Weekend Download №249
Ex Amante (Windows/Mac, free) - A short, crisp narrative adventure masquerading as a first person exploration game. Navigate the snowy pathways as you come across dialogue options ripped straight from an SMS conversation between two quarreling people. Make your decision, then march through the cold and await your response. The events are a bit restrictive, so don't expect the full CYOA experience, but the emotional impact is still there.
Path of Shadows (Windows, free) - A student project by a team at IDEC - Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Path of Shadows is an atmospheric stealth game with gorgeous cel-shaded artwork and a creative storyline to boot. You play a reincarnated soul who can sneak through the shadows, teleport across short distances, and perform other ninja-like feats of pseudo-magic. As you work your way across the landscape, avoid the light and keep to the darkness so your powers stay filled, but watch out for soldiers. They'll end you with a single swipe of their blade.
Aaru's Awakening (Windows, demo) - An early teaser for the gorgeous platformer set to release in early 2014, Aaru's Awakening already looks and plays like a winner. The artwork was inspired by animated films from the '70s and is drawn by hand, right down to every background, every moving frame, and every layout. The goal is to create a dreamy sort of experience that stays with you long after you play. Mission accomplished so far, and this demo is only an alpha release! The learning curve is a bit steep, but this is an early version of the game, after all. Play it and enjoy!