Posts Tagged ‘review’

Wot I Think: Learning electronics with Bomb Squad Academy

If there’s one thing I’m sick of, it means I’ve had some sort of head injury and forgotten the many, many, copious things I’m also sick of. But amongst their number is the cavalcade of recent games that feel the need to try to trick me into learning computer programming. You know, I’m good thanks. I’m 40 this year, my brain has pretty much established over multiple attempts that it just isn’t willing to let in computer programming, along with French, the difference between “affect” and “effect” [not to mention “defuse” and “diffuse” -ed.], and the HTML for embedding an email address. You program the games, I’ll play them. Ta.

Anyway, so there’s a nice new puzzle game out called Bomb Squad Academy [official site], a game about defusing bombs against the clock, and – WAIT A SECOND! This game’s teaching me electronics! Why I oughtta… Read the rest of this entry »

Wot I Think: Excellent physics-puzzler Snake Pass

Smarter than half a dozen BioShocks despite looking a bit like it fell from a lost GameCube promotional disc, Snake Pass [official site] is an animal physics game without the slapstick comedy that often entails. (Tail, like a snake has).

I’m not sure if it’s best referred to as a platformer or a puzzle game. The main activity in Snake Pass is progressing from one platform to another, but where historically (hiss, like a snake) platformers involve high-speed bounding from place to place, this is about slow-speed slithering, climbing and clenching. You’re a snake, see. Snakes don’t jump, apart from in that bit in David Attenborough when one of them snatches a hummingbird out of the air or something.

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Wot I Think: Thimbleweed Park

In Thimbleweed Park [official site], few things are what they appear to be. The game, which reunites Ron Gilbert with his Maniac Mansion co-designer Gary Winnick, is a point and click comedy-mystery that looks like a relic from the past. Or, more accurately, like memories of the past; it has handsome lighting and a level of visual detail that actually fills in the blanks that memory often papers over.

Attractive as it is, should such pixels please your eye, it’s the quality of the story and the puzzles that really count. On one of those fronts, Thimbleweed eventually finds a way to go above and beyond anything I expected from it, but the combination of broad jokes and mystery-thriller sometimes creates confusion and frustration in both the narrative and the puzzling along the road.

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Premature Evaluation: PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds

Every week we dump Brendan out the back of a plane and into the hotbed of gunfire that veterans know only as ‘early access’. This week, the competitive murderfields of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds [official site].

I’m halfway across the river when the net starts closing in. A huge electric field looms up behind me, sparkling and fizzing and nipping at my heels as I swim for my life. Having just dodged a player driving by in his jeep, I was now going to die of wounds slowly inflicted over time by the game itself, simply for not being in the right place. I kicked and swam, even as the electric field overtook me and my screen started to slowly bleed. If I didn’t reach the safe zone soon – marked by a white circle on the mini-map, I’d be dead. Oh well, I figured, there are less interesting ways to go.
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Wot I Think: Beat Cop

It’s time to walk the streets (well, street) of mid-80s New York as a down-on-his-luck patrol officer, handing out parking tickets, and er, handing out some more parking tickets. But! But handing out parking tickets while people all around you shout racist and sexist stuff, because it’s set in the ’80s! It’s Beat Cop [official site]. Something something Senator, something something diamonds, something something parking tickets. Here’s wot I think. Read the rest of this entry »

How I (almost) learned to love Freestyle Football

For years now, I’ve been looking for an arcade football game that has some of the best qualities of SWOS combined with an RPG-lite career structure. A niche desire maybe, but for a while New Star Soccer happily occupied that niche. Now that the series has moved to mobile, I’m left with an empty hole and I recently turned to Freestyle Football [Steam page] to fill it. It’s a free to play multiplayer football game with anime style characters.

What could possibly go wrong?

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Wot I Think: Rain World

A trickle of wholesome GIFs has been tantalising us with post-apocalyptic platformer Rain World [official site] and its adorable protagonist the slugcat for some time now. It’s out tomorrow and I have been hopping and swimming and munching my way through its dripping, humid world of predator and prey over the past week to tell you wot I think. First: I am certain it’s going to become a cult hit with a crowd of hardcore, mystery-loving obsessives behind it. But secondly, it has also left me with the impression of a badly missed opportunity. Equal parts astounding and hands-tearing-out-your-hair frustrating, this adventure, like the slugcat itself, is a bit of a mix. Read the rest of this entry »