It's been around for a while, so we expect many of you are already familiar with A Case of the Crabs, but if Nick Bounty's first point-and-click adventure missed you, now's a great time to give it a go. It's a hilarious parody of classic detective stories, a noir-but-silly tale of a down-on-his luck gumshoe solving the mystery of a murder and a crate full of crabs.
The Malstrums Mansion is a retro point-and-click game with a surprisingly tense atmosphere, in the style of old Apple Macintosh adventures like Shadowgate. The heavily pixilated black and white graphics are chunky but lovingly crafted. If you love games that give you the creeps, or if you just like to relive the early years of gaming, this is a title you simply can't afford to pass up.
How great is it to be a detective? You wear expensive suits, your hair always looks perfect no matter what angle you're seen from . . . oh! And of course you get to utilize everything from hidden objects, spot-the-difference, fun puzzles and more to catch your man! And if you do it by playing one of Big Fish Games' newest releases, CSI:NY, you get to do it all with a substantially decreased likelihood of getting shot! And hey, who doesn't like not getting shot?
From Spiritonin, creator of Adult Swim's Death Vegas, comes Capoeira Fighter 3, a 2D fighting game with a free online demo and full-fledged downloadable version. Featuring more than two dozen playable characters and a refined, logical system of combos, it's one of the rare fighting games that captures the nostalgia from the genre's heyday while updating everything to fit in with a new generation of gamers.
Women's Murder Club: A Darker Shade of Grey is the latest installment in the murder mystery/hidden object adventure game series based on the books and television program of the same name. Investigating the death of a young boy, you play the role of several different experts, each with a specialization and accompanying gameplay mode. Gather evidence and clues and piece things together in the forensics lab to solve the mystery!
Bloody Fun Day is a refreshingly original turn-based strategy game from Urban Squall, built around the character of a cute little nihilistic, selfish grim reaper. Your objective is to score as many points as possible by reaping the Cuties, who populate their hexagonally gridded island like dense, colorful game pieces. Their crime is incessant happiness and adorability. Their punishment is a gratuitously violent death. Deceptively well-crafted and deep, Bloody Fun Day is a bloody good time.
Schizo-Phrenzy is a surreal platform adventure with an art deco look and a discourteous attitude towards gravity. Guide the mentally unwell private investigator John K. Facey on his quest to confront the titanic Mayor and discover the true extent of his own madness. Schizo-Phrenzy will fill your shoes with spider eggs during the night, and if they hatch, you are in real danger of having your privacy invaded.
Sin Mark is a Bowmaster Prelude-inspired side-scroller by Con Artist of Armor Games, featuring subtle strategy elements and lots of magic arrow, spell-weaving fun. It's meant to be played with your hero as mobile as possible, unlike many of the static, turret-defending bow-and-arrow games in this genre. Progressing through a series of levels battling waves of Middle Earth-type monsters, you'll extract magic from "Rune Stones" to build a larger arsenal of offensive and defensive spells, all of which are cast from your trusty bow.
"What good is Magnetic Poetry if you can't be the best at it?" you might be saying. Well, wonder no more, for Paul Preece and David Scott (AKA the Casual Collective) have just the thing: Farragomate! Compete against up to 9 others to make the best sentence out of a given pool of words.
In Escape, a multiple-room point-and-click escape game in the Trapped series by Godlimations, play as Dialla Reineheart, a spunky red-headed lady detective tasked with bringing down a sinister crime syndicate. Your partner, Mickey, has been tragically slain by the leader of the gang, the ruthless Dan McNeely; now, you must escape from his clutches. This won't be easy.
An entrant into the 2009 Independent Games Festival, 2DEngine's Chains is a game of color connecting that puts a new spin on the same-game genre. Twenty unique levels challenge the player to clear circles while balancing a coat hanger, cleaning a clogged pipe, painting a pyramid, and dodging giant pinball flippers. But of course, we all do that every weekend, don't we?
In Cortex Command, you assume the role of a disembodied brain (floating in a jar, actually) that's able to network with—and telepathically control—a variety of machines and soldiers. The basic premise is that you're setting up shop on hostile alien worlds to mine for resources, while your enemy is doing the same. Superficially, it sounds more like a real-time strategy game than a turn-based warfare game, which is one of the main reasons Cortex Command has so much potential; it's both.
The sequel to one of the best tactical battle games on the internet has finally arrived! Sonny 2 improves on the first game by offering three separate character classes, hundreds of new items, and a Player vs. Player mode. The turn-based combat flows like water and requires plenty of intense decision-making, while the incredible amount of character customization available right from the start opens up a world of interesting choices.
How close are you with your family? What if you received a letter from an uncle one night, asking for your help in investigating rumours of an ancient culture deep in the wilderness? Would you pack your bags and head out to help? You might. But the blood on the ground when you arrived might give you serious pause. How bad could things be, right? As befits the first chapter in a series of adventures, you're going to end this one with more questions than you started with, and maybe, just maybe, a prickling feeling of unease at the back of your neck.
Warfare 1917 is a rather excellent World War I strategy title from Armor Games that concentrates on the use of trenches as strategic choke points. The gung-ho cries of your troops make it hard to lose them, and if you waste too many lives, you run the risk of losing the battle to low morale. It's a real gem of a wargame that works on more levels than just pew pew pew KABOOM. Though certainly it provides that as well.
You kids these days with your Halos and your Gear Wars and your Half Lifes... you don't appreciate what we had to work with! Back in my day, we didn't have no fancy-schmancy high-end graphics in our shooters! No complex storylines, neither. We didn't even have a jump! You know what we had? We had Doom.
Reemus and Liam continue their journey to save the kingdom from the plague of death slugs that appeared from nowhere in the first chapter. Zeebarf is a fantastic animator and he uses his talents to tell an imaginative story full of interesting characters and fantastic situations. You will be entertained (and perhaps a little grossed out, too). The puzzles are not too difficult, but wacky enough to keep you from just breezing through the game.
Violet is a richly engaging one-room puzzle game from the annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2008). The problem? You're a graduate student working on your dissertation, but you haven't gotten any writing done in months. Your girlfriend Violet has put her life on hold, waiting for you to finish, and she's getting fed up. If you don't get a thousand words written today, your relationship is over and she flies home to Australia.
Ghostscape, a new escape game by Psionic, is just chock full of supernatural goodness. You play a veteran investigator of the occult who, upon hearing rumors of a haunted house, cannot stay away...and what a paranormal gold mine it turns out to be! Chairs and cups move as if grasped by some invisible hand, mysterious diary entries litter the floor, grotesque paintings adorn every room. And then, of course, there are the ghosts.
It is a classic horror scenario: the car broken down in the middle of the road, the swirling snow and biting cold, the beckoning light visible just over the hill. A house! Oh, thank goodness. But what's this? The lights are on, cheery fireplaces crackle in every room, yet no one is there. You call out a hello, but your voice echoes unanswered through the hall. How strange.
Karoshi is a platform/puzzle game where your goal is the exact opposite of most such entertainments: you have to die. Throw yourself onto spikes, zap yourself with electricity, smash yourself with a falling safe. It's like an extended version of the cathartic moment when you get finally get sick of Mario's empty-headed cheerleading and just hurl him off a cliff.
Monster Basement 2 is every bit as entertaining and well-made as the original; like the first game, it is extraordinary for its thought-provoking plot and tense, eerie ambiance. Patrick Majewski, from Godlimations, has spared nothing in bringing his tale of monster-against-man-against-monster to life.
Ben There, Dan That! is an old-school adventure game in the classic sense. You know how this works. Right click to access the interactive menu. Interact with objects. Pick them up. Use them with other objects. In this game, you default to playing as Ben, but you can switch to being Dan when the occasion calls for it. It features some fairly witty writing with that rather unique British self-deprecating sense of humour.
Zeebarf returns and you'll be pleased to know that his work just keeps getting better. Your job is to guide opportunistic exterminator Reemus and his ursine companion Liam through a series of eight oddball misadventures on a quest to... well... do something or other. Go to a castle and save the world, I guess. They get sidetracked a lot.
Monster Basement is a chilling room escape game that injects mood and atmosphere into what is often an almost apathetic genre. The motivation to leave is made all too clear; this room with its vampire flies, blood stained meat hooks, and grotesque abominations sitting in fluid filled beakers, scares the jebus out of you, and as you slowly work through a way to leave this terrible place, things aren't likely to get better either.
Developed by Dark Realm Studios, Pandemic 2 is the sequel to the morbidly fun original Pandemic, a game in which your goal is to eradicate the human race with the perfect disease. While the original game didn't go on to become hugely popular, Pandemic II is more an improvement upon its predecessor than a sequel, with an improved interface and more features.
Gigolo Assassin is a new point-and-click adventure from Mediatonic and created for Adult Swim. In this first installment of a three part series, you must guide your gigolo (I named mine Bruce Digelow) through an isolated tropical island in order to put a stop to the sinister goings on of one Alana Lamia. In so doing you will meet an assortment of unique (and decidedly non-unique) characters as well as solve item based puzzles much along the same vein as the old Sierra and Lucas Arts point-and-click adventures.
Dangerous High School Girls in Trouble is an innovative and award-winning download game for both Mac and Windows that defies classification. It's a unique genre-bending game that includes puzzle and RPG elements, as well as a variety of mini-games. All these disparate elements synthesize remarkably well, and the gameplay quickly becomes intuitive.
Based on the James Patterson novels (and the subsequent television spin-off), Women's Murder Club: Death in Scarlet is a murder mystery wrapped in an adventure game spiced with light hidden object scenes and a few simple minigames. Investigating crimes is the central focus of gameplay, with heaping doses of clue sniffing, murder scene scrutinizing, and some light labwork here and there to keep the story moving along. You don't need to be a fan of the series to enjoy the game, and even if you are, Women's Murder Club: Death in Scarlet weaves a completely new tale (penned by Patterson) that stays faithful to the original characters' personalities. This time, however, you're in charge.
The Several Journeys of Reemus is a point-and-click game with a medieval fantasy setting from talented flash artist Zeebarf. Wanna-be hero Reemus must put a stop to a local infestation of giant ants, armed with only his dubious wits, a kickin' handlebar mustache, and his faithful purple bear sidekick Liam. By applying your skill at pointing, clicking, and problem solving, you must guide Reemus unscathed to the final confrontation with the towering ant queen.
Monsters' Den: The Book of Dread is Flash RPG of extraordinary depth. It is essentially a turn-based, tactical dungeon crawl, and it understands your insatiable clawing lust for magical super-trinkets. If the promise of powerful enchanted do-dads gets your blood pumping even a little bit, then Monsters' Den will have its generous claws in you for quite a while.
Alan Probe: Amateur Surgeon is a cartoonish and casually offensive entry into the simon-says-surgery genre made famous(ish) by Atlus' Trauma Center. Your job is to follow the exact requirements of each surgery as quickly and as accurately as possible. The game is blessed with the finest production values a second-tier television network can buy, with bright, detailed environments and an ever-present sense of self-conscious irony. The violence is so over-the-top that it's not really gross, but there's still plenty of comically intense moments to go around.
Bow Street Runner is a mystery adventure series commissioned by Channel 4 (UK). Set in London's Covent Garden in the 1750s, crime in the city has risen to such a level that local magistrates were forced to take action. The Bow Street Runners were born, created to instill order in the increasingly crime-ridden city. It's a dark and historically accurate journey through old London, presented with live actors, voice narration and full motion video for an impressive cinematic experience.
XSketch is a multiplayer Pictionary-style game with an interesting twist on gameplay and scoring. Players can jump right into any game already in progress and begin to have fun immediately. Points are earned by drawing and guessing successfully, and monthly competition leader boards give the game a real competitive feel.
Sonny is most likely the best Flash RPG yet made. Imagine fluid battles that don't feel like a grind, complete with fluid animation and tactics that are actually interesting and fun. Now, imagine that you're a superhuman zombie. Yes, Sonny, this is it.
Trapped Part 2: The Dark is the middle installment in a trilogy of puzzle adventure games distinguished by a literary flavor and an unusual perspective. This series has a lot more in common with the old Infocom text adventures than it does with modern point-and-click games. Rather than relying on abstract puzzles and thorough visual investigation, the Trapped games plop you in a mundane environment, lavish you with a huge inventory, and then ask you to be extremely clever.
In Ragdoll Invaders, the falling spikes are replaced with lasers and explosives, but lo and behold, your floppy ragdoll stickman is replaced with... another floppy ragdoll stickman. But wait, there's more! His arms, unlike the other stickman, have been replaced with DUAL CHAIN GUNS. Which have unlimited ammunition. This pretty much makes any game flipping hardcore.
The first full release from Diverge Creations, Host is a multiplayer fighting game where you play a deranged mutant. It has great art from the same chap who worked on Gish, it's easy to pick up and a fair bit of fun. The interface to join games is very smooth: you can skip registering an account and jump right into a currently running game and go at it.
The penultimate entry(!) to the 4th Casual Gameplay Design Competition is from wonderwhy-er of Latvia. Please welcome wonderwhy-er with your kind feedback and constructive criticism in the comments. Nightmare is an action game of fighting monsters with your bare hands. The "ball physics" theme has been implemented within the underlying game engine rather than in the gameplay itself.
The next entry up is from Martin Jonasson of Sweden. And while this is Martin's first competition with us, you may have seen some of his games before here on JIG. Goreblood, for short, is a projectile shooting game in a classic 'defend your castle' setting, except it's a brain you are defending from a horde of zombie nuns.
The game is an interesting twist on your standard point-and-click. While you still use found items to solve puzzles and escape the house in which you are trapped, Trapped trades in the standard first person view for a pseudo-3D isometric third person perspective. Use your clicking finger and your puzzling skills to collect items and combine items, and to get out.
Blackflip is a remarkably well-produced puzzle game inspired by the game Polarium for the Nintendo DS. It's a very simple game to understand, and yet quite challenging to play. The best part about Blackflip is that all of the puzzles are created by other players, and you can even link to specific ones you create by using the tags provided.
Pillage The Village is the spiritual successor and prequel to Defend Your Castle, one of THE original web-game classics from back when there were only so many good web-games on the whole Internet. Made by XGen Studios, one of the first companies to dive into the Flash scene with gusto and not a look back. Now, years later, XGen is back with Pillage The Village, a smashmortion of click-tastic mayhem.
A desperate man grips the detonator of the explosives belted around his waist, his thumb hovering ever so slightly above that little, harmless-looking red button. On the other side of the room a cop stands, gun drawn, his finger trembling over the trigger. You are the invisible observer, responsible for helping the cop find some way out of this seemingly impossible situation.
Bodilies combines beautiful graphics and animation, and haunting, melodic music with a story that actually works and feels right. Help Neil in his quest for freedom and self-actualization; it leads you through an interesting point-and-click adventure you won't soon forget!
Ah, the humble ninja. Stealthy, wise and deadly. Everything I am not. Which is why I choose to play games that have ninjas in them. Much easier than actually becoming one. And most of the time you can pause for a quick break when you need one. Try doing that in the middle of a real life assassination. Bet you can't.
Makibishi Comic is an atmospheric, quirky, and well-drawn point-and-click flash created to promote the Japanese studio... Makibishi! You play the role of Asashin who is searching for five ninjas hidden across five different environments. Each stage is a new and creative area with multiple puzzles and scenes to experience. Think Blue Suburbia meets Hapland and you're ready to roll.
About a year and a half ago we posted a logic puzzle published by Coudal Partners, the people behind The Show and the ones responsible for recording the recent live tours of both the Pixies and Dead Can Dance. Well, they have just published a new one, and this one will surely give your brain a tickle.
O Quarto is a great looking point-and-click game made by Andres Calil of Me Pixa. Once again you are trapped in a room and must search the area for items to help you escape. The art style of this game is superb and reminds me of an interactive oil painting. The game is also quite mysterious and offers some wonderfully perplexing mysteries that must be solved in order to escape.
Quadradius is an online, multiplayer, turn-based Flash game that takes the skeleton of the board game checkers, and pumps it up with a massive list of power-ups and new strategies that turns the game into an addictive and very compelling new concept. In fact, calling it checkers is an oversimplification that does not do it any justice.
As a casual gamer, you have certainly come across titles that fall into the defend-your-castle category. BowMaster Prelude fits that description as well, but certain aspects elevate it above other candidates, such as earning experience points and gold to recruit an army, the ability to upgrade and buy different arrows, and a unique feature that lets the hero leave the castle.
Poid is a short flash platformer from Protopop Games, the creators of Nimian Flyer and Nimian Hunter. The Nephohedron transport ship (profit class) has run into a bit of a problem. On route to Junx city the navigation system failed and the crew wasn't responding. To the rescue is a small poid, a flea-like creature you release from a slumber pod. Guide your poid through the ship and uncover the mystery behind the strange errors.
Paintball is a simple time waster that should prove a fun diversion for an hour or two. Or three. The playing field consists of: a ball, which drops under gravity and bounces; a square, which the ball is trying to reach; pre-set platforms which the ball will roll/bounce on; and custom-made platforms which you draw freehand on the screen. Simpler than some games with this feature, Paintball is unlikely to elicit gasps from its players with advanced physics, but what it does it does very well.
For those of you who have never been drunk in your entire life, the Game of Disorientation will serve as a suitable trainer in case you drink from the wrong plastic cup at the next party you're dragged to. It's when the walls start pulsing and the room starts rotating that things really get confusing.
You've managed to make it to lunchtime. It's been a rough day but you are free for an hour and you'd love to spend it laying the smack down on some monsters RPG-style. However, it's going to be hard to install World of Warcraft on your puny work PC, and besides, you simply don't have time. What do you do? Fire up a game of DragonFable.
Gibbage is a one-panel player verses player bloody shoot-out that was created over the period of 2 years by the talented indie game development newcomer, Dan Marshall. Its gameplay is not quite like anything else currently available on the market and has the graphical sensibilities of the pixel games of yore.
Nightmare Escape is a horror-themed, room escape game created by Robert Mac Nelly. It combines a macabre and bloody setting with some tricky riddles that will scare you and puzzle you at the same time. Be observant, know your surroundings, and think literally to find the answers.
Naked Melee Armageddon is one of the most aptly named online games ever created. Your simple goal is to overwhelm alien attackers by placing naked humans on the screen as fast as you can. Why everyone's naked, no one really knows, but you don't have time to sit and ponder. After just a few seconds the aliens will attack, at which point all you can do is kick back and watch the armageddon.
Magneto Syndrome is a point-and-click room escape game created by Juliana Reina. The main character has been infused with the power to control metallic objects. He regains consciousness and his first thought is to escape. It's going to prove a little difficult, seeing as how he's stuck inside a water-filled tube. Using his powers of magnetic manipulation, it's your job to help him make his run for freedom.
Remember the amazing, jaw-dropping, Shockwave 3D first person shooter (FPS) demo that surfaced last year just prior to GDC? The game was called Phosphor Alpha and it was created by Nick Kang of Rasterwerks. Well, he's done it again: Phosphor Beta 1 kicks the action into high gear by including multiplayer deathmatch functionality, with additional mods being added regularly.
Take three (3) complementary University students, all with strong backgrounds in Flash; pour in their hearts and souls and mix well. Add a year's worth of caffeine and just a touch of obsession, and then bake for long hours and many long nights. The result is this very impressive ninja-fighting 2D side-scrolling platformer that performs as only a ninjaman can.
Pow Pow's Mini-Golf is an impressive Shockwave 3D implementation of classic miniature golf gameplay that runs in any browser. The game even features RPG-like elements with saved character stats that can be 'leveled-up' with experience points.
"Gorgeous" is the only word to describe the award-winning Dofus, a feast of sight and sound in the form of a Flash-based MMORPG created by the folks at Ankama Games. The art and music of Dofus follow in the finest traditions of anime, making the game something of a cross between WoW and Pokemon (with a dash of tongue-in-cheek humor thrown in for good measure).
From South Korea comes this stylized side-scrolling shooter that features over-the-top action and two (2) playable characters, Happy & Smile, a bunny and a cat. But don't let their cartoonish good looks fool you: these cute and adorable animals pack a mean punch, carry lethal weapons, and have fearsome special attacks that will fry any enemy to a crisp.
In the last century, an extraordinary man called Tulse Luper archived his entire life in 92 suitcases. It seems he was a witness to several key events in the 20th century. The Tulse Luper Journey is a game that is part of an ambitious series of multi-media projects initiated by film director Peter Greenaway and based on the adventures of this mysterious lead character. Discover new research material that appears each week.
Deanimator is an elegantly simple, gorgeous and gruesome shooter that was inspired by one of H. P. Lovecraft's short stories, Herbert West: Reanimator, which is the gruesome tale of an eccentric young doctor with a penchant for experiments that involve reanimating the dead. If you have the stomach for survival horror, don't miss this one.
As far as casual game design is concerned, I find much to celebrate about Gas Games. All of the games on the site have been created with a consistent appearance and style, and many of them feature gameplay that is unique and addictive. A few of my favorites are Fulfillment, Gravity, and Centrifuge.
As I enter Guano Junction inside the Bat Hole, I check my equipment. Chef's hat? Check. Rubber axe? Check. Frilly skirt? Check. Dirty hobo gloves? Check. Pine-Fresh air freshener? Check (well, one can never be too careful). I am ready for anything.
See why this is considered one of the most terrifying horror games of all time! Nobody is willing to enter an abandoned house where the entire family committed suicide, but you're looking for the truth... unfortunately, somewhere in the dark, something is looking for you too...
NFH Propaganda is a creepy point-and-click adventure game created using a combination of Flash and a series of HTML pages. The result is highly reminiscent of the 99 Rooms, and as equally artistic: just replace all the graffiti with ghoulish animation and weirdness.
The Goat in the Grey Fedora is a strange and offbeat point-and-click adventure with a black and white film-noir atmosphere. The game's highpoint is definitely its sense of humor. Not only that, but it has an actual plotline, which, as the title implies, has to do with a goat. In a grey fedora.
Because the Hapland games are so much fun and unbelievably popular, I wanted to post a link to this similar game for you to try. Although not quite as well done as Robin Allen's games, Puzzleland is much easier and there are more levels to solve. Each level details the...
Flash-in-the-Can 2005 award winner, Grant Skinner, has put together an impressive and ambitious pseudo-3D first-person shooter in Flash. There is even a back-story in case you need a reason to shoot at cute little creatures.
Puki: The Swarm begins after a routine mission to a space station, in a far away...
From the creator of Treasure Box—an engaging and clever interactive Flash puzzle that showcases the author's artistic talents—comes another such piece with a clearer objective than its predecessor. It is an imaginative work of art filled with sights and sounds that include various puzzles to solve. The objective is to find all 5 stars and then place them onto the wheel of fortune.
Madness. Not really a game, and yet I had a lot of fun playing with Just Letters, a Flash Communications Server application. Basically, there is a white board with lots of English alphabet letters on it that you drag around to form words, sort into colors, or what ever you like. Problem is, there are many others all doing the same thing.
And what would Halloween be without a little gore? Five Finger Fillet, from the now defunct 13th Street website of Universal Studios, is a Shockwave game to test your reflexes and your stomach. Be careful or you'll lose a finger. =p
From Sony Pictures comes this Flash point-and-click adventure to promote their new low-budget horror film starring Sarah Michelle Gellar of Buffy the Vampire Slayer fame. This mini-adventure is quite scary and will likely send chills down your spine, so turn down the lights and turn up the volume for maximum effect.
Alien Hominid is a fast-paced 2D side-scroller in which players must run, jump and shoot their way across the globe in pursuit of the alien's coveted UFO. Also sporting 2-player madness, this game is a truly original title with outstanding hand drawn cel-shaded graphics and animation.
I did a double-take when I first saw this on a French Flash games site. Fighters were the one genre that I had seen very little if anything done in Flash, yet now you can relive those arcade glory days by playing Street Fighter with your friends, on your computer.
Julien Philippe has created a version that allows you to play single player against ...
This gorgeous game, titled "The Malibu 9 Rescues Mr. Malibu (and 6/9 of the Deepfried Posse)", was originally from a club, Club Malibu, in Stockholm, Sweden, that may not even be in existence any longer (you know how clubs just come and go). Top notch production in a fun little Flash game.
A lot of thought and design went into developing the Anti-Bush Online VideoGame. It's a mix of SouthPark brashness with old-school 2D side-scrolling fun. Everyone should play it, if for no other reason than to see just how George Bush has failed us as our president. The Emperor has no clothes! We must get rid of him before it's too late.
Viridian Room is a place you wish to escape from, but have you the soul to withstand the challenge? Muha-ha-ha-ha-ha! This point-and-click puzzle game was one of the very first escape-the-room type Flash Web games. Nicely done with eerie sound effects.
An odd and addictive little game of violence against stick figures intent on invading your castle. From what I can glean, the gameplay has some depth by allowing you to purchase additional units and upgrades between levels.