I didn’t mean for it to get this bad. They’re just harmless frogs, right? How was I supposed to know they would take over my life like this. I’m warning you, reader. Stay away from the frogs. Do not let them take you. Do not lose your freedom, like I did. Do not become a servant to their digital whims. No, don’t click to find out more. Get away. Get away.
Frog Pets by Nathalie Lawhead
Amphibian companions for your desktop. Not content with creating the Electric Love Potato, Lawhead has provided three frog friends for your computer. Enjoy their company as you work, browse the internet and generally get on with life. But first you must find them, hidden in a warren of folders, sub-folders and zip files “for their protection”. When you finally do uncover the frogs, you will find them very demanding mascots, always asking for food or hugs or to be comforted. “I am hungry,” squeaks Crackers. “I need love,” says Princess. “Physical contact at this moment is crucial,” says Mr Croak. But when you fulfill their needs they are very grateful. “That is exactly what I need at the present moment,” they say in their troubling robot voices. Now crack on with your work, safe in the knowledge that these wonderful creatures are –
“Look at all that valuable information.”
What did he say?
“Subjugate the data.”
Oh god, what are they?
Awkward Dimensions Redux by Steven Harmon
Pitfall of dreams. The sleeping scenarios of a single human, complete with all the surreal occurrences and logic that flows with them. This is more a collection of short scenes than a single idea, all woven together by passing through doors or falling into vast pits. Some of them are simple A to B journeys, like the one about being a bull in Pamplona during the encierro. Others expect you to discover some clue to a puzzle, like the one about waking up in a locked room with a self-destruct countdown. And some just want you to stay still and enjoy the scenery, like a simple day at the beach. The weirdness flows for quite a while here, featuring a record player with a woman’s legs, a picture frame that reveals secrets, and eerie voices surrounding you in the woods.
Try Harder by Noodlecake
You are not trying hard enough. We’ve all known it for years. Have a go at this endless runner and try harder. You can never reach the end, obviously. There is no end. But you can try harder. Tap the space bar to jump over the spikes and pits. Pick up power ups to activate your hidden talents. Double-jump to safety, glide with your wooden board, or transform into a tough ball immune to spikes. Are you rubbish at endless runners? Fear not! This ones leaves the corpses of your previous attempts behind, so you can stand on top of them. Your self-improvement is dependent on past mistakes. Metaphorical! And when you pass the point of your previous best distance, you become a whirling rainbow trail of confidence. Hooray!
Rainy Day by Thais Weiller and Amora B
Interactive story about trying to get out of bed in the morning. It’s raining outside and you really ought to be in work. But look at how wet and horrible the world is. Pry your way through this short story about making coffee, getting showered and wasting time on your phone in an attempt to shake off stress and anxiety. Weeeeeeee! Everything feels like a slog. At one point in the story there is a taxi that will take you to the office and I empathise with the protagonist’s thoughts in the back seat. “The driver seems ok,” we’re told. “He barely speaks and pretends I don’t exist which is the best quality any driver can ever have.” There are a few mistakes – translation errors it looks like – but the core of the tale is a familiar (and serious) one. Forcing yourself through the day as best you can, when all you want to do is stay in bed and hide.
Magical Sound Car! by monoelpdb
Musical platformer for children 21 years and over. While this platform-hopping game is wrapped up in a pleasant little package of childish cuteness, it is also fiendishly difficult. You are a small toy car that makes music as it moves – move faster and the music goes faster. The black-eyed children of this world have made 40 courses for you to navigate by leaping over pits and spikes. But what starts off as an easy hop, skip and jump to the finish line very quickly becomes a horrible obstacle course of crumbling blocks, bouncy springs, and irksome conveyor belts. The car itself is a slidey, difficult-to-control vehicle, and some of the landing spots so narrow, that just reaching the half-way point is something you will need to try again and again. All presented in monochrome, this is a simple game with a masochistic heart.
Distructanks by Studio Besus
Blow up all the things. Is there something over there that has not been blown up? You should blow that up. You are a tank and that is what tanks do. But watch out. There are other tanks. Grey tanks. And they are trying to blow YOU up. This will not stand. Blow them up and then blow everything up because only when everything is blown up will you get your time score and move onto the next level where you can blow up all the other things which require to be blown up. Trees? Blow them up. Houses? Blow them up. Airports? Blow them up. If you cannot blow things up then what kind of tank are you? Why, barely a tank at all.