★★★ 

/xrrgroup]
Survive wave after wave of badguy airplanes.

Game: Steambirds: Survival | Developer: Radial Games

January 22, 2011

K.O.L.M.

Filed under: Arcade & Retro, Free, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsJosh @ 05:33

In the beginning, you can't even see.

If I had to describe K.O.L.M. in one word, I would say “poignant.” It’s the story of a robot who awakens helpless in a dangerous world. He cannot jump, can barely walk, and can hardly even see. And as much as he tries to please his mother, she only has harsh words for him. I can honestly say this game made me a little sad.

One of the first messages you see in this game tells you to put on headphones. I’m glad I heeded this advice, because the soundwork in the game is brilliant. The music is soft, melodic, and surreal. It’s a perfect fit for what you are experiencing as you push the little robot through puzzle after puzzle.

The gameplay is Metroid-ish. As you progress through the game, you find yourself unable to get to certain areas. Later on, you will acquire new abilities that will grant you the ability to reach some of these areas, so you will find yourself going back to explore passages and rooms you couldn’t quite figure out how to get to. Some of the skills you will learn are jump, double-jump, dash, duck, and photon cannon.

While at first it’s the atmosphere that draws you in, eventually you will come to realize that the plot is extremely intriguing as well. The robot is constantly trying to make his mother happy, yet she grows more and more distant as he gets more powerful. I don’t want to spoil anything here, but this tension actually brings the story to a mind-blowing conclusion. Let me just say that the end of this game gets pretty intense.

And he's jumping...

K.O.L.M. has a very interesting look. It is seen entirely through security camera footage. The cameras are constantly distorting the image and getting static interference. Every time you move from one screen to the next, a digital marker pops up letting you know which camera you are viewing. This draws you even deeper into the world, as you can never be quite sure whose perspective you are viewing this strange world through.

K.O.L.M. is a great little Flash game with a very well-put-together atmosphere and a clever storyline. If you like puzzle-platformers at all, give this one a spin.

This room has a yellow Matrixy thing going on...

K.O.L.M.

 ★★★★☆ 

Gameplay:★★★★¼ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
A Metroid-esque puzzle-platformer.

Game: K.O.L.M. | Developer: Armor Games

January 21, 2011

Puzzle Dimension

Filed under: Other, Paid, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsNina S. @ 05:58

There were not any obvious instructions for Puzzle Dimension but that was not really a bad thing. The game is not very complicated. It starts out with music that encourages you to move in your seat. The art style only furthers the game play; it is comprised of flowers and paths made of dimensional blocks. Since the game is essentially a series of interactive 3D puzzles that you “solve” by using a ball this seems perfect.

If you are wondering what I meant by the ball…well, I mean exactly that. This game offers a unique chance to solve a straightforward kind of puzzle through the eyes of a ball. The idea here is to use the ball smartly and grab a set number of keys. These keys come in the shape of my favorite flower, the sunflower. Once you have all of them on one level, the door opens up and you can complete the puzzle in question.


Now, I did not have too much trouble while playing the game. It is a truly motion based game, though. This means that in order to pass each level your ball if going to flip over and defy gravity while it rolls. This will kind of tilt your visuals along with it and can lead to a bit of dizziness but even for me -with my weak stomach- it was mild.

Overall, I liked this game. It was extremely simple, which can be a negative depending on how it is set up. Here it was not. Thanks to fun music, a colorful background, and a fun overview the game really speaks to me. It is enjoyable and easy to play which makes it fun for all ages. If you are not looking for a family friendly game this should still tickle your fancy, though.

It’s cute but thanks to some crumbling panels, a ticking clock, and doors that don’t open without gathering every prerequisite, it’s challenging enough to stimulate someone who likes games a little grittier too. Grab a stopwatch and it could be a fantastic party game with a few repeats of the same level. This game is a great example of a little bit of effort going a long way. A simple game design done with high-end finishes really makes a bit of entertainment more of an adventure that does not require you to leave the comfort of your home. This is just what you want when you think of Indie games that really thrill.

Puzzle Dimension

 ★★★¼☆ 

 
Gameplay:★★★☆☆ 
Technical:★★★½☆ 
A ball, sunflowers, and a magic door. What else do you need?

Game: Puzzle Dimension | Developer: Doctor Entertainment

January 20, 2011

Vindictus

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, Free, Linux, Macintosh, WindowsHeath @ 05:13

Hey pretty momma

Vindictus

There is a Celtic legend that a mysterious goddess will reveal paradise to a warrior that defeats an enemy of the state. This is one of the most adult games that I have ever played. It is a brutal MMORPG that relies on ingenuity, ruthlessness and teamwork to be a complete and free game.

Gameplay

If you are a fan of side scrolling ‘hack and slash’ video games, you will feel very at home here. Everything is a weapon. See a tree limb? Beat the crap out of your enemy with it. Seriously, you can combo with it. Done with meleeing? You can pick your enemy up and toss them. Or, use them as a shield.

The physics of this game (based off of Valve software’s Source engine) are simply incredible. You can interact with literally anything that you can see. Do not trust rocks or logs.

At this current point in time, you have a limited character set. But, there is a great deal of customization in those sets. Quite honestly, some people get all riled up about their characters. I am not one of those people.

I won’t go too deep into gameplay, because there is a group tutorial. Yes, you have to go through it as a group. Once that’s done, you can detail your character, and it’s off to adventures.

You take longboats (Celtic theme again) to different locals. The decks of the boats are the ‘waiting rooms’ where you can do messaging and stuff like that.

At the end of each battle, you get BP. If you take certain ‘Oathes of Honor’ you can get ever more. For the record, you are battling enemies of your country, NPCs.

Technical

Take THAT Phillip Pullman!

I’ve mentioned it before, but the attention to detail and the immersive quality of the environment are beyond incredible. There are stray dogs in the opening village. You get a sense of the economy of each area that you visit.

The controls are simple, mouse and WASD. You can cast certain spells. Everything around you is game. You can pick up parts of a column and beat someone senseless with it!

There’s a crafting system, which is really what you use the loot for. So, instead of finding the nearest shop after a battle, you go, hmmm, what can I make out of all this crap that I just got from a giant spider?

Multiplayer

There are certain levels that, quite simply, can only be beaten through teamwork. Not because there are so many bad guys, but because there are actions that can only be undertaken with 2 or more people. Off of the top of my head, I remember having to make a net and subdue a polar bear. Only possible with 3 guys.

Final Verdict

Excellent, excellent game. If you are looking for a new MMORPG, this is it. Seriously the immersive environment is second to none and you will not get bored.

Vindictus

 ★★★★★ 

Gameplay:★★★★★ 
Technical:★★★★★ 
Multiplayer:☆☆☆☆☆ 
Find paradise in this Celtic-themed MMORPG.

Game: Vindictus | Developer: Nexcon

January 19, 2011

I Am an Insane Rogue AI

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, Arcade & Retro, Free, WindowsJosh @ 05:36

Killer robots make for some good fun.

If you’ve ever wanted to be a psychotic AI that can use computers to take over the world, then you are in luck. Nerdook’s newest hit I Am an Insane Rogue AI allows you to do just that, one building at a time. There are two methods by which you can accomplish global domination: the violent way or the peaceful way.

Your goal is to hack into every computer in each building, then hack the mainframe. While you don’t exist in physical form (you are just AI, after all), you can use your influence on anything electronic. That means you can distract people by making the phones ring, turn on and off lights, and lock doors. But more importantly, you can take over security robots, and some of those robots are armed.

The violence escalates pretty fast. Once you have one killer robot on the loose, suddenly you need to command the gun turret so it doesn’t shoot your robot. Then you have security bots trying to take out the gun turret, so you take control of those too. It’s quite easy to turn a whole building into a robot killing spree.

Purchase new skills between levels.

But if you prefer a more peaceful approach, that’s fine. Since you can lock doors, you can often keep intruders away while you hack into computers. Of course, this takes a little more patience, and will bring in less money in the end.

And money is good, because you use it to purchase upgrades. And these upgrades are awesome. One of the most interesting upgrades available is the ability to send a message over the speakers on a particular floor – you just type whatever you want into a box and you’ll actually hear the AI say it. This makes the people on that floor start to panic. There are plenty of other purchasable  skills too: you’ll be able to release clouds of poison gas, turn corpses into zombies, create portals, and let loose heavily-armed cyborgs, just to name a few. With so much destruction at your fingertips, you may want to think twice about that whole passifism thing.

The music fits perfectly, but it’s rather un-Nerdook like. If you are used to the more melodic tunes in games like Monster Slayers and Vertical Drop Heroes, then you’ll be somewhat surprised to hear music so dark and ominous. But the whole tone of the game is darker than Nerdook’s usual style. In fact, with all the psychotic AI ranting, I suspect he was strongly influenced by Portal.

I Am an Insane Rogue AI is free, and it’s incredibly addictive. It’s a wonderful addition to Nerdook’s rapidly growing list of awesome games.

Zombies, cyborgs, and hacked computers... this really is the end of the world.

I Am an Insane Rogue AI

 ★★★★¼ 

Gameplay:★★★★½ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
Be the computer. Kill the humans.

Game: I Am an Insane Rogue AI | Developer: Nerdook

January 18, 2011

Spirited Heart

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

The people who make Spirited Heart makes a lot of different kind of games. Most of them are Dating Sims in one way or another but the man difference comes in the themes that they do. They have ones that are set in Fantasy worlds, some that are set in futuristic worlds, and such. They really enjoy upping the anty and each one of their games is different than the other, though it’s the same overall concept a lot of times.

Spirited Heart is one of their most popular titles. In it you are given the option of playing as one of three different kinds of woman (human, demon, and elf) and you’re also able to decide how you sepnt your life as a child pre game. The choices you make while you’re setting up your characters have an impact on the stats you have to start with and thus which ones you will have to work on to get where you want to be later in the game.

Spirited Heart offers you a lot of different choices, not only in the men you seduce but in the way you spend your time. The game feels a lot less about grinding out stats and a great deal more about making your character as strong as possible and spending your time wisely. You get to see a lot of different aspects of your character (by which I mean she wears a lot of different outifts –which is always a sure fire way to make ME happy, at least) and you can really costumize the way she grows and learns, just by making your own choices.

Now, that doesn’t mean that Spirited Heart is without it’s downfalls. The game is rather annoying in the sense that some of the gameplay options can frustrate you. Everything you make money wise is taxed for starters. I’m sure the makers wanted to add a little difficulty to the game with this but ultimately it’s just annoying. In addition (and this is not unusual for games like this), there is a stress addition here. Meaning if you have a bad week or day you become stressed and your character won’t be able to perform her duties. This is usually not so bad in these games but in this one it’s a major teeth grinder. The “jobs” you can do are based on an entirely random roll of the dice (a game of chance) and if you fail you’re just nice and screwed. This could have been done better.

Overall, this is a great game. For women, for sure, but a  good way to spend a couple hours of your life.

Spirited Heart

 ★★★¾☆ 

Gameplay:★★★½☆ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
A Fantastic Fantasy.

Game: Spirited Heart | Developer: Tycoon Games

January 17, 2011

Mega Man 8-Bit Deathmatch

Filed under: Action & Shooter, Free, WindowsJosh @ 04:57

Sure, you've seen this menu before. But have you seen it from this angle?

The original Mega Man game series was a must-play in the 1980s, with creative gameplay, interesting boss fights, and some of the best music in the industry. Perhaps that is why we are still infatuated with the Blue Bomber to this day.

Cutman Mike loves Mega Man perhaps a little more than the average fanboy though. He spent over a year building his very own tribute to the Blue Bomber with the phenomenal Mega Man 8-Bit Deathmatch. This first-person shooter takes the Mega Man world and puts it into 3D using the Doom game engine. Of course, 8-bit graphics and music have been taken directly from the classic Mega Man series.

Mega Man 8-Bit Deathmatch allows players to choose a character from the Mega Man universe and frag other characters in arena battles. There are weapons and powerups scattered around each map, and fighters collect these as they blast their opponents. There are over 50 weapons in all, every single one of them taken from the classic Mega Man games.

The maps are all 3D re-imaginings of levels from the old Mega Man games as well. Long-time fans will smile as they recognize many of their favorite places.

Mega Man vs. Mega Man. This will definitely get interesting.

There is a single-player mode, in which you work your way through the Mega Man games in order and battle AI opponents. This is pretty cool, but the real fun of the game comes from the online multiplayer, where you can frag your friends or random strangers. Players can join any of the established servers or even host their own.

My only complaint about this game is that players are not given any help as far as downloading custom map packs. If a server is running a map pack that a player doesn’t have installed, the player will not be able to join the server until that map pack is manually downloaded and placed into the correct folder. There is no option that allows you to automatically download the map packs from the server, like you can in most modern FPS games. But this is forgivable, since the game is so incredible. Players with the slightest bit of experience installing custom mods will have no problem getting all the map packs they need in order to get the game running.

Mega Man 8-Bit Deathmatch is a must-play for every Mega Man fan. It takes up a mere 60 megabytes of hard drive space and is completely free. But it does come with a word of warning: this is a fan-made project and is in no way supported by Capcom.

Mega Man fans will have no problem recognizing these powerups.

Mega Man 8-Bit Deathmatch

 ★★★★¾ 

Gameplay:★★★★★ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
Multiplayer:★★★★★ 
Mega Man re-imagined as a multiplayer FPS frag-fest.

Game: Mega Man 8-Bit Deathmatch | Developer: Cutman Mike

January 16, 2011

Rush

Filed under: Other, Paid, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsNina S. @ 08:07

Every Christmas Steam has this awesome sale and I end up blowing my game budget. It is usually not a bad deal. I get like four games for the price of one thanks to their spiffy bundles but in addition to that, I end up with a number of games that I would not have considered otherwise. Many of those games end up being fantastic. So, when I ended up with Rush, thanks to a Steam event I was beyond excited. Good thing, too, I do not like to be disappointed.

My first impression of this game was it looks like it was put together lovingly. The backgrounds are colorful and glossy. They put you in a good mood immediately. The pallet is stunning. The music is nice too.

Atmosphere aside, Rush is a 3D puzzle game. You have blocks that are set to move in one set direction over a floating mass of planes. You use a certain amount of special tiles to direct the rolling blocks to marked goals. Once these blocks finish their rotation, another puzzle is unlocked. It is a straightforward game. You know your goals right from the beginning and there is little way you can get lost.

I had a great time with this game. The tiles can change the directions of the blocks. They come in lots of different forms but all of them can make your goals. Beyond that, the game is beautifully done. When you are playing, you set up the movement tiles all at once, press play and watch your set-up come to life. It reminded me of synchronized swimming. Everything in this puzzle game is well done. It was challenging but not frustrating. It was also aesthetically pleasing, which is always a plus.

This is the kind of game you want to play when you are looking for a relaxing sort of headache. Does that make sense? There is no denying that the game is built on the back of strong, interesting puzzles. They range in ease, meaning you could let children play the first few lines without getting bored. On the other hand, someone who is deeply into puzzles (like me!) can plow through the first dozen and find themselves really enjoying themselves. I would say this is a game for anyone who likes a good puzzle. It is beautiful, easy to understand, has a nice learning curve, and is a joy to play. This one is well worth the price as well as the time and effort. Get the family together for Rush.

Rush

 ★★★★☆ 

 
Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
The power of a little direction!

Game: Rush | Developer: Two Tribes

January 15, 2011

Hanna in a Choppa

Filed under: Action & Shooter, Arcade & Retro, Free, Puzzle & Casual, WindowsJosh @ 08:46

You are helped by the incredibly encouraging messages written across each level.

Hanna in a Choppa is a unique flier game, made almost completely of two colors, in which you take control of a helicopter piloted by a girl named Hanna. use the directional keys to move around and spacebar to deploy the winch. If you are especially talented, you can even do flips. Just don’t bump too many walls or you will crash, and you’ll have to start the level over again.

The beauty of the whole thing is the amount of creativity packed into each and every level. You will end up dodging fans, herding sheep, rescuing drowning sailors, and even baking a cake. And if the levels aren’t hard enough for you, you can earn a “Fast Flight” bonus for finishing a level within a specific time limit and a “Perfect Flight” bonus for finishing a level without bumping into anything. There is even a list of achievements you can occupy yourself with while flying around. However, after completing the game, I felt that it only scratched the surface of its true potential. And that’s not because it wasn’t good; it’s actually because it’s too creative. Almost every level has such a bizarre concept behind it that I felt like the developers must have had dozens more ideas for this game that we never got to see.

This is one convoluted level map!

Of course, that’s not saying there is anything wrong with this game. I started playing it at around 2:30 AM, and I wouldn’t let myself go to sleep until I had finished it. I couldn’t leave it alone.

The visual style is so incredibly simple that it’s hard not to marvel at it. It mainly uses two colors: black and orange, with a splash of white thrown in here and there. I am astounded by how much was able to be done with this minimalistic look. And the music fits perfectly. It’s this sort of soothing, yet somehow chaotic ditty that seems to match the spastic nature of the game. And it will probably get stuck in your head.

Hanna in a Choppa is a game that won me over with its unique look, and then kept me hooked through 21 insanely creative levels. I just wish that it were longer. In fact, I hope they either make a sequel, add a level pack, or introduce a level editor so we creative gamers can take a crack at building obstacles for the lovely Hanna.

Believe me, this level is not easy!

Hanna in a Choppa

 ★★★★☆ 

Gameplay:★★★★☆ 
Technical:★★★★☆ 
A nifty puzzler about a girl and her choppa.

Game: Hanna in a Choppa | Developer: deeperbeige

January 14, 2011

Oolite

Filed under: Adventure & RPG, Free, Linux, Macintosh, WindowsHeath @ 09:09

Don't. Crash.

Oolite

If there is no way to win, are you really playing a game? Oolite is a open source space sim game where you fly around being a productive member of society. Or being a pirate. Your choice.

Gameplay

Okay so a little background. This game is an open source version of the 1984 game Elite. So, the graphics are a bit clunky. But don’t let that deter you. This game has an intense level of depth.

The first thing you’re going to need to do is get used to the controls. This is a bit tricky. The up and down arrow keys are inverted. The left right control your roll. Read that again. It’s not strafe. It’s not yaw. It’s roll. W and S control your speed.

Don’t run into anything. If you run into anything, you’ll die. You’ve been warned.

Now you’re going to want to get used to the HUD. It is also in 3D. I’ve found that getting an object into the up/down part of your crosshairs and then pitching your way until it gets into your screen is the way to go. If you’re motion-sick at this point, just take some deep breaths and get some water.

This is a pirate attack. It is a lot more exciting than it looks.

That’s all I’m going to tell you, because it gets complicated from there. You’re going to want to learn how to dock, because that’s how you’ll get missions, buy equipment and get commodities.

Technical

One of the major drawbacks of space exploration games is that they are often clunky or take up a massive amount of space (heh). Well this game sacrifices graphics for complexity. Each step is a new learning curve. First you learn how to dock. Then you learn how to fire lasers. Then missiles. And so on and so forth.

It is a huge game. You can even explore the inside of your ship. If you were a fan of the show ‘Firefly’ then you are definitely going to like this.

I mentioned earlier that the graphics are kind of bad. Well, you can change this. There are tons of 3rd party mods all over the place. Your processor and imagination is the limit.

Final Verdict

This is one that I didn’t think I was going to like. I’m not a fan of space games. However, learning the new control system and traversing the wild black yonder was pretty cool. I wish that the developers would take this even further. But that’s just a pipe dream. A dream about pipes.

Oolite

 ★★★★★ 

Gameplay:★★★★★ 
Technical:★★★★★ 
Space Adventures! Pew! Pew! Pew!

Game: Oolite | Developer: Open Source, Yo

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