Link Dump Friday №265

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Link Dump Fridays

DoraAs summer approaches, it's a bad time to be a gamer if you're trying to exercise any sort of self restraint whatsoever on your purchasing. You would think the indie developer community would take pity on you, but no, they're just as merciless as their big-name counterparts, and as a result, we have a whole bunch of really amazing games coming down the road finally available for pre-order. And we wouldn't have it any other way. We've also got an update on your favourite evil bunny murder game, and a playable demo coming very soon for the detective game starring everyone's favourite persnickety purple pony. We've even got a contest running where you can win a copy of an upcoming indie game! (Check below for details!)

Are you psyched?... not yet? Okay, get in position... SUNSHINE, SUNSHINE, LADYBUGS AWAKE! CLAP YOUR HOOVES AND DO A LITTLE SHAKE! Awwwww yeah, it's on now!

HomeHorror Comes Home Surprise! Pre-orders are now available for Benjamin River's upcoming horror adventure game, Home, is finally available for pre-order! The game will be released for Windows digitally on June 1st 2012, and for just $2.00 USD you can get a copy, or for $20.00 USD plus shipping get a special collector's edition that comes with all sorts of neat physical goodies. The game, which follows you as you awake in unfamiliar surroundings, is billed as a "murder mystery with a twist" that lets you decide what has and will happen. Sound good? Heck, sounds great.

My Little InvestigationsDeveloper is Best Pony Remember My Little Investigations, the upcoming Phoenix Wright inspired adventure game based on My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic? Well, get your detective's cap ready, because the game is about to be ahoof! Developers Equestrian Dreamers have just announced that on May 5th 2012 you'll be able to download the first case of the game to play, which is essentially the demo. Free, of course! The game, which follows Twilight Sparkle as she solves mysteries with the help of her friends, has come a long way since its initial concept, and really showcases the tremendous talent and dedication of the fan community. Check out our interview with one of the developers for more information, and the official site for preview videos of everything from gameplay to the voice actors.

PoacherShotgun, Meet Update If you've already tried Yahtzee Croshaw's metroidvania adventure download title Poacher, you might be interested to know that the game has since received a substantial update that even includes customiseable keyboard controls, achievements, and an easy mode, on top of the standard bug fixes. Poacher follows belligerent "hero" Derek Badger who falls down a literal rabbit hole one night and winds up in a conflict between two warring underground factions. Combining action and platforming with humour and violence, it's a great free little title to check out. And then go play Art of Theft because it's my favourite and I said so.

Torchlight 2As If Millions of Wallets Cried Out in Terror Let's get right to the point; pre-orders for Torchlight 2, the upcoming sequel to the original action-packed RPG roguelike adventure are finally available! While the release date is still currently set at a rather nebulous "Summer 2012", you can pre-purchase the game for $19.99 USD now on Steam (and receive a free copy of the original for yourself or a friend), or on Perfect World. Who's excited?! I am excited. Browse the official site to learn more, and check out all the gorgeous screenshots and gameplay footage to get yourself ready.

Do you know an upcoming indie project or some community gaming related news you think deserves some attention? Send me an e-mail with LINK DUMP FRIDAY in the subject line at dora AT casualgameplay DOT com with the info, and we'll judge it with the all-seeing glare of our own self-importance for inclusion in a future Link Dump Friday article!


Here's my entry to win a copy of HOME.

I'd have to say my favourite horror gaming moment was every second of Dark Fall: The Journal. It's the only game I've ever played that got the atmosphere exactly right. There were never any bloody corpses or moany zombies or freaky monsters or even any jump scares and that's why it worked. Alfred Hitchcock said, "There is nothing more frightening than an unopened door." and nowhere is this thought more literal than in Dark Fall. Rows and rows of doors on every floor with who knows what behind them. The sounds of footsteps and whispering gave me goosebumps and nowhere felt safe, even though there was nothing actually out to get me. Sadly it's sequel failed on all counts for me but the original will always stay with me. Or at least nearby. Lurking in the shadows. Peering from the end of a hallway. Standing just behind that door I don't want to open.

The other horror moment was that time I played Papa's Pancakeria. Seriously man, pancakes freak me out. They're like eating skin... *Shudder*

MonochromeMolly April 27, 2012 1:42 AM

Oh, oh, I want one! Pick me!

But if you don't I'll buy it anyway. I love games with feelies!

breakstress April 27, 2012 4:56 AM

The first one that came to mind was that horror point and click flash game that was based in a hotel and oddly enough tied into a doritos marketing campaign.

I just googled it and found out that it was called Hotel 626. I remember there was one scene that involved having to click on something before the timer that ominously encircled a dimly lit baby's crib ran out.

I think either I x'd out the window before or right after the timer ran out because I was just so scared. First and maybe only time that's happened to me.

Also I remember that I found it through a link off of jayisgames and after googling it found that it was published here in 2008.

That was four years ago, I was half way through high school playing the game in my family's living room computer then and now I'm in my second year of college typing this comment on my laptop in bed when I guess I should be fixing my sleeping schedule before final's week coming up.

The game's review page also has a note that says that doritos took Hotel 626 down, so I guess the game is also kind of scary as a reminder that certain things, whether it be a little flash game page or your sophomore year in high school, things that terrified and caught your attention at the moment, might eventually cease to exist except in your memories.


The other gaming related horror was when I just read that breakstress was halfway through highschool in 2008. Then I realised I was old. It's almost as scary as having a conversation with someone born after 9/11. That makes me go foetal in a corner.


It's funny you mention Yahtzee Croshaw in this article, because my favorite horror indie gaming moment would definitely be in his Chzo mythos. Probably the part near the beginning of 7 Days a Skeptic, when they're looking at the box and I want to scream at them "no! send it out into space again!" but I can't.

Or, depending on the meaning of "indie", that part at the end of Scratches. I knew what was coming but it still scared the h-e-double-hockey-sticks out of me.


My favorite moment in Monday, 16:30 is when you

look under the bed and see the dead body you stuffed underneath.

Although not listed as horror, I think that qualifies.

Strangelander April 27, 2012 2:22 PM

Home contest entry:

Playing Ex Mortis for the first time. Back then, who knew you could get such a creepy game in a browser?


I know someone else has mentioned it, but my favorite indie horror moment also comes from the Chzo Mythos.
It's from Trilby's Notes, near the beginning when

the hotel shifts to the Dark World for the first time.

I played the game when it first came out, so there's no way I could have spoiled myself- so it was pretty awesome as well as being scary. That whole game remains one of my favorite horror games, indie or otherwise.


I'd like a shot at a copy of Home.
Probably the most memorable indie horror game I remember playing, along with the Chzo mythos, was Yume Nikki. I played it late at night, and the bizarre level design and endless patterns reminded me of claustrophobic rug patterns. It's like a game version of "The Yellow Wallpaper."

And yes, I did see Uboa... it actually wasn't the weirdest moment for me, but it's certainly lodged itself in my memory now.


Entry for copy of Home

The scariest game experience is by far amnesia the dark descent. It is scary because you are vulnerable.

borateen April 28, 2012 8:47 PM

My heart was racing during Penumbra Overture as I crawled through a dank tunnel, spider webs grazing my face, and turning a corner to find huge poisonous spiders ready to jump and attack. That game is so scary. Just listening to your character's breathing and heart rate, not knowing what's around the next bend. A phenomenal balance between hiding from baddies to solve a puzzle or using your limited ammo to blast your way through.

I can't wait for Home to come out. I've heard so much.


Since I'll take any excuse to write a Top 10 list...

1. Last Half of Darkness: This was shareware, so that means it was indie, right? Anyways, this game was as spooky as EGA could get, particularly the adorable little girls playing patty-cake who'd leap at the screen with a mouth full of needle-like teeth, and that angry red-eyed grim-reaper fellow in the garden shed who'd be happy to rip your beating heart from your chest. Brrr.

2. Which Way Adventure: That. Frigging. Manticore.

3. Ex Mortis 2: Definitely the best of the series, exploring that farm house whose inhabitants failed to survive the ongoing apocolypse has some of the greatest atmosphere of any game, so much so that the random jump scares almost take away from it. The scarriest moment though comes right at the beginning, where you struggle outside an abandoned church to figure out how to start a car while ominous demonic forces approach over the horizon. I don't know if they ever got there, but I wasn't willing to wait and find out.

4. Intruder: How could something so scary be made so early in Flash Development? It's the online equivilant of a Slasher Flick, with all the fears you'd expect in a final battle.

5. Dark Cut 2: We're probably not ever going to see a Dark Cut 4, but serving on a Civil War battlefield should be enough to dissuade you from any medical training for at least a couple days. Having to amputate your own leg is the most visecerally painful moment in any flash game.

6. Deanimator: The only zombie shooter that has ever truly scared me. Trying to fend off the Lovecraftian horrors with only the pistol in your shaky hand makes you feel in real danger. Nothing is worse than trying to reload a shotgun while a huge brute of a creature inches ever closer to you. The fact it's all in shadows only makes it worse.

7. Purgatorium: My favorite work of Ben Leffler. Finally opening the door and peeking through, and realizing who you are, what you've done, what's about to happen to you, and why you deserve it.


9. Shrapnel, By Adam Cadre: Shrapnel takes a turn for the scifi at the end, which limits its appeal as a horror piece. Still, those early scenes where you walk around the house, finding death at every turn, only to resurrect and find your corpses littering the world around you is seriously eerie. The fact that it takes place outside the Zork house only makes it worse.

10. The Chzo Mythos: Specifically Trilby's Notes. The hallucinations that afflict you are subtle but startling. Whether you've been transformed into a welding mask wearing serial killer, are trapped in the corner of John DeFoe's basement while he slowly advances on you with that machete, or just reading an endless stream of it hurts it hurts it hurts it hurts it hurts why father it hurts it hurts it hurts it hurts it hurts, it'll keep reminding you how seriously wrong this game's universe is.

Billy Nitro May 1, 2012 8:52 AM

@ Dandy: I don't know what kind of weird skin you're eating that's like eating pancakes. Normal skin is just fine for me.

The scariest moment in a game? That's easy. There was this one game that had you collecting things. you started off as a boy full of vigor and enthusiasm, but as the game wore on the foreboding feeling of inadequacy and hopelessness. All the friends you made throughout the quest helped you at one point or another, through courage or sheer determination, sometimes teaching you things, but in reality it didn't matter. In the end, you had to face the void alone.

At that point the hubris of the culture that had given rise to such pointless collecting and cultivating and micromanaging every detail fell far short of the introspection of the honest man. Early in the game you are taught to be strong, to be fast, to be smart; impotent lessons your forebears were never skilled enough to realise were utterly useless against the broken will of a man realising the "destiny" he was to fulfill won't bring him or his people peace.

I traveled the land. Searched far and wide. Only to find the power inside existed only inside the minds of the cult that worshipped the fey beasts across the land. The characterisation and dialogue was so well written that by the end my mindset was the same as the main character's. I didn't want to be the very best. My test went from catching them to living with myself. My cause was no longer to train them, but to survive another day of constant battle. And (I retched when this happened), I felt like I had finally caught enough Pokemon.

Oh wait, browser/indie game you say? Disregard the previous post!

Although I think the scariest moment in a browser game was fighting the Evil Lemon in Sissy's Magical Ponycorn Adventure. I didn't sleep for three days after that.

nobody May 4, 2012 9:41 AM

Contest entry:

My favorite horror moments, indie or otherwise, might be from Mike Inel's "Which" (Windows download, featured here two years ago). For the most part it's more atmospheric than actually 'horrifying,' but it includes a good number of small surprises, some creepy and some jolting. I hesitate to give anything away in case this encourages someone to track it down and give it a playthrough (it's a very short game), but to pick a single moment that won't be too much of a spoiler: the first time, early on, when you turn around and see a figure behind you that previously was not. It's such a classic, silly horror trope, but works perfectly within the hazy, atmospheric world of the game and somehow sidesteps the potential silliness.

The various endings are also very memorable, but to describe them here would be to ruin them.

In any case, consider this game heartily recommended. If nothing else, it's worth checking out just for its unique use of bright light and darkness.

nobody May 4, 2012 9:43 AM

Ah, here's the original Weekend Download page featuring the excellent "Which."


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