The Rock, Paper, Shotgun inbox, monitored with terror and suspicion by all four us, has a tendency to fill up. Now, we're very diligent about deleting anything that isn't about getting a bigger willy or inheriting a South African fortune, but occasionally emails about videogames nonetheless manage to reach our eyes. It's almost like people expect us to write about games on this games site. The cheek of it.
Unfortunately, being SeptOctNovember, it's silly season for big game releases, which means we're getting a mite behind on all manner of interesting indie and online fare. Huge apologies to those developers and sites who've sent us these that we are too weak to give each its own post, but let's hope we can make some amends by grouping a few mini-treasures together below for your esteemed delectation.
Karoshi Suicide Salaryman has been speaking deeply to me, given that I've spent pretty much the entirety of this week bed ridden and praying for release from this snotty mortal coil. It's a - hey! there aren't many of these- 2D puzzle-platformer, superficially with the trad. goal of reaching a level exit. The twist is that you can only end a level by killing your character - bad sitcom stuff, where an unhappy protagonist keeps getting interrupted just as he's finally going to the deed. Only with more giant spikes and falling crates. It's kinda crude, but super-clever and there's some excellent ingenuity in making obviously fatal traps as hard to reach as as possible. Particular favourite: firing a gun at a sequence of trampolines then jumping into the ricocheting bullet. It's like Portal, but with more Farewell, Cruel Worlds. Also, it appears to use the incidental music from the Adam & Joe radio show's Text The Nation segment, which is really confusing. (Thanks to Kevin Veale for the tip-off.)
Sanctioned Renegades is an in-browser (using the Unity webplayer thingy, which I'm sure will make someone moan about Linux support or something) mutliplayer FPS with something of a Far Cry (1) aesthetic, somehow squeezed into just 10 megabytes. Quite the technical achievement and... and that's all I can tell you, because the Unity plugin repeatedly crashes on load on my PC. I'm going to speculatively blame Vista 64 for the time being, and hope you have more luck.
Game Krunch is a new webgame portal with myriad broswer-played delights lurking within. I've particularly enjoyed Tactical Assassin Substratum, which is sort of a browser Hitman with stickmen. Your perspective is that of a sniper rifle scope, with everything around it black - so it's a matter of locating your target more than it is of shooting him. With everyone a stickman, your victim is rarely obvious - you need to read to supplied intel to find out what actions will give him away. Dead good, this'un.