Free Loaders: Stop Bullets With The Power Of Prayer

Gun crime is sky-rocketing in the United States and just last week the elected representatives of the country voted to keep as many bullets from unemployment as possible. And while that sentence may be a rabid simplification of a greater issue, we all know what’s fundamentally at fault here – we are just not praying enough.

Thoughts and Prayers by  Everyday Arcade

Political point-making. There’s an epidemic of mass shootings in the United States and it’s up to YOU to stop it. And we all know how best to stop gun crime – that’s right, with the power of sympathy. Think and pray your way to the cessation of as much firearm-related violence as you possibly can by alternately mashing ‘T’ and ‘P’ on your keyboard in this latest addition to the GOP Arcade. You may be surprised at the results. But you may also be thoroughly unamused, depending on your affiliation in the great “guns vs humans” war.

Generate A Tech by Nathalie Lawhead

Less a game and more an invitation to randomly see some technical nonsense at the push of a button. Sick of Star Trek actors screaming about reversed polarities and particle subfunctions? Pulling your ears off with pliers whenever the hacker lady in your favourite crime show tells everyone she cracked the internet? Well, plier no more. You can get all your jargonistic needs fulfilled right here. Hardwarehack the basic runtime! Convolute the memory as hyper drives! Stream the ASCII lasers!!!

Scream Paint by Adam Hartling

I don’t usually list things I haven’t been able to play for myself, but this looks interesting. You have to scream into your computer’s microphone to get your paint flowing (I don’t have my mic) but apart from that it seems just like your vanilla MS Paint. I will let any regular free loaders tell me if it is rubbish or not. Mostly I wanted to include this in the week’s roundup because I enjoy the image of dozens of people screaming with blood-curdling enthusiasm at their computer screens on a Saturday afternoon. AHHHHHHH.

Super War Crime by Hot Cereal

Cold Warring. Get two gamepads and a pal so you can recreate all the terror and suspicion of the glorious days of the coldest war ever warred. Try to literally force the hand of your opponent into pressing a button that will commit horrific war crimes, while defending and dodging the hand-forcing attempts of your rival. You each have five buttons to press and protect, and when bashed they will prompt headlines and sweat beads for everyone involved. Nostalgic!

Just Feel by various peoples

The French have made a sexy game. Depending on how the UK-EU referendum went, you may not be allowed to have sex with French people anymore, as it is banned.

SUPPLEMENTARY WORD BINGE

Okay, the picks are few this week. I am currently working off a MacBook in sweltering jungle heat and it can be difficult to find small games that slip into this machine’s circuits with comfort. So I thought it would be a good idea to go over some of the ways in which Free Loaders is made. Gather round anyone who wants to know. The rest of you – you’re dismissed.

Where do you find the games?

Without wanting to give away all my secrets, there are a bevy of websites that themselves curate the hundreds upon hundreds of freebies that are splattered onto the internet each week. Warp Door is an essential source and I pillage their selections mercilessly for almost every column. But the lesser known Free Game Planet is sometimes also a profitable place to raid.

Aside from those, itch.io is an obvious source and I tend to spend most of my time scrolling deep into its free games pit under the ‘recently released’ tab, looking for bright colours and furious GIFs. Twitter also plays its part and I have a private list of all the desperate characters who I know make weird things, or have made weird things in the past. Lastly, I like it when YOU send me things. So do that: I am @Brendy_C. I don’t post about everything fired at me but I will play anything a person has gone out of their way to send. That’s my rule.

How do you choose?

A free game doesn’t need to be Dr Langeskov to get into the column. Occasionally we get things which are done with a mad amount of polish – things like NORTH, which can also be worth whole posts of their own. But generally, if a game is funny, unusual, political, eye-catching or championed by the myriad monsters who don the avatars of “indie game developers” on Twitter, then it will likely get far enough to reach the Free Loaders folder on my desktop. At that point it is about a 50/50 chance that it will get mentioned. I have turned great-looking games off after 30 seconds because they had garbage controls but I have also smiled with relief and joy when horribly illustrated games come out with fantastic moments. I pretty much have a three strikes policy for cliches in dialogue or writing though. Can’t stand that.

Why should I play any of these games?

You don’t have to! And I don’t expect you to. Honestly, if I was reading this as a player and not a journo or gamemaker, I would likely just pluck out the ones I was interested in (if any) and leave the rest. I suspect that’s what a lot of people do (is it what you do?) but I have also been told that a lot of people just drop in to look and see if there’s anything good and then leave not having played anything but feeling a little cheered about the state of the indie scene and all its strangeness. If this is all you get from Free Loaders, then that’s great. But there are also times when I am vehemently and obviously wearing my RECOMMENDATION hat. And in these cases, I implore you to get downloading.

Like the man said: give all of your free games to @Brendy_C because he needs them to live. Need more free games? Check our list of 50 best free games on PC.

From this site

49 Comments

  1. Spacewalk says:

    No! You have to play these games. All of them, no fence sitting.

  2. Bobcat says:

    Interesting to see where you find these games. I love this column and probably spend as much time now exploring the free, short-form indie scene as I spend with well-known titles. In fact, Free Loaders is one of the things that has inspired me to consider making my own game(s) this summer. On the other hand, I did just buy a bunch of games in the steam sale…

  3. peterako1989 says:

    In case case you care to check this out, I made my own digging into freeware games and created a post into gamespot as some sort of database.
    http://www.gamespot.com/forums/games-discussion-1000000/the-ultimate-indie-freeware-games-mega-collection–32826947/#16
    Some where discovered here so you propably recognize some.

  4. MontereyJohn says:

    Not to be that backseat editor or anything, but “gun crime,” as with almost all forms of violent crime in the US, is falling and has been on the decline since around 1973.
    Source: link to pewsocialtrends.org which is derived from DOJ data tables.

    • Premium User Badge

      Harlander says:

      Yeah, you could be more accurate by saying “gun crime has steadily dwindled to the minuscule rate of six mass shootings a week”.

      • airmikee99 says:

        1980: 23,040 murders, 10.2 per 100k people
        1991: 24,700 murders, 9.8 per 100k people
        1997: 18,208 murders, 6.8 per 100k people
        2000: 15,586 murders, 5.5 per 100k people
        2007: 16,929 murders, 5.6 per 100k people
        2014: 14,249 murders, 4.5 per 100k people

        Can you please point out where any of that shows a ‘skyrocket’ increase?

        • Premium User Badge

          Harlander says:

          How about you answer what I actually said, not the voices of the howling ghosts in your skull?

    • Michael Anson says:

      Having just looked at the numbers myself, I would like to point out that the US has twice as many homicides per capita as the UK, that most of these homicides are committed with firearms, and that most of these homicides are caused by acquaintances and not by “home intruders” or “mass shooters.”

      We have a problem, and nobody is willing to drop their rhetoric long enough to come up with a sensible solution.

      • SaintAn says:

        Not really anything that can be done. Guns and ammo will always be available in the US either legally or illegally. Hell, I used to know a kid in middle school that was an illegal gun dealer because we lived in a bad neighborhood. Either guns and ammo gets trafficked in from Mexico, South America and Canada like other illegal stuff people want like drugs funding organized crime even more and allowing only those willing to break the law to have guns while law abiding citizens are defenseless, or we keep selling guns and allow people to protect themselves and feel safe. There will still be constant shootings either banned or unbanned.

        Also, I’m going to go ahead and counter the usual argument made to save me the bother later just incase: Some people like to use island countries like Japan for examples that gun control can work, but it being an island country where surrounding countries have gun bans would make trafficking guns much harder, and there’s not really a demand in their culture so it wouldn’t be worth the bother.

        • malkav11 says:

          link to theonion.com

          It’s hard to say if it would ever be practical to totally eliminate guns from American life, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it wasn’t. But it’s sure as hell practical to take steps to do things like prevent impulse purchases for the purpose of immediate violence (suicide or homicide either one) and deny access to people with a history of violence, not to mention to filter out the sort of firearms that have no practical purpose outside of military engagements. It just can’t be piecemeal across a handful of states. It has to be national. And no, they won’t be totally effective. Yes, it will still be possible to go through illegal channels. But most of the shooters in these incidents trivially purchased their weaponry 100% legally. If you don’t think stricter gun control could have prevented or even reduced some percentage of those incidents, I think you’re being willfully blind.

          • MontereyJohn says:

            Hey, there! Sorry for starting a bit of a debate, but I figure I might as well outline my thoughts here. As scary and tragic as there, semiautomatic rifles and mass shootings shouldn’t be the most urgent concern. Fewer than a quarter-percent of homicides in the US involve a mass killing of any sort. Roughly three percent involve a rifle of any sort, including what are commonly referred to as “assault” rifles (not exactly military rifles due to the lack of select-fire capability, though they are similar in appearance). More than twice as many people are killed with hands and feet as they are with military-styled semiautomatic rifles. Conversely, it’s estimated that between thirty and seventy percent of US homicide is rooted in gang or drug activity. Perhaps finding a solution to that would be a better use of resources?
            Sorry if this bothers anyone, but it’s no use in having a dialogue if people don’t communicate, so I’ll do my best to be clear!

          • malkav11 says:

            You’re right that mass shootings shouldn’t be the biggest concern when it comes to gun violence. There’s a lot more of it that’s accidental, suicide, or domestic, and yes, a fair bit that’s related to criminal activities. All of these could be diminished by gun control (again, not banning, just reasonable barriers to ownership). And that can be done -while- addressing gangs and drug crime. These aren’t either/or propositions.

          • MontereyJohn says:

            You’ve certainly got a point, Malkav. My biggest issue is that no one has offered a method of effectively addressing these concerns while still maintaining individuals’ civil rights. Gun control in the US has been spectacularly ineffective wherever it’s been enacted, be that Illinois, California, New York… heck, even outside the US, Australia confiscated pretty much all civilian firearms but those used by farmers and their crime rate hasn’t dropped noticeably compared to the overall trendline. Accidents are highly publicized but rarely lethal; swimming pools are substantially more dangerous than firearms in terms of accidental deaths. Suicides are a much bigger concern, but considering the myriad ways to end one’s life, taking away one tool isn’t enough to address the root cause. They may not be either-or propositions, but there’s a limited number of resources in the world, and focusing on the bigger issue is much better than doing half a job of both.

          • malkav11 says:

            Piecemeal gun control isn’t very effective because there are no meaningful borders between individual states in the union. For example, I live in Minnesota. For years we had a ban on private individuals buying fireworks. But the thing is, our largest population centers are maybe an hour’s drive from the Wisconsin state line and they didn’t have any such ban. So everyone that wanted fireworks just drove over and bought them in Wisconsin. There were big fireworks emporiums right there on the state line. The same thing happens with guns when one state has gun control laws neighboring states don’t. A federally instituted law would be much more effective because it would be applied nationwide and you’d actually have to go out of the country entirely to avoid it (and could be subject to inspection on the way back in).

            You state that Australia didn’t experience a notable reduction in crime when they did their gun buyback, but that’s not at all what I’ve heard. Maybe, like certain other people in these comments, you’re comparing overall trends instead of gun-related ones. The point of gun control isn’t to stop crime. Obviously there’s still plenty of crime in places where guns aren’t widely available. The point is to reduce deaths. Because guns are a much more effective tool for killing than pretty much any other available to private citizens. There’s a reason that we give them to our soldiers when we send them to war, after all.

            I also can’t say as restricting gun ownership particularly trips my “abuse of civil rights” flags because I’ve never been provided with a convincing reason why the vast majority of people need to own one. I get that there are a substantial number of people who like owning them and use them for things other than murder, and I am personally inclined to let them within reasonable parameters. But I am not convinced they make anyone safer as a personal defense thing (especially if most other folks aren’t running around with guns either), most hunters aren’t hunting to live off the results but as sport (and there’s other ways of hunting animals, come to that), they certainly aren’t going to keep the government away…

          • malkav11 says:

            Re: suicide – yeah, there are other ways, but they’re harder to do and easier to be saved from. If someone really seriously wants to kill themselves, it’s quite probably going to happen regardless, but guns mean one slip into suicidal ideation and you’re quite possibly out. I have friends who are intermittently suicidal and they have told me they’re only still here because there hasn’t been a gun in the house.

          • MontereyJohn says:

            Australian homicides happen along the same trendline as they did before the 1995 Port Arthur Massacre and subsequent crackdown (not buyback in most cases, but confiscation) on gun ownership. (Citation: link to aic.gov.au)It doesn’t seem like much of an improvement to die by the use of a knife versus dying by the use of a gun.

            For need to own a gun, there are a few good examples. The typical ones, hunting, sporting, and self-defense (link to en.wikipedia.org is a good place to start, though as always, Wikipedia should be double-checked) are useful explanations, but beyond that there’s the question of civil rights. Some of the first gun control laws were implemented in the antebellum South to make firearms ownership difficult for the poor, particularly poor blacks. Even today, the impact of gun control laws is disparate, felt more by the poor than the wealthy, and that’s undesirable for obvious reasons.
            The Enlightenment-era concepts of “consent of the governed” and a social contract (on which the United States governing system was largely based) are based on an equity of force between the people and the government. (The Federalist Papers and the other writings of the US founders, particularly Jefferson and Madison, are informative here) More simply put, while a government monopoly on force doesn’t necessarily mean dictatorial rule, civilian ownership of arms is a philosophically and practically vital check on power. A spree killer can kill maybe twenty people. The Soviet Union starved twenty million of them.
            As for efficacy of armed insurrection, I’d like to politely disagree with you. The last few wars the United States have fought, they’ve been opposed by poorly literate, poorly armed, and largely untrained poor. Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, they haven’t exactly been wining those. Nothing terrifies me more than the idea of an insurrection in my home country, but it certainly works.

            The piecemeal explanation always struck me as a hypothetical, frankly; the “gun control hasn’t worked yet, so we simply must implement it more to see if it works better.” It seems as if perhaps we ought to have at least some data showing restriction works before going “all in.”

            As for suicides, Japan is your example there. Near perfect restriction of guns and an incredibly tragic suicide rate. Better to solve the root of the problem and create a society that’s better at heart, than to create a stopgap that hurts a hundred fifty million law-abiding and eminently peaceful US citizens.

            By the way, thanks for being willing to have a civil conversation! In discussions like this, I find it’s rare that they can go on for long without someone calling the other Antichrist.

          • malkav11 says:

            You’re less likely to die if someone attacks you with a knife, though, and “spree knifings” are not a thing.

            I already addressed hunting, sporting and self-defense when I said that I don’t see a valid -need- for guns in any of those cases. The former two are entertainment, the latter a fallacy. Again, I support people being able to use guns for entertainment purposes but I don’t think that desire is a fundamental right or that restricting it with some common sense precautions is a major civil rights concern.

            Similarly, I remain entirely unconvinced that individual ownership of a few guns (or even many) is going to be a meaningful defense against tyranny armed with tanks, helicopters, bombers, drones, etc etc. We have seen insurgencies have some success against foreign occupying powers with very lengthy supply lines, though not generally to the extent of actually ousting them. I’m not sure we’ve seen them successfully overthrow a native government without the active aid of an existing military. It seems particularly unlikely to work in the US given the extent of our military and their technological advantages. But even if we pretend that’s something that’s a valid need, I don’t think it’s at all incompatible with common sense safety provisions like background checks, waiting periods, proscription to people with active restraining orders/domestic violence convictions, and similar.

            And yes, it would be nice to have research on gun violence and approaches to its reduction. But the NRA actively blocks funding for such research, so until we do something about the NRA, that’s not going to happen.

        • kaliper says:

          Guns overwhelmingly flow out of the US into places like Mexico, not the other way around. Why would anyone try to smuggle guns here when they’re easily purchased over the counter with no trouble in many places? It would be way more difficult and costly to obtain black market weapons, which would in fact prevent many criminals from getting their hands on one if that was the only way the could. Also, it’s not just island nations – literally every developed country besides the US and many developing countries have strict gun control and much, much lower rates of shooting deaths than we do

          • airmikee99 says:

            From which orifice did you pull those “facts”?

            In 2014 (the last year for which full figures are available) America’s murder rate was 4.5 per 100,000 people.

            Honduras had 85 per 100k.
            Venezuela had 62 per 100k.
            South Africa had 33 per 100k.
            Colombia had 28 per 100k.
            Brazil had 25 per 100k.
            The Philippines had 10 per 100k.
            Russia had 9.5 per 100k.

            And more than 100 other nations had a higher murder rate than America. Even the murder count (not rate) shows that America is doing better than other nations of similar size. America is ranked #3 in terms of population, but only #10 in murder count.

            The only way someone could say that America literally had a higher murder rate than other developed and developing nations is if they don’t understand the definition of the word ‘literally’.

            Economic disparity and inequality produces America’s average murder rate, not the number of guns.

          • GWOP says:

            None of the countries you mentioned are first world countries, and you haven’t compared the rates of all developing countries (he said ‘many’, not ‘all’, when it came to second/third world states), so you didn’t actually refute kaliper’s point.

          • xyzzy frobozz says:

            airmikee…

            Given that the United States has a higher murder rate than all other OECD countries except Mexico, it’s YOU that “literally doesn’t understand” statistics.

            link to quandl.com

    • SomeDuder says:

      Well, as long as your wise government doesn’t see a problem with letting (potential) terrorists buy guns, then who are we to complain? After all, they are mature people who don’t throw themselves down onto the floor like a toddler when they don’t get their way, nor do they vote themselves into a huge mess like not being able to pay the bills.

      oh wait nvm, they did all those things lmao

      • MontereyJohn says:

        I suppose I didn’t mean for this to start a debate, but something that’s fairly important to most Americans are the guaranteed rights of the accused. The Fifth Amendment of the Constitution states that no individual may have their freedoms restricted without due process of law. People on the “No Fly” or “Suspected Terrorist” lists have not been shown to be guilty of a crime, ergo they may not legally have their rights abridged. In fact, in several cases small children (and eminent politicians) have been added to the no-fly list due to administrative errors. Secret lists ought not to determine an individual’s liberty, nor should folks with the name Muhammad have any fewer freedoms than the rest of us.
        Sorry again! Now let’s go back to talking about games, because we can usually all agree on that. (And that said, most of our politicans are indeed children. But hey, that’s universal.)

  5. dorkandy says:

    I am basically making a high pitched noise in front of the computer as of now: I’ve worked on Just Feel! I’ll tell the team!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE FEATURE!!

  6. Chillicothe says:

    “Gun crime is sky-rocketing in the United States”

    Status quo reinforced.

  7. Doomlord says:

    Wouldn’t be RPS without clueless liberal “experts” wringing their hands about another country’s issues.

    • LionsPhil says:

      Or the right-wing comments that go with them!

      • Flatley says:

        Basic awareness of statistical trends = right-wing? (Murders are not skyrocketing except for in a few cities)

        • GWOP says:

          Oh no, even hard-core right wingers, like Bill O’Reilly or Gretchen Carlson, may sometimes muster enough self-consciousness to realize that they are on the wrong side of history.

          But it takes a special kind of cognitive dissonance to see the people being murdered left and right and go, “This is fine.”

          • Flatley says:

            Your post has nothing to do with mine because I was discussing a verifiable metric (US homicide rate) and you did not reply In kind. I wanted to let you know, however, that the “wrong side of history” meme is smug, inaccurate, and should be retired. You and I don’t know where history is headed; that should be astonishingly clear during this of all weeks.

          • GWOP says:

            You are right, I don’t know where history might be headed, considering now Donald Trump now has a chance of getting into the White House.

        • xyzzy frobozz says:

          So the murder rate is not “skyrocketing”?

          That’s wonderful! But it’s kind of like telling a 400lb man that he doesn’t have a weight problem because it isn’t increasing.

          Lets compare America to some of its peers (rather than barely functioning second and third world countries as has been done below).

          How about we compare the US to other OECD countries? And what do you know?!!?!? It has the second highest murder rate at 5.2/100,000.

          You’re five or more times more likely to be murdered in the US than Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Korea, Slovakia, Italy Ireland, Portugal… the list goes on and on.

          YOU ARE TEN OR MORE TIMES MORE LIKELY TO BE MURDERED IN THE US than…

          The UK
          Germany
          Austria
          Denmark
          Norway
          Spain
          Switzerland
          Japan
          France

          In fact, only one OECD country has a higher murder rate than the USA…. Mexico.

          But congratulations, the rate isn’t increasing! Congratulations, you’re doing better than some countries in South America and Africa.

          link to quandl.com

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      lasikbear says:

      Hi, yes, as an American I would like to confirm that our mass shootings and gun deaths are actually Good, and an important part of our culture. Please be respectful of our right to kill ourselves and others in the manner we choose.

      • airmikee99 says:

        Compared to the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s, yes, America’s murder rate today is definitely good.

        You’re confusing a greater access to information with an increase in crime. Crime has been in a steady decline for decades, you just get to read about that less frequent crime more often thanks to the internet.

        • GWOP says:

          I wish your ISP would stick you with a 10kbps connection at something like $20/month.

          It’s great compared to the 70s and 80s, after all!

  8. Premium User Badge

    Skabooga says:

    I would very much like to second the sentiment that even if I never get around to playing a game from the latest week’s Free Loaders, I’m always glad to read about the games mentioned. And on lazy weekends, I have often trawled previous posts of Free Loaders to play the games I missed the first time around.

  9. Necrourgist says:

    As if prayer or religion solves anything…Pfff…Please…I would have expected better i.e. atheist from you, RPS, instead of getting more exposure for some cruddy “PRAY AWAY GUN VIOLENCE BECAUSE IT TOTALLY WORKS” game. /sigh

    • xyzzy frobozz says:

      This is a troll, right?

      I mean you cannot be that… I mean, you can’t, right?

      • Necrourgist says:

        Not a troll, a pissed off atheist.

        • klops says:

          No need to get angry. The writer wasn’t serious in stopping the gun violence with prayer. It was a joke.

        • malkav11 says:

          The point of the game is that politicians keep “thinking” and “praying” instead of doing something about it.

          • Necrourgist says:

            Thanks for explaining, i am rather sesitive when it comes to glorifying religions, and might not always see the actual point at hand, instead biting my teeth into what is most obvious to me – Something mentioning religions in a good light.

            Sue me, boohoo. Yes i hate religions with a passion and i am open about it. Call me names, you are right whatever names you call me, they all fit. I do not deny being a looser jerk douchebag egoist arrogant […] because i am open about it and accepted who i am.

            Just be glad someone is bothering to shove the uncomfortable truth down deluded peoples throats.

            Yeah…well…that got out of hand on my part…Anyways…*cough* *crickets*

          • Ansob says:

            Ah, you’re a shitty teenaged atheist.

          • Premium User Badge

            lasikbear says:

            Pls play the game and then sit in the corner and be extremely embarassed for at least 5 mins

  10. mutanteggs says:

    Didn’t you know? It takes a crime rate going up to consider guns a significant problem.

    • Ancient Evil says:

      That’s a straw man and I think you know it. I think it’s always valuable to point out how the media, political, and cultural narrative on a wide variety of topics often has no or inverse correlation with the actual hard statistics on the subject.

      In fact, were it a different issue, you’d probably be agreeing with me. But politics has always been about “winning” first and non-partisan deliberation of facts second not even on the fucking radar, so any facts that might politically weaken one’s side are to be held in contempt and avoided like the plague, even in the relatively rare case that one indeed acknowledges them to be, you know, factual.

      But this whole line of discussion is a total waste of time, anyway, because many savvy people have come to realize that the real core of the entire American gun debate is cultural, and in the end really has fuck all to do with the effects of public policy on violence rates. And I’m talking about both sides here.

  11. Eightball says:

    lol @ ArePeeEss trying to wrap their minds about other countries

    Anything to distract from the revolt of the ordinary, decent people of England, eh?

    • Blinky343 says:

      Someone said something bad about guns somewhere on the internet? This will not stand no sir not on my watch

    • bp_968 says:

      I do love seeing all the hand wringing about that. Before the vote it was all “yah democracy! Yah for the power of the common people!” Then when the vote didn’t go the way the liberal elites wanted it became “boo democracy! Those dumb uneducated poor people have no idea what they’ve done! We need to nullify the vote and do what we know is best for them!”.

      As for the first “game” It’s not really even a game. It’s a political statement and slap at religion. But as long as it supports your viewpoint right?