Another simple idea executed almost perfectly, Andrew VanHeuklon's Rerun is a unique mouseplay game of collection and avoidance. And though we have seen this core gameplay mechanic in other games before, it is the creative implementations of the "replay" theme that elevate this title above others of its type.
It should come as no surprise to hear that great things often spring from the simplest of ideas. Gimme Friction Baby is one such simple idea turned into an award-winning arcade game of strategy and skill that will keep you coming back for more long after your first play. First place and audience prize winner from our 3rd game design competition, and now part of the elite selection of games to be called Best of 2007. Another exceptional game design by Wouter Visser.
Sick of all of this sudoku nonsense flying about the place? Need a break from all this one-of-each-in-every-row-column-and-square rubbish? I've got the perfect solution for you... sorta. Kakuro—or Cross Sums or Sum Totals, depending on what school of puzzling you were raised in—is another number puzzler that has gained popularity in recent months.
Cute pixelly monsters? Plucky soundtrack? Arcade-style gameplay? It must be the latest release from Nitrome! Hooray! In Square Meal, you play a cute boxy monster trying to escape from a sinister dungeon filled with monsters, floor spikes, exploding blocks, slippery patches, and other hazards. Luckily you're armed with a hearty appetite.
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!
Your plane goes down on a mysterious and seemingly deserted island somewhere off the radar charts, and it is up to you to find a way to 'Escape from Island' using only the resources available to you. Thought-provoking puzzles and a well-illustrated environment together create an atmosphere ripe for adventure and captivating gameplay.
Dream Chronicles is a sensual delight, an intellectual challenge, and a very engaging twist on adventure, seek-and-find and puzzle games. It's been compared to Myst and Uru, and whilst it's certainly not as demanding as those mainstream titles, I found Dream Chronicles even more enjoyable.
Kudos Rock Legend sim allows you to indulge your dreams of rock stardom—start out as a struggling band with no publicity or gigs, develop your musical style, write songs and claw your way up to playing the Enormo-dome, making TV appearances and hiring bodyguards to protect you from the hordes of screaming fans.
DayMare Town is a strange and oddly deserted town that gives the unsettling feeling that eyes are peering from around corners. It is drab and dreary, not a very pleasant place to be. But now you're stuck, and you'll do anything you can to leave.
Gravity Pods is a physics-based vector shooting/puzzle title created by Wicked Pissah Games. The goal is to fire a projectile and hit a target across the screen. Barriers are usually in the way, but by using gravity pods you can bend the path your projectile takes to send it virtually anywhere on the screen.
A Flash version of the classic Denki Blocks originally made for the Game Boy Advance. The goal of each level is to maneuver blocks of the same color so that they touch. Use the arrow keys to move the entire set of blocks around the screen. Immovable black squares can be used to prevent certain blocks from moving, allowing you to separate adjacent blocks from each other. The twist here is that when blocks of the same color meet, they fuse into a single block. Although this is the ultimate goal of the game, you'll have to be careful, as you can easily render a level unsolvable through premature fusions. With 100 levels, Jelly Blocks contains more than enough puzzler goodness to satisfy the hunger of anyone.
Admit it: you've wanted to slap someone silly at least once today. Just haul-off and give them a good hard smack across the cheek. In Rose & Camellia you can do just that while taking part in a unique new game with high production values from Japan. Reiko has married into a noble family, but shortly afterwards her husband Siyunsuke dies. The women of the house do not respect Reiko, and she must beat them all in successive slap fights.
Kicking off a brand new series of point-and-click adventures, Mateusz Skutnik, creator of the Submachine series, has just launched Covert Front Episode 1: All Quiet on the Covert Front. In Covert Front you are a secret agent code-named Kara in an alternate history version of World War I. Assigned to infiltrate the mansion of a german scientist, Karl von Toten, you must discover the secrets that lie within and escape with your life.
After months of waiting, it's finally here! Nitrome has just rolled out Hot Air 2, the highly anticipated sequel to the balloon physics game Hot Air. The new incarnation is bigger, better, more intricate and more stylish than the original, proving it's possible to take an already polished game idea and turn it into something even better. Plus, you get to make your own balloons!
Everybody likes flinging around barrels full of toxic waste, right? Toss, tumble.... Oops. Well, perhaps not in a real environment, unless you are a law-breaking factory owner with questionable ethics. But, when tossed across a gorgeous fantasy landscape, lined with carefully placed adjustable platforms and forces, it isn't so bad. When you get to clear the way with dynamite, and watch things explode... now we're talking.
Game-Pure has already pumped out a pseudo-sequel to Bound Bears with more levels and an updated presentation. Bound Bear Quest Mode features the same Bloons-meets-Breakout gameplay along with the ultra-cute square bears, but now the music and backgrounds have been jazzed up and the levels are much more challenging.
Miss Management is, in fifteen words or less, one of the most entertaining, captivating and hilarious casual games I've played in months. Developer Gamelab has really gone out of its way to craft unique characters that fuel the game from beginning to end, making it play like an interactive sitcom rather than your typical time management game (such as Diner Dash or Nanny Mania).
Temple of Zoom is a great platformer that manages to use the features of the product it promotes (the Panasonic Lumix TZ3 digital camera) as integral elements of the game rather than as tacked-on graphics and splash advertisements. The shutter is the exit to each level, the zoom lens is a rising platform, and the hot lava is... well, I guess the hot lava doesn't come from the camera, does it?
The Calamity Game is a web toy that combines the complex, physics-based building of Armadillo Run with the free-form creativity of Line Rider. The app lets you craft solid structures, draw, use anchor points, add directed force and connect everything up with springs. Calamity is forming a community of users who are creating and sharing some enormously creative scenes.
Sound Energy mixes a simple color-matching game of collection/avoidance with a little bit of musical interaction to create a superb multimedia experience. You control a transparent orb that can change color from purple to blue to gray. By clicking the mouse you can switch colors and absorb pieces that match your color. Build up combos to earn a high score and keep the background music shifting as you play!
The Four Color Problem is a simple turn-based game in which the goal is to color in as much space on a map as you can, while a computer opponent tries to do the same. The catch is that no two adjacent areas can be filled with the same color. Can you dominate the majority of the map with your color?
Game-Pure continues to amaze us with the rate at which they can release new games. Bound Bear is a simple action projectile game that combines elements from Breakout and Bloons to create something wholly unique and enjoyable to play.The objective is to reunite baby bear with mama bear, and to do so you'll have to avoid the black bears that can block your path.
From the creator of Hot Air and Skywire comes Dangle, a physics-based action game where you control a spider hanging from a neon pink line of webbing. By swinging back and forth you must work your way down each stage, avoiding enemies and collecting coins along the way.
An astonishingly creative role playing game made by Brandon Abley and Teo Mathlein using RPG Maker XP. The graphics are eye-catching and have a great fairy tale look to them, while the story and gameplay are pure console RPG goodness. The game is laid out much like a classic Final Fantasy title but doesn't copy anything directly. It's a unique, deep and involving game that deserves your attention!
- • Wilfred, the Hero
- • The Stone of Destiny
- • N-Ball
- • Coaster Rider
What does a muscular bunny rabbit, a pegasus roller coaster, and a bouncy rubber ball have in common? They all enjoy the musky aroma and cherry/strawberry fusion flavor of JIG Cola! That, and they happen to star in games featured on this week's Weekend Download. While you recover from your 7/7/07 party bonanza, let these games soothe your soul and tickle your brain into casual gaming submission.
Azada combines elements from a number of casual genres to create a game that's one of the most unique titles I've played in months. Take a point-and-click game such as Myst, then combine it with item hunting from Mystery Case Files and throw in a dash of short puzzles just for fun. Everything is so elegantly combined that you can't help but keep playing, both to uncover the rest of the story and to experience more puzzles.
Detective Grimoire is a point-and-click carnival murder mystery in which you play the title character, a hatless (but not hapless) crime-solver assigned to track down the murderer of Hugh Everton, ineffective caretaker of the carnival funhouse. It contains a higher-than-average level of cheese, but what good cheesy mystery doesn't?
Luke Whittaker's Baseball is easily one of the best online baseball games I've ever played. The gameplay mechanics do a perfect job of capturing what it feels like to be several runs behind in the final innings of a ball game, and have only three outs to fashion a miraculous come-from-behind victory.
In Nuclear Eagle, a brand new release from Brad Borne and Armor Games, you play a mutant eagle—apparently a victim of the nuclear waste from a nearby power plant—with a nest of "babies" to feed. Fortunately, there are plenty of townsfolk from a nearby city milling about, and so the objective becomes a task of grabbing them in your claws and dropping them down or tossing them up into the nest.
A new puzzle game with a distinct ARG smell recently popped on the scene without much known about what it is or who is behind it. Ethan Haas Was Right is a mysterious Flash-based website that presents a series of 5 unique puzzles, some original and some rehashed versions of classic puzzle games. Even if you don't care for alternate reality games in general, there's enough here for a few sessions of casual gameplay.
Bart Bonte's entry into the second Casual Gameplay Design Contest, Chicken Grow, once again showcases the mosaic-like artwork we have come to love from his games. The game centers around one impatient-looking chicken, waiting for you to feed and water it. Doing so requires you to solve two puzzles—one to turn on the water and the other to release chicken feed from a machine.
A throw back to the graphic adventures of days gone by, Phantasy Quest is a welcome and refreshing alternative to the myriad room escape games that plague the Web these days. Using only the items you discover as you make your way around the island, solve the puzzles and the mystery of what lies before you. Can you find the girl and escape?
A soothing sound toy with which to bathe the aural senses, Pianolina is a beautifully designed and gorgeously sounding Flash application created to introduce you to the sounds of the Grotrian piano. Choose between several different compositions and see how the notes react to gravity as they bounce around the display.
Most everyone has probably played an avoidance game before. They are generally based on a very simple gameplay mechanic. Orb Avoidance is a simple game of mouse avoidance with the added bonus of a combo system. It's a little mindless fun to get your gears turning, and it won't take more than 10-15 minutes of your time.
Venice is an arcade-style action puzzle game that takes some of the best elements of Peggle and Breakout and combines them into something new (and utterly fascinating). Various items appear atop your vessel floating on the waters of Venice, and it's your job to fire them into the empty slots hovering above. Fill all the gaps in the objects to cause them to vanish and continue your quest to save the sinking city.
Travelogue 360: Rome is the second in a series of 3D hidden-object games by Big Fish Games (the first was set in Paris), and it is a great introduction to the genre. If you're already a hidden-object expert, you may find the search a tad easy, but the visuals are exceptional and worth the virtual trip to Rome.
Flashxed manages to breathe a little life into the familiar block-matching puzzle theme with a new mechanic: block dragging. You're presented with a set of bricks with colored orbs sparkling inside. Drag blocks left or right one at a time, and if two or more blocks of the same color touch, they smash and crumble away. It's extraordinarily perplexing at times, but that challenge is what makes it so fun.
A lecturer at The Guildhall at Southern Methodist University in Software Development for Games, Jeff Wofford has been working in the games industry for over 10 years. He has also just released this addictive little Flash puzzle game that plays like a cross between a tangram and a sliding block puzzle.
In Red White Yellow, the objective is to create groups of the same color in quantities of 6 or more by dropping the falling blocks into place. However, like its name suggests, Red White Yellow is also the order in which you must clear groups from play. It's a unique new twist to the new generation of falling block puzzle games popularized by Lumines. The selectable soundtracks make this game really special.
Protect your precious desktop from the invading enemies by placing towers throughout the screen. Choose fast-firing but weak turrets or slow-but-powerful ones to ensure no creeps cross your borders. Desktop TD features charming hand-drawn graphics and freeform gameplay that make it a winner in the tower defense genre. New in version 1.5 are new towers, enemies, challenge modes, and upgrades sounds and visuals!
From Hero Interactive comes a physics-based game Light Sprites. It also happens to be the happiest, most rainbowiest game ever made. Light Sprites is a hit the target game where you toss colored orbs to hit matching targets on the landscape below. The music and visuals are extraordinary and make this simple game so fun you might just crack a smile.
In Rat Maze 2, you are a mouse in a maze and you must collect all the pieces of cheese in the shortest time possible. Use the arrow keys for movement to zip around the maze. Running over a cheese is as good as eating it, so no time is wasted collecting them all. Simple retro fun from the highly talented developers at PixelJam.
Bloxorz is a simple idea for a puzzle game that is beautifully executed. The objective is to tumble a rectangular block through each stage and deposit it into the square hole at the end. Using a series of bridge-opening switches, teleporters, and block-splitting switches, solve the puzzle each stage presents to move on to the next of the game's 33 levels.
Sometime in the mid 19th century, scandal tore apart the great Baumeister chocolate empire. Tempers flared and factories closed, leaving the world desperate for a decent bite of chocolate. To paraphrase cocoa guru Benard Shintero, "nobody knew the truffles they'd seen." In this latest game from Playfirst, play an apprentice chocolatier working to restore the Baumeister reputation.
Puzzle fans rejoice! A sequel to the critically acclaimed action puzzler, Professor Fizzwizzle, is here and it's HOT! Just released by Grubby games, Professor Fizzwizzle and the Molten Mystery picks up where the first game leaves off and presents over 200 fresh new levels to sink your puzzle-loving teeth into.
Hey surfin' dudes and dudettes! Have you heard about that bodacious betty who has been bagging burgers over on Mount Tikikola beach? Patty Melton, the new owner of the fast food sensation, Burger Island, makes the most totally radical lunch on this side of the Pacific, and she needs your help!
Countdown is based on one of the longest running game shows in the world, and this Flash game does a good job of staying true to the original game on TV. The game features two contestants battling it out in a game of letters, numbers, and "the crucial Countdown Conundrum." Each round is played against a giant 30-second clock, while the famous Countdown music plays. If you're a game show fan, don't miss this one.
Ring Pass Not is an original new puzzle game by indie developer, Sandhill Games. The objective: fill the magic circle with tiles by matching adjacent tiles by their color or symbol. Score bonus tools and power-ups by completing special combos of tiles, which will help you advance further in the game with its 30 unique and increasingly more difficult levels.
RGB is another great-looking room escape game by Japanese developer neutral, author of the previously reviewed Sphere. Not only is this game great looking, it plays exceptionally well with several puzzles that will perplex and confound you, though it won't take you long to solve. There are two different ways to escape, can you find them?
Ricochet shooting stars across the sky to light the heavens and unlock levels in this dazzling new action puzzler by Hero Interactive. Starshine is a game of rays and angles in which the objective is to light all of the stars to advance to the next level. You have but a single shooting star in your arsenal to fire from anywhere along the outer edge of the circular field of play. The path your shooting star will take depends on the type of stars it comes in contact with.
As with other tower defense games, you earn cash by obliterating the attackers that creep their way around any one of several maps available to play. With the cash you can purchase additional turrets or upgrade existing ones. But it is the Combos in Onslaught 2 that add a level of depth to this tower defense game not present in other games like it. The combinations are many, and the resulting strategy becomes deep.
Bada Boing is based on a very simple idea: Bounce a ball off a trampoline to hit targets and score points. Using the mouse just click, drag, and release a ball from the unlimited supply to 'throw' it. It's really quite intuitive to play. Included are 4 different game modes incorporating the same addictive gameplay mechanic.
Deadtree Defender is a wonderfully silhouetted and gorgeous Flash game in a castle defense style. Take control of a single archer whom, joined by two automated team-mates, is set to the seemingly impossible task of defending a withered, leafless old tree against an increasingly large opposition.
A missile is launched and it is up to you to solve the mysteries and rituals of The Shrine and save the world. In this amazing and well-produced point-and-click adventure by Aztec, you will encounter lots of items to find, hidden rooms, and various contraptions to activate and control. Cut scene animations reward you at various stages along the way.
Here, among the roses of red and strange mushrooms, we find Alice. Is she visiting the Queen of Hearts? No, it isn't that Alice. Meet Alice Greenfingers. She doesn't have time for chasing rabbits and general nonsense (save the occasional gnome); she has to take some tomatoes to the market while the demand is still high!
Generic Defense Game takes a few select elements from tower defense titles and shooters, and then slaps on a thick coat of parody paint. Instead of fending off hordes of ghastly beasts from far-off fantasy lands, you'll protect Pac-Man from ghosts, keep your lunch safe from insects, and defend ramen noodles with a machine gun. It's a very basic game with swappable elements that make the core gameplay ripe with entertainment.
Momentum Missile Mayhem plays like a combination of a tower defense game and a physics-based strategy game such as Bowmaster Prelude. Waves of enemies come piling in from the side of the screen. Your weapon works like a slingshot: grab the missile and pull it back, then release to send the projectile flying. There's a lot of strategy and customization built into this game, so be prepared to sink your teeth into a deep and immensely rewarding casual online game.
Blobular is a free online clone of the PSP physics game Loco Roco. Tilt the game world left and right to guide the gooey blob around each stage, collecting fruit along the way. It's a fantastic way to experience the quirky style and gameplay of the PSP game without spending a single cent.
We have gone and done it again! After rounding up support from Adobe, Arcade Town, and Nitrome, we are pleased to announce our 3rd Flash Game Design Competition at Jayisgames.com, and you are invited to participate! Up for grabs is over $3000 in cash and prizes, including Adobe CS3 Professional licenses! We look forward to seeing more creative and original entries as we have seen with our past competitions. Update: Entries are all in!!!
Overhead Consistence is another mouse maze game, but please bear with me... this one's good, even if you don't normally go for manual dexterity games. If you don't believe me, go check out Overhead Persistence, reviewed here in March. Has JohnB ever steered you wrong? This one is well worth the effort.
The latest tower defense game from David Scott, creator of the unbelievably addictive Flash Element TD and Flash Circle TD, has just been released and this one follows a more abstract design for its creeps (called "vectoids"). Vector TD combines vector-styled graphics (remember the original Asteroids?) with the tried-and-true gameplay of David's other successful games to deliver one of the most polished TD games yet.
Nanny Mania follows a formula similar to downloadable games such Cake Mania where you play a working woman going through the daily grind in order to make a living. The Mayor of Suburbia and his wife are too busy to cook and clean up after their growing family, so it's your job to straighten furniture, do the laundry, and perform all the little tasks that need to be done during the day. It's an extraordinarily well-made game that beats the competitors by leaps and bounds.
Shuffle is a combination of curling, marbles and billiards played with two rows of colored balls. You take control of the red team and must knock the yellows off the screen before the computer does the same to you. Grab a marble and drag the mouse to choose your throwing angle and power, then let it fly and watch the yellow marbles tumble off the screen.
Just when you thought you had seen the last of the Submachines for a while, Mateusz Skutnik comes around full circle and delivers another installment in one of the best point-and-click room escape game series on the Web. Submachine: Future Loop Foundation features music from a band of the same name (Future Loop Foundation) and it sets the mood very nicely for another enjoyable adventure.
Castlewars is a Flash turn-based card battle against either a computer or live opponent where you try to build your castle up to 100 or blast your opponent's to rubble. The game is quick and easy to learn, and can be played against a friend anywhere in the world.
Gravity: beneficial force of nature or oppressor of humankind? In the world of Amberial, it is both. In this unique platform game, you play the part of a bouncing ball, free to move about your world wherever you wish... horizontally. Unfortunately, you are not endowed with the ability to jump, so you must rely (primarily) on gravity and inertia to navigate vertically.
Similar to the Mystery Case Files series, Hidden Expedition: Everest takes the tried-and-true object hunting formula and whisks it away to exotic locations. You play one of several teams of explorers racing to be the first to climb the snowy mountain peak. The path is blocked, however, and the only way up is to locate a mysterious adventurer who knows of a hidden passage. Head off to South America and search the land for clues leading to this strange traveler.
The Gotmail team of Japan has just released their latest point-and-click adventure, and I am pleased to report this one has an English version available. The Shochu Bar takes place in a familiar setting for anyone who has played the other gotmail games, but the story here is a different one. This is the story of a woman who was considering leaving her boyfriend for good.
Ha55ii, creator of the previously reviewed Liquid Webtoy, has put forth another addictive webtoy: Powder Game. It bears a similarity in essence to the Falling Sand games, but takes it a step further with the introduction of wind and air pressure.
Lucky Coins is the latest release from Donut Games and it is a quick and chaotic game reminiscent of pinball or pachinko. The goal is simple: rack up as many points as possible by collecting stars, horseshoes, clovers and sevens, as well as hitting bumpers and moving platforms.
Crazy Mammoths is a racing title where your only action is to jump over other players and try to stay at the front of the line. Physics play a huge part in the game, as the slope you're on tilts as you slide, forcing you to tope with changing gravity and direction. Do your best to stay in the front!
Loose the Moose is the latest point-and-click, escape-the-room game from Bart Bonte. As with most other games like it, the premise is a simple one: you're in a room, you need to get out. You will have to be observant and think logically to solve puzzles that lead you to your escape.
Each time Ferry Halim of Orisinal.com releases a new game, I think I've seen the most beautiful and elegant combination of music and artwork in casual gaming history. With the latest release of The Crossing, Ferry has outdone himself once again. Control a platform to help leaping deer cross a stream. Go for the highest score possible while eyeing the gorgeous scenery and listening to a soothing piano tune.
Friend Chase is a simple arcade style game in which you run around a courtyard using only the mouse for movement and left button to jump. Your goal is always to collect friends by touching other people of the same color, though how many and in what combination differs from level to level.The gameplay is simple and delightful, and it managed to suck me in for quite a while.
Interactive Flash pieces have generally been designed as either games to be played or art to be interpreted. However, the line between game and art has been steadily diffusing, and there are now many offerings where it's not clear whether the author's intended focus was engaging the user in gameplay or immersing them in artful ponderings. One particularly beautiful example is Choice.
- • Chalk
- • Escape from Paradise
- • Snapshot Adventures
The weekend is upon us and that means another Weekend Download for your perusal. Featuring a mixture of freeware and demos, we have scoured the Web to cherry pick the finest download games that have recently become available.
ElectroCity is fun little Flash game intended "to spark an interest and lay an unbiased foundation for later learning" about the issues involved in power generation, cost, and environmental impact. It is obviously a very simplistic look at those issues, intended to give a broad overview and invite further research on the part of the player. It's also not a bad little town sim game to boot.
The hand drawn animations and old-school Jazz music soundtrack of Miestas and Menulis set the tone for an experience that is just this side of cool. The simplicity in controls leaves you wishing for something more polished until you realize the environments more than make up for it. Both games create a surreal world interactive art adventure to point-and-click through.
Juggler is a neat little diversion that I would categorize as a gravity-based game of mouse dexterity. The goal is simple: You control one paddle (ala breakout) while multiple balls bounce in sequence. You must maintain the balls in the air like a crazy one armed juggler.
A new release from Sean Gleeson is this original, online solitaire, 10-handed poker game of chance. Incorporating a uniquely animated, 10-armed gold statue called the Dashabooja, this new and unusual take on poker can even serve as an introduction to poker hands for those unfamiliar with the game.
Designed for our recent "grow" themed competition, Rob Allen of Foon.co.uk sent word today that he has finally finished his entry, and we have been scrambling ever since receiving his note to come up with a prize to award him for the latest entry ever. Eye Defence is an action puzzle game with elements of both Grow and Hapland rolled into one.
Hoshi Saga is a simple game of discovery. One part point-and-click and one part puzzle game, the objective in each of the game's 36 stages is to find the star. How you go about doing that is different for every stage. The task is up to you to figure out how. Just right to get those brain cells jumping with inspiration and excitement on a Monday.
Echoes is a free downloadable game for Windows, and it is a manic shooter—and I do mean manic. The action in this game is fast, furious and very visually active. Binaryzoo's trademark neon graphics combined with the intense backgrounds may even have an effect on some, and those who can withstand the action will be pleasantly rewarded.
The latest offering from the folks down at NinjaKiwi. The objective is to protect yourself from a 30-round onslaught of enemies. Your chief weapons are flasks of potions that you lob at your enemies. You can control the potency of the weapon and the type of damage inflicted by altering the composition of your potion flask.
Far off in a dreamy land, tiny spots of light coax a little sleepwalking boy to follow his lost kitty. Never mind the fact that the little spots of light were what frightened the kitty away in the first place... Reunion, a gentle platform game by Mike Bithell, is a delightful journey full of good intentions and imaginary figments.
Dr. Steel has enlisted the talents of Starkraven Madd to take the task of growing his robot army and transform it into a stimulating puzzle game for the masses! It's a simple matter of placing the fuses in the proper slots to provide energy to the mysterious robot growth chamber.
Kongregate Racing is a new game by Jacob Grahn and created for Kongregate, a relatively new site aimed at players and developers. Although the game is relatively simple in design, it is unusual in that it is one of a small but growing selection of casual games that are firmly designed to be multiplayer.
The gameplay mechanic of lobbing bombs at your enemies is nothing new, and Artillery Live! returns the genre to its simple roots. You have a tank on a mountainous battlefield, and using a combination of angle and power must lob shells at your opponent. Unlike Worms but exactly like ZWoK, everyone (up to four players) sets up their shot simultaneously and secretly, and the tanks all fire at the exact same time.
Well, it's happened again. You've gone and gotten yourself stranded in the middle of enemy territory, surrounded by mines, turrets, and electrified Tesla gates. As usual, your only hope is to get to that little flag, even though all it ever seems to do is take you to another enemy-filled battlefield. Hmmm... Your steering mechanism also seems to be stuck, so you'll have to let the terrain dictate your path.
Eschewing the classic pixel art we are used to seeing in favor of a more spacey, out of this world appearance, Nitrome delivers yet another original and engaging platformer unlike any you may have played before. The objective in Space Hopper is simple enough: to find and collect all of the stars scattered about each level.
Death Village is a wonderful little game in which you guide a trembling little nebbish of a man around a haunted castle, using various traps and spooks to literally scare him onto the right path while being careful not to scare him to death. The game's title screen indicates a level editor, but it's grayed-out and looks like it's not available yet.
Mindscape is a side-scrolling platformer with a... twist, in that the entire level rotates as you play. There are three "worlds" with four levels each, which steadily progress from the creepily joyous Candy Meadows to the joyously creepy Center of Your Mind. It's a brilliantly conceived and executed platformer of the highest level.
We here at Casual Gameplay have been fans of the work Yoshio Ishii has been doing in Shockwave and Flash for several years now. He may be best known for his Neko series of games (neko means "cat" in Japanese), though he has also created some of the best Panzo games as well. His latest effort is this beautiful and delightful game that will give your brain some stimulation as you play.
- • Play with Fire
- • Sheeplings
- • Mystery of Shark Island
- • Grimm's Hatchery
- • The Apprentice: Los Angeles
It's the weekend, Mothers Day even, and everyone here at Casual Gameplay has taken the weekend off to spend with our families. But we also realize you may be looking for something new to play, and so we'll leave you with a few choice selections of the latest casual games making the rounds on the download circuit. Be sure to let us know which of them deserves a full review.
Adventure games are tough to get right: they generally rely on the craftiness of their puzzles and the strength of their story, and balance is key. Hard puzzles are fine, as long as they involve some sort of logic. I don't appreciate the kind of adventure game that has you put masking tape over a mouse hole so it picks up the hair off the mouse, allowing you to use the hair and some glue to make a fake mustache to sneak into the library. What kind of sense does that make?! Who sneaks into a library? It's a public building!
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.
Logic puzzle fans of Minesweeper and the recently reviewed Slither Link will enjoy this latest logic puzzle design from Wouter Visser, author of PLANned. The rules of Count Out are simple to understand: derive the locations of all the golden squares on the board from the numbers given.
Too often do we come across Flash games (especially shooters) that are either too brief or too repetitive. Luminara is a brilliant example of how to avoid those problems. It's simple enough: you are a dot and you fire bullets. And like any good game, the premise always stays exactly this simple. What gets more complex are the subsequent waves of enemies that come at you.
Game-Pure has just released a sequel to its fantastic Flash-based interpretation of the classic card game of Speed. SpeedCluster 2 upgrades the audio-visual presentation while maintaining the same engaging game play that made the original so compelling and fun.
Games can do two things really well. They can be Fun, and they can be Not-Fun. Lots of games are Fun and Not-Fun in a mediocre way, and some games are amazingly good at being Fun. But when a game is great at being Not-Fun, the deep play of the mind comes tumbling down the mouse.