B A N A N A S
Banana Boy by J Martinovsky and C Andreasson
Maggot stomping head smasher. You are Banana Boy. You love bananas but also maggots. Maggots are on the ground and you must eat them by slamming your own face against the floor at high velocity and from increasingly tall heights. Bananas, as we all know, are flying creatures. They must be devoured and transformed into large coins by snatching them in mid air. Your head and face will become covered in blood and exposed bone. Do not let that stop you. The ground will become littered with interfering chainsaws. This is of no concern to you. You are Banana Boy. The maggots will succumb.
Path of the Rabbit by Daniel Linssen
Carroty puzzle tiles. Pop down tiles to lay out a path for this humble hopper, who will follow your directions with an endless thirst. You can quench said thirst at water tiles, but you must also battle foxes to get your strength up. Fighting these cute orange snarlers takes away carrots, which you regenerate with each move. But fighting enough of them will give you a bigger carrot meter. As the space fills up, you need to place new tiles on top of the last set and avoid your bunny standing pointlessly at some edge, forcing a restart. It seems very simple, but it’s a tough one to crack. You need to keep an eye on the upcoming tiles, Tetris style, and plan accordingly. Once you burn through all the tiles, you face the final boss. I hope you have built up enough carrots to fuel that brawl. Another solid freebie from the obscenely prolific Daniel Linsesen.
Dungeon in a Bottle by Andrew Jones and Joe Hanna
Oh no, you’re trapped in a bottle again, you fool. And this time the walls are closing in. Escape from being crushed many times over. Each level sees you trying to platform your way to the nearest exit, using the threatening walls themselves as a means of escape. The timing on your walljumps is a little fiddly and the character likes to stick to things sometimes but these are problems you could overcome. I heard you were the best damn wall-jumper in the academy. Show me what it means to be stuck in a bottle which is also a dungeon.
Spikes ‘n’ Stuff by Alan Hazelden
Spike and crossbow dodger. Puzzle through minimalist rooms of spikes and sharp bolts ejected from the walls. All about timing and positioning. Micro-puzzlers like this enjoy murdering your brain and the later levels here are no exception. I am stumped on one of them that forces me through a narrow passage covered by a crossbow. There’s a little delay after they fire, as they reload the next shot, so I know it’s something to do with that. But I just can’t figure out how to get into the right spot at the right time. Damnation upon thee, tiny puzzle.
Intra-System: Trust Issues by Smoke Some Frogs
Decision-making psychopathy test. There’s a man stuck in a strange complex of rooms and passageways, and you have a machine that lets you talk to him. It’s voice-acted so he chats to you when you press the play button on a big panel in your interface. The machine then gives you information on what the “agent” must do to get to the next room without being “punished”. Then you choose whether to pass that information on reliably to him, or to be a heartless jerk by suggesting the wrong options. I was being very helpful, for instance, and only sent him in the wrong direction that one time just to see what happened. After he screamed with all the intensity of a hyena caught in a bear trap, I resolved to help him out. But then the machine told me that he had to do something which sounded WELL DODGE. So I refused to order him to do it. Turns out, that was a mistake. I had to listen to the poor German fellow die. Whoops.