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Tactical backstabber I'm Not A Monster infiltrates under the guise of a free weekend

I’m Not A Monster is mostly about mind-games, sometimes shooting stuff with lasers and best when you’re a space-lizard chewing a friend’s face off. Developed by Cheerdealers and released yesterday, it’s a blend of XCOM-style tactics and parlour games like Werewolf. A crew of heroes try to rescue civilians from SPACE DANGER, but two of them are shapeshifting B-movie reptiles. Below, a launch trailer featuring a lot of (beeped) swearing, friendly fire, off-colour jokes and backstabbing which I guess is probably accurate to real online play. It’s also free to try until Sunday.

Despite being a turn-based game, I’m Not A Monster moves at an exciting pace thanks to actions playing out simultaneously, ala Frozen Synapse. Turn timers are also restrictive enough to force snap decisions. You’ve only got a few moments to decide if the buddy sticking close to you is doing so for their own protection, or for a chance to reveal themselves and murder you before scurrying off to convert innocent civilians into more of their treacherous kind. The alien players can see what each other and any converted civilians are up to, while the heroes are limited by fog of war.

I’m Not A Monster made its beta debut back in July, and I enjoyed the couple rounds I played at the time, even if there weren’t a huge number of real human players around. Its bots (filling any empty player slots) play things by-the-book, rushing to complete objectives without any of the doubt or paranoia you’ll get with a proper team of human players. That should be less of an issue for the moment, as the game seems decently populated thanks to this opening free weekend, although I’m curious whether players will be sticking around once people have to pay to get in.

I’m Not A Monster is out now on Steam, and free to try for the next couple days. It costs £8.23/8.63/$10.39, with an extra discount if you own Cheerdealers’s earlier The Thing-inspired Distrust.

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Dominic Tarason

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