Going Going Gone: Race The Sun Is Free For One Day

By Alice O'Connor on July 30th, 2015.

Zoom zoom.

That there Race the Sun [official site] is a fine game. You skim across abstract landscapes in a solar-powered vehicle, trying desperately to outrun the impending sunset while not smashing into the odd architecture like a ruddy great fool. It’s fast and exciting. I’d recommend you pay money for it, and I’ll certainly recommend you snag it for free.

To celebration the launch of an iOS version (and its new chillout DLC on PC), developers Fippfly have made Race the Sun free for one day. Head on over to Steam to nab it and it’ll be yours forever.

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Where Babies Come From: Deabirth – Real

By Alice O'Connor on July 30th, 2015.

“The experience of an event begins for its audience when they first hear about it and only finishes when they stop thinking and talking about it,” says Tassos Stevens of interactive theatre gang Coney. I dig that. Many small games I like are big on that extended experience.

I suspect the best way to first hear about Deabirth – Real is to spot this freaky animated gif while looking through new releases on Itch and notice the game’s made by someone named LOVE MERCHANT DEAD GHOST (their capitalisation). Eagerly click on through to its Itch page and enjoy the fine description there. Then download it – it’s free – and oh gosh definitely read its readme file. If you read on through to the rest of this post, you’re only spoiling your own fun.

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Have You Played… Digital: A Love Story?

By Brendan Caldwell on July 29th, 2015.

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

There’s a moment in Digital: A Love Story [official site] when your (in-game) computer starts to crackle. Lines of pixels run across your screen and obscure your view. You’re under attack! Your attacker has manipulated a vulnerability in your system. But… didn’t you upgrade? Didn’t you patch this very vulnerability? Why hasn’t the upgrade been applied? That’s when you realise there’s a simple solution to your hacker problem: turning it off and on again.
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Ooh, Tanks! Tokyo Warfare’s Free Multiplayer Prototype

By Alice O'Connor on July 28th, 2015.

Keep rollin' rollin' rollin' - remember that man with a hat, aye?

Tanks rolling through the streets of Tokyo, big seats with wheels and pedals, polygonal 3D graphics (three dimensions! three!), big bassy booms, and networked multiplayer left early teen me fascinated by Namco’s Tokyo Wars in arcades. I only ever had the money to play it twice (we were a penny falls family), but it’s stayed in my mind all along. I like games doing unlikely things in otherwise-serene modern cities. Well, today’s my lucky day, as folks are making a game which looks awfully similar.

Tokyo Warfare [official site] is an arcadey tank battler rolling through the streets of Tokyo, and has a free work-in-progress version you can download and play today.

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The Ballast Of Tom Jones: Tough Love Machine

By John Walker on July 28th, 2015.

Gosh, how I’d love to tell you about the later levels of pay-what-you-want puzzle Tough Love Machine [official site]. Because I’d love to be clever enough to have reached them.

Controlling two hands on gradually extending arms, one via WASD, the other on the cursors, you must push two hearts until they meet. Awwww. Except, good gracious, it’s tricky.

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10 Minute Barbarian Is Exactly What It Sounds Like

By Emily Gera on July 26th, 2015.

Some people say that Hemingway’s short poem “For sale: baby shoes, never worn” is great because of the enormous size of a story it hints at in such minimalist prose but I think we all know it’s actually good because it’s really, really fast. In this mile-a-minute world of vines and GIFs I just don’t have time for anything that requires more than seven seconds of recollection.

Enter 10 Minute Barbarian [official site], which is exactly what it should be.

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Chess With Boobytraps: Chesser

By Alice O'Connor on July 24th, 2015.

From Chess 2 with its new armies to Bennett Foddy’s Speed Chess [official site] with 16 players and simultaneous turns, a lot of ideas are floating around to make chess new and weird and exciting and silly. Add to the list Chesser [official site], a free arcadey take on the turn-based tactical classic.

What’s different here? Well, Chesser goes down a smaller grid: 6×6. Units can move in more directions and each side has a smaller lineup: four pawns, a king, and a queen. Oh, also squares can drop off the board and trigger traps to explode enemies.

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Roguelike Mega Collection Torrent Has 700+ Free Games

By Adam Smith on July 23rd, 2015.

Free games are great and roguelikes are the best of all games, so a torrent containing more than 700 of the blighters is a lovely thing to discover on a Thursday morning. The collection is the work of ‘foamed’, a Reddit moderator and roguelike curator, and it’s more than a big pile o’ fun. As well as containing some of the greatest games ever made, this is an important archive – there are variants and minor games included that are no longer available elsewhere, and as long as there are seeders, any future disappearances will be protected until our computers turn to dust.

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Glitched-Out Explore-o-Puzzling In Strawberry Cubes

By Alice O'Connor on July 23rd, 2015.

Okay so what?

I’m not sure what I’m doing in Strawberry Cubes [official site]. I’ve had a few cracks at the puzzle-platformer (I think it’s a puzzle-platformer) since creator Loren Schmidt released it for free earlier this month, and each time find some strange new thing without quite understanding what I’m doing.

It’s not impenetrable, I’m sure, but I’ve been a bit exhausted and dim these past few weeks. I have enjoyed the mystery all the same, gathering and planting seeds, dodging blades, collecting doodads, taking in the sounds and music, and doing… something with frogs. I don’t know what I’m doing with the frogs.

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The Path More Taken: Up Hill And Down Dale

By Philippa Warr on July 22nd, 2015.

Nature park funsies

I’ve been playing about with The Path More Taken [official site] this morning. It’s a little game about designing a path through a map that will most appeal to your group of visitors for the day.

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Ernest Hemingway’s Olympic Challenge: The Old Man Club

By Alec Meer on July 21st, 2015.

The hairy chests and the steely gazes, the short sentences and the bulging crotches and the calm, almost brotherly invitations to war. The snarling lionhead and the gaping fishmaw, the smirking dolphin and the crab most muscular. Literate arm-wrestling challenge The Old Man Club is Hemingway’s very particular interpretation/incarnation of masculinity twinned with body-horror absurdism. And a touch of Tyler Durden too, of course.

LET US PLAY THE HAND GAME.

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Dark Obelisks Await In Free Horror Walking Sim Sanctuary

By Alice O'Connor on July 21st, 2015.

Ah, Sanctuary!

Connor Sherlock’s games often remind me of slow, dready horror movies from the ’70s, the sort of oddball thing you might catch at 3am on a Friday night then spend years trying to remember the name of. From ghost stories in the woods to eerie deep space encounters with deserted alien ships, he’s happy to let things unfold slowly and build unease. It’s part pacing, part tone, and part his splendid synth soundtracks.

His latest freebie is Sanctuary [official site], a walking simulator which reminds me of the ominous dreams of lost lands and dark obelisks that’ll surely turn out to be all too real for our protagonist.

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GhostBuskers: Audio Horror Game Sylvio Has a Demo

By Adam Smith on July 21st, 2015.

Sylvio [official site] is my favourite horror game of 2015. It’s a quiet game, set in an abandoned park where the sky runs red, and you’ll spend the majority of the playing time straining to hear voices in the static. Sylvio, you see, is a game about electric voice phenomena and its central scares are based around a tape deck, on which recordings made in the field can be played at various speeds, reversed and analysed. I’ve raved about the game at length and now there’s a demo available for you to try.

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