This week's selection of Vault titles don't really have much in common apart from being awesome. I mean, unless you want to take the 2.99/minute call-in psychic route. I sense that these games were... made by a... a person... who... ate food... slept in a bed... and... had... letters in their name? Wow! I'm so accurate I'm scaring myself!
- Bloons - Who would imagine the combination of one monkey, a whole mess of pointy objects, and a lot of balloons would spawn a dynasty and capture the hearts of people everywhere? Well... Ninja Kiwi, apparently. (I like to imagine it started in a laboratory somewhere with lots of lightning and cackling, "They called us mad! MAD!") Now a immensely popular series, Bloons began life as a simple physics game of skill that could have stepped right off a carnival midway. The object is simply to pop all the balloons onscreen with a limited number of darts, which is easier said than done as the stages and obstacles become more and more complex. It's a simple idea made incredibly addictive... though... I don't personally understand how a monkey hurling pointy bits of metal willy-nilly is necessarily a step up from the ones that fling poo.
- Trapped Series - People love point-and-click adventures almost as much as they love escape games, but rarely do the two ever meet, and even rarer still in this unconventional, top-down isometric manner. Rodrigo Roesler's trilogy follows a man who wakes up beside a stranger's corpse one morning following an argument with his wife that sent her packing. While somewhat slow moving, both in plot and in actual gameplay, the series' unusual design and cleverly conceived puzzles make it a winner even four years later, blending surreal mystery with a play style that makes me all misty and whatnot for the days of SNES-incarnated Shadowrun. Only with less inscrutable dog totems and more
- Banner Game by Rob Allen - When he's not doing unspeakable things to hapless little stick figures, Rob Allen is busy making magic happen right here on our site whenever we've been very good little boys and girls. (Which, as Jay will tell you, only happens once in a very long while. Darn it, Jay, I keep telling you the coffee machine set itself on fire! All I did was watch!) This charming, compact little point-and-click puzzle is played entirely with the mouse, offering no other instructions and leaving you to figure out both the objective and the means of achieving it. While you could just consult a walkthrough, this little game is infinitely more satisfying if you just experiment, clicking on everything onscreen and trying different combinations for yourself. Which, incidentally, is how I get through most of my life. Instruction manuals are for suckas, amirite?!
While we welcome any comments about this weekly feature here, we do ask that if you need any help with the individual games, please post your questions on that game's review page. Well, what are you waiting for? Get out there and rediscover some awesome!