Weekend Download №114


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Weekend Download

JohnBEver wonder what happens to the games we feature on Weekend Download? Think the respective developers just take a nap and start on something new? Oh ho HO! You would be wrong! Two of this week's games are updates of titles we featured in the past, proving once and for all (insert significant philosophical observation here).

magicplanetsnack.gifMagic Planet Snack (Windows, 8.7MB, free) - You're a wizard, but you're obviously not a very good one. You see, instead of doing cool stuff like casting a fire spell to cook some muffins, you turned yourself into a worm. Now you must travel through space avoiding lava and trolls and devouring blocks, orbs, and rival wizards with your endless appetite. Use the [arrow] keys to swim through blocks, nomming as you go, and gather enough orbs to turn on your hyper power and transform everything into desserts!

exclamation.gif! (Windows, 9.7MB, free) - Ben Chandler is at it again with another bite-sized adventure game. This one is put together in a rather whimsical way, not only because the story and music are zany, but because the game takes place in six locations, each displayed on the screen at once. Didn't see that one coming, did ya? You play a robot investigating Count Can't's theft of the town exclamation mark. Didn't see that coming either, right? Anyway, go play, it's fun! Also check out some of Ben's other adventure games: Featherweight, Awakener, Heed, and Annie Android.

christmastale.gifDawn's Light: A Christmas Tale (Windows, 56.5MB, free) - This tasty little morsel from John Wizard features characters and callbacks from the creator's full-fledged RPG, Dawn's Light. Now, though, the fourth wall is put on shaky territory as John Wizard appears in the game! It's for noble reasons, of course: to save Christmas! John Naught has stolen all the presents from under the tree, and in order to get them back, John Wizard enlists the help of characters from Dawn's Light. They can't just go out and find the presents, though. They need some sidequests to keep things interesting! A cute and entertaining diversion perfect for a near-holiday afternoon.

sumotoridreams2.jpgSumotori Dreams - (Windows, 1MB, demo) - Originally featured back in 2007 (on the fourth Weekend Download EVAR), this unassuming title pits two ragdoll sumo wrestlers against each other in a small arena. Shove your way to a hilarious victory as you stumble around trying to gain the upper hand. This update isn't free, unfortunately, but if you're willing to part with $4, you'll get new arenas, more fighters, and approximately one thousand times the laughs as before. Seriously, this game is funny to watch. Sumotori Dreams is one of indie gaming's darling little giggle machines. Also: the demo has a frustrating time-bomb on it. Please don't hit things when it runs out.

gunfudeadlands.gifGunFu Deadlands 1.0 (Mac/Windows/Linux, 8MB, free) - First featured just a few months ago, GunFu Deadlands is a wild west-themed arcade game that's all about taking out the bad guys. Move with the [WASD] keys, fire with the mouse, and use bullet time to slow things down for a few seconds. GunFu has received a small but significant update addressing some of the concerns players expressed when the original was released. Enemy AI has improved, so the bad guys will try to avoid your shots as best they can, and collision detection is more accurate. There are also new levels, new buildings, and a slightly decreased level of difficulty.

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!

14 Comments

I just finished "!" single-handedly. Here's a few tips:

The witness at the monument:

This guy lets his emotions get in the way of everything. He's also very easily influenced by what people say about him, so say the right things to give him the right mood.

The phone:

Dial some random numbers on the phone. Look for a pattern in who you end up contacting, then use that pattern to figure out how to contact the person you need to.

The natural order of things:

Examine everything. Pay attention and look for something that might qualify as an order.

At the dump:

Make sure to make comments that are both true AND conceivably positive.

The final battle:

There's a way to tell which rhyme is the right one to pick. You should be able to guess what the key is by now!

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I don't see the point in the Sumotori Dreams demo at all...5 seconds of gameplay? If anything it put me OFF purchasing the full game...

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Lukex, I think the appeal lies in the AFTER-game; the rampant destruction, the peculiar drunken actions of the characters...

I'm prepared to shell out the four hundred pennies.

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Kinda lame that you have to do old levels do get to some new levels in GunFu, also lame that in hard mode you restart from beginning - not harder just more time consuming.

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What exactly was the point to Magic Planet Snack. Also that website is the worst design in the world,

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I got up to the final battle in !, but I couldn't figure out what the correct choice was for the life of me, especially since my options seemed to change on each restart.
At least, I assume that I get sent back to the start when I make a "wrong" choice.

I could make choices that would only cause a retort SOME of the time. I wondered if it was something about the exact accuracy of the rhymes, but that doesn't seem to be it either.

Also annoying: it's a looping conversation. You can't pause, you can't access the save/load/quit buttons. I needed to alt-tab out and then close it via the taskbar button.
I'm going to have to go back to the start of the game if I ever fire it up again.

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Ben Chandler December 20, 2009 3:21 AM

Thanks for the mention as usual, John :)

JonMW: Yes, I agree that not being able to save/quit here is a weak point in the game and has been mentioned to me by another player. I'm currently trying to decide an elegant way of getting around this!

As for you being stuck, the solution is hidden right in front of your nose :)

The correct line can be determined by

thinking about the game's title

Thank you for playing and for your feedback! (and good work for finishing it without hints, SonicLover, these are some of my trickiest puzzles :D)

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oh man... i cant get past the "natural order of things" part.. can anyone help me?

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Ben Chandler December 20, 2009 6:17 AM

Everything you need to solve the natural order of things is in the park room.

Small hint:

You have to look at things in the park and pay attention to what the lady says in reply.

Big hint:

She actually tells you what order you need to click things in... but you might not notice this at first. Try saying each line aloud, it might help

Huge hint:

The last word in each sentence is the number that that item occurs in the order of things

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Smoothfonzo Author Profile Page December 21, 2009 1:23 AM

I love Sumatori Dreams. It's wonderfully intoxicatingly hilarious. I loved it since the first version that was released, that may have been reviewed here.

I've tried playing Dawn's Light, however, I have an odd problem that I have with every game made with RPG Maker XP. First happened when another game using the same engine was featured on here, and so I went investigating and trying different games using the same engine, getting the same problem with all of them.

I'm using XP SP2, and when I try to launch the game, I get a black screen and it just hangs there. Then it will say Not Responding. It will take about a minute before I get a dialogue box that says: Access is denied.

I've tried everything. I've searched and search on Google for a lead with no luck. I went so far to go on a forum of a game developer using the same engine and telling them of my problem playing their game, and even getting the Aveyond developer to try to help, but they were all perplexed. I really want to play these games. They're beautiful, but for some reason I just can't play them, and it's frustrating.

Interestingly enough, I can play games using the RPG Maker 2003 engine with no problem. I must not be the only one with the problem.

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Just finished with Dawn's Light: A Christmas Tale. Cute diversion but as a game it leaves a lot to be desired. Gameplay is pretty straightforward RPG. Puzzles are by and large pushing things (blocks, toys, rocks) around and some do require a bit of thinking. But there's just way too much extraneous "I did it because I could" parts to make it really enjoyable.

The game starts off with the evil John Naught stealing all the elves, presents and candy canes to ruin everyone's Christmas. John Wizard starts off on an adventure to track down John Naught and recover all the goodies. He enlists the help of three characters from the Dawn's Light game to help. OK, fine so far.

But it's rather a let down when you don't actually USE these characters. Everything is essentially done by John Wizard himself and the three heroes are just along for the ride and do little more than bicker and make snide remarks. There is a rather lengthy intro to introduce these characters into the game which led me to expect I would have to switch between characters and use their abilities to solve various puzzles. Nope. All the characters could have been left completely out of the game and it would have played identically.

The epilogue upon completion was WAY too lengthy and downright tedious, as was most of the dialogue within the game. This is exacerbated by the fact that whatever the characters say is spelled out (literally). Wouldn't have been so bad if the banter between the heroes didn't drag on so. Pushing the Enter or Space bar for several minutes isn't my idea of fun.

A fair part of the final confrontation with John Naught was just John Wizard running through a series of inconsequential rooms. Almost felt like the designer had some more in mind but was rushing to get it out by Christmas.

Still and all, there were some bright spots and there was obviously a good bit of care that went into creating it. If less time had been spent on the extraneous bits and devoted to utilizing the characters and fleshing out the details, it could have been a really nice game. But, you get what you pay for, I suppose.

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There is no after-game in the Sumotori demo. It's like he said, five seconds of game play. What in God's name are they thinking? Do they think that in my brief experience of going through the menu system I've developed such a hard-on for this game that I'll immediately buy it without playing it? This is the stupidest demo I've ever seen! It's an insult! Maybe you're willing to pay your four hundred pennies but it seems obvious that YOU'VE PLAYED IT ALREADY, unlike me, because unfortunately YOU CANNOT PLAY THE GAME IN THE NEW DEMO. It is not technically a demo, unless it's a demo of the menu system.

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how do you get the hidden part?

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Smoothfonzo: Dawn's light is made with RPG Maker VX, not XP. Try downloading the RTP for VX and try again.

Personally, I LOVED ACT, and after finishing it I went and played Dawn's Light. It is amazinging fun and I am now definitely a JohnWizardGames fan! :)

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