The Vault №88


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The Vault

Tricky Journal Entry 77 - It will soon be over. The monsters are at the door. I've already hidden the other disconcertingly red-stained pages of my apocalyptically-toned journal all about this abandoned cabin, and the only thing left is for me to make the decision that will determine which ending I get... Though, I'm pretty sure all of them will involve turning into a zombie, somehow. So before I recklessly solve that final puzzle, I leave to you another collection of classic games from the JayIsGames Vault. This week we have astonishing arena action, a peculiarly player-propelled pointer puzzler, and adorably addictive arcade awesomeness.

  • Amorphous+Amorphous+ - There are a whole heckuva lot of arena games out there. It's not hard to see why: a single warrior locked in a brutal stand-off against a massive horde of enemies is a powerfully dramatic premise. However, with so much competition in the genre, prospective developers should definitely be studying one of the best: Amorphous+ by Caleb Rhodes. It's an object lesson in how to differentiate yourself from the pack. The aesthetic is simple and clean, without a lot of random textures to confuse the aesthetic. The blobular enemies are engagingly goofy, but maintain a surprising amount of menace. More than that, the player is constantly rewarded for continuing play, whether from the snarkily-described medals earned, or in unlocked pages of one of the best-written bestiaries yet. Throw in an impressive armory selection headlined by a classic Big-Friggin'-Sword, and you have the worthy winner of JIG's Best of 2008 Action/Arcade Award.
  • Cursor*10Cursor*10 - Many multiplayer games emphasize teamwork, but Yoshi Ishii's Cursor*10 is one of the few single player games where cooperation is vital... but with yourself! With the mouse cursor taking center stage, you'll need quick thinking and quick clicking to make it to the top of the tower. You'll have some help along the way, though: the actions of your previous lives replayed in real time as you play! The minimalist visuals hides the impressive design of each of its levels, all of which ooze creativity. Cursor*10 and its sequel are games that totally live up to the promise of their awesome premise, and are must-plays for any puzzle fans.
  • Bubble IslandsBubble Islands - Is it possible for something to be Arcade-Perfect if it never actually appeared in an arcade? Well, if so, Dot-Invasion definitely managed it in his Match-Threevaganza, Bubble Islands. With its colorful cast of octopi, wizards, aliens, ice princesses, and robots, this game was clearly a labor of love for its developer, and the result can only be described as magical. A very worthy finalist in the 2007 IGF awards, all Puzzle Bobblers, Mean Bean Machinists, and Tetris Fanatics, should get ready for fun. Bubble Islands is slick. Bubble Islands is cute. Bubble Islands is addictive as all get out. What more could you want?

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!

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Exit Fate> Dora In this free indie RPG heavily inspired by the likes of Suikoden and other classics of the genre, Daniel is a man betrayed by his country and trapped behind enemy lines who suddenly finds himself in a unique position to help end the fighting. Recruit 75 party members for your castle, take part in huge battles, and enjoy hours and hours and HOURS of play time in this massive game.  ...
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The Rogue Puzzle Game> Satori Clear your way through the dungeon in this unique Sokoban-like puzzle game by carefully selecting which swords to shove into which monsters to vanquish them all. The Rogue Puzzle Game was picked as one of only three finalists in the Game Nomad competition and is set to be presented at Gamer's Day, Arabia's largest gaming event.  ...
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Sentry Knight 2> Dora Sentry Knight is back and more colourful than ever in this sequel that brings more of the same addictive defensive shooting fans have come to crave. Stay in your tower and take aim against an onslaught of baddies, upgrading spells and abilities, as you bow-and-arrow your way across the kingdom.  ...

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