Posts Tagged ‘best of’

A Best Of (Ctd.)

Posted by (twitter: @yr_property)
Sunday, September 7th, 2014 7:12 am

This is my fifth (I think) ‘best of’ post. You can view the past few on my LD page.

Warp Paint — An extremely well-designed puzzle-platformer. The objective is simply to throw an orb to the correct destination. But the level designs can be deviously clever in their uses of colour and various other elements.

 

 

The Lion’s Song — A romantic game set in the epicentre of Romantic and Classical music, Austria, with a player character who composes (presumably) Romantic music. Despite this seeming bombardment of romance, that aspect never feels overwhelming. Each layer is romance is placed subtly, to such an extent that its romantic elements won’t be at all evident at the start of the game. It arrives spontaneously, a genuine romantic spark. And that is why I love the game. (It’s beautiful graphics and atmospheric audio only make it even better.)

 

World of Beatrice, the Girl Next Door — Engagingly written and attractively presented feminist game highlighting our anachronistic view of women. I rather like the fact it portrays the prejudices against all the choices women make, be they progressive or traditional.

 

 

Mor — I need only to reprint the description: “In this videogame you play a fetus. You try to escape your mothers body through her anus.  Your dead twin’s ghost chases you on the way, throwing drugs and cigarettes at you.” Funny, addictive, oozing with style. 

 

 

 

Superdimensional — A moody, sort of ethereal game with a very innovative mechanic. I hate writing about games like this, because the gameplay is really bloody difficult to describe. I guess you rotate shards of transdimensional matter that expose you to a secondary world, without knowing which one is in fact real. It’s easier if you just go play it.

 

Galactic Bonding — An adorable little game in which you try to match your dad’s silly faces as a kind of bonding exercise. It’s cute in its simplicity, with endearingly childish sketches and easily accessible gameplay.

 

 

Dear Sister — Based on a real life incident, this is a sentimental game about a sister passing on, the connection between our life and the next. Admittedly, as an irate anti-theist this premise instinctively causes a grinding of the teeth, but taken as an emotional venture with real-life connections, I thought it was an admirable game with some powerful music. (It is also, doubtless to many people’s disgust, a “walking simulator”.)

 

Which is my cheeky way of bringing the subject onto one of my games. I just released a second game for the RuinJam 2014, a jam to celebrate the imagined demise of the games industry as a result of social justice games, “non-games”, queer & feminist games etc. The game is a “text-only stream-of-consciousness (and heavily queered) walking simulator”. You can play it here.

It also serves as a companion piece to my LD entry, Sleep.

Okay, the obligatory plug is over…

If you think I’d enjoy your game or for some unfathomable reason want to talk to me, please leave a comment either here or on my game page. I will endeavour to play your game, though I’m at a point now where my comments are getting increasingly abbreviated. So I’m sorry if my feedback is too terse.

I will, however, be making a final ‘best of’ — which I not-at-all narcissistically title “The SNOOTHAs” — late in the coming week. A kind of best of the best, I’ll put together winners for each category and honourable mentions, all in a snazzilly formatted blog post. If you want a chance to win an unquestionably-prestigious SNOOTHA award, then please bring my attention to your game. You can view last year’s SNOOTHAs here.

–Snoother

A Best Of

Posted by (twitter: @yr_property)
Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014 2:34 pm

This is my fourth ‘best of’ post. Hereafter I’m abandoning the categorised approach, or else I’ll risk leaving shit out. Please do check out my past posts: the best romantic/erotic games, the best sci-fi games, and a mini-feature on a fascinating little game titled Any Moment.

Where Are Your Friends Tonight — This is one of those games that many people can doubtless relate to. Who hasn’t been moving on in life, finding out that you’re no longer tethered to certain friends as once was the case. Reunions become loquacious bouts of nostalgia but nothing more, until gradually the people you once new most intimately just fade from your life. And it’s all done with nice-looking graphics and a simple, accessible social network-esque interface.

 

Circling Circles and Oval Opposites — These are two of a perfect pair. Apparently both developers know eachother and decided to pair up to create two “connected”, thematically similar games set in the same world. Probably one of the most inventive takes on the theme I’ve seen. And the games work really well too. They’re minimalist, casual games with distinctive designs and moods.

Familiaris — A gorgeous Twine game — both visually and narratively — centred round  a dog and his owner. It’s all written from the dog’s perspective, which makes for an interesting, and ultimately engaging experience that I can heartily recommend.

 

 

Intranet — Another Twine game, but this one’s much more creepy than it is cute. And it uses the theme wonderfully. I don’t really want to say much more. You’re better off playing this one without any foreknowledge.

 

A Ludic Proof of the Difficulties Inherent in Finding a Proper Skull — Few! That’s one hell of a title. And it’s one hell of a game too. Like with the last one, I’m going to reserve to right to say no more. Narrative-based games like this are best played with a wholly unaffected mindset, I think. Just go play it. (You might not get it immediately though. It has a fascinating, but at first kind of subtle, take on the theme.)

 

Connecting — An involving conversation game written with utter believability, and set against pleasant graphics and atmospheric audio. You are texting your partner after a trip visiting a past love (or old fling; it’s not overly clear, nor does it need to be). The text messages can take multiple directions, and all the one’s I’ve found are engaging and affecting.

 

Alice Anxiety — Beautiful artwork, stunningly moodful music and notably interactive for a visual novel. Sadly, the game is very much still in embryonic form — just as things start to get really interesting, it ends. The developer obviously ran out of time. But what is here will keep you engaged, just be prepared for a lacklustre ending. I truly hope a post-Jam version is in the making.

 

And if you want to play my game, you can visit its page here. If you leave a comment I can promise I’ll check out your game and repay the favour. It just might take me a couple of days, considering my to-play list is expanding at a stupid rate.

And also because (self-serving plug coming up) I’m a bit distracted with the RuinJam 2014, for which I entered A Tale of the Cave, a hyperlink-based hardcore-but-short cave-crawl nearly entirely written using William McGonagall’s tremendously inept poetry. And I intend to make another game for jam in the next few days. I encourage anyone else interested to join me in ruing the game industry.

–Snoother

Without Comparison: “Any Moment” by Jakub Koziol

Posted by (twitter: @yr_property)
Sunday, August 31st, 2014 12:30 pm

[Warning: the following is mildly spoilerific, but personally I think it’s about as spoiler-filled as your average game review. So if you want to enter this game completely unaffected, go play it first.]

Any Moment is an entry that is completely different. As far as I can tell, it bears no resemblance to any other game this LD. I think the best way to describe it would be the ‘weirdest’ or the most ‘experimental’ game, rather than the most ‘innovative’ . A game that I struggle to find a comparison for.

How many of us just have to keep connected to social media? The restless checking for new emails and messages, and the serious impediment this can be on your creativity. Any Moment centres on this, and then branches out into the author’s submergence into depression. This is interesting and evocative by itself; however, what makes it so special as to be considered ‘without comparison’ is the way it approaches this subject. There is only ever one screen. There is only ever one method of interaction. There is only ever one path. Profound minimalism. How else do I describe it?

Well, okay, I can maybe do a bit better… It is an autobiographical conversation game where you listen to the author detail the aforementioned problems, spoken with the genuineness and austerity of unscripted, stream-of-consciousness speech (even though I suspect it was partially written). The only occasions at which the player interacts is when a question is posed, at which point the player can press the spacebar when they are ready to continue listening. For instance, at one point you are asked, “have you ever lost interest in something you really loved?” The audio pauses; a prompt arises waitingSpace for your to press enter. The player pauses, contemplating and reflecting until they are ready to move on. For me, this was a profound method of interaction, unlike any other this LD. It doesn’t require choices and consequences, but it still engages the player to an extent much greater than many other entries combined. As patronising as this may sound, it forces you to ‘think’, to involve yourself.

There is also an interesting overriding theme in the game: the desire to be listened to. In games we expect the player to be the ones listened to. The player is the one who inputs, and the game acts accordingly. In this case the opposite is true. So then, I hear some of you cry, why on earth is it a game? Well, the player sets the pacing. They choose when to progress, and they are being directly interacted with by the author — there isn’t even a fourth wall to break. And the player listens. For once we holster our expectations of power and listen. I feel that this is an important message, ever more potent as more and more gamers are demanding games tailored to the  player, rather than games directed and authored by, well, the author(s).

So, an autobiographical minimalist game with no agency that demands passiveness on the part of the player. Yet it works. Go figure.

On a sidenote: this is the kind of game that some people may consider to be “ruining the game industry” and causing its impending “demise”. So in the spirit of hyperbolic dystopianism, I recommend everyone enter the Ruin Jam 2014, a jam to celebrate games that “contribute to the downfall of video games”. Hopefully I’ll get the time to do my little bit in aid of the forthcoming apocalypse. (And thank you to Sunflower for bringing my attention to it.)

Also, this is the third ‘best of’ list I’ve written (well, in this case it’s more of a mini-feature). Please do check out my past two lists on the best romantic/erotic entries and the best sci-fi entries.

–Snoother

Sci-Fi: A Best Of

Posted by (twitter: @yr_property)
Saturday, August 30th, 2014 5:36 am

The second in my ‘best of’ lists for this Ludum Dare. You can view the last one, which was on romantic and erotic entries, here.

Cesarino’s Friendly Interplanetary Delivery Services — Even without acknowledging that the game’s title is nonpareil, this is a truly fun piece. You perform the various deliveries, bumping humorously into various planets and asteroids, while also eliminating all the competition ships with your laser guns and upgrading your own ship along the way.

 

Capsule — A really amusing one-man-in-space story that will keep you captivated from start to finish. Made in Twine, it’s also one of the best looking text games I’ve ever seen, packed with dazzling css effects, cool animated gifs, and a decidedly professional font and colour scheme.

 

 

 

Parallel Rift — A high-octane platformer where you repeatedly traverse the level, each time creating a clone of yourself who performs your last navigation of the level. But you can’t come into contact with any of your past selves, quickly ramping up the challenge and making for some addictive gameplay. An interesting take on the theme, I thought.

 

 

A New and Beautiful World — An admirably large visual novel with only one occasion for interactivity. To many that sentence would be an indictment of the game — but trust me, it shouldn’t be. That one moment of interactivity is more profound than the combined gameplay of many other entries. And the story, set decades in the future,  is an engaging, sentimental one of the relationship between two brothers and a father.

 

Crece-above-Clouds — A kind of space-island tower-defence game, but with various peculiar characters who’s dialogue is always engaging and quite often amusing. And the music — oh my, the music. Definitely worth checking out.

 

 

Crisis Culture — An interplanetary visual novel ridiculous in tone and lush with style, both through its odd, distinctive characters and its highly stylised graphics.

 

 

And if you feel so kind, you could also check out my game. It isn’t sci-fi, however — there’s not much science to it, and only half of it’s fiction… But it is kind of surreal, pretty intimate, and I’m proud of it at least.

–Snoother

Love and Lust: A Best Of

Posted by (twitter: @yr_property)
Wednesday, August 27th, 2014 4:14 pm

So like last year, I’m going to make lists of my favourite entries every few days. But unlike last year, I’m going to try and categorise a few of the lists, especially as this theme seems to have inspired people to work within specific genres (sci-fi and romance come to mind).

It goes without saying that just because I played your game and it isn’t on any list, that doesn’t ipso facto mean I don’t think it’s any good. Sometimes it’s just down to preference, other times it was just hard to pick which ones to include, and very occasionally I may even forget to bookmark your entry.

This list is one for the best romantic/erotic games I’ve played so far, somewhat selfishly chosen considering it’s the genre I wrote my game in. (And yes, that was a not-very-subtle plug, but I had to put it somewhere 😉 )

13 Minutes of Light Okay, normally I’ll refrain from ranking anything on these lists, but I can’t help myself announce how much I like this game. It is my favourite so far. Beautifully told, 13 Minutes of Light is a romantic visual novel played through a clever letter-writing mechanic and set against a tumultuous political backdrop. I will be replaying this game to find all five ending. And then I’ll probably replay it some more.

 

 

Zanlings Match by Franklins Ghost — I’m not quite sure how to advertise this one. A weird dating show simulator where you may end up marrying a towering pink blob monster. Wait, that’s not quite it. A carefully stylised romance that will amuse, touch and perplex. Slightly better. But not perfect. Just go play it — trust me.

 

 

Our Worlds by Davi Santos — A dual-screen boy-girl romance where you control each character separately in an effort to get them to “connect”. Loads of games LD have gone for this, but so far I think this one comes out top. It looks great, with a distinct palette for both characters, and the mood is then refined thanks to the great music.

 

Thinkings by Lythom. This game also follows the two-avatars-connecting-with-one-another-via-puzzles template, but does it in a uniquely abstract way. You have some nice quotes to inspire solution to each puzzle, and each puzzle is an attempt to deepen the connection between these two pentagonal creatures. It doesn’t even have to be viewed as a romance — but that’s the way I interpreted it.

 

Secret Place by M James Short — A piece of Twine erotica about existential lust, with some very evocative lines: “early wetness as you melt inside me”, “a silent hiss of chemical infatuation”.

 

If I encounter more enticing romantic and/or erotic entries I’ll put up a part 2 to this list. And if you’ve made a game within the genre that you’d like me to check out, please do leave a comment!

–Snoother

[ETA: I got in a slight kerfuffle  (it’s getting late here) and had to repost this. I hope I haven’t annoyed anyone by doing so.]

The SNOOTHAs

Posted by (twitter: @yr_property)
Saturday, May 17th, 2014 2:32 pm

The SNOOTHAs is a self-described prestigious ceremony set up to award Ludum Dare entrants for their efforts. It may or may not be real. The “S” stand for Snoother (me, of course) and the “A” stands for award. I can’t for the life of me be bothered to fill in the rest.

The awards ceremony was held in a musty, windowless room by the “Robed Ones” — a bunch of self-appointed game critics donning brown, hooded robes. They quipped back and forth about “innovation”, “agency”, “underlying messages”, “immersiveness” — all that stuff. After weeks of sleepless deliberation, they finally reached a judgement. For each category they have assigned an overall winner and a selection of honourable mentions, listed alphabetically. Here are the results:


 

EXCELLENCE IN INNOVATION

Winner: And the Moment is Gone

An introverted and experimental conversation game. It brilliantly depicts the pains and frustrations of so many conversations by using an innovative game mechanic. The Robed Ones — for whom the voice of love often calls, only to find it’s a wrong number — felt they could particularly relate to the game.

 

Honourable Mentions: A Day in the Life; I Remember Alice; The Loudest Ballerina; The PondSpace to Go; Substratum; Tenkosei Robo


EXCELLENCE IN FUN

Winner: Gravity

A ridiculously addictive game in which you descend below the surface to collect all the artefacts, reveal the ending and, of course, beat the high score. The Robed Ones stayed up way past their bed time playing this one.

 

Honourable Mentions: Beneath the Ice; Black Bile, Inhuman Circuits; Coin Diver; Doomsday Bunker; Mimic of the Deep; The Pond; Senilescape; Substratum; Tenkosei Robo


EXCELLENCE IN USE OF THEME

Winner: Not All of Them Died

A chilling and beautifully-minimal use of theme. It is “a game celebrating industrialised warfare” in which you walk through a vast cemetery of deceased military personnel, all individually named, including rank and date of death.

 

Honourable Mentions: A Day in the LifeAbstraction; And the Moment is Gone; Black Bile, Inhuman Circuits; Castle Engineer; Heart of the CardsThe Loudest Ballerina; RMBR; Series of Choices


EXCELLENCE IN GRAPHICS

Winner: Wunderheilung

Wunderheiling has some gorgeous art with a gently-surreal touch. The gameplay consists of examining peculiar creatures for medical problems, virtually forcing you to stare at each fabulous pixel cluster. While playing, the Robed Ones were gazing endlessly into their computer screens and drooling slowly — oh wait, they do that anyway.

 

Honourable Mentions: Gravity; Last Dive; The Pond; Seven Souls; Tenkosei Robo; Watch Your Step


EXCELLENCE IN AUDIO

Winner: Space to Go

A one-button music game — doesn’t sound like it should work, right? But oh my it does. With each spacebar press you control the pace of the music, moving forwards through this abstract plane and unexpectedly discovering a narrative. Just sublime.

 

Honourable Mentions: Any Ship Can Be a Minesweeper… Once; Coin Diver; Fragment; Gravity; In the Black; Last Dive; Magma; Mimic of the Deep; Tenkosei Robo


EXCELLENCE IN HUMOUR

Winner: Black Bile, Inhuman Circuits

The humour is so incisive and devious, thanks largely to how well-written it is. Loads of subversions of tropes and referential humour, but, as I said, it’s done so well. You experience that which is “beneath the surface of the body, in the realm of bodily humors: black bile, yellow bile, phlegm, and blood.” (The Robed Ones nod along, frothing.)

 

Honourable Mentions: Any Ship Can Be a Minesweeper… Once; Orlok’s Ordeal; The Sadness of Rocky Barbato; The Surface; Wunderheilung


EXCELLENCE IN MOOD

Winner: The Pond

This isn’t an outright mood piece: you have to sustain life in the pond for as long as possible by feeding the fish and moving the water. But it’s minimalism and life-and-death theme makes it remarkably evocative. Playing it feels serene, sombre, wistful. As the second-counter moves steadily onwards and your pond life begins to die away, you feel dejected — if only life weren’t so ephemeral.

 

Honourable Mentions: A Happy Place; Black Bile, Inhuman Circuits; Gravity; I Remember Alice; Last Dive; Mimic of the Deep; Not All of Them Died; Sopora


BEST GAME OF LUDUM DARE 29

Winner: The Loudest Ballerina

So cute and well-executed: a game about ballet and a giant monster. Intrigued? You should be. For goodness sake, go play it! Even the Robed Ones love it — and getting them to abandon their hypermasculine gamer culture and do ballet is indeed an achievement.

 

Honourable Mentions: And the Moment is Gone; Black Bile, Inhuman Circuits; Gravity; Last Dive; The Pond; Tenkosei Robo; Wireside


MY GAME

And what post would be complete without some aggressive self-promotion? This is, oh kind, generous reader, my game. A game that — wait for it — looks beneath the surface of an FPS.

Okay, in all seriousness I’d be really grateful for anyone to check it out. I put quite a bit of effort into it and there’s an important underlying message. It’s a text-based second-person shooter that explores the worst aspects of violent video games and the culture surrounding them.

 

–Snoother

Is it already too late? Nope. Time for a Best Of!

Posted by (twitter: @tolicious)
Friday, May 16th, 2014 6:57 pm

Woah! Look at all those games!

Hey folks! So, this time I’ve only rated 82 games. Shame on my, I know – I’m busy with my Master’s Thesis, but apart from that, I really have no excuses. I didn’t think I’d actually get around to do a Best Of list this time, but since those games are just so incredibly great I’ve done one anyway now!

So here’s a list of the best and/or most interesting games I’ve played – and so should you, in my opinion! But hey, I know it’s only three days left, so just pick the cherries. (Hint: They are all cherries.)

Excellence in EVERYTHING

Dig Hard by petey123567
Have you ever wanted to save the PRESIDENT from EARTH’S EVIL CORE and the UNDERGROUND DINOSAURS wielding BADASS WEAPONS? Sure you have! And even if not, this game will teach you why you SHOULD want that. It’s just so much fun even if when you inevitably die in mere seconds – and it feels more juicy than any fruit you’ll ever come across!

Planet Corp. by Maschinen-Mensch
Planet Corp is pretty short compared to the other games in this category, but what it does, it does really well. You are drilling different planets in our solar system for resources in a totally safe way (that involves throwing freakin’ drilling bombs down on them). But hey, the TV says it’s fine! Which it will in fact do ingame. The cutscenes are hilarious.

The Valley Rule by Raiyumi
I sincerely believe that the two creators of this game didn’t get ANY sleep, because there is no way they could’ve finished The Valley Rule otherwise. This game isn’t just the very definition of polish, it’s also incredibly big and a lot of fun! What this game lacks in innovation, it makes up in sheer production values. (And I still want the OST for it. Please.)

Behind Mirror by SaintHeiser
So, your friend just got his reflection stolen, and you want to catch the thief who is underwater. You can’t though, because your reflection is blocking you! So now your goal is to become a vampire, because well, vampires don’t have reflections, right? Combine this premise with lovely vector-art-pixel-graphics (is that a thing now?), cool music and the hardest jumps in this LD edition and you get Behind Mirror.

Rosa Neurosa by Wertle
In the words of the game’s creators, Rosa Neurosa is a “digging/mad libs/improv game.” I can’t find words for how awesome it is that they actually managed to pull of a digital single player improv game that is fun and works well, haha. Awesome graphics, great music and the option to actually share the story that you write seals the deal for me. (Try it! Post your endings here, please!)

Excellence in humor

NOPE by shadow64
I- I really, don’t know what to say about this game without spoiling anything. It’s Monty Python-esque. It’s short. It’s extremely funny. I promise you’ll like it!

Inside Look Activity Book by rylgh
The same thing applies to the Inside Look Activity Book, actually! The humor might be a biiiit more twisted and dark, but hey, it’s a book for children, right? What could possibly go wrong?

Excellence in storytelling/atmosphere

The Stanley Enigma by nddrylliog
Ah, the Stanley Enigma. You had a pretty bad dream about your friend Stanley dying, but dreams don’t come true, right? And I mean, who’d hurt Stanley anyway? Hum. Who indeed. You better check. Maybe you’ll find out in the ever branching storylines of The Stanley Enigma, a brilliant dialogue game with (as one commenter rightly remarks) Kentucky Road Zero vibes and over 1000 lines of text.

The Westport Independent by Double Zero One Zero
This game has a “Papers, Please?” vibe to me, and that’s definitely a good thing. Less good is that you’re running a newspaper which is due to be closed by an censoring antagonistic government. You’ve still got a few weeks left though – so what exactly will you print?

In Hiding by Sheepolution
Sssh. Everything will be alright. If you don’t get found, that is. Slightly scary, pretty atmospheric and the coolest effect for ingame soundeffects that I’ve ever seen.

Seven Souls by BrothersT
This is one of those games that I really want to be finished. Seven Souls is a storytelling game where you play a very nice creature which only wants to play with those other characters. Preferably in the water. No ulterior motives, I promise! A clean art style and great writing make this top list material, even if unfinished. (Also I love the accent of the creature.)

Excellence in audio

Orlok’s Ordeal by Davelope
The gameplay is fun on its own, but DAMN! This opening! Awesome voice acting combined with expressive story book pictures and dramatic music, this is just perfect. (Oh, and I love those paintings ingame. And the ending, haha.)

Ripple Runner by DDRKirby(ISQ)
A one (sorry, two. Eh, I mean three?) button runner with an innovative mechanic, game boy aesthetics and the BEST SOUNDTRACK. And the game is synchronized to it! This is just an absolutely joy to play. (And in fact, I’m listening to the soundtrack while I’m writing this list.)

Space to go by geekdrums
“Space to go” is probably the only LD game that has the complete tutorial/instructions in its title. It is storytelling synchronized to music and I can’t even describe why, but – synchronizing the words to sounds gives this whole thing an unexpectedly awesome and quite humorous feeling. It’s pretty short too, so there’s really no reason why you shouldn’t give it a try!

Excellence in being really, really different

Underworld Evolution by StudioWolfox
Underworld Evolution calls itself an “epic RTSE (Real Time Strategic Evolution) game” and it really delivers on this promise. You’re taking control of a bunch of pretty incompetent minions which you’ll slowly but surely improve – generation by generation! (Hum, maybe you shouldn’t actually play it, it’s super addictive! Don’t tell anybody, but I’ve spent over an hour on it and only stopped because I wanted to rate more games…)

Mini Metro Subway Tycoon by ripatti
A subway simulator in retro Sim City style – pretty cool. It’s a bit hard at first (I recommend watching the How To Play video), but soon you’ll be building subways like it’s nobody’s business!

You Don’t Want That by Dark Arts and Sciences
A creepypasta Ludum Dare game about making a Ludum Dare game? Sold! This is the most obscure LD game I’ve ever come across and it’s also pretty hard, but I definitely felt entertained. And I just love the idea. Don’t skip this game. It might get angry. And, uh, you don’t want that.

Generic Adventure Game by Jezzamon
As the title of the game suggests, this one is just a generic adventure game. Yup. Definitely nothing interesting here under the generic surface. (It might be pretty funny though. And have a cool concept.)

Please Come Back by PapyGaragos
This game has the greatest play-controls-avatar relationship I’ve ever encountered with a mouse. If yours has a scrollwheel, try it – you won’t be disappointed. You might get exhausted though, and the distress is pretty real too after a while. The only thing that I don’t like about this game is that it’s based on a pretty similar game, but I still think you shouldn’t skip this experience – and it’s pretty cool that it still works with such a simple art style.

 
 
Did you like my recommendations? If so, maybe you could rate and comment on my game too. I’d be really happy about that! (Although I can understand if you’re exhausted after all those other games I just suggested, haha.)
 
SnakeFormer by TobiasW
A puzzle game combining Snake with pseudo-physics platformer mechanics. It only has four levels, but it’s not actually short – level 3 and 4 are probably the hardest puzzle levels in this LD. I’m terribly, terribly sorry. (If you beat them, please tell me!)

 

I’ve rated 140 games. Time for a Best Of! (Part 3)

Posted by (twitter: @tolicious)
Sunday, September 15th, 2013 6:35 pm

I’ve previously done two “Best of” lists of the games I enjoyed the most so far – you can find them here and here. I always planned to do this third part, but then life happened – and now at last, with one day of judging left, I present to you this final part!

So one last time, in no particular order, here are some more entries that I think nobody should miss out on:

 

pleading-rainPleading Rain by Brassawiking
You aren’t really sure what happened, but standing in the rain with a gun to your head and two people shouting at you, it’s quite clear that you probably fucked up. This is a dialogue game, fast-paced and intense: You try to figure out how to get out of this situation, and until you do, you’ll have to stall without spilling any unwanted proverbial beans. It has no less then 9 different endings and some of the best writing I’ve seen this LD. (Two tips: You can click on parts of the images when you “Think”, and sometimes you need to click on more than one part until a new dialogue option pops up.)

 

flooded-dungeons
Flooded Dungeons by ripatti
A super-polished dungeon crawler where your primary concern are not the many monsters or the riches, but the impending watery death flooding the higher levels. Fly, you fool! Oh, but maybe grab some of the riches while you’re at it. This game feels so finished, I stand by my suspicion that ripatti secretly made a time machine for this LD. Or cloned himself. (Then again, I guess this level of dedication would make up for the cheating.)

 

10013-milliseconds10013 milliseconds by mortus
This is a short adventure game with a Myst-like vibe: You are a technician, and not a happy one, because an explosion in the bunker you are in destroyed some pretty important equipment and locked down all the doors. Your only hope: A distress signal. The computer hasn’t got much power left though. Oh, how I love this game: The super clean graphics, the sound effects, the music. The mood they create together so dense, I feel like I can touch it. (And if you still aren’t sold: It also features a fox!)

 

ecostarEcoStar vs Aeronox – DreamTeam
EcoStar vs Aeronox is the best side-scrolling shooter I’ve seen at this LD. The seasons have been greatly sped up and invaders attack – luckily you’re up for the defence! The enemies are element-coded according to the seasons with strength and weaknesses, and you can get an element shield and charge an elemental attack additionally to your normal one. Great music, wonderful graphics and a lot of R-type-like fun!

 

antidoteAntidote by Antidote
You’ve come to get the golden idol, but you’ve been poisoned – quick, make your way out! And while you’re at it, grab a lot of riches to make it worth your while. Another super-polished game – this time in the jam section, being a perfect example of what you can achieve with a team of dedicated people. Everything fits together, and shooting, blasting and running through the dungeon while picking up shiny jewels feels great.

 

tai10 Second Tai by Teejay5
A short game about oversleeping, flying with jetpacks and fighting sharks (oops, spoilers). While it’s really rather on the short side and it’s missing music, for me it was pretty hilarious. There should be more ridiculous physics-based games. And I can’t get over the faces Tai makes! They are just so well done, haha.

 

clocked-inClocked In by rylgh
An avoider-type game with some pretty neat design choices. It just feels extremely smooth, everything about it – even when you lose a heart, it just feels like is factored into the normal flow of play. It also features a flawless and clean visual presentation, a nice minimalistic soundtrack and great level design.

 

 

Did you like my recommendations? If so, maybe you could rate and comment on my game too. I’d be really happy about that!
 
Lost-in-the-DarknessLost in the Darkness by TobiasW
Your three friends are scattered in this nightmarish world, turned into creatures of darkness – and you’re their only hope. Follow the music and save them! It won’t be easy though: The world is in constant change. Be ready. And don’t stay in the darkness for too long…

 

40 Games Rated – My Favorites

Posted by (twitter: @JarcasStudios)
Monday, September 2nd, 2013 8:58 am

Well, I’ve managed to rate 40 games so far. People seem to like “Best Of” lists, so here are my favorites of the ones I’ve played:

  • Make a game Game – This is definitely my absolute favorite I’ve played so far in LD27 – a clever little game about making a game. This is the kind of thing that anybody who participates in Ludum Dare can really appreciate.

  • Lost Pixel – Underneath this unassuming exterior is an addictive little puzzle game that will really get your heart racing. You are given a grid of random pixels and tasked with finding one particular pixel in 10 seconds. Each time you succeed you’re given a little more time and a larger grid. I got to level 30! Can you beat that?

  • Royal Decree – There wasn’t much to this game, but it charmed me all the same with its wit and packaging. All you have to do is watch the story, and then click twice waiting as close to 10 seconds between the clicks as possible. What really sold me on this game were all the crazy endings. I also did end up having a competition with my wife to see who could get the closest to 10 seconds.

  • Impact – A 10-second endless runner… does that make any sense? I don’t know, but I still love the style that just oozes from this game. Fantastic pixel art that sets a great mood for the end of the world.

  • Time Slime Arena – Nice little arena survival game w/ a surprising amount of depth and player choice. Lots of nice touches of polish in this one.

I’ve rated 100 games. Time for a Best Of! (Part 2)

Posted by (twitter: @tolicious)
Sunday, September 1st, 2013 2:36 pm

Like I wrote in my previous post, I’ve rated 100 games now. There were a lot awesome games in there – and a few that I think nobody should miss out on.

So again, in no particular order, here are some more entries that I think everyone should’ve played:

 

probe-teamPROBE TEAM by Andrew Shouldice
If you play only one game from my list, take this one. You are playing a swarm of drones, one by one, tasked with exploring and repairing. Even if your current drone fails, you’ll likely have explored the perimeter. And that’s where the game really shines: Exploration. You want to know what’s around the next corner, what the probes discover next! Together with the shiny visuals, the soundscape and the small bits of plots, this game manages to create an incredible atmosphere. It’s my favourite from the whole LD27 so far and I wouldn’t be surprised if it wins!

 

royal-defenestratorRoyal Defenestrator by BasmanovDaniil
You are the Royal Defenestrator, tasked with… I am not sure what you are actually tasked with. But it seems that the queen isn’t very happy, and if she isn’t happy with something, there’s really only one choice what to do with it! There also only one word to describe this game: “hilarious”. Combine a few pretty fine jokes, a lot of emergent humor, a simple clean style and perfectly fitting music and you get this game!

 

the-only-oneThe only one by JaJ
Ah, The only one. I don’t want to spoil anything, I think you’ve got to play this one for yourself. The writing is excellent and compelling. I felt sad and touched after I played it, and it’s been a while since a game did that to me, especially one so short and created in only 48 hours! The 2 color look works well (which is pretty hard to pull off in my opinion), and even if that’s not your thing: This game is really worth playing.

 

the-duellistsThe Duellists by jay griffin
This game in one word: “Polish”. Oh, and also “gorgous pixel art”, although I suppose that’s three words. Contrary to “Way of the Gun” from my Best Of (Part 1), the core gameplay here is actually about duelling. The mechanic is simple and fun and everything works smoothly. I just wish he would’ve added music – but then again, he already announced a post-compo version.

 

detective-awesomepantsDetective Awesomepants by xel
I’ll let xel do this one himself: “Experience the epic adventure of Detective Awesomepants as he tackles difficult cases assigned to him by the world police! Travel to exotic locations. Meet unique characters. Put bad guys in jail! All in a days work for the greatest detective around.”
So – it’s basically murder mystery in 10 seconds with super quirky characters. Short, sweet, extremely fun!

 

legend-of-epikourosLegend of Epikouros by Erhune
It seldom happens, but sometimes there’s a game that’s not that much fun to play, but I’m super excited about nonetheless. This is one of those. The concept is as simple as it is brilliant: It’s an adventure RPG with a long play time – but each player session only lasts 10 seconds. When you start, a lot will have already happened to our hero Epikourous, dictated by other players, and you’ll watch his story until it’s finally your turn to play him. What will you do with your 10 seconds? I really hope this one gets a post-compo version!

 

 

Did you like my recommendations? If so, maybe you could rate and comment on my game too. I’d be really happy about that!
 
Lost-in-the-DarknessLost in the Darkness by TobiasW
Your three friends are scattered in this nightmarish world, turned into creatures of darkness – and you’re their only hope. Follow the music and save them! It won’t be easy though: The world is in constant change. Be ready. And don’t stay in the darkness for too long…

 

PS: I rate/comment everybody who rates/comments my game – so if you’d like one of those, that would be a better way than to ask for it in the comments here 😉

What a competition…

Saturday, August 31st, 2013 5:50 pm

This is my second time at ludum dare. It was funny, it was challenging, it was exhausting. Perfect weekend!

I’ve seen a lot of very good games in the field. Some of the games are so good that I hope the developers will do some more finishing to their games… Here are some games you definitely should have played this LD 😀

Love ya and hope you will and rate my (modest) game too ♥ ♥ ♥

 

 

Proletarian Ninja X

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=2982

 

Dinosaur Jr. vs the 1960’s

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=22858

 

Time Annex

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=6762 (Best puzzle game ever)

 

Clockwork Cat

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=14266 (so cute)

 

Flooded Dungeons

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=15853 (well this is a fantastic dungeon crawler)

 

Detective Awesomepants (Very cool title)

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=12874 (This is one of the best games at this LD)

 

Graviten – cool puzzle platformer

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=16151

 

Hello Dr. Steiner (COOL NAME)

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=7971

 

Duke Dashington (most polished game this ld)

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=11391

 

ROBOT PLANET (Cool art, nice gameplay)

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=8631

 

The strangest game I’ve played this ld:  

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=27818 (because this idea is matchless) THX… so cool Idea!

I’ve rated 100 games. Time for a Best Of! (Part 1)

Posted by (twitter: @tolicious)
Saturday, August 31st, 2013 4:02 pm

So yeah, I’ve rated 100 games now. I wish I could rate more, but I seem to have the tendency to write detailed feedback. It takes up so much time!

Anyway: I’m in awe of this community. So much creativity and talent! And there are some gems that I think nobody should miss. There are a lot of those, so I’ll split it in multiple parts. In no particular order:

 

10 Seconds Before the World Ends by Lustdante
You’re a scientist trying to save the world which ends in (you probably guessed it!) 10 seconds. Luckily you have a suit that doesn’t only stop time, but allows you to move around in the meantime! Use debris as platforms, promenade under deadly obstacles and activate time again in the right moments to let it create a passage for you. Everything about this game is awesome, and it feels strangely great walking in a frozen world.

 

Low-BatteryLow Battery by RHY3756547
Hunting for treasure as a robot felt never more franti- WHAT THE HECK JUST HAPPENED. This game is hard as hell, but even while losing I had a lot of fun. Shiny graphics, totally over the top effects and a kick-ass soundtrack completes the set.

 

Rebound-ReconRebound Recon by TheHermit
Your drone stole the industry secrets you were looking for – now you just need to get away! There’ll be no room for mistakes: And that’s where your drones advanced predictive software comes into play. It allows you to plan your route before the drone executes it. This is the best puzzle game I’ve played this Ludum Dare! The controls feel a little sluggish until you get used to them – I recommend you deal with this, the game is definitely worth it.

 

Way of the Gun by vrld
Way of the Gun is a… dialogue/bantering game? Wait, what? I won’t tell you why, the intro can do that much better – what I can tell you though is that this game features pleasing graphics, great music, an interesting mood, superb dialogue, a lot of quirky humor and some funny surprises.

 

Clockwork-CatClockwork Cat by patrickgb
A cute cat with a big wrench and an even bigger clock – what more could you need to make a great game? Maybe an extremely smooth flow? Soothing music? Small clever puzzles? Well, if you agree, you’re in luck – this game features all of that. Its only downside is it’s shortness, but that’s hardly a reason to pass it up!

 

Insert-picture-hereCrappydoodle by superjoebob
No picture for this one? Yep – I really have no idea how to depict it pleasingly in 120×85 pixels. Which is a bit ironic, because Crappydoodle is a game about pictures. It’s basically Pictionary on speed with random strangers – what’s not to like? Don’t try it though, because it’s addicting. No really, please don’t click the link.

 

Did you like my recommendations? If so, maybe you could rate and comment on my game too. I’d be really happy about that!
 
Lost-in-the-DarknessLost in the Darkness by TobiasW
Your three friends are scattered in this nightmarish world, turned into creatures of darkness – and you’re their only hope. Follow the music, resist the darkness and save them!

100 Games rated – Best Of

Posted by
Friday, September 7th, 2012 10:06 pm

Just like the last few times, now that I’ve passed 100 games rated time to pick some favorites that I think could use a bit more <3 !  This time is a little different though, I’m not going to pick “overall” favorites, as to be honest this LD every game so far that i’ve loved in one way has managed to frustrate me in another, so I’m going to categorize some favorites based on what I think is their strong suit!

As always, in no particular order (games that would fall in multiple are only listed in the one i think they’re strongest in)

Best Use of Theme:

Most Fun:

Best Graphics:

Best Music:

Some of these still only have a handful of plays, go try them out and give them some feedback!

And as always, I could always use more feedback on my entry as well if you havent played it already !

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-24/?action=preview&uid=7131

Play these games because…

Posted by (twitter: @@JajabenGames)
Saturday, May 12th, 2012 2:53 pm

Just in time, I’ve finished rating 100 games, a LOT of them were really good. I’ve made a list of 25 games. I’ve listed some of the best divided into 5 categories.

Play these games because they are original!!

These games all added something new to their genres that I hadn’t seen before in other games.

1. Boxed by Starpixie

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=12750

I was pretty awed by this concept. It’s about a box that is inside a box. However, the second box is also inside the first box and one box influences what happens in the other. Can’t get your head around it? Play the game and you might. A really great take on the theme. The game has it’s problems however, but it was too original not to place on number one.

2. Recluse by Chambers

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=11981

I disliked this game at first because of its small game window. That was until something really surprising happened that had everything to do with the window size.

3. Moon base by morganquirk

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=4243

A game that shows what happens when the world is as small as a beach ball but still has the same gravitational pull. This game is also very polished, but has a difficulty curve that is a bit steep.

4. Bottlecolonies by tcstyle

play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=4834

I don’t think I have ever seen a videogame that appears to be so simple, and then turns out to be surprisingly well thought through. That’s a pretty original quality in a videogame if you ask me.

5. Spaceship in the sky with colors by quixotic-project

play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=10726

Collect colors to be able to fly in the sky with the same color without dying. It gets pretty tricky. Not a perfect game but it provides a very unique game experience.

 

Play these games because they have a lot of depth (for a 48 hour game!)!

These games are ambitious and have depth, but you need to take your time for them and they have their flaws. But they are worth figuring out.

1. Gale Axile by free_napalm

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=12423

A random galaxy is generated and you have to try to build a spaceship and get away. To do this you have to plant and harvest fruits, trees, make weapons, collect ore, kill spacemice and find a way to get to the right planets, while not starving and keeping warm (your choice between a campfire or a piece of uranium.) The downside to a game having all these elements is that you have to give the game a couple of tries before you even know what you have to do.

2. ONLY US by Datamosh

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=10942

In this case the game is deep for a different reason than the other games in this list. You are on the moon with your astronaut partner, and while your partner stays behind at the ship, you go explore the moon. But if you go further, you get lonelier, and it keeps getting harder to go back.

3. Deconstructorium by GreyShock

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=11045

Collect molecules and make them interact with each other to gain new powers, only to lose them again when one of your experiments goes wrong. Playing this game truly feels like experimenting with the world, and there are a lot of possibilities.

4. Tinysasters by Volute

play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=11243

A tiny world has four types of land. If you build a shrine on that land, each land will produce a different type of mana. If you build a workplace on it, each one will produce a different kind of resource. You have to keep improving the world, but often natural disasters happen that will ruin everything again.

5. Exposed by 01101101

play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=5105

In this very polished game you have to evolve little creatures by exposing them to different elements in the lab. It feels a bit like deconstructorium mentioned above, but is a bit more limited.

 

Play these games because they are epic!!

I can’t really define what makes these games so great, so don’t expect any good arguments. Just play the games.

1. Tiny World: The Musical: The Game by pdyxs

play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=2440

A game that’s also a musical, why is that epic?

Because it is.

2: Prince of Leaves by evilseanbot

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=7902

As with number one, it is the audio that makes this game truly epic. You won’t understand until you have played it.

3. T in Y World by Tom 7

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=1984

I still have no clue what this game is and what makes it so awesome, but it’s just amazingly original.

4. Hero of rain by 31eee384

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=1712

The idea of a tiny world in a raindrop that is in the last fase of it’s fall, facing inevitable destruction just gave me chills.

5. Eye Questeigenbom

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=1695

I don’t know why. Just play it.

 

Play these games because they are polished!!

These games all feel really complete and polished. Most arn’t really original, but they are all beautiful and you won’t be getting stuck in any walls.

1. Memento XII by deepnight

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=2982

I think this was my favorite game of all. Very polished and very beautiful in more than one way. You just have to play this one.

2. Tiny Island Adventure by AdventureIslands

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=11391

No flaws. Looks great, sounds nice and well animated. The only negative thing you can say about it is that it’s ‘just’ another platform game. But it’s a very, very polished one.

3. Zephyr by cadin

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=7233

This one really needed it’s own category, it’s really relaxing. It’s a simple, beautiful game where you have to guide forest sprites to a flower. It makes great use of audio that sets the right mood and gives feedback at the same time.

4. Dude, where’s my planet by Zamando

play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=12041

One of the many games with small round planets that you have to travel between, what makes this one stand out? It looks absolutely amazing. (And the fact that it has an added mechanic.)

5. Evolve by jerombd

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=12512

This isn’t even a game, really. You have a planet and each round you have to make a choice, deciding the fate of the planet. It just looks really amazing and has some very funny outcomes.

 

Play these games because they are fun!!

These games are all really simple in design, but extremely fun.

1. Overpopulous by Make A Game

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=5631

Great theme! You have to ‘colonise’ new planets by crashing into them with your own planet. It’s chaotic, it’s funny, it’s fast.

2. Astro Break by hulahulahest

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=528

The presentation, the sound effects, the simple gameplay, the fact that you shoot at things, it all just screams fun. And it is.

3. Eight O’Clock by Kendja

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=12019

A small adventure game where you search for keys and talk to strangers who say silly things.

4. Dave is in a Fish Tank by Toast

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=6788

Dave is a tiny guy who is in a fish tank. You need to feed him, but not everything you drop in the tank is food. There are some really surprising and fun elements to this game.

5. Nom Nom Planet by Arkazon

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=6492

Aliens are eating your planet. You don’t want aliens to eat your planet. Shoot them.

 

Play this game because I made it

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=5496

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