If Light-bot had babies with a 2D sliding block puzzle, those babies might look a little bit like this deceptively simple new puzzler, Botiada by industred. Your job is to unite all the bots on the page and, while you're at it, try to hit all of the charger spaces as well. While the zen nature of this game allows you to move on to the next level without a single charge lit, where the real puzzle comes in is finding a way to both connect all the bots and turn on all the charges at the same time. Lighting one, two, and all three charges has value, as each provides you with voltage to open the next ten levels in the game. In all, the 40 levels can be played through in a few short minutes if you are only interested in finishing. But real puzzle lovers will find many levels that challenge them to think through their moves to try to accomplish the ultimate goal.
May 2014 Archives
Jolly Mouse's newest title, Wanna Oranges?, is a heartbreaking tale of one man's quest to survive in a world ravaged by plague. Just kidding. There's a cute panda and you have to feed it oranges. Do pandas eat oranges? Who cares! This physics puzzle is all about what's wholesome and fun. Click the floating ice blocks to destroy them, setting your Rube Goldbergian plan in motion, guiding the orange past spikes and platforms. Timing is key. There's stars to collect on the way, some of which expire after a few seconds. You've got to plan your path quickly if you want to keep your little endangered bear friend from crying. Don't let the kid-friendly aesthetic fool you. Wanna Oranges? has plenty of brain-scratching puzzles to keep you motivated.
Who was the last character you played in a horror game? Chances are, even if they weren't a laser-toting space marine, they were probably at least an adult, and thus physically capable of basic tasks and defense. But in Krillbite Studios' indie adventure game Among the Sleep, you're just a toddler... and you're all alone. Late at night after your second birthday, when you received a very special teddy bear, you're awoken by something... strange. You don't know what's happening or what's wrong, but you do know you want your mother, who has always made everything all better. Too bad you can't find her. The deeper you go into the house and what lies beyond, the more you'll begin to question what you're seeing and hearing. After all, you're just a little kid, and everyone knows little kids have overactive imaginations... right? With subtle storytelling and thick, surreal atmosphere and imagery, Krillbite Studios has created an adventure that's at once one of the most magical and most terrifying games I've played in a long time.
You know, while I'm all for helping people out, there are times when I can't help but think they bring trouble on themselves... like buying a hotel rumoured to be haunted by evil spirits, and then being surprised when it is totally haunted with evil spirits up the wazoo. There has to be some sort of personal culpability there. In Elephant Games' hidden-object adventure Haunted Hotel: Ancient Bane, you've been called to help out the owner of one such hotel whose guests have been going missing. I'm not sure what you expect when your hotel has demon faces on the gates, enough sinister angel statuary to make Matt Smith hesitate, and twice as many elaborate puzzle locks as bathrooms, but whatever floats your boat. When you arrive with your detective friend James, however, you discover the hotel owner, a Mr Shadowy to complete your run of Bad Omen Bingo, is acting very strangely indeed, and you'll need to solve puzzles, rummage through hidden-object scenes, and thwart an ancient curse if this place ever has a hope of getting a better rating on Yelp. Comfortable beds and complimentary breakfast, unspeakable evil used my body to construct the end of the world, three out of five stars.
Tales of the Adventure Company is a casual RPG that works like a puzzle game. The tile-tapping exploration mechanic will be instantly familiar to anyone who's played Dungelot (or had an advent calendar), while the enemy grid formations will feel similar to the animal rescuing sections of Disco Zoo. Put it all together with quick combat sessions and a little bit of party-based strategy and you've got your next roguelike obsession!
So a Spartan, a ninja, a barbarian, an archer and a mage walk into a dungeon. What happens next? Puzzles, apparently. Specifically match-3 style puzzles, replete with combos and high scores and glittery magic goodness, which the team over at Deqaf Studio have managed to blend into the turn based RPG formula with superb dexterity. That's right, Dangerous Adventure is a dungeon crawler with a dose of Candy Crush Saga sprinkled on top. The result is a fun exercise in genre blending, where the simplistic joy of match-3 combo creation melds with strategic deployment of each character's skills to great effect. So what do you get when you put a band of misfit vagabonds in a dungeon? A fun, challenging, Dangerous Adventure, that's what!
Pablo Cavarez: Sliding Puzzle Explorer is your new hero. The intrepid explorer traverses underground temples like we stroll through the park. His secret is to take things one square at a time. His other secret is to get you to move those squares before taking a single step. The sliding block puzzle game is somewhat similar to Continuity in basic design, but Pablo definitely has the tougher job. How many other puzzle heroes have to use a sword?
Platformers! How do they work? Overall-and-mustache-aficionados have been hopping and bopping for years, which is fine, but leave it to the indie developers to show the full spectrum of ways you can play with the genre. Why deal with mushrooms and angry turtles when you can have a harrowing emotional journey to save your species? Delve into a magic stump filled with puzzles and a bazooka? Mix fire and water to speed through stages and grab crystals? Flip reality on its head? In this installment of our 12 Best Games You Might Not Have Played series, we look at some of our favourite platformers we've played over the years. It's just the ticket to broaden your appreciation for a genre that's practically as old as time itself! (Prehistoric platformers were played with wooly mammoths, dinosaur eggs, and charcoal drawings. Fact.)
Ninjadoodle's point-and-click puzzle game Shurizzle is about that most wondrous of solutions to all life's problems... the shuriken. Can't find a seat on the bus? Shuriken'd! Favourite show got cancelled? Shuriken'd! Cereal got too soggy before you were done eating it? Totally shuriken'd! Ask your doctor about what shuriken can do for you, but in the meantime, your goal here is to make a shuriken in each of the game's twenty levels. Each stage looks similar, but presents a different twist on its formula to assemble your heart's desire. All you have to do to play is click and experiment, figuring out the mechanic in each level that will reveal that pointy metallic goodness.
Here's some nice news for anybody who likes puzzle games and/or things made by the guy who made Monkey Island. Scurvy Scallywags, the amazingly well-tuned matching game that hit iOS in 2013, has finally worked its way to the green robot devices. It's more than just a blind port, however. Creators Ron Gilbert and Clayton Kauzlaric wanted to experiment with releasing the game for free and supporting it through entirely optional in-app purchases.
All is not well in the kingdom of Carmelot. The royal pot of gold has gone missing and the distraught king desperately needs someone to track it down, in a new Carmel Games point-and-click adventure game, Tales of Carmelot: The Missing Pot of Gold. That someone is you, playing as town hero Ryan O'Brien. Use your adventuring skills, along with a little magic and luck of the Irish, to find the gold your kingdom depends on. You'll need to solve puzzles, gather magical ingredients, and... to do a magical dance, you say? Hmmmm...
Three free escape games. Three very different atmospheres. Take your pick: whimsical, thinky, or dark. Then settle in for five minutes to revel in the mood. Since those still might not be enough to get your fix, you can follow the "Like that? Try this!" links for continued mood indulgences.
Candy Rooms No.10: Lettuce Green Natural - Imagine a phone call that goes like this: "Yeah, FunkyLand? Let us have more candy but make it feel healthy, environmentally sensitive, something that Kermit would approve." And here you have it: refreshing visuals in everyone's favorite color and a lovely view out the window of a summery verdant backyard. It's both cleverly presented yet consistently simple; find the five candies and the door key is ceremoniously presented to you. If only... could just... reach... there! Out in a jiffy! Relaxing amusement more than cranial strain is the goal.
Maze of Similar Rooms - You already know from the title if you're going to love or hate this newest Hottategoya escape. Either mazes remind you of that awesome day at The Wooz with all your friends—or they leave you teeth-gritted and shaking, not at all relishing the rat-in-a-box scenario. Most the challenge here is poured into orientating yourself through a series of very alike rooms as you seek out clues and solve a couple puzzles on your way out. The polished aesthetics and quality production values help mitigate any disappointment of its brevity while its design and concept add an extra escapeyness to round out the experience.
Dark Alley Escape - If Hottategoya's maze got you thinking about scarier things, such as rounding a hedge and being startled by Jack Nicholson's frozen grin of madness, then this little horror adventure by Esklavos is right up your alley. It'll satisfy those who are in the mood for something darker than all the sweet candy goodness of FunkyLand, but it's going to disappoint true horror fans with its rather thin storyline. The atmospheric visuals are fun to poke around in although it tends to feel static overall. Once you get past some clunky navigation and controls, the puzzles—although rather abstruse—are enjoyable enough to please escape fans of all ilks.
If you've ever found yourself in a room with all sorts of wondrous and tempting switches, levers, and buttons but been told not to touch anything, Haretoki's newest escape game Sometimes Sunny Step is going to fill you with glee. You're trapped inside some sort of strange laboratory, and the only way out is to run around, hitting buttons and messing with things with wild abandon, reveling in the fact that there's nobody there to tell you no and stifle your passion for expression, Mom. ... and, uh, solving puzzles, I suppose. Just click to explore and interact, but don't expect a whole lot of help from the game itself. There's nothing so crass as actual direction here, and you'll be left to your own devices to find and interpret clues, as well as simply figure out what things do. There's no changing cursor here, so make sure you click on everything, and don't forget to revisit certain areas or objects if you've made progress, even if you think you've already gotten whatever clue they had for you...
Glorkian Warrior gets update with new controls - Look! Glorkian Warrior got an update! The crazy-creative arcade shooter from PixelJam has added support for Italian, German, French and Spanish along with new Game Center Achievements. The biggest new feature, though, is tilt controls. Instead of virtual buttons or swiping, it's all about holding your iOS device and tipping it around like a plate of wobbly flan. You wouldn't think it would work well with a game like this, but you might be surprised once you give it a go. Apart from that, it's the same glorkey goodness you'd expect from the developers of DinoRun. Check out our Glorkian Warrior: Trials of Glork review for more info.
Dungelot 2 returns to iOS - First, it's released. Then, it's pulled. Now, it's released again! Dungelot 2 has returned to the iTunes App Store with a wheelbarrow full of gameplay changes and artwork switch-ups in tow. It tones down some of our original complaints with the set-up, but it still doesn't quite match the simple perfection of the original Dungelot. Floor after floor, you'll uncover tiles that hide treasure, nasty enemies, spells and surprises. Think of it like an advent calendar with a few more complexities thrown in for good measure. Check out our Dungelot 2 review for more info.
Drawn to Life scribbles from DS to iOS - If you owned a Nintendo DS back in 2007, you probably jumped at the chance to buy Drawn to Life. The curious platform game gave you the wonderful ability to actually draw the main character, vehicles, items, weapons, etc., then watch while they're animated and brought to life. Few could resist the temptation to make a rocketship shaped like a baked ham. Drawn to Life has worked its way to iOS devices with only a few changes, so if you missed it the first time around, grab it and get to drawing!
The world is dark. The spirits of the earth have been wrongly imprisoned, turned into corrupted versions of themselves. Now, we wait for the light to restore balance...wait...what? This is a math game?!
The folks at Learning Games Labs (the developers at New Mexico State University, creators of Game Over Gopher) have done it again. They have managed to make math both fun and stylish with their latest game, Gate. While the game starts with a charming story, and the gameplay is often fast and frantic, it is teaching a basic math principal with every key stroke. You begin the game by choosing your gender and approaching a gate. A repeating visual tutorial shows you how to begin... tap out every number you see to fire a missile from your staff. Each monster carries at least one number which must be targeted in order to defeat them, and they can fly, explode into multiple monsters, or just fool you into thinking they are moving too slowly to reach you. In the first level you are responsible for one digit numbers, in level 2 you see two digit numbers, and so forth, and so on as the levels progress, but that's just the beginning.
Sure, being a Dragon Princess sounds easy. You get all the cushy benefits of being a princess, such as elegant balls, a stunning wardrobe, an excellent assortment of handsome men throwing yourself at your feet, with all the awesome perks of dragonhood, like an epic stash of treasure and enough fireballs to make any of those princess-napping dark-lord types think twice. But then someone breaks into your hoard and steals your most powerful magical artifact, and of course those lazy guards can't be bothered to do their darn jobs and retrieve it. It's up to you to embark on a quest to get back your treasure in this action shooter game from apanda! Choose from [WASD] and mouse controls, or mouse-only, then set off on your journey! You'll be blasting through waves of monsters, collecting allies, and even defending a tower or two through 16 levels of fiery, dragon-y action. And... be on the lookout for a snarky, pink-haired girl. Just trust us on this one.
Dualities exist all throughout nature. Confucius knew it, Hermann Hesse knew it, and you bet Obi-Wan knew it too. Now developer Daniel Linssen, alias Managore, has transformed the concept into the exceptionally unique platformer The Sun and Moon. Taking first place in Ludum Dare 29, the game embraces its theme of "beneath the surface" with style, forcing the player to move not simply on top of platforms, but within them as well. The [arrow] keys or [WASD] will move the teeny ball of concentrated cuteness you control, with [shift] or [Z] allowing you to delve into the ground and through the dark-coloured platforms. Your objective is to collect the three Shinies and reach the wormhole to beat each of the levels. You'll be fighting gravity to achieve this, whether it's the familiar ol' downward pull, or the reverse gravity inside the walls, which seeks to thrust you high into the sky at alarming speeds.
Eugene Karatev is probably a name you're familiar with if you love physics puzzles, masterminding popular games like the Wake Up The Box games, the Splitter series, and more. 2013's Drawfender was all about finding ways to stymie the efforts of a bunch of assassins who wanted to stop a philanthropist from philanthropisting (look, one of us is getting paid for this, so clearly I'm the one who gets to decide what is a word and isn't), and now there's Drawfender Level Pack for even more! See, the goons from the first game are out on bail, and since our hero has never seen a hysterical after-school special about online safety, he posts his vacation destination on social media, letting his would-be killers track him down. In each level, you need to draw shapes within the grid that will protect him from the cartoonishly large weapons they're trying to wipe him out with. The number of pencils at the bottom of the screen represent the number of solid shapes you can draw, with one completed silhouette costing you one pencil. It's not as easy as it seems, since your creation will turn solid when it drops, thus enabling it to interact with or even just bounce off of other elements in the level, and if it knocks our hero off his platform, or even just knocks him silly, you're doing the work for the assassins!
It churns and bubbles and boils, covering the surface. So far, humanity has managed to stay but one step ahead of this all-consuming poison: a goo with no purpose but to swamp and multiply. Empires have fallen to it, and it cannot be stopped. But it can be delayed, and every day the human race earns is sweet enough reward as it is. Get ready to fear the creeper once more in Creeper World 3: Abraxis, the newest browser installment of the Creeper World real time-strategy series that stirs additional pylon constructing with Conway's Game of Life to make a primordial soup of fun. Being as it is an browser appetizer to get people interested in the Steam-released main course of Creeper World 3: Arc Eternal, it's no surprise the plot has a distinct prequel side-story feel. Join a robotic simulant of legendary hero Skarsgard Abraxis as he tests out situations you'll encounter in the full game... er "possible future battles".
When was the last time you made one hundred of anything? no1game has been making escape games for years, and now all that effort has reached one pretty massive milestone with Find the Escape-Men Part 100 Special. After playing all the Escape-Men games, you wake up in one seriously weird little town sporting more than a few familiar faces. As usual, if you want to find a way out, you'll need to hunt down ten elusive little green men, but this time you'll be running all over a map to do so, getting the help of different characters from other games and developers, as well as finding the items they need and solving puzzles, too! There's no changing cursor, so you'll need to click everywhere to leave no stone unturned. You can click items (or characters) in your inventory to highlight them for use, or click the little question mark beside their icon to examine them up close, which could let you manipulate them, or just give you a clue. Sometimes you may need to leave an object or person alone for a while in order for something to happen, so keep checking back in places to see if anything changes, or just hang around for a while to see if anything else will happen if you're patient.
You Are Not A Banana: Chapter 1 is a game about everyday life. It was built by Brian Cullen and is filled more than its fair share of humor, tossing the supremely average protagonist into a series of mudane situations made extraordinary by the puzzles and arcade sequences you'll complete in order to make it through the day. It's a bit like Super Amazing Wagon Adventure, only you get to play as a banana for a bit.
The first time you start up Transistor, the new indie action RPG from Bastion creators Supergiant Games, you're going to be confused. But that's okay, because you're also going to be awed, excited, and immediately hooked by this neon-soaked world of cybernetic mysteries. You control Red, a beautiful but silent woman wielding a massive sword that seems to have a mind of its own and provides direction. That's the Transistor, and you'll soon realize exactly why everyone wants to get their hands on it when you get a taste of the power it can wield. You won't immediately know why she's fleeing through the streets, what the bodies you find mean, or what the electronic horrors are pursuing you for, but once you get a taste of it, you're going to want to find out. With fast-paced combat that allows you to freeze time and chain strategic moves for powerful combo effects, a compelling narrative that opens organically as you play, and the stunning visual and aural presentations you've come to expect, Transistor is one powerhouse of a game.
What is a puzzle? A wonderful little pile of pixels! It ain't all Rubik's Cubes... there's a lot more to the wonderful word of free online puzzle games than you might think, largely due to a lot of creativity and a willingness to experiment from the indie community that creates them. Over the years, we've seen a lot of different takes on the genre, some of them elegant and challenging in their simplicity, and others full of complex mechanics and ingenuity. Here are twelve of what we think are some of the best you might not have played, showcasing everything from logic to platforming to horror (and even a reverse escape game!) that will keep you thinking for a long time. Geronimo! (And be sure to check out The 12 Best Escape Games You Might Not Have Played!)
Who are you if you like to order people around, have purple hair, and want to rule the world? That's right, the snooty king in Playrix Entertainment's Royal Envoy games! He's is back in Royal Envoy 3, the next installment in the popular and oh-so-fun time management strategy series, and he needs you to help the inhabitants of newly discovered islands so they'll agree to be his subjects. Rumors of gold, pearls and other treasures of the isles interest the king, so once again he puts you in charge of surveying the land. In this popular time management sim, expand your empire by sailing to new islands, helping the natives build houses, and collecting treasure. Because if there's one thing we know that gets the king's attention, it's treasure. Who knew imperialism could be such fun?
If you've been dominating with your army in Berzerk Studios' fantasy strategy game Battle Cry, you might be interested in knowing that it just got one whopper of an update in the form of Battle Cry: Age of Myths. In essence, it's still the same game it was before... play either online against others or offline by yourself in the singleplayer campaigns, and meticulously craft your army in everything from formation to new soldier types and the equipment they carry to handle every battle you go up against. What Age of Myths brings to the table, however, is an entire new campaign act to play through, over 75 new items to outfit your army, substantial rebalancing, and more. It's a pretty hefty update for a game that was already pretty meaty when it came to content, and whether you want to play online against the armies other players have crafted (which still requires a free account) or offline solo, this game still has a ton to offer.
I'm just going to come out and say it... I don't like balloons. It's not even because I have the nerves of a cat and I hate when I pop, or that I think they're weird, it's that we all float down here. Apparently, however, Pencil Kids didn't have the traumatic childhood movie viewing I did, so their latest Monkey GO Happy game is Monkey GO Happy Balloons. In each stage, your goal is to find and pop all the balloons, which you can in turn trade in for toys to keep your horde of mini-monkeys happy. Not all balloons are out in the open, however, and you'll have to solve a few puzzles along the way. Just click to interact, and drag items from your inventory at the top of the screen to wherever you want to use them. From solving graveyard codes, to turning a boring playground toy into the ride of your life, winning each level releases another flourish of balloons to pop and spend. Just... stay away from any storm drains, and never trust a clown. Or Tim Curry.
Tower defense games on mobile devices are about as common as ice in an igloo. That's why SMG Studio decided to go all-out with OTTTD. And by "all-out" we mean they crammed in everything they could think of to create a defense game that really is over the top. You'll like it, though, because all of those elements work together to add excitement and depth to a genre that desperately needs a rousing punch in the gut.
Only the inniest of the in crowd get to go to the hot pot party. Except maybe there is such thing as too much hot pot; maybe eating until tummies pop is not without its downfalls and smiling smelly hazes. So when the party is over, does that mean the fun is done? Er, no. Detarame Factory's After HPP is when the good starts happening. After all, when you escape a room, you open a lot of cupboards, take things out and move stuff around, don't you? Well, who do you think puts that stuff away for you? Not those kitties passed out under the table. They're in need of their own aid. So it's up to you to explore the multiple scenes, picking up the clutter, washing dishes and putting it all back where it goes. Of course, some wise guy put new puzzles on the locks when you were busy partying.
Turns out the reason dinosaurs died out was because they decided to be colossal jerks, at least according to Qaibo's physics puzzle Disaster Will Strike 3, which informs you that since all the dinosaurs have turned evil, it's up to you, as the universe, to wipe their eggs off the face of the earth with a few well placed natural disasters that will destroy all of them. Hey, if eggs without arms or legs or really anything other than evil grins are somehow able to build complex structures to protect themselves, that is not any business I want to be a part of. In each stage, you've got a limited number of different types of disasters, such as earthquakes or floods, and you have to figure out how to use them and where to set off a chain reaction that will destroy the eggs by crushing them or dashing them against rocks. Earthquakes, for instance, need to be used on the ground, but will shatter any glass atop it, while wind will blow any round objects around. Ultimately, victory is yours when all the eggs lay an gelatinous mass of ruined yolks on the ground. Or hollow-eyed drowning victims. Which is... sort of disturbing, actually. Is enjoying this game some sort of psychiatric red flag?
By the time you finish reading this sentence, you could have lost three games of Lumena. The high-speed, twitch-based arcade gameplay will be familiar to anyone who tortured their hand eye coordination with the likes of Super Hexagon, only this time around there's a bit of a rhythm aspect to it. Even if you can follow the beat, though, it's still not an easy game. Not by a longshot.
You're a knight. You have a sword. There's a princess to rescue. Knightality wants you to do what comes naturally. Developer Daniel Zhuravlev presents us with a title where immediacy is the name of the game. Everything in this top down brawler game comes at you fast and fun. Move with the [WASD] keys and shoot tiny little sword blasts in all four directions with the [arrow] keys (or by clicking), dodging and weaving through enemies as you go. Reflexes are key. The game isn't Meat Boy hard, but it's not afraid to throw some curveballs your way that will have you dying and restarting, all the more ready to vanquish your foes.
Opposable thumbs are so awesome. We can twiddle them! Oh, and we can also hold stuff. Which brings me to Cat Around Africa, an adorable physics puzzler from Alma Games, where the protagonist is a cat, a creature known for its woeful lack of any thumbs whatsoever. This wouldn't normally be a problem, but our kitty has gone on a trip to Africa, where all the food is somehow trapped in elaborate puzzle mazes, and the kitty can't work them. That's where you and your nimble hands come in: you will push buttons, move stones and break ice blocks while the feline is eagerly awaiting snacks.
Even though you've been happily reliving "Ommagosh I'm trapped!" memories playing 12 Best Escape Games, I know you want more. Well, at least, I want more. Thus I present these three new escape games. Perhaps they can only dream of their icon in the spotlight of your favorites list, but they've come prepared to win you over. Even without bright lights and fame, even if those "hard core" gamers such as Yahtzee Croshaw don't totally agree, escaping of all sorts is fun. And we can never get enough of that. Which is the point, of course.
Fruit Kitchens No.5: Peach Pink - from FunkyLand, the master of creating rooms we want to break into and live in, not escape out of, is less bland than it first appears. An ineffable appeal that transcends the simple side of puzzle solving sparks our excitement on as soon as we lay eyes on this room. Luckily, its suave style makes up for the simple gameplay—gather up seven pretty peaches, watch as they magically morph into a key, use it to unlock the door, and there you have it: a grin to last the rest of the day!
Story Room 8 - by Story House is short and not particularly full of puzzling, but the puzzles that are here are pleasing enough to warrant a weekday escape appearance. Explore the single wall, looking for clues and solving codes, much the same spirit as a Robamimi One Scene game although notably short of the aesthetic wonderment. Still, Story Room 8 fits perfectly in those moments when you need a mental recharge while being assured frustration-free success.
Escape from the Brown Door Room - Like parents taking one look at their newborn's tuft of auburn curls and deciding to name him Red, Yomino Kagura leaves the creativity to game making rather than titling. You might glance at the beigeness of the design and decide to skip it. But you shouldn't—a changing cursor and clean design make escaping from this room a pleasant endeavor. One can't help but wish for more graphical pizzazz to go along with the puzzles, which have their own sense of whimsy. Although the answers are straight-forward, you'll need to jump through more hoops to get them, making the experience feel more substantial.
Having grown up at a time when E.T. on the Atari was the height of technology, I'm used to a lot of modern "retro games" usually embodying the worst of the era by emulating the clunky controls, tedious gameplay, and laughable translations. Maybe because everyone is bitter that they'll never make a better game than JoustSHUT UP IT'S AMAZING CAN'T HEAR YOU. Bart Bonte knows that old school can be elegant and challenging in its simplicity too, however, and his puzzle game Piksels (also playable on GameJolt), created for the #lowrezjam, proves simple can be sweet... and smart! Using either [WASD] or the [arrow] keys, your goal is to get each pixel into the outline on every stage, but when the rules start changing and the levels get trickier, you'll have to think outside the box. Or in. Depending on the design.
Times are tough. One minute you can have a cushy job, the next you can be out on the streets, with only a pair of whitie-tighties to your name. Hobo Bob has lived the tale but has also found his way out of it. Free jobs! But only so many, and the line... oh so long. But Hobo Bob is a brilliant man and one with unknown skills. Crash your way through the factory to get to your (hopefully) future boss before anyone else, in Wolves' new jumpandrun game. Interact with obstacles that get in your way and help Hobo Bob get back on his feet. Or at least into a pair of pants.
SEGA's free Android and iOS game Dragon Coins is weird to talk about, mostly because it's a weird game. On the one hand, it's a simple arcade title with physics that plays like those old coin pusher machines you can find on midways, in Vegas, and state fairgrounds anywhere. On the other hand, it's a surprisingly addictive and beautifully illustrated simplified Pokemon inspired RPG, where you battle, discover, level up, and evolve literally hundreds of different types of creatures through that coin pushing game in a series of fantasy themed adventures. Sounds like a recipe for endless mindless fun, right? But on the other other hand, it's also a game with a lot of in-app purchase and social/monetization options (though thankfully not a lot of nagging to pony up), and lots and lots of grinding. So while I like Dragon Coins for its vibrant presentation, casual gameplay, and "one more battle" style of engagement, there are also some issues that keep me from being in like with it, or at least as much as I could be.
Nitrome usually thinks big, but some of their best work is when they keep things small... really, really small! Flue is a puzzle game that, like Turnament, Ice Beak, and J-J-Jump before it, is a mere 50x50 pixels. Don't worry, you can make it bigger if you need to! Just click the screen to bring up a menu, and the icon in the lower left corner will make the game larger incrementally. Using [WASD] or the [arrow] keys, you're guiding some green goop through a series of tunnels to the exit in each stage. You're moving away rather than left or right, but if you bump up against the wall on either side of you, the world will rotate ninety degrees in that direction, as long as there's a platform for you to walk (ooze?) on. If you encounter a hole, it can be filled by pushing one of the little round balls into it to create a new platform. Just think carefully about where you're going, since the game is turnbased, and enemies move when you do!
When something gets in between you and happiness in life, you have a few options depending on your personality. You could write the offender a terse note a la Miss Manners and not invite them to attend your summer gala. For others, a cartoonishly-oversized battle axe — or a golf ball in the gas tank — is the preferred approach. But you probably haven't given much thought to targeting the offender with a barrage until they're nothing but a useless heap of pixels, and then absorbing those pixels and using them for your own, hopefully much better, purposes. This is something I really wish I'd known you could do before challenging the judge presiding over my fix-it ticket to an old-fashioned duel, weapon of choice: Siberian tigers. Zillix breaks it all down for us nice and neat in his new shooter, denudation.
Have you ever filled in a sheet of graph paper with tiny designs, square by square, just for the sheer zen of it? That's kind of what playing Pixel Flood by No Hoy Banda Games is like, except it uses your Android device instead of paper. Pixel Flood's basic mechanic fits squarely into the "color fill" genre, where your goal is to make the entire playing field one color. You can change colors by selecting any of the buttons at the bottom of the screen. The trick is that contiguous regions of a color all change together. This means that once you merge with that huge green area, you can change the colors of any squares that touch that area. You're given a set number of color changes to achieve your goal. While there are many other games that work like this, few do it as well as Pixel Flood.
Usually, it's the thought of creepy evils, such as ghost and ghouls, that keeps us mere mortals awake at night. But what wakes them up with a haunting chill? In Orlok's Ordeal, a short puzzle game by Tuuka and Dave Van Bale made in just a few days for Ludum Dare, Nosferatu awakes to find his own personal nightmare, his prized possession is missing! Help him scour his castle in his attempt to find it. Use [WASD] or the [arrow] keys to move, and the [spacebar] to interact as you explore. Find keys to unlock doors, ignore the rude paintings as they shout things at you, and read the short but humorous descriptions Nosferatu provides for you as you go along trying to find his treasure.
Fearless Fantasy is a combat-centric role playing game created by Enter Skies, the small two person indie studio that also created Memohuntress. It ditches all the in-between stuff found in RPGs, such as overworld map traversing and endless dialogue trees, in favor of stats, skills, items and pure, smooth, delicious combat. Layered on top of that is a simple but enjoyable story that's got a runaway princess, a sarcastic hero, and at least one enemy who lost the battle because he has a hole in his sock.
Oh my goshhhhhhh!!! Move already!!! HurryhurryhurryhurryhurARG! If you are not shouting these or similar things at your browser within a few levels of starting Paint Land, a new fast-paced strategy game from OneGoodGame (the makers of Liquid 2), you are inhumanly zen. Built on a very cool, isometric field with Nitromesque graphics, this new take on the virus genre adds a timed element to gameplay which gives Paint Land just the right amount of tension. Apparently, you control a land of paint, with evil black droplets trying to take over, and time running out to take your blue drops to the safety of a rescue tube. As with most virus games, you can drag or click the paint vials to direct your drops to the next bulb or container. Different kinds of vessels have different attributes, and the amount of paint they already contain has to be overcome. At first it's a straightforward game of beat of the clock, but by level two, black paint is raining from the sky and the race is on to see which color wins the day.
The golden age of platform games came and went a few decades ago (you know, Mario, Sonic, all those guys). Since then, platformers have struggled to find modern relevance. It took the likes of LIMBO and Braid to resurrect the sidescroller, and since then we've had a miniature golden age where the platform game has begun to shine. Only now, instead of twitch reflex action it's all about puzzles!
A new point-and-click adventure game has arrived from Phoenix Online Studios and Jane Jensen's (of Gabriel Knight fame) Pinkerton Road Studios. In Moebius: Empire Rising, you play handsome yet awkward Malachi Rector, a genius with a traumatic past. With his astonishing eye for detail (he could give Sherlock a run for his money), Malachi has made a name for himself in the high-end antiques business by being able to spot a replica from an original a mile away. He's (mostly) satisfied making the big bucks in NYC this way until he's attacked on a business trip, and upon his return is contacted by a mysterious new client from a mysterious government agency with an even more mysterious job request. Instead of analyzing an historical artifact, he's asked to use his historical prowess to analyze a person to see if she resembles any well known historical figure. And when murder is involved, Malachi is even more confused as to why the government wants his help. There's more going on here than meets the eye, and you've got to figure it out.
Kero Blaster has arrived! The sidescrolling platform shooter by Studio Pixel looks simple and sweet on the surface, but the difficulty is cranked up high enough to give your reflexes an honest workout. As janitor for the teleporter manufacturer Cat & Frog, your job is to venture out into the dangerous world to fix the company's broken machines. No sweeping or actual repairing involved, just shooting and trying to stay alive!
When it comes to escape games, there are a lot of names most people think of right away. Robamimi, Neutral, and Tesshi-e to name just a few. For good reason! But there are a lot of great escape games out there that aren't as widely known, or at least ones that you might miss if you're sticking to the celebrities when you're getting your "stuck in a room oh noes" fix. They're weird. Creative. Surprising. Thoughtful. Scary. And they're all right here in our archives. Here are 12 of the best escape games you might have missed the first time around! Allons-y!
The original Demons vs Fairyland by Storm Alligator made kidnapping both adorable and strategic as you took control of a nefarious army of evil critters who had absconded with all of Fairyland's tots for unknown purposes. Since the good fairy folk aren't going to let you just saunter off with their kids, in each stage you had to hold off waves of enemies who wanted to carry off the children by placing towers to defend against the forces of good with skeletons, gooey beasts, demonic archers, and more, all of which could be upgraded in various ways to suit whatever you were facing... to say nothing of a few deadly spells of your own, of course. It was fun. Addictive. Challenging. And now, thanks to help from Armor Games, Demons vs Fairyland is available for iOS! This isn't just a simple port... with enhanced visuals, new levels, a new interface, equippable gear and more, it's a tough but polished and engaging strategy game that's perfect for on the go.
Wait, hold on. You don't look serious enough to play this hidden-object adventure. Gimme a scowl. Now, like... hunch your shoulders a bit and loom. No, think more serious... grimmer. Once you're doing your best Mad-Eye Moody impression, you're ready to play Elephant Games' Grim Tales: The Vengeance, whose opening sequence is so mysterious and dramatic and strange it's like what you'd get if you put the opening cinematic from Final Fantasy 8 and a bunch of Dean Koontz novels in a blender. At the start of the game, you've just received a frantic phone call from your nephew James, who's been arrested under suspicion of murder when his sister Elizabeth goes missing. While James is headed to trial, you're in a unique position to help find the true killer, since you are not only a detective, but also have the ability to "move into the past", which the newspapers are surprisingly blase about. In the courtroom, you'll have to use your unique powers to sort through the evidence you're given in hidden-object scenes, and then travel into the static past connected to each object you uncover, where you can explore and search for clues and solve puzzles. Good thing time stands still in the courtroom for your while you're on your wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey time travels... Phoenix Wright never had it so good!
ViDi Games' point-and-click adventure House of Fear: Revenge offers no explanation for why you're loitering around outside this gloomy place on a snowy night, nor why you immediately feel motivated to start smashing things and breaking in. Maybe you're role playing as the person who dies first in a horror movie to clue the main cast in that something strange is going on? You can go ahead and feel justified in your felonies and property destruction, however, as it quickly becomes obvious that there's some serious Scooby Doo business afoot here, so you should probably explore further. There's no changing cursor to indicate interactive areas, so you'll have to click to pick up items and explore on your own. Clicking the square in the bottom left corner will open your inventory and its many buttons... click to highlight an object you're carrying, then again on whichever icon corresponds to the action you want to perform. The magnifying glass allows you to examine objects more closely, while the interlocked puzzle pieces will let you try to combine two items, and the separated puzzle pieces are for disassembly. If you actually want to use an item somewhere in the game, you need to click the hand icon once you've highlighted it. Maybe this place is haunted by the spirit of clunky User Interface design? Wooooooooo!
(Update: As of May 14, Monument Valley is available on Android!)
Monument Valley is a creative puzzle game that looks like something Wonderputt developer Reece Millidge would create and plays like Echochrome (or BOXGAME, if you like), even though it's made by ustwo, the developer of Whale Trail. Set in a surreal world of shapes and tricky perspectives, you control Ida as she ventures from level to level, walking on walls and twisting platforms as she tries to figure out where she's at and what the heck is going on in this dreamlike world.
Remember that old Hanna-Barbera show Wacky Races? Dick Dastardly? Muttley? Penelope Pitstop? Well, check out Madmen Racing by Flashrush Games and you'll get the general idea. This silly racing game offers fifteen unique modes of conveyance, from a rabbit driving a carrot to a lady reclining in a wheeled bathtub to a pharaoh in a gilded chariot. Each "car" has its own stats for top speed, acceleration, and stunting ability, and all can be upgraded in the garage. Upgrades even carry over between vehicles, so all that cash you poured into your hot dog car won't be wasted when you upgrade to the UFO.
What do you get when you combine a sleek mining game with RPG-style collection and crafting, and a soupçon of puzzle-solving? Well, if you're the folks from Backflip Studios, you get Dwarven Den - The Mining Puzzle Game, an addictive mining mash-up that also happens to have a great storyline and cute-as-a-button artwork. The developer is a master of utilizing the tiny space of the iPhone extremely well, and this game, with so much to see and do, will surely satisfy.
It's hard to find a good hat. You need to find one that fits and flatters and doesn't turn you into an internet meme waiting to happen, so when you find one that works for you, you kind of want to hold on to it. That's why the star of Anton Rogov's puzzle platformer Pursuit of Hat 2 goes to such extraordinary lengths to get his hat back in each stage, even though he's really, really bad at holding on to it. As in the original game, you use [WASD] or the [arrow] keys to move and jump, trying to find your way to wherever your hat has wound up in each level. You'll climb, swing, leap, and, uh... well... literally rip your own limbs off to get it back. See, by pressing the [spacebar], you'll pull off your legs, arms, and even your own torso in that order. Doing so can leave a part behind to, say, press a switch for you, but each one you remove will hamper you... without both legs you can't jump as high, and if you're a head, well, you can't jump at all. Fortunately, you can just press the down key to be reunited with whatever limb you're standing over.
Good morning, JIG team. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, involves the recovery of five stolen candy pieces. But, before you can get to said sugary wealth, there are two other rooms you must break out of. A gauntlet of codes stand in your way. This mission isn't difficult, it's...well, it isn't. Now, you have 30 minutes to make your escape.
Get Out - Here's a simple, stripped to the basics escape-the-room game from No 1 Game. Get Out requires you do just that, given a limited number of resources at hand. While there are three possible endings, it all plays out rather linearly and it's not a new concept, so it ends up being a flash fast venture. Still, despite how little is actually happening here, it's gratifyingly satisfying to play. You're like a super suave no-mission-is-impossible type secret agent, trapped by some dastardly villain, slickly solving your way out before the train runs over your sweetheart.
Wheel - from Rose Key has a bit more style in its decor than Get Out and should be especially appealing to those who cherish that plastic decoder ring, still smelling slightly of the Chex cereal you begged your mom for a week to buy. On the other hand, a few rather esoteric puzzles—logical in their own right despite vague clues and heavy reliance on lateral conclusions—might make Wheel less charming to the rest of you, who were content merely with eating inexplicably crunchy marshmallows and sneaking handfuls of alphabet-shaped oat bits to the dog. Either way, it's solid enough to warrant a try, an especially good time waster to charge up the brain cells.
Candy Rooms No.9: Dark Violet Pop - FunkyLand continues construction on the dreamiest pads ever imagined. Just find five pieces of candy and trade them in for a key: rather simple, all told. Even amateur sleuths could solve it in a jiffy. Instead, a bigger mystery comes to mind: "What's the deal with this music?" Okay, sure, it's funky, but in a weird, annoying kind of way. Ironic considering the pop music theme. Just hit the BGM off button and put on your own jams (my pick: "When Doves Cry"). Nevertheless, the eye-pleasing imaginative design is worth a little ear distress.
P.S. If you want the whole house to go, you can also download the iOS version of Candy Rooms on your mobile device.
Whether your name is Lana or not, it's still a rampage... a Dead Rampage, to be precise! In this action-packed zombie game from Elven Games, your quaint moonlit drive through the post-apocalyptic wasteland is interrupted by a rocket the blasts your van to smithereens and leaves your stranded on the side of the road with only your trusted pistol, and a distress signal that's going to need a lot of work to get functional again. Your job is to hold off the waves of undead mutants for as long as it takes you to repair it, using [WASD] or the [arrow] keys to move and jump, and the mouse to aim and shoot. Blasting baddies not only earns you experience points to level up and skill points to enhance yourself, but cash to spend on sweet upgrades and new weapons from the oddly fortuitous kiosks that just happened to be set up nearby. (In my day, we bought our upgrades from shadowy hooded vendors of dubious humanity and we liked it.) Don't get too caught up in blasting, though, since you need to be standing beside and actively repairing the beacon to make any progress, and without help, you're probably just going to end up another shambling corpse on the roadside, and that's how you get ants.
For all the daydreaming we do about our ideal apocalypse scenario, sometimes it's worth remembering that maybe the total extinction of the human race could have some somber moments. The team over at Games 121 want us to feel that loss. The Last Heart does a better job than most tugging at your, ahem, heartstrings. You play as a tiny nanobot implanted in the last human being's chest cavity, moving with [WASD] and firing with the [arrow] keys, blasting away at an ever encroaching wave of bacteria that have already claimed everyone else. It's an infinite shooter game, so the goal isn't to win. You're just holding out for as long as you can.
It's happened to all of us at one point or another. You're at a sleepover, some kid starts telling a pants-wettingly scary ghost story, and all the other partygoers notice you quaking in your slippers. Suddenly, you've got to deflect questions regarding your bravery with all the might a terrified middle schooler can muster. Unless you're the eponymous hero of Eyesteam's platformer, Pajama Boy 2: The Dark Forest, in which case, you decide to prove your courage and boldly venture into the woods alone in a fit of preteen bravado. The woods which just so happen to be filled up with spikes, sawblades, and cannons spewing an endless stream of what appear to be silver gumballs. Maaaybe this decision wasn't entirely thought through. But certain death is nothing compared to the threat of sleeping in the dark, and plucky Pajama Boy is determined to escape the spooky forest... With a little help from a few fireflies, of course! Using [WASD] or the [arrow] keys, Pajama Boy can run, roll, and leap from wall to wall in a way that feels pleasingly acrobatic, though the wall jumping is a little bit touchy at times. You'll have to collect a patch of fireflies on each level to progress, but you'll rarely have to go out of your way for them; usually they're right in front of you on your way to the level's end.
Kiwanuka is a puzzle game that feels a lot like Lemmings, only with lightning and humans instead of lemmings and dirt. You're in charge of a group of humans who have two enormous talents: sticking together as a group, and forming towers and bridges out of their own bodies. The set-up sounds almost too simple, but once you see the mad puzzles that require multiple towers drops through swirling insta-death rocks, you'll be thankful there isn't much more to be concerned with.
You're an enterprising person, always on the lookout for an opportunity. So in 1849, an excellent indie city management simulation game by Somasim, when the call of "there's gold in them thar hills!" reaches your ears, you decide to take the California gold rush by the horns and make a nice profit along the way. Making money may sound great, but you've got your work cut out for you if you want to see a penny. Each scenario begins in a different Californian town with various goals which are listed before you begin. Some pertain to attracting a certain number of people to your town, others require you to build certain structures or ship a certain number of goods, and you get to choose one of three bonuses to start out.
Outside, the Rain is falling and what's there to do if you're stuck inside? Make the most of a rainy day by gathering clues and solving your way out! At first this unassuming little escape game from Yonashi seems like a simple time waster with a handful of rather standard puzzles. Although it's just a tad light on challenge, its quiet charm sneaks up on you as you explore and encounter a number of animated characters. Soon you're won over by a design that's as shyly sweet as an April shower and painted in hues that feel like color therapy.
I think we can all agree that turning your future husband into a frog won't particularly endear you to him. On the other hand, when we're talking about a witch determined to marry an unwilling prince, this seems like a natural course of action. All she has to do is put a spell on him and be the one to kiss him, and he will fall in love with her. In Witch's Pranks: Frog's Fortune, a hidden-object adventure by Shaman Games, the wicked witch has not one, but two frog prince candidates lined up. The problem is that neither one wants to be kissed, so they are imprisoned until their change their little amphibian minds. This is where you come in: wandering through the forest, you see a strange house and witness the witch's most ignoble behaviour towards the royals. Since you have a soft spot for all things green and slimy, you decide to save them... and end up in a cage.
So you've decided to sneak around a highly suspect security company headquarters. You will need the following tools: one extra large flower pot (preferably containing a ficus tree or similar), one infinitely extensible length of rope and one fedora hat. Why the hat? Because it looks cool. Now you're ready for some stealth action in Spy 2 by Wildcat Games, and you're trying to figure out just what nefarious schemes are unfolding behind the nondescript front of Live Inc. Use the [arrow] or [WASD] keys to walk, and up or [W] to interact with objects. Don't get spotted by security cameras and guards or you'll get busted!
There are a lot of game developers out there, but few have achieved the cult following and widespread popularity of Mateusz Skutnik. From the post-apocalyptic tale of The Fog Fall to the simple yet oh-so-stylish puzzling of his charming 10 Gnomes games, Mateusz has taken players around the world on memorable point-and-click adventures, to say nothing of his smash-hit ten year series of Submachine games. It's hard to believe he gets any time off at all... just one month after the first Submachine game, he released Submachine Remix, which dramatically expanded upon the original. Since 2005, he's made or been involved in the creation of a staggering amount of free online games, to the point where it isn't officially the New Year until he's released a new installment of his Where Is... ? series to ring it in.
Just lately, he's agreed to work on a very special project for us, an escape game just for JayisGames, but then, he's always working on something special, from comics to tutorials, to special HD versions of the games people love. What's your favourite Mateusz Skutnik game? What was the first one you ever played? Do you like them whimsical... or just a little freaky? What's your favourite thing about them... what makes, for you, a Mateusz game, a Mateusz game?
Click on past the break for a short interview and a sneak peek at his upcoming escape game! And remember, if you've enjoyed any of the many fantastic free games he's released over the years, consider supporting him by purchasing HD versions from his store!
PhilllChabbb's puzzle game Lone Ghost & Cat is difficult, but mainly because figuring out how to play is sort of like trying to assembling Ikea furniture going by the vague drawings someone is holding up in a window across the street. As the title of the game suggests, you are a ghost. Specifically, a Patrick Swayze sort of ghost, in that you can move things by expending energy. Your goal is to climb a towering apartment building for unknown reasons, solving puzzles in each room to proceed. You use the [arrow] keys to move, [Z] to interact (mainly pushing and pulling), and [R] to restart a room. As you move physical objects, you'll notice you start to become more and more ghostly in appearance until you can't move anything any longer and you can, in fact, pass through objects. This presents a problem, since the exit on each stage only appears when you have a lot of energy, and the more you expend, the more the door dwindles. Fortunately, you can absorb energy from certain things with a lot of it to spare, such as potted plants, but holding [spacebar] near them, though doing so repeatedly can drain these things dry until they're no longer of any use to you. Where does the "cat" come in? Well, after a few stages you'll wind up with a feline companion you can have follow you around and drain the energy from things you can't, turning into a walking spectral source of ghost juice.
From mobile puzzle maestro Kris Pixton, SpellPix is a new take on the path-drawing logic puzzle seen in games like HUEBRIX or Conceptis' Link-a-Pix. The idea is to connect the marked letters to an identically marked letter somewhere else on the grid. The path can snake around as much as it likes, but it has to be unbroken. In SpellPix, each grid square has a letter, so with every pair of letters you match up, you'll also spell a word.
Detarame Factory has invited us to a Hot Pot Party and it doesn't mean what you might think it means. A hot pot is a savory recipe made from various fish, veggies and seasonings. It looks deeee-lish, but before the party can start, you'll have to find the recipe and collect all the necessary ingredients. This is not as simple as the pastel colors and cute characters might lead you to believe—nearly every cupboard and drawer is locked, so you'll have to escape your way through each, using the clues and items you've gathered to help you further along through multiple odd-shaped rooms and whimsical scenes.
We've got a real gem here, folks. A narrative-based art game with a gorgeous style and heart to match, Ian Burnett's It's Not About The Aliens (also available on GameJolt) teaches browser games can be so much more than cheap, fun distractions. What appears to be merely a platform game with a good physics system gradually unfolds into an emotionally resonant tale of lost love and somber yearning for better days. You control with the [WASD] or [arrow] keys, and you can shoot your little pistol with either a click or with the [CTRL] key. Aliens block your path, but you can't die. After all, it's not about the aliens. It's about the people you're longing for, and the ordeals you suffer through to save them.
More Icebreaker, anyone? Nitrome has released the Kraken Pack for its slice-based physics puzzle mobile game Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage. The update contains new enemies, new characters, new missions, a new branching map with side paths, and a brand new boss fight described as "spectacular"! It also contains 40 new levels, bringing the total number to just over 140. Android users finally have their chance to cut blocks on their devices, as the Kraken Pack marks Icebreaker's debut on the Google Play marketplace. No downsides, just ice slides!
Leo's Fortune has been stolen. His mounds of gold are gone missing and, in their wake, a trail of coins like breadcrumbs leads into unknown worlds. Hmm, some kind of mystery to be solved! Now join Leo and hunt down the thief through a breathlessly challenging platform adventure game, gorgeously hand-crafted by the talented hands of 1337 and Senri. Spanning from the moss-covered forest floor of his home, oasis-dabbled deserts, watery pirate coves, and further on to the indescribable depths beyond, this journey is an epic one. It's not an easy undertaking, but responsive touchscreen controls and smooth physics will help you guide Leo through all 24 levels unfolding with treacherous obstacles and mesmerizing beauty.
Vladimir Jamajkaman Makarov, Zakhar Gadzhiev, and Ressa Schwarzwald seal their reputations as purveyors of the sweet with the point-and-click puzzle game Find the Candy: Winter, a frosty themed sequel to the original Find the Candy game. Each stage has three hidden stars, and one delectable hidden treat, and to find them you need to click to interact with the environment, or sometimes even click and drag to manipulate things, such as pulling windows open. Though things start out simple, as the levels get more elaborate with sneaky locks and mechanisms to experiment with, things slowly become more challenging... uh... sort of.
Your horoscope for this week in May: You are characterized by great style and wit, and you show it in everything you do. Unfortunately, you have a tendency to wind up in tricky situations. But, fortunately, you also have the gumption and charm to escape your way out of them. This week is no exception; you'll find yourself being a great help to friends, exceedingly brilliant at solving problems and, when given lemons, you'll smile happily and walk out the door.
The Adventures of Duck - by Kamokichi, the author of Yana Escape and A Little Slow, is more about getting into rather than escaping from. But never mind that technicality because this little delight shouldn't be missed. Explore the various scenes, helping everyone get what they want so you can find and unlock the hidden vault. While playing, you'll probably think: "This reminds me of a Minoto game." Along those lines is a Monkey GO Happy essence at each playful turn. Comparisons aside, The Adventures of Duck is quite a treasure, unique enough to stand out on its own.
Escape from the Similar Rooms 11 - Hottategoya has found a fascination with sameness, and so have we because it looks a wee bit like a Spot-the-Difference game...only much more escape-y. Among the sparse furnishings and decor of each of these rooms, the clues do tend to stick out. So spotting them isn't the problem. What is the problem is making sense of their abstruse hinting in order to decipher the codes for each of these three doors. This amounts to three coy puzzles with rather twisty logic, one for each room. Sadly, you're out before you're ready to end the fun.
Fruit Kitchens No.4: Lemon Yellow - FunkyLand gives us a bunch of lemons and what are we to make of it? Quick, easy, cheerful fun! No use being a sourpuss and complaining it's too simple or too yellow. Just keep your eyes peeled for 7 oblong zesty citrons and, when you've collected them all, they magically turn into the door key. The item hide-and-seek is a bit more of a pixel hunt this time around so, if you do get stumped, it's probably because you missed a tool that would help out in a pinch.
We could all use a little more joy in our lives. Color Joy, a physics puzzle by Gibton, provides just that with its upbeat music and ever smiling shapes, but it also provides a great mental workout. Get at least one of each coloured shape into its matching portal to pass the level, but collect all the stars to unlock bonus levels for an even greater challenge and to reveal the secret level. Click on pieces of the level to make them disappear to set the stage and get the shapes moving. If two shapes of the same color touch, the larger one will absorb the other growing bigger until it hits its limit, after which others can pass safely by without being eaten!
I'm not saying the primates in Pencil Kids' point-and-click puzzle Monkey GO Happy games are making a deliberate and concentrated effort to get rid of all their little mini monkeys. I'm just saying it's a little suspicious that those little monkeys keep going missing in such dangerous places. They've done it again, and like the original Monkey GO Happy Tales, in Monkey GO Happy Tales 2 you'll be guiding one of our little negligent authority figures through multiple stages of strange places and creatures, trying to track the mini monkeys down. To play, just click to interact, and drag any items from your inventory at the top of the screen to where you'd like to try to use them on the field.
The Robbery is a stylish mobile room escape game from Caluliber that isn't about escaping from rooms, towers, or even offices. Instead, you're a burglar out for some cash, cracking safes one by one using your puzzle solving skills. Use clues and a few inventory items in each level to get to the gold, then race against the clock (and the security lasers) to grab it all for yourself. Tasty, tasty loot!
If you're of a certain age (and don't try to front, we know you're out there), there is a distinct chance that you went to school with a folder, a binder, or even more that showed images of rainbow-colored cutesy animals frolicking around vaguely-inspirational sayings. "Follow your dreams and shoot for the stars!" Despite their distinct lack of neon colors, Pavlov Andrey's adorable band of animals has decided to act out all your awesome-rainbow-binder fantasies in Reach the Star. Literally! In this stacking-style puzzle game, create piles of cutesy critters tall enough to snatch those stars right out of the air!
What do word games, questionably existent fish, sorting puzzles, literary plot devices, and balloons have in common? The first four are all ways to describe a Red Herring, which happens to be a new game by Blue Ox Technologies (makers of the award-winning 7 Little Words). The balloons have nothing to do with the rest, they're just a red herring to throw you off, and they're exactly the sort of pitfall you'll need to avoid. In this deviously simple mobile game, you're given sixteen words, and all you need to do is sort them into three themed groups of four, with four unrelated words leftover.
Alright, I can admit it. There are times, usually when my husband isn't home I'm watching Impractical Jokers and the remote is a few inches out of reach, I wish I was an alien blob of glue with retractable slime appendages. A Slime Hook, if you will. Darren Briden has made my laziest dreams come true with this cute puzzle game about a cyclopean ball of green extraterrestrial goop who is able to shoot out appendages that stick to any green surface and pull it along. Just click to make our boneless hero shoot a hook out to where your cursor is. The goal in each stage is to make it to the exit in as few moves as possible, but you'll also have to contend with guards blocking your path. If you cross in front of them they'll see you, but if you slide through them from the sides or from behind, uh... well... let's just say our innocent looking little friend has more in common with the blood-and-guts approach of The Visitor than, say, ET. Naturally, you also don't want any of the guards to be able to spot the bodies of their, eh, incapacitated coworkers, since that sort of thing tends to upset people.
Hot on the trails of indie horror titles like Slender and Amnesia runs Dungeon Nightmares, screaming and wielding a meat cleaver. Developer K Monkey's Unity-powered title puts you in a dungeon and assaults you with nightmares. Really, it's exactly what it says on the tin. You can't fight. You can barely see. You move around the dungeon with the [arrow] keys in first person, looking and interacting with the mouse. Most doors and chests will need you to click and hold to pick their locks, while candles can be lit... and blown out. Hit [M] for a handy map that keeps track of where you've gone. You've got to collect artifacts in a series of randomly-generated dungeons before you can finally climb into the light.
You have two minutes to turn a falling mess of letter tiles into words. Think you're up to the challenge? Fiasco! from Blinking Pixels combines Tetris with Scrabble in the most frantic way possible. Letters fall from the top of the screen and can be swiped and stacked below. Arrange them to spell words, then give them a tap to convert them into points. Work in as many long words as you can and you just might turn this fiasco into a triumph!
You can't really talk about indie point-and-click adventure games without talking about Wadjet Eye Games because, well, nobody does it better. They've made or helped make some of the best adventure games in the last decade, but few have been spinning their story as long as The Blackwell series. Most recently starring Rosangela Blackwell, a socially awkward but determined medium guide, and Joey Mallone, her laconic spirit guide, the series has been telling an increasingly more complex tale since 2009's The Blackwell Convergence and 2011's The Blackwell Deception. Three years later, Rosa and Joey's story finally comes to an end with The Blackwell Epiphany. Rosa's been working her usual jobs for a while now, finding and helping troubled spirits pass over, but one routine assignment takes a horrifying turn when she and Joey witness a murder... and something they've never seen before. Throughout the game, which otherwise controls like your typical point-and-click adventure, you'll need to make use of both Joey and Rosa, both of whom have their uses and limitations. This time, however, you'll also take a leap into the past and control two other characters on a path that reveals a lot more about someone you thought you knew.
So by now you can probably make short work of any undead horde with nothing but your wits, determination, and a high-powered machine gun. But how do you fare with just a dagger and a bow? Flyanvil's latest topdown survival game strips away the high-tech, post-apocalyptic gadgetry and plops you right back in the dark ages where every arrow counts. Merging elements of simulation games like Rebuild and solid shooter action, Decision: Medieval offers multiple enemy types, upgradeable structures, and a wealth of weapons and skills, creating a deep experience that's certain to keep players invested. What makes Decision: Medieval stand out from the crowd is the medieval setting. Catapults and poison arrows replace the usual grenades and sniper rifles, upping the tension immensely.
Choko-Chai's three cats have unwittingly found themselves in a variety of predicaments—bound for the open sea on a Passenger Ship, virtually catnapped by Forty Thieves, and facing lupine menace as Little Red Riding Hoods—yet these kitties do more than yowl discordantly and leave fur clusters on your clothes. They are rather resourceful (with a smidgen of assistance from you) and happen to love tasty treats, so of course they're purrfect heroes when the baker's apprentice is locked inside the cake shop and can't find the door key. Join the three cats to the rescue! Gather useful items, solve puzzles, and decipher codes in order to Escape from the Cake Shop!
Urara-Works and Skipmore are back with a brand new mobile puzzle game! Pixel Rooms 2 follows closely the style and set-up of the original Pixel Rooms escape game. Instead of stepping into doors, however, you're helping little pixel dudes step out of them! There are just over two dozen single-screen levels, each with a solution that may or may not require tapping, swiping and/or shaking your phone.
At the start of Elephant Games' hidden-object adventure Royal Detective: Queen of Shadows, there's a bird with a letter at your window, and even though it's not an owl so you know Hogwarts hasn't finally accepted you, you still begrudgingly open it. Princess, whose mother was so imaginative and full of love that she named her daughter after her station ("Eh, good enough. Pass the hossenfeffer."), needs your help again after her mother is kidnapped by a bunch of tentacles in the middle of a dark forest, which sounds like the setup to a really immature internet meme. Turns out a bargain the queen struck to save her one and only daughter from a curse is now coming back to haunt her, as fairytale deals are wont to do, and now it's up to you to save them both. You'll solve puzzles, dig through hidden-object scenes, wield magic, and get the help of a talking skull who has better manners than Morte, luckily for the content rating.
Gibbets 4, a physics puzzle game by Hypnocat Studios, is a terrible game for terrible people. Not, of course, that the game itself is poorly made or inherently bad in any way, or that you yourself have to be in order to enjoy it... but it helps! In theory, the premise is honorable. You've got a bow and arrow you can click and drag on to aim and fire, and you're aiming to not only take out any overzealous hangmen in each stage, but to rescue each unjustly hung soul with a well-placed arrow to sever their noose before their health bar runs out. If you miss and accidentally take someone's eye out, and therefore a chunk of their health, you're supposed to be duly horrified and not laugh like a deranged hyena. ... I feel like just typing this game's description and my reaction to it is putting me on a government watch list somewhere. I mean, look, I made that banner specifically so you know I tried to play it the right way. See? It just... didn't turn out so smiley all the time. Or upright. Look, I may not be the hero they need, but I'm the hero they deserve, okay?
Ludum Dare is a competition that challenges developers to create games within days according to a specific theme that's open to interpretation, and with a theme like Beneath the Surface, Ludum Dare 29 has seen a lot of entries with wild variations and styles. Few, however, might be as lovely and intriguing as Ryan Carag and Bill Kiley's puzzle platform game The Valley Rule, which looks and plays something like the whimsical unique of Fez and the work of Nifflas. Using the [arrow] keys to move and [S] to jump, you control a tiny creature lost in a sprawling underground world who must find a way to unlock the massive door trapping you in. You can't do much but jump and push at the beginning, but as you go deeper, you'll find things that unlock new abilities to help you progress. If you fall into what is apparently a very dangerous sea of milk, you'll die, but you'll also instantly respawn at the last save point you activated, which looks like... what is that? Two floating high-heeled shoes and an existential Triscuit? Man, underground civilizations are weird.
Is it officially a new year, really, if we haven't celebrated with Tesshi-e's yearly Mild Escape game? I say to thee nay, but now that Mild Escape 7 is finally here, we can break out the streamers and confetti! Each year, as the narrator tells us at the start, we find ourselves back at a particular door in this series of escape games, and this time is no different. Click your way around the room to explore and interact while some evocative piano music makes you feel weirdly nostalgic and melancholy. If you highlight an item in your inventory, you can click "about item" to view it up close and try to manipulate it, or just click in the area you're exploring to try to use it there. Some objects in your surroundings can't be carried or picked up, but if you click and hold on them, a closer or alternate view might be displayed.