So there's this Ball. Ball wants to Go Home. It's your job to get Ball home. Ball lives in a hollow tree stump in a forest. Yes he does. Thankfully, said forest is filled with ramps, bridges, floating platforms, mine carts and more. Some parts are missing, and that's where you and your reflexes come in.
Another brilliant room escape game from Neutral, the authors of the amazing Vision. Lights features inventive tough-but-fair puzzles, gorgeous rendered scenes, and enough charm to drown a dozen rubber duckies.
Here are 50 more visual puns in a painting, hinting at the titles of 50 "great" movies you may have seen recently. Nice illustrations, relatively easy hints, and a smooth interface make this an light and pleasant diversion.
All you have to do in NinjaDoodle's ClickPLAY! is press the Play button, but that Play button sure does run and hide in some sneaky ways. Track it down and click it!
A fast-paced, tightly-designed version of Breakout by the talented Taro Ito. Use a big round smiley-face paddle to knock out all the bricks before they advance past the dotted line. Collect hearts to earn extra balls and shoot them into play at any time. Cute, fun, and simple.
It's another blast from the past with this week's Weekday Escape. It's an oldie from our friends at Bianco-Bianco by the name of Escape from Dr. Ichie's Factory, another gem in the Dr. Ichie series. The story's a familiar one: you wake up in the middle of an odd factory building, and you find a note from the culprit, Dr. Ichie, telling you that you have to solve some puzzles to escape from it.
Action, adventure, and painful, spiky death can all be yours in Chup, a new platformer from Tomas Pettersson. With a retro vibe and an intensely charismatic star, Chup offers a tricky jumping adventure that would make Mario proud.
A space-themed mixture of Time4Cat and Replica. Your hyper-drive has malfunctioned, and deadly replicas of your ship are popping out of a wormhole behind you, retracing your path. They only move when you do, but you still have to travel fast to collect the research from nearby planets that will allow you to escape.
Despite the title, there's no water falling from the sky in Nitrome's new game — only little bunny-like creatures. Help them fly like little floppy-eared helicopters past electrified birds and other hazards to rest on the targets below.
New features included in Stunt Pilot 2: A level editor. Bonus levels where you follow a curvy line that catches on fire if you're good enough. Cannons that shoot coins for you to catch in mid-air. Hollywood explosions that bring hot-air balloons and racing pylons crashing down around you. Yeah, this game rules.
Fun to play and play to say, ChuckaBOOM is a game from Ninja Doodle that makes throwing bombs into light entertainment! The object of each level is to clear a target number of stars, using bombs that go off three (short) seconds after you fling them.
Melon Lacquer. Mellifluous Lymphocytes. Marimba Lion. Just what, exactly, does #07 ML stand for? Anyway, this is another high-quality escape-the-room game from consistently excellent Japanese designer 58 Works, who also made Cottage and Escape from Test Kitchen 2.
Tower of Greed is a game about the banker's favorite deadly sin, in the form of an aggressively retro, fast-moving platformer. Will you exit the tower with untold riches? Or will you be betrayed by your own avarice? If your fingers are nimble enough, let's find out!
In Learn to Fly, you play as a penguin who looked himself up on Kiwipedia and took the whole "flightless bird" comment as a mortal insult. So he decides that he's going to learn to fly, presumably so he can visit whoever wrote that and give them a stern talking to. Fly high, long, and far to gain money and upgrade your penguin with gliders and rockets. And when you're done, try playing again to see if you can do it faster.
One man's trash is another man's treasure. We all have that one thing that's important to us; that one tiny, seemingly inconsequential thing that's somehow special. The Blue Beanie is grand adventure in a lilliputian package about just such an item, and one little hero's quest to bring it safely home.
A gorgeous puzzle game with an impeccable user interface, Minim sets the standard for browser-based casual games. Minimize molecules to nothingness by combining atoms with digits on them, according to a few simple rules. Despite the references to chemistry and some light math, Minim isn't an educational game. It's more like a comforting hug followed by a knuckle sandwich.
Toys is a compact, high-quality escape game that, if not exactly groundbreaking, is certainly enjoyable. A prominent feature of one of the game's puzzles is the usage of stereograms, a form of optical illusion in which a three-dimensional image is hidden within a two-dimensional picture. All in all, a high-quality production.
Miracle Witch is the bright, fast, colorful, hard-as-nails story of cute little witch Polfe and her quest to defeat the evil king Yeah Walusa, which is the best name for an evil king ever. Find secret treasures, slay monstrous bosses, solve obscure puzzles. Like a mouse-controlled Legend of Zelda,
How hard could building a bridge be? In a game where you have to retrieve an elephant from a distant island, the answer may surprise you. Cargo Bridge asks you to engineer a sturdy path for your movers as they transport crates, safes, and yes, elephants.
Pariboro is Tonypa's latest endeavour into the world of tile-based games of skill and luck. Forty tiles of three colors lie on the grid before you, and your job is to clear as many tiles as you can, before the random domino-generator produces one you can't match. Bonus: having a Casual Gameplay account saves your progress!
If a three-year-old or a five-year-old were to make their own platform game, Androkids 2 is exactly what it would look like. If you never quite got over collecting coins and jumping on the bad guys, this is definitely right up your alley. Kid-tested and approved.
Rougoku falls into the category of more "realistic" escape games, those that concentrate in large part upon collecting and using items in practical ways (with, of course, a few genuine puzzles thrown in). It is a solid room escape game from a solid developer, familiar and proven with games like this.
Prince Peep is the last of the Whistle Knights, who have guarded the legendary Arrow of Time for generations against all invaders. Help Peep keep the Arrow safe in the new defense title from Super Flash Bros: The Arrow of Time.
Fans of Samantha Swift's previous caper have cause to rejoice. Samantha Swift and the Golden Touch, the newest hidden object adventure in the franchise, offers a compelling combination of well-integrated mini-games and adventure-style item puzzles that do an excellent job of keeping the game feeling fresh throughout.
Put Paper Mario and Tim Burton in a blender and you get Paper Moon, a smooth, sophisticated example of how to integrate design and mechanics into a masterful casual game. It's a platformer with a twist, and with enough style and depth to keep you coming back for more.
Playing equal parts as a maze, a hide-and-seek game and a guessing game, the idea of Neon Maze is to run around a glowing labyrinth in your little blur-pod, changing colours to open up new areas, while attempting to find the exit platform. The graphical presentation and surprisingly intricate level design make this one a winner.
Finally we find out why we have been trapped in so many different rooms in the Great Escape series by Mateusz Skutnik and the Pastel Games crew. Apparently there have been ghosts at every turn, slamming doors and locking us in various areas of the house, and now it's up to you do deal with those ghosts, once and for all. The Great House Escape takes the locale from each of the six previous installments, plus hallways connecting them all, and turns them into one big final "great escape" game.
Loom Blend is another room escape game from Place of Light, who previously brought us Room Fake, Room Bath, Room Marine, and Loom Above. The game's scenario is nothing new: you are in a room filled with diabolical puzzles and more than a few secrets, and must employ all of your wits to escape. A simple premise, but one that Place of Light does very well.
Desktop TD Pro is a substantial new update to one of the grandfathers of tower defense, with new shiny graphics and menacing new "hopper" and "decoy" creeps. With the new Scenarios, Sprint Mode, and a completely customizable Sandbox Mode, this is a strong contender for Best Tower Defense Game Ever.
In the experimental game Gray, you are a white or black androgynous person in the midst of a rioting mob, filled with people of the opposite shade. Your goal is to talk to the people who are highlighted and attempt to convert them to your point of view. It's amazing how accurately such a simple little game can hold a mirror up to modern political discourse.
Windosill is the story of a toy car, a little blue box with wheels and a smokestack, who one day dares to journey outside of its confining storage shelf. You, armed with the power to touch, carry, poke, prod, and experiment, will lead the toy through a cool blue dream presented in stages, a series of shadow-boxes full of curious characters and structures, each with its own puzzle to be solved.
This is a story of pop-up people who live in pop-up houses next to pop-up castles and pop-up trees. Your goal is to make the right side of this picture-book world into a mirror image of the left side. Headspin Storybook combines fabulous graphics with a creative twist on the "spot the difference" genre, and you'll want to keep playing it till the very end.
Look! Off in the horizon! Ships with flags with skulls and crossbones! And tons of peg-legged men hobbling right this way! We've got pirates on our hands, and the need to defend against them! Pirate Defense is Hero Interactive's (Storm Winds, Bubble Tanks) take on tower defense games, with a steep slant toward traps and chain reactions. Give those pirates the worst day of their pillaging life.
Snake Ball is a game of mouse skill, in which you, the snake, must quickly score points by bouncing and trapping balls into a pit with your body. Green balls are healthy but score low, while red balls score big but slowly drive your snake insane. An insane snake is a disturbing sight, I'll tell you what.
Can you feel it? That buzzing in the air? That's the feeling of the excitement of a new Nitrome tingling at your senses. Or someone just stuck a fork in the microwave, but it's more likely the former. Power Up is a physics-based puzzler with a high-voltage bolt of challenging fun that lasts for up to 32 levels.
G-Sensor is a solid, well-plotted and very enjoyable escape-the-room game from Japanese developer HILG. You, as a nameless business-person, have checked into the mysterious Uncle Boo's Hotel, and now you can't get out!
Puzzle Defence is a charming mash-up of the SameGame play mechanic with RPG elements. Scary, adorable monsters are attacking your castle, and the only way to defend yourself is to match them together, puzzle/strategy-style. You just want to hug this game and tousle its hair.
Tantrix is a friendly one-player version of the 1988 board game by Mike McManaway, a game that may not have the renown of Scrabble or chess, but still attracts devoted players for annual tournaments. Try to form loops of a single color out of specially-designed hexagonal tiles, in either a puzzle mode or the more improvisational Solitaire mode.
Planet Basher is a blast to play. It's like a gigantic, customizable pachinko machine in space. Your goal is to buy planets and position them so that your rockets bounce off of them long enough to collect the required 200 stars in one round. How many rounds will it take you?
Bipole is a physics-heavy spin-cycle of a puzzler. The goal is simple: annihilate all the cute, smiling particles by colliding them with particles of the opposite charge, taking advantage of gravity and electrostatic attraction/repulsion to gain momentum.
Acting as a prequel to the original, Gemcraft Zero tells the story of a wizard who has become so entangled in his search for the fabled Gem of Eternity that his colleagues have cast him out. Any fan of tower defense games shouldn't miss this one, but even those who may not normally be interested in them should at least give it a try.
How cute can you take it? If your answer is merely "pretty darn cute", that won't be enough. Even your cursor becomes pudgy and extra cuddly as you set out to help the little Euwins return home. Build bridges across 70 levels worth of waterways in Bridgecraft!
Jmtb02 brings us a cheerfully nihilistic look at traffic, in the form of a fast-paced, fun little reflex-tester. Click on the stop-lights to turn them on or off, allowing cars, buses, and semi-trailers to pass through intersections safely. Can you beat all 20 levels, oh Invisible Sky-bound Weaver of the Woof and Warp of Interlocking Automobiles? Or will the jabbering banjo music drive you insane first?
In this single-player Flash implementation of the card game Sevens, you play a stone cactus, locked in an endless death-match with a room full of other stone cacti, hoping to prolong the sweet breath of life for a few more rounds before The Claw hauls you off to the Great Gravel-Maker in the Sky. No, really.
Loom above is the latest room escape game from Place of Light, one of our favorite room escape game developers. It's not nearly as long or challenging as previous releases we've seen by this developer, and there are far fewer items to find. The puzzles are all fairly straightforward and the game is a joy to play because of how well everything fits together. See for yourself.
Scarygirl is a huge (hours long) and absolutely stunning platform game just released today by a collaboration of companies, including art direction by concept creator, Nathan Jurevicius, an Australian-born artist now living in Toronto, Ontario. Although currently marred by gameplay issues causing player frustration, it is without a doubt one of the most visually appealing browser-based experiences we have ever seen.
Using proprietary physics simulation technology, Collider lets you in on all the particle-smashing action you can handle! Simply annihilate all the charged particles by crashing the positive ones into the negative ones in this gritty physics-based puzzler.
Prizma Puzzle is a new tile-based puzzler by Silengames, strong on aesthetics and brimming with potential. Using your mouse, your job is to form a path of light beams from a source of your choice to all of the pyramid-shaped goals. It's a bit on the easy side, but the snazzy package and a variety of prism tiles make it interesting.
Zerosum is an intense variation on match-3 puzzles, with strict policies on winning and losing but vast opportunities for strategy. Easy to learn, hard to master. Make matches by adding adjacent numbers together, but make sure you don't run out of digits to replace them! It's brain candy, once you get into it, like defusing a bomb constructed by an six-year-old arch-villain.
These puzzles are the same type of chess mind-benders that still appear in some newspapers next to the word jumble and bridge game brainteasers. Given an endgame position consisting of a few pieces, try to produce checkmate in a given number of moves. The difficulty curve eases you in gradually, and if you're good enough, you can tackle 650 unique puzzles. Regardless of your Elo rating, you'll find a challenge that will suit you with MateMaster.
Bart Bonte knows that at the end of the day, sometimes the simplest rewards are the sweetest. Me and the Key is a series of mini-games that all have the same end — getting the titular key. That's right. There's no zombies, no spaceships, no power-ups. Just you and a slowly evolving set of puzzles designed to test your common sense, and your ability to think outside the box.
In ooPixel's brilliant new action game Escape the Red Giant, the sun is about to die, and you have to keep yourself alive for as long as possible by jumping from one asteroid to the next. Between the detailed physics engine and the tight gameplay, you may find yourself addicted without realizing it.
Tower Core is another shining star from John Feltham, the author of the previous "Core" series of games. It continues the story line established in Soul Core without a hitch, and even provides a recap accessible from the main menu. An alien being has decided to attack Earth while it was vulnerable. We can't let this happen. Unfortunately, the planet's defense systems are powered by a special Power Core Deluxe which someone forgot to charge before leaving.
Though it may appear to be just a slightly more colorful clone of Loops of Zen,, Colourshift starts to separate itself when you have to start blending colors together. With a gentle learning curve, plenty of customizable options, and a page of unlockable achievements, Colourshift may just take you by surprise.
A great game for fans of quirky physics puzzles, Civiballs asks you to drop colored orbs into the corresponding urns. Most orbs begin the level suspended in the air by chains and ropes. Your only method of interaction is to cut those cords, and let physics handle the rest, as the civiballs bounce and roll through a network of ramps and obstacles to reach their home.
The latest wacky puzzle from Nitrome, Rustyard has you indirectly leading a junkyard robot with a striking resemblance to Wall-E. You cannot control the movements of the machine, but you can manipulate the environment with its buttons and switches and trolley tracks. Get the robot to the generator and charge up! Bzzzap!
Redstar Fall is a short but wonderfully executed and atmospheric entry in the physics-based stacking/unstacking genre. you begin each level with a pile of oddly-shaped blocks sitting on an island floating in the sky. Click on a block and it vanishes, allowing everything above to shift with the pull of gravity. Your goal is to ease the red star down so it comes to rest on the island.
The sixth installment of Mateusz Skutnik's Great Escape series. By now you should know what to expect; beatiful cartoony backgrounds, quirky music, and improbable contraptions you must build to make your unlikely escape. Oh, and bats. Maybe you weren't expecting the bats, but they're in there too.
Quest for the Crown is not a breeze but a gale, racing down from the frigid peak of a mountain to blast you wide awake from your gaming funk and make you realise the brilliancy of the world you've been missing all along. And maybe — just maybe — change the way you look at the RPG genre forever.
Neptune is quite different from GUMP's previous room-escape games. It doesn't begin with an interesting introductory movie in which a pink-haired character does not encounter a huge building and doesn't decide to enter it, not passing an enigmatic red ladies' shoe that isn't resting on the ground outside.
There's delicious candy out there for those brave enough to mine it. Spin a giant orb made of coloured candy blocks to make the incoming bullets strike the blocks of your choice. But be careful you don't accidentally let the bullets strike the candy core! There may not be a lot of replayability or depth in Gregory Weir's Sugarcore, but there is a surprising amount of charm and cheek, and plenty of fast-paced puzzle blasting. Treating yourself to this candy won't make you feel guilty.
Zachtronics Industries has come up with a new "Game for Engineers", and given its central concept you'd think playing it would blow up the space-time continuum. It's a computer game about programming computer chips. Though it may take some time to grasp its central concepts, Kohctpyktop: Engineer of the People is a rich and rewarding puzzle game.
Assembler 3, by Bryce Summer, is a game about TWITCHING RAGE or to be more specific, a physics-based puzzle game with 44 levels, in which you must carefully position green objects within their equally green outlines. Maddening and compelling, Assembler 3 is sure to scratch your itch for GRAAAAAAAGH JUST STAY ON THE STUPID WEDGE YOU STUPID CRATE! MRAAAAAAAGH!!!
Drift Runners is a rip-roaring overhead racer from developer Long Animals, with no brakes, a variety of achievements and a hectic pace. Due to the emphasis on drifting, you don't carve the turns so much as shred them. It gets the controls right, it looks pretty, it makes crashing sounds at all the right times, and it rewards you for breaking stuff. Give it a spin.
Quaint room is a relatively short and easy room escape game, but it is also impressively polished and well-made. The graphics are aesthetically pleasing in a tidy sort of way, and the interface is completely smooth and user-friendly. So, take a break. Relax, step back a few years and enjoy this lovely example of classic Japanese gaming goodness.
The graphic presentation is fairly simple, but this is a deceptively deep Dr. Mario-style puzzler with a unique color-matching mechanic. Whenever you make a match, you leave behind a ball of a new color, and your job is to work your way up to the top of the rainbow scale. This adds a lot more gameplay dimension than you'd expect, and once you get into it, you will be hooked, trying to make that last couple of levels. Definitely give Combine a chance.
Your job in Nosobow, the newest creation from Tonypa, is to eliminate the non-matching tiles from the screen, while clicking a member of a pair puts you in jeopardy of losing the game. Behind the brilliantly simple design lies a intricate psychological game of self-pacing and concentration that will have you groaning in anguish every time you have to start back at square one.
A sequel to Open Doors, one of the most interesting puzzle games of 2008, has arrived, with an arresting makeover and just the right amount of extra spice. Open Doors 2 features compact puzzles with just the right number of new doors and mechanical gizmos. With a sparkling presentation and superb level design, this is one of the best puzzlers we've seen so far this year.
GlueFO 2.0, from the irRegular creators of Sproing Reloaded, has a simple premise: what if the heroic ship in Asteroids couldn't afford ammunition? What if the global recession were in fact universal, and the only way you could afford to bust space rocks was by sticking drifting pebbles to your hull, and then spraying them at the asteroids like deadly gravel?
What could be better than a game based on explosions? The goal is to get the yellow outlined cube to the bottom of the screen, and the only way to do it is by placing bombs in various locations and letting physics do the rest. The interesting part is how you can time the bombs to move blocks around the screen, one explosion after another.
Have you been wandering around in a haze since the first Perfect Balance, your heart crying out for the opportunity to wedge more things together? Do you miss the wedging like a starving shark misses bluefish? Then Perfect Balance: New Trials is here to offer you sweet, sweet, soul-crushing relief, in the form of 30 more levels of tough block stacking.
The vikings and the ice that trapped them have returned in an expansion on Nitrome's original physics-based puzzle game, Ice Breaker. Ice Breaker The Red Clan introduces lots of new obstacles to deal with strewn about an all-new set of levels. Vikings are trapped in the ice, walled-in by rock, or otherwise prevented from reaching the ship. Using your cursor as a cutting tool, it's your job to set them free. Manipulate each environment to provide a clear path from viking to ship and carve your way through 40 brand-new levels.
Another Room, by Japanese designer Mofuya, is a sweet, semi-short example of classic point-and-click that is executed with near-perfect competence. The game's puzzles are simple but well-crafted; while not wildly creative or different, they nonetheless offer a satisfying variety of problems to tackle. The room's neat, somewhat subdued appearance is pleasing to the eye and makes it simple to navigate the surroundings.
You remember Labyrinth, the board game where you turn knobs to roll a little steel ball to the exit, without hitting any holes along the way? Tilt is an example of the wooden labyrinth in 3D digital form, and an excellent one it is, too. Of course, one of the advantages of a digital version is the fact that the maze configuration does not have to stay static, and it certainly doesn't here. There are 66 different levels, many of them devilishly hard.
Hex Empire is a casual turn-based strategy war game, occupying a comfortable spot between the simplicity of Risk and the number crunching of the Avalon Hill-style board games that inspired the whole soldiers-on-hexagons thing. It lets you jump right into battle without much fuss, and offers enough tactical depth to be addictive even after several wars have ended. A bit of a treat, really.
Ever play Crack the Whip? The game where you hold hands with people in a line and then yank them around until someone loses hold of their neighbor's hand? Gen is a physics game with the same whippy slingshotty action, set in the world of microbiology. Maneuvering your little yellow cells to the big blue cell—without letting them get eaten by the red cells—will keep you swimming happily around in the petri dish for a while.
The microgames come at you at a rapid pace, in succession, leaving little time to recover before the next one attacks with sadistic intent. It reflects the Four Second series, but adds an online leader board, updated in real-time to reflect your standing against other people playing around the world. Whether you sit down for a marathon go or you just want a two-minute fix of quick gaming, you're bound to have a blast with the plethora of microgames in Tiny Trials.
Back to the basics again with Kagi Nochi Tobira 2, the simple and original puzzle game sequel to the very well-received Kagi Nochi Tobira from September of last year. There's not much else to say other than the raw creativity and sense of discovery in these simple puzzle games create an exceptionally engaging and appealing experience. Another example of why simple ideas are often among the most fun!
Wizard Defense is a Web-based tower defense game with a rich back-story and polished UI. You play a young wizard who resides at the Espeon School of Wizard Defense, hand-picked to defend the land from evil magic forces and monsters. Multiple path routes and a variety of tower and spell abilities later in the game offer plenty of strategic fun. Rooted by its rich story and dazzling presentation, it's something that every casual gamer should check out.
If you celebrate Arbor Day and always thought a logic puzzle was just what the holiday needed, then Leaf Blight is for you. In this relaxing game, snip off the infected leaves in the correct order to keep your trees healthy and strong.
You're in a cell, seemingly with no chance of escape. But wait, what's this? A letter tucked into a chink in the wall. Apparently your captivity is due to one Simeon Meade, a member of the mysterious Talos Organization. He can't help you escape directly, but it is possible to unlock your door from inside the cell...
The player starts in the present day, but with a push of a button can be transported into the same room some indeterminable span of time into the past; press another button and the operation is reversed. Two separate, subtly different rooms to zoom between, each one affecting the other... interesting, no?
An engaging and easy new puzzle game from Joey Betz and the Super Flash Bros. Featuring 30 levels filled with blocks to push, switches to switch, creatures to avoid as you negotiate monkey to the goal for each level. Isometric perspective and a retro look give this little puzzler lots of charm and potential for fun.
Music Catch 2 delivers everything you'd want from a sequel to Reflexive's surprise hit Music Catch, especially if what you want is more ways to collect thousands of shimmering doo-dads. You get three more lovely piano tunes by composer Isaac Shepherd, and a few different choices for how the collectibles will bloom and fade away. Some of the new movement patterns make the game dramatically easier than others, but Music Catch was never about challenge anyway. It's just an easy way to relax, scooping up armfuls of trinkets and grooving to the mellows.
Globetrotter is as simple as it gets. You're given a map and you're given a location, and you must click on where you think that location is on the map. Sure, this is easy if you're looking for New York, United States or London, England, but good luck with Tunis, Tunisia on your first go, and believe me, Australia can be trickier than you may think.
The idea, as always, is simple. Get the red ball (or square) to touch all the flags by drawing physical objects directly onto the screen with your crayon-like cursor. This sequel to Magic Pen features 32 more puzzling levels, all selectable from the moment you start the game, mostly set in various crayon-rendered versions of historical locations. The level designs feel a bit more intricate this time, with more on-screen obstacles and even a few moving contraptions to cope with. There are no major improvements to the formula, but such a childlike, pure idea doesn't need them. This is a heap more Magic Pen for everyone who loved it the first time. Enjoy.
Enter the Kid's Room. You left your myPhone behind when visiting your friend's house, and he hid it in the kid's playroom. You go to get it, possibly to get away from your annoying myRobot for a while, but some prankster locks the door behind you when you enter. Of course. It is an excellent piece of work, with puzzles that make sense, fine 3D graphics, and just the right amount of satisfaction when you figure something out.
The writing's on the wall at The Glassworks Company for Kapowski, who just got fired for getting a little too creative at work. Now you've got to prove to your boss that you're capable of making it in the window-washing world with your new power gloves and a little high-flying daredeviling. Enter The Glassworks, the latest platforming experience from the talented crew at Nitrome.
Blush is a unique and beautiful, 3D rendered, underwater physics-based game by Flashbang Studios, in which you play a betentacled creature fighting your way through the ocean deep. It is also very addictive. Fight off other sea creatures, collect eggs and bring them to glowing orbs that increase your speed and extend your tentacles. Even earn achievements, too.
The ray gun: time-honored weapon of choice for protection against baddies of all kinds. But if there's nothing to protect against, what good is it? Transmover, a puzzle platformer by Japanese game developers Polygon Gmen introduces a new function for your favorite hand-held emitter of energy: transmotion. In layman's terms, this simply means when you fire your gun at a block, you and the block switch places, a tactic that injects new life into the block-maneuvering platform genre.
A short demo of a larger point-and-click adventure to be released in April, this is the latest by Gateway series creator Anders Gustafsson. It uses similar play mechanics to his previous games, and yet the graphical engine looks like it has received a complete makeover. A compelling teaser for the beautiful new world of adventure that Gustafsson has in store for us.
Spin-n-Match, by Jess Hansen, is a simple puzzle game that will torque your brain to its limits. On the left, you see a grid of jumbled up balls. On the right, you see your target formation. Your task is simple: Make the left look like the right by rotating 2x2 clusters, similar to Bejeweled Twist. You can try to simply beat all 40 levels, or you can go for the developer's target scores. Either way, Spin-n-Match is a nifty little puzzler that'll keep your head spinning. (Fifty bucks says you saw that coming.)
Your objective in Panda Star is to launch an ambitious panda into the night sky and light up all the stars you find there, which have gone dark because they apparently lack panda juice. This is a simple arcade-style game of skill that looks and sounds like a slow-paced mystical journey of spirit. It won't change the world, but it made us happy one evening in a simple, panda way, and maybe it will do the same for you.
Yoshio Ishii (Nekogames) has just released a sequel to his unique, if no frills, self-cooperative game, Cursor*10. The update, aptly named Cursor*10 2nd Session, offers a whole new set of levels with the premise and objective still the same: You're a cursor in a tower. You have to reach the 16th floor in 10 lives, but your lifespan is rather short. And not only that, all your previous lives are being replayed, in real time, at the same time as you play. You will have to think on your feet and use cunning and puzzle-solving prowess to get through all 16 levels before your lives (and time) run out.
Exorbis 2, by Editundo, is a tile-based puzzle game about shunting orbs into targets. The clever thing is that your controls for doing so are tile blocks themselves. Arrow blocks come in pairs. By clicking on one, both move in that direction by one tile, taking any orbs between them along for the ride. 100 tricky levels and a level editor await you in this colorful and absorbing puzzle adventure.
An uncommonly lovely escape game that is also, for better and for worse, unusually difficult. We've come to expect great things from Place of Light; their previous games are both excellent and well-executed. With Room Marine, however, they have positively outdone themselves. While the difficulty of the game can be at times taxing, the reward is more than worth it; if you're a serious connoisseur of escape games, you're gonna love this one.
A uniquely engaging, captivating and relaxing puzzle game that will be both fresh and familiar every time you play since all levels and even the music for each level is randomly generated. Author Dan Russell-Pinson set out to create a game with wider appeal than the Tipping Point series of adventure games he is known for, and the game's redeeming qualities certainly don't end there.
A game that is little like Pong, except that you've got four paddles, they're tethered to the walls by chains, and every eight hits produces a new ball to contend with. It's easy to play and aesthetically simple, with vector-like graphics and soothing sound effects, but the evil challenge is what keeps you coming back for more.
The latest real-time strategy game from tower defense master David Scott sets you in deep space, defending your asteroid mining operation from humongous swarms of space pirates. The freedom of building in two dimensions gives you a lot of room to experiment and find your own strategy, and the sheer scope of the massive battles make it feel like quality space opera. Constant tension plus simple controls plus nearly unlimited mathematical depth equals awesome strategy game.