Three truly heavy-hitting games on this edition of Weekend Download, two of them weighing in as unofficial sequels to commercially released games. Don't let that keep you from trying Journey to the Center of the Earth, however, as it packs even more punch than the name brands!
Journey to the Center of the Earth (Windows, 12.8MB, free) - Your surprise addiction for the weekend, this unassuming little game is all about hunting for treasure on a tiny map. Your tools include an unlimited supply of bombs along with the ability to both run and jump. You have a map that shows hints for all 40 pieces of treasure, but getting to the locations and making the boxes appear is the real puzzle. The website and game are in Japanese, but there's no text or speech to worry about, so click the yellow button and download away!
ASCIIpOrtal (Mac/Win/Linux, ~9MB, free) - You've played the game that spawned Portal, Narbacular Drop. You've played the Flash version of Portal. Heck, maybe you've even played the real Portal. Now, friends, it's time for ASCIIpOrtal. This 2D reimagining once again puts the familiar portal gun in your hands, granting you the ability to pass from one to the other to reach previously inaccessible areas. Use it to do the seemingly impossible, such as move through small areas, gain access to high ledges, and slingshot yourself across wide expanses by transferring downward momentum. The controls and mechanics are a bit odd to get used to, but if you press onward, you'll find a surprisingly rewarding puzzle platform game.
GIana's Return (Windows, 7.1MB, free) - Real old-school gamers will recall the Commodore 64 platformer made in the image of Super Mario Bros. titled The Great Giana Sisters. This faithfully-done fan sequel preserves everything you would want from the original and provides better visuals and completely new levels to play. No gimmicks here, just tricky jumps, enemies to stomp, bricks to bust, and a power-up or two to help you along the way.
Note: All games have been confirmed to run under Windows Vista and are virus-free. Mac users should try Boot Camp, Parallels, or CrossOver Games to play Windows titles, Linux users can use Wine. If you know of a great game we should feature, use the Submit link above to send it in!