OneMrBean's first place award winning entry into the 9th Casual Gameplay Design Competition is a piece of interactive narrative about remembering the things that really matter in your life, and the people who gave them to you. You play as an initially morose fellow who takes you on a personal journey through his life and his memories, and offers up a simple but touching and surprisingly heartfelt experience that is wrapped up in a beautiful package.
Jake Elliot's surreal interactive art adventure is a slow, thoughtful game where you play as four different women who attempt to comfort a small boy who can't sleep. The stories they tell take you back into their memories to solve some rather unusual problems with rather unusual
methods. Part dreamlike narrative, part abstract puzzle solving, it's a charming bit of storytelling that's just the thing to unwind with.
What happens when infatuation becomes complacency? Or dependence? You take on the role of a young man having doubts about his current relationship, and whether it really is what he wants out of his life. Air Pressure, a visual novel by Bento Smile, might be a simple story about falling out of love... or something else entirely.
Apples in the Tree is primarily an exploration game with a little bit of point-and-click thrown in. What might seem at first like something that will only appeal to people who wear 'Nightmare Before Christmas' hoodies soon turns into a game that looks great and has a lot of depth.
Sometimes atmosphere is everything. Coma, a delightful exploration and adventure game by Thomas Brush, brings such an abundance of atmosphere to the exploration game table you might just want to clean out your refrigerator to save the leftovers.
Track down nine bodies in a brain-bending maze of unreal proportions brought to you by Ian Snyder. The premise is simple, and so is the gameplay, but the otherworldly design and lack of narrative combine to create an oddly meditative experience where the only real meaning is the one you give to it.
Sometimes games are just there for us when we want to have some fun, blow up the princess, and save the zombies, or something like that. Other times, we want to explore more difficult and painful stories. Grace's Diary manages to seamlessly integrate the theme of a relationship abuse into a sensitive and moving visual novel.
It is almost impossible to describe the joy created by wandering in the strange, surreal universe that Enu (Hanamushi) has created in Flower Insect. The synthesis of art, animation, game, and experience is nearly flawless, and will leave the casual gamer breathless as they wander deeper and deeper into the morass. Stunning beyond all belief, this is not necessarily a game to play all in one go. Rather, the Hanamushi game is something to consume in small bites, lest you find yourself deep in the abyss that is the imagination of an extremely talented individual.
If you're younger than a certain age, you've probably never thought, "Wouldn't it be great if I could take part in my favorite radio dramas?" But the advent of podcasting has borne a renewed interest in all sorts of languishing radio formats, including radio drama (or "TV without pictures"). It's true, really
! Now BBC and Radio Scotland bring us an interesting experiment in combining the audial thrills of radio drama with the interactivity of online gaming. Legacy is a sound-heavy adventure game, telling a tale of secrets, cryptic clues, and underground vaults.
Somewhere there's a place littered with bones and the remains of an ancient civilization... and you've been drawn to it, alone. Gregory Weir's striking exploration title may lack enough direction to ensnare all players, but packs a significant wallop in the atmosphere department, and provides an intriguing story if you're willing to track it down.
Make a choice; disobey or not. Loved is a short piece of interactive art disguised as a platformer, and intended to make you think about the decisions you make. Is it successful? What meaning do you take from it? And is there a right way or a wrong way to feel about something?
The name of the game is literal in this experimental adventure game, where you play a scientist who literally only has one chance to find a cure for a disaster he's responsible for, before all life in the world comes to an end in six days. There is no replay button in this short but grim little title, and with different outcomes possible, how will you choose to spend what might possibly be your last days on Earth?
An experiment in concept, Record Tripping is a short game that you control using your mouse scroll wheel. Play a series of mini-games that take you through Alice in Wonderland with one very pretty presentation. The whole package is a cool little showcase of a neat idea with lovely trappings, well worth the short time it takes to complete.
Before I played the Submachine Network Exploration Experience, I didn't know just how involved fans of the series were in discussing its mysteries and mythologies. Like the various alternate reality games involved in the marketing of Lost
, although not really a game at all, the Exploration Experience gives fans of the series the chance to delve into the Submachine world like never before.
Step outside your cubicle prison and into a world of beautiful pen and ink art and wondrous music in this soothing platform game.