More Ludum Dare games, anyone? The 48-hour game creation-a-thon has ended yet another competition, inspiring developers from around the world to create almost 600 new games, all centered around the theme of "escape"! The voting has ended, the scores have been tallied, and we've picked some of our favorite downloadable titles to share with you!
Stratus (Windows, 4MB, free) - Point and click room escape game, meet the world of 3D! This curious text-less game places you on a flying vehicle and challenges you to figure out a series of puzzles using only icons at the bottom of the screen. Move around, check out the interior of the ship, and try to determine what you need to do given the sparse set of clues. It's a very short game that ends as soon as it starts getting exciting, but it's a nice accomplishment in such a short amount of time and a concept we would love to see expanded! Created by RichMakeGame, author of PlasmaPig.
epacse (Mac/Win/Linux, 1MB, free) - This somewhat gloomy little escape game from Marach drops you in a cave filled with traps, puzzles, different types of particles. You can move around with the [WASD] keys and blast said particles around with the mouse. Now, how to get from place to place in this confusing world? Try moving sand around, getting it out of your way or knocking it around so it stacks and forms a platform? A surprisingly long experience for a 48 hour game, and the puzzles are very well-thought-out.
AWOL (Mac/Win, 11MB, free) - This gorgeous driving/shooting game by quickfingers is all about escaping a prison facility and making it as far away as you can. Hijacking a tank that can transform into a flying vehicle, which is all kinds of awesome, drive, fly, and shoot your way through enemies that get progressively tougher and more numerous as you go. See how far you can get without going the way of the big ka-boom! A web version is also available.
To Hell and Back (Windows, 1MB, free) - This point and click graphical adventure game by Kayamon mixes an art style you might recognize from one of those Final Fantasy games us kids in the 90s used to rave about with everything that's best about the adventure genre. You play as Ragnar who really wants to escape from wherever it is that he happens to be. Loitering ghosts? Three-headed dogs? No thanks, it's time to make it back to the real world. If you can solve the intense puzzles, that is. A funny and entertaining game, very impressive for a two day effort, though the dialogue scrolls by very slowly and you'll wish there was a shortcut key to access different commands.
Note: All games have been confirmed to run under Windows 7 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!