Link Dump Friday
Sometimes I like to think that in the future, highly advance civilizations will find records of our indie games and wonder just what the heck was going on inside our heads... but in a good way! We've got another contest this week for you to win a copy of a brand-new indie hit, a mini-review of part two in a series of episodic zombie adventures, surreal violence, Alphas, and more!
CONTEST: Thomas Was A Prize Mike Bithell's story-telling puzzle platformer Thomas Was Alone is generating a lot of the old buzz in the gaming community, and for good reason. Our very own download czar John Bardinelli called it "a little indie masterpiece that does great things with narrative and minimalist artwork." So now we're giving you a chance to get it for free! In order to win one of four free copies of the game, just try the free downloadable demo for Windows or Mac and leave a comment here about it. Rules: Entries must be submitted by July 13th, 11:59 p.m. EST (GMT-5). Winners will be notified by e-mail shortly thereafter. Winners are selected randomly. One entry per person only. You must be at least 13 years of age or older to enter. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited.
Update: WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER!
The winners of a free copy of Thomas Was Alone are:
You will be contacted via e-mail shortly. Thanks for reading!
Call Me Call Me Any, Any Time I... I just... I don't know. The trailer for the upcoming retro-inspired action adventure Hotline Miami inspires so many feels, though perhaps chief amoungst them is "What the heck did I just watch?" The game, made by Jonatan Söderström and Dennis Wedin under their new moniker Dennation Games, follows you as the protagonistin 1980s Miami, where you've been receiving horrible messages on your answering machine urging you to commit acts of violence. It looks and sounds like something that Quentin Tarantino and Suda 51 might have made, and for those of us with particular tastes, this could be a very good thing. The game promises hard-hitting, violent action, a surreal plot, and "impossible situations", and is definitely worth keeping an eye on it if you have the stomach for it.
Surely Nothing Bad Ever Happened In an Idyllic Meadow Get ready for first-person horror adventuring! Dreampainters is about to release Anna, a short point-and-click game for PC based on an authentic local folklore tale in Italy, recounted to the developers first hand by locals as well as some good old-fashioned research. The game looks to be heavy on atmosphere as you explore an abandoned sawmill in a deceptively peaceful countryside, solving puzzles and eventually confronting the strange presences that linger to get one of three possible endings. It looks absolutely gorgeous, and the heavy emphasis on mood and tone is something a lot of horror adventure fans will appreciate. Look for Anna to hit soon from digital download services once negotiations have been finished!
Alphas, Start Your Engines! Hold on to your whatevers, because Mojang's strategic fantasy card game Scrolls has just entered the Alpha phase! What does this mean for you? Well, if you signed up for the chance to be in the Alpha, it means you should start watching your e-mail for a potential invite. For the rest of us, well... we'll have to wait for the Beta, since no new Alpha testers will be added to the list. Like Minecraft, Scrolls will become publicly available during the Beta, at which point you can purchase it at a deeply discounted price and continue to receive updates (and new scrolls for your character!) as development continues. Can Mojang make lightning strike twice and repeat their success with Minecraft? We'll find out soon enough.
Episode Two: Mini-Review Since TellTale's second installment in their gory horror adventure game series The Walking Dead is mechanically identical to the first, here's your mini-review of Episode Two: Starved for Help. While it shares the same issues with tiny, frustratingly located hotspots, Starved for Help is in a sense more visceral than the first game. Not just in regards to the violence, which is in itself really brutal and uncomfortably intimate in most cases, but in its story. It focuses more on the interplay between the survivors, and really succeeds at presenting choices you'll struggle with because there is no right answer that will make everyone happy. You'll potentially see some of the plot twists coming a mile away, but Starved for Help delivers big time on all the same action and unflinching violence of the first game, while developing its cast in ways that make you connect with them even more. Highly recommended.
Do you know an upcoming indie project or some community gaming related news you think deserves some attention? Send me an e-mail with LINK DUMP FRIDAY in the subject line at dora AT casualgameplay DOT com with the info, and we'll judge it with the all-seeing glare of our own self-importance for inclusion in a future Link Dump Friday article!