Free Loaders: The Calm Before The Storm

What’s that on the horizon? Oh no. It looks like E3. Quick! Batten down the hatches! Stow the sail! Carry out some other protective maritime measures! We free loaders must keep ourselves clean of the oncoming storm of AAA nonsense and degenerate hype. Why don’t you stock up on these free games and try to wait out this maelstrom, while I take the speediest schooner we have and go for help. Solidarity, brothers and sisters. If the free games gods will it, I will see you next week.

Cooldog Teaches Typeing by cuxo, jen, renaud and zander

i cant believe i missed this game when it first came out a few weks ago. i was a complete looser back then but now, thanks to cooldog, i am a typeing legend. in this game you have to follow cooldogs strict typing rules and lessons and learn a lot about the keyboard and also about your strange human paws. i am telling you the truth when I say you will laern a lot from this game. it is simple to learn and hard to maste, just like typing in the real world. if you feel unwell or bored with class you can always pop up for fresh air – this is good for the lungs and the soul. you should always take regluar brakes from the keyboard and the computer scren. good gaem. ten out of 10.

Notes of Obsession by Creaky Stairs Studios

Housebound horror. Skulk around in your lovely Swedish home until you realise it isn’t lovely. There’s some dark terror skulking around with you and the only thing you have to hand is a wind-up music box. Cue all the things that make human beings afraid – shadows, television static, a child’s creepy bedroom complete with toys that seem to have a life of their own. Each time you wind the music box strange symbols appear on walls or surfaces and touching these glowing runes will go some way to helping you out. There is a storm outside the house but I played this while an actual factual thunderstorm was happening in my own town. And because the thunder here is loud enough to set off all the neighbourhood’s car alarms, I got a free IRL jump scare when a peal of thunder struck. Back in the game, it was unsettling to see how the house degraded from pristine IKEA to soggy near-collapse. I have my theories for what was going on here. But maybe you have your own eerie thoughts?

Wrestling With Emotions by Team Lazerbeam

Intense wrestler speed dating. Create your wrestler’s look and name before you leave your exercise caravan. Then battle your way through 8 sweaty hunks in musclebound and emotional rapid fire questioning. Take your ripostes to the next level by filling out the questionaire at the end of each date. Was he sweaty? Tick the box! Was he charming? TICK THE BOX GOD DAMN YOU. Show your appreciation by affixing extra stickers onto the questionaire form, for love purposes. From the team who brough you Snow Cones comes this he-motional rollercoaster. I created a wrestler with low self-esteem called The Regular Mega Dad, who went on to find a happy match with Señor Murder (pictured above). But who will you create? Someone not as good as The Regular Mega Dad, I’ll bet. Pfft!

Hello: Talking Simulator by Benjo Durbin and Chey Webb

Walking AND talking simulator. Traipse through the corridors and offices of the Corporation as you undergo a job interview conducted by giant words on the walls. What was your last job? Command & Control or Accounting? What made you decide to apply? Are you even the correct applicant? Walk through the doorways to choose your answer and hope for the best. For me, I was probably more successful than any real interview I have ever had. If you count success as receiving a boring job trapped at a tiny desk with no discernible escape. But things will go better for you. I know they will. You’re an impressive person.

Space Tank 9000 by arnodick

It is the year 9000 and the aliens need to be blown up. Thank god you are a tank because that is what tanks do. Grab the flashing crates that rain from the wreckage of your victims to swap to a new weapon, including: manybullets, wideshoot, big circle, and more. The developer says this is “Scorched Earth meets Super Crate Box” but the thing I like best about Pico-8 games like this are the nonchalant descriptions of known bugs. “Just straight up totally hard crashes for some reason sometimes?” says one here. “Will probably run out of memory if you get too far?” reads another.

Oatboy vs Slime Mould by Manstersoft

Run away from the bad thing. You are an oat that has come to life and you must escape from the slime mould. Direct your nippy ‘O’ character away from the slime for as long as you can. Touch the slimey trail it has left behind and you’ll die but you can blast through it using your shield (your… ‘oat’ shield?) by holding the Z key. Beat 2000 points to get a potentially seizure-inducing surprise. Obviously, I do not know what this surprise is because my high score is 584. I am a failure.

Shadow Brawlers by Team Guazu

Local multiplayer ninja fight (requires controllers). Up to four players can assume the stance of a shadow in a randomly generated arena with narrow shafts of light filtering through. Stay in the darkness, stick yourself to a wall and watch for the puffy footfalls of your enemies as they land after a jump. Leap into the light and switch to being white to hide among the beams. Then, when the time is right… strike! Oh shit you missed. Strike again! Oh god where have they gone? OH NO YOU’VE DIED. But you died like a true ninja. Well done.

The Shaman by Secret_Tunnel

A short poem-game about a young man on a naive quest. Brief yet profound. Heavily recommended.

Sacrifice your free games to the free games gods – use @Brendy_C as your priest

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  1. rps32121 says:

    Is this where I question ‘on the horzion’?

    • rps32121 says:

      Cool, just checking. Enjoying Shadow Brawlers, good harvest of games this season.

  2. mcgiants says:

    The Shaman was the most moving indie game I’ve played this year, even though it’s so short. Thank you for the recommendation. If you end up playing it, take your time thinking about each sentence before you continue, they all come together really well at the end.

  3. NephilimNexus says:

    E3: The golden toilet. Where all the biggest names throw out their most polished turds for all the world to see. The event that is to game critics what elections are to late night comedians. Yahtzee & Sterling are probably already salivating in anticipation of the fresh taste of blood from some poor herd of marketing hacks, and I look forward to watching their greatest kills on YouTube.