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Live Free Play Hard: Flowers to Womans, Guns to Mans

This universe is overcrowded

The most fragile truck in the world. Multiplayer temporal loop. MALE CRIME WORLD SIMULATION.

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This one originates with RPS’s very own Cara Ellison, who one day received an auspicious email from a Male and tweeted about it. Then someone turned that tweet into a game. How? MAGIC

I am pleased to finally play a game for womans. All these MALE CRIME WORLD SIMULATIONS are so tricky, with their gun puzzles (Puzzle #1: How to bullet mans...)

I emit a “subtle floral fragrance”. I pick 200 flowers. There are several zones: market, forest, meadow, ghost town.

Meadow is best zone for womans. It has many flowers. A flower is like a bullet from the gun of the ground, except instead of enabling the dominant members of society least likely to be penalized for the discharge of firearms in a gun control and legal system rooted in racism, it delivers happiness to my heart.

As I am not a mans, I am unable to review the male content in this game. I assume it is of the highest quality.



Moirai by Chris Johnson, Brad Barrett, John Oestmann

You live in a pastoral village. A woman has gone missing. The priest urges you to find her. They say she went inside a dark, rat-infested cave.


This is a perfect asynchronous multiplayer loop. Each player supplies text for the next player. I like the nature of the prompts.

I wouldn't call this a game about moral choice. There is a choice, but it's highly ambiguous (assisting suicide, under such uncertain conditions, hardly has an objective answer.). Instead, I would call this a game about judgment. Judged for explaining yourself under suspicious circumstances. Judged under the same circumstances under which you judged someone else, just with different words.

That's a key problem with justice, right? The ways in which people in identical circumstances can experience different outcomes. The only factor in this game is how well you advocate for yourself. What you actually do in that cave doesn't matter, except to yourself.

I'm really interested in the different responses people gave, and if there were any common appeals or explanations made. I tried to be as level-headed and convincing as possible.

At the very moment I was writing about Moirai, Anthony Burch tweeted at me to tell me he'd spared my life, saying 'Not to mention you used proper punctuation and grammar which made me think, " this is clearly a part of the authored script"'. Now I'm thinking about a game where the typing is imperfect, where your ability to self-advocate is hampered by stress...



Night Rider Turbo by SOS and Svetlana

Doomed driving simulator on an 80’s highway. I say doomed because this is the most fragile truck in the world.

I have a lot of anxiety around driving. I don't drive. I refuse to drive. It feels like an unspeakable responsibility with too many variables that need to be just right or I kill everyone around me.

So this is actually fairly pleasurable for me. When things just give in to entropy. Maybe these disastrous manipulation sims are appealing because they release that tension. Safe spaces to break things. Safe spaces to fail. I could see a whole line of therapeutic failure sims for common activities like going to the supermarket and having a basic conversation with another human being.



Pamela’s Adventures in DreamLand by thecatamites

You play as a spidery nightmare infesting the dreams of a little girl. Shit's fucked up.



Galah Galah by Jake Clover

Sometimes I feel like a video of a game is more interesting than a game itself. So I wanted to try and make a game that is like a video of unfinished games.

A series of abject failures in a hideous scifi universe. This universe is overcrowded, violent, covered in metal. As in many of Jake's games, I feel like part of a system that goes on with or without me. A citizen, not a hero. A citizen in a miserable empire where no one can wake up from the haze of hellish routine. It actually reminds me of real life more than most games.

These games are driven by the expected behavior of the player.

My absolute favorite scene is the one with the green and pink amphibians. It films itself, the constraints of the controls creating the appropriate outcome.

In another scene, I am a figure on the deck of a spaceship. I move back and forth, searching for interactivity. When I find none, I realize I’ve been causing my character to pace back and forth nervously. When interactivity is suspended, the movements of my character become meaningful in of themselves. Clover has a habit of putting me on the spot with his games. It's very stagelike, the way he has me focusing on my physical performance.



Mashkin Sees It Through by thecatamites

It was November when this game crossed my path. Permit me to elaborate--or perhaps this modern century permits no such elaboration, requiring a penetrating thrust to the heart of the matters at hand, in the manner of linkbait and other such licentious grottos of the plane we, or should I say, us stalwart denizens, know as the realm of the virtual. Suffice to say it can be played with the most common protuberances of mind and body. The democratic impulse of Mashkin Sees It Through is this: the dying can play it as well as the living.

In Mashkin Sees It Through, my dear reader may note an abundance of text--a method of communication more commonly associated with street signs, cookbooks, and skywriting. That’s all very well for a series of symbols buoyed up by the brothy smells of the hearth, or the sensual, provocative smell of clouds. But how well does it translate (dare I say transmute?) to the fetid oubliette of the reader, an environment characterized by waste, garbage, and coagulated depression? Can videogames save global hunger warming? Have I hit my word count yet? Yes.


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