The Vault №79
We like you. A lot. You're pleasingly shaped, your hair smells nice (is that lemongrass?), and you always laugh politely at all our stupid jokes. All the same, haven't you ever wanted to be someone else, just for a little while? But not just anyone. Someone very... different? This week's Vault features three games with three very different protagonists who all have an unusual set of skills. (Most of which would probably wind up getting you hospitalised, arrested, or both.)
- Alan Probe: Amateur Surgeon - Generally, you have to have certain qualifications to take certain jobs. The police, for example, are unlikely to allow me to ride around with them if the only thing I can claim to be is a "taser enthusiast" or "armchair interrogator". Well, little things like education, skills, or a basic sense or moral decency aren't about to stand in the way of former pizza boy Alan Probe in this action-packed simulation. Using various improvised tools on a wide cast of unsavory characters, you'll help Alan carve his way to the top of surgical glory. It's ridiculous, it's gory, it's over the top, and employs a very dark sense of humour. The mouse-based gameplay incorporates clever puzzle elements, while the strange diseases and afflictions combined with the unorthodox tools Alan uses make this one weird but memorable ride... and is definitely not for the kiddies.
- The Several Journeys of Reemus - Reemus is a lot like Heath Ledger in "A Knight's Tale", only instead of being a plucky and handsome commoner he's a paunchy and oblivious exterminator. And instead of Alan Tudyk he's got Liam who is... uh... well, Liam. Zeebarf's episodic point-and-click adventure series has been following Reemus and his adorable companion for a few years now as he seeks to crawl out from under his brother's shadow. Don't think being an exterminator means you can't be heroic... though it helps if your kingdom is populated by all manner of massive, bizarre vermin. With a distinct visual style, fantastic imagination that lends a spark of creativity to puzzles, and surreal humour, it's easy to see why Reemus and his mullet have won hearts all over the place.
- Dolphin Olympics 2 - Keee! Kee-kee-kee-kee! Wrrrrrrk... That's dolphin for "Hey bro, 'sup?" Don't feel bad. Not everyone can learn the words of the dolphin. But if you play Alan Rawkins' action stunt game, you might just learn how to swim like one. Improving on the 2006 original by packing in even more flair and style while still keeping the free-flipping/flying gameplay you loved, this sequel does just about everything right. Your goal is to perform various stunts and tricks by swimming through the water and flipping up into the air, scoring big for more complex moves (or more fish!) and unlocking even more secrets. It's the sort of game you can play for five minutes or an hour... but the first time you pick it up it'll probably be closer to an hour because it's just so darn cool. One of the best examples of super, giddy fun on the internets.
While we welcome any comments about this weekly feature here, we do ask that if you need any help with the individual games, please post your questions on that game's review page. Well, what are you waiting for? Get out there and rediscover some awesome!