Home. It's the only thing E.T. wanted. And to reunite with his robot family is all this adorable mechanical youngster wants in this whimsical point-and-click story from BeGamer. Help him get back to Earth by clicking the right places and in the proper order. Odd-yet-entertaining, although not as strange as Minoto, there's as much fun in watching each scene unfold as in figuring out how to get there.
Life's not easy for the fearsome pirate mercenary antihero Captain Zaron, star of Studio Meristem's adventure game Captain Zaron and the Trials of Doom. His sister Elsa is to be sacrificed at the stroke of midnight as part of a doomsday prophecy that will wipe out the kingdom, and he'll be damned if he's going to let that happen unchallenged. Don't let the cheap graphics fool you, Captain Zaron is a game with meat. It's an compelling adventure game with logical puzzles and the perfect level of challenge.
Wield the awesome power of language in this innovative physics puzzler. Click on different areas of each level and use the keyboard to change the environment, either by typing characters or deleting them, in order to remove the specified text from the screen. You can watch the text plummet by deleting the platform it's resting on, type "water" to make the text float away, or key in "fire" to ignite bombs and blast the text from the screen.
In Dibbles 2: Winter Woes, simply place commands on a field to order the little dibbles to create a path for their king... by killing themselves. Sound gruesome? Shhh. Look at the softly falling snow. All is right with the world. Just repeat "it's for the greater good" until it feels right.
Even if you don't speak Russian you are still probably familiar with matryoshkas, also known as nesting dolls. And just like the dolls this escape game unfolds in layers, each one revealing a lovely little surprise. Despite the fact that it is called a "mini-escape" Matryoshka contains all the bells and whistles expected in a well-designed escape game: easy inventory control, great puzzles, intuitive navigation, and even a save feature. Come and give Matryoshka a try and, even if you're a macho guy, discover the joy of playing with dolls (and escaping).
Something is wrong in Volcania. A mysterious darkness has suddenly befallen the harsh, inhospitable home of a race called the Celheads, and you alone are left to unravel the mystery with only cryptic clues to guide you in this clever and engaging puzzle platformer.
Haven't you always wanted to lord it over an entire tower, Trump-style? Well in Theme Hotel from Toffee Games you can do just that. Inspired by games such as SimTower and Theme Hospital, this simulation game puts you in charge of building a hotel from the ground up and taking it all the way to five stars.
We live in slightly unbalanced times. But you know what? That's not always a bad thing, especially when Ttursas is at the helm. Imperfect Balance 3, the latest in the physics puzzler series of odes to ultimate unsturdiness, has just come out, and it's shakiness is nothing but awesome. Imperfect Balance 3 may not be a reinvention of the formula, but it's a solid level pack that will appeal to fans of the series.
- • Skywire
- • Zoo Keeper Quest
- • FoolYoo
Action isn't all brawling robots, blasting guns, and pop culture references. This week's Vault takes a look at three titles that all share a common strangeness, but also incorporate action into their gameplay in different ways.
Like Portal? So do the folks at HighUp Studio, who openly took inspiration from it to craft this challenging little puzzle platformer about robots put to the test. While Invertion may not be an entirely unique game, it definitely offers a test of your patience, perseverance and puzzling skills with smooth controls, creepy narration and nicely detailed animation.
An arcadey combination of mouse avoidance and WarioWare-style mini-games, Mouse Quest by Oilold takes two love-em-or-hate-em genres of casual gameplay and fuses them into something quite likeable. The plot is nothing too special: the mysterious Shapemaster has transported you to his dimension and presents your cursor with various fast-paced challenges so that you may prove your worth before facing him. Overall, the presentation has the minimalism of someone new to game development, but it's very enjoyable work all the same.
New from Yoshio Ishii of NekoGames, TOUKA is a short and simple game of darting your mouse all over the place. It follows closely in style and basic format as the previously-released KIKKA and OUKA, only this time around, there's less puzzle and more action.
Swift Stitch, from Sophie Houlden, author of some fan-favorite browser games like Linear RPG and BOXGAME, is a one button (almost) arcade game that's all about speed, direction, and crashing into walls because you got confused as to which way your ship was going to go when you pressed the "switch" button. Smart decisions and quick reflexes get you through this game, and if the 20 odd levels in the free browser demo get you excited, there's more than twice that content awaiting you in the full version!
Get set for another rapid fire series of mini-games and puzzles to tease your brain and challenge your wit. The clock is ticking so see how fast you can make it through on your first go-round. Your final score depends on you thinking fast on your feat and on the edge of your seat!
Robots Can't Think, Z3lf's newest puzzle platformer, has you controlling a robot through a set of challenges. You can pick up, drop or throw blocks; climb along walls and ceilings and, most importantly, warp through space and time. When you die, the system will attempt to 'rewind' to a previous safe position, but to help prevent death, you can scan the level with a click of the mouse. Robots Can't Think is a challenge, so don't be surprised if you find yourself creating a pile of scrap metal, but it's worth it.
Sometimes receiving a message can be so exciting that the letters seem to jump off the page. Then those letters form into a giraffe, which will dart across the landscape pursued by snakes, sharks and Godzilla. Okay, that just might be the interactive music video for Japanese rock group Andop's song "Bell". With an amazing combination of typographic and charcoal art, the game so visually interesting that it makes up for the CPU-hogging and somewhat loose gameplay. There are probably easier ways to post a missive, but this is definitely one of the most fun.
Don't you just hate when you're hungry for some lunch and when you sit down, ready to eat, you find that you used your puzzle lunch box? Or maybe you love it. Similar to the Dismantlement series, Chovy Works brings us Pot, a point-and-click puzzle game where the ultimate goal is a scrumptious noodle lunch. It's a cute and quirky distraction to try out during your much simpler lunch break.
Shaun, Shirley, and Timmy are on the road once again entirely by accident. The sheepish trio finds themselves far from home in London, and the way back is a bit more complicated than a hop, skip, and a jump. Help guide three different sheep back home through fifteen levels of physics puzzle platforming in this stunning (and stunningly cute) game from Aardman.
Looking for a little Halloween every day? Then point-and-click through the latest Zeebarf/Steve Castro gore-fest, The Visitor Returns, another installment of the saga of the disturbing pink grub and his appetite for bloody, cartoonish mayhem.
Dim the lights, light the incense, and settle in for some relaxing puzzlement with Coins. Slide the coins around from starting position to goal position in forty soothing levels. Ahh. Sounds easy, right? In the first twenty levels, you can only move a coin to a place where it's touching two other coins. In the second twenty, it must be touching two coins of different colors.
You've got to appreciate those evil overlords who go out of their way to spend that extra buck for solid dungeon construction. Now, if only they didn't leave their door keys lying around, their treasure would be safe from the local green-hooded retro hero contingents. Oh well. Dangerous Dungeons, an arcade platformer developed by Adventure Islands for a month-long game jam, has an old-school style and old-school difficulty to match.
Life can get complex sometimes, but in Ttursas' puzzle game, The Wizard of Blox 2, it's quite simple. You're presented with an arrangement of different shapes in a few different colors. Using the set of blocks you're given, move them with the mouse and use one of the many keyboard sets of controls to find a way to connect all like-colored pieces to get them to disappear. Do you have the goods to earn the title of Wizard?
After Star Wars: Episode II and that whole Spider-man fiasco, one cannot help but be a little wary of clones. However, leave it to Roman Gecerov and Yuriy Kurenkov to show us that just because something's a little familiar doesn't mean it has to be bad. Shameless Clone doesn't rip off anything... it rips off everything! A pitch-perfect recreation of every mid-90s arcade space shooter ever, filled to the brim with skewered references and memes, Shameless Clone is a bullet hell whose authors have nothing to be ashamed of.
3 Doors is a standard point-and-click escape game that involves a basic room with three mysterious doors and a lot of fun and tricky puzzles, mostly visual. You're faced with the usual dilemma, getting out of a locked room, and the standard "pick up everything that's not nailed down" in order to get out scenario. This is definitely an escape skewed towards those who take careful note of their surroundings and can spot the hidden patterns.
Sleigh bells ring, are you listening? In the new Bart Bonte game, sugar's glistening. A beautiful sight, we're puzzling tonight, playing Sugar, Sugar: The Christmas Special. Guide particles of sugar to several cup targets, with some complications along the way such as color-changing dyes and gravity switching buttons, and all with a Christmas theme that's as sweet and cheery as a mug of hot cocoa. Like its predecessor, it requires a decent amount of patience, so consider this a warm-up for waiting to open your presents.
We've all been there... Friday night, just hanging out at your house at R'lyeh waiting, dreaming, for your cult leader servant to finally complete the ritual that will grant you unlimited power. But then, all these lame-o cops, Miskatonic professors, mystics, and asylum escapees just had to show up and try to ruin your fun. Good thing your very tentacley touch brings the corrupted servitude of madness. Still, you'd think they'd just learn to Leave Cthulhu Alone! In this flashpunk tower defense game from Loserville Express, messing with the old ones has never been so much fun!
When it's time for a break there's nothing like a soothing room escape game to calm the overworked mind, and Tomatea has just the panacea in Figurines Room Escape 2, a perfect sequel to the original. You know the routine; locate objects and solve puzzles to find your way out of the room.
- • Inquisitive Dave
- • You Have to Burn the Rope
- • Thy Dungeonman 3: Behold Thy Graphics!
Need a laugh? Yeah, well, YOUR FACE! HA!... okay, so there's a reason I don't tell the jokes around here, but fortunately, with this week's Vault focusing on some very funny, silly, and weird little titles, you don't have to rely on me for your chuckles.
Those darn emo kids have accidentally summoned a horde of alien-zombies to destroy the city! Who should we call? The police? A dashing bandit? A Victorian-era, impressively side-burned gentleman thief? A redneck in a trucker's hat? Jason Vorhees? Well, all are options in Random Heroes, the new platformer from Woblyware. Random Heroes is a solid run-jump-and-shoot action game with a very cool aesthetic design that goes very well with its parallax scrolling effects.
Aboard a suspicious hot air balloon, our titular thieving hero has no choice but to press onward and craft the most dubious robot you've ever seen in order to find his way out in the fourth installment of Pastel Games' popular point-and-click escape adventure series.
Like an early holiday present from Robamimi, Snow Dance is the perfect escape game to start the holiday season here on JIG—it has all the sumptuous conveniences we escapers prefer: changing cursors, logical puzzles, sparkly music, perfect graphics and, to top it off, a hint system better than any in the genre. While the puzzles are farm from difficult, they do require the right amount of thought and investigation to complete, so you can find the key to the gorgeous, snow-blanketed world just outside the door.
Rustlers are after your bulls! That's like the Wild West version of someone trying to steal your Camaro! In Long Way, a new western tower defense game from Meetreen Games, your job is to get together a posse and show those rustlers what happens to dirty snakes who break the law of the West. Long Way blends classic Tower Defense gameplay with a great upgrade system that adds a lot of longevity. You can develop your posse in a variety of ways, so even though the game can be fairly difficult there are several paths to success. Trying different strategies goes a long way toward keeping the game fresh.
Yoshio Ishii of NekoGames is back with another stress busting, eye pleasing simple discovery game borrowing from the same formula as Ouka. This time, though, you're looking for the delicate, many-floreted chrysanthemum—petal by petal. Use the mouse to scroll about the soothing charcoal grey backdrop and figure out the rule that will bring all the petals back to form the lovely mum. Like a lovely vase encased in flowery bubble wrap, Kikka is both beautiful and gratifyingly fun.
It's the classic story of an alien invasion on Earth. Thank goodness for humankind's need of animal companionship, because it's our feline friends who hold our salvation. Fresh from LongAnimals with lovable art by Jimp, it's the physics puzzler, Star Claws. It's 32 levels of hissing and cat fights toward the demise of the not-so-friendly men from above, so grab a pack of catnip and help out these brave furry souls.
You're probably familiar with level editors, where you can take all the time you want to make the perfect level of your favorite game. Here you'll have to put those skills to good use in a puzzle platformer with a twist. With a further 35 levels, people who've cut their teeth on the first game should be ready to ace this one, and those who passed over the first as too easy might want to give this one a go.
Remember that hapless adventuring party you had to help out in Detarou's last escape game, Nani-Quest? They're in a jam again. In NaniKono-Quest, they (and you) are locked in some sort of complex with an Aztec or Mayan or Egyptian theme... it's hard to tell. Still, who can say no to a Detarou escape to help push them through one more work day before the weekend?
What time is it? Tasty Planet: Dinotime! Mathematical! The popular action series from Dingo Games is back, and this time things have gotten prehistoric. Like always, gameplay is one part Fishy and two parts Katamari as the ancient world faces the cutest darn grey goo scenario you ever did see, and you have the starring role as the goo! It's eat or be eaten as you grow from pebble-size to apatosaurus-size... and maybe just manage to do something about that huge asteroid in the sky.
There's plenty of hubbub about saving the whales, but we've really got to be worrying about our own hides. Whales are dangerous, you see., and you'll find out why in this arcade action sequel about causing chaos to ships and upgrading your whale. Moby Dick 2 makes for a great half-hour of destruction. It's also a great example of what will happen if we don't develop anti-whale countermeasures immediately.
When a work has an excellent premise, it's always interesting to find variations on the theme. Haydn knew it. Beethoven knew it. Now Conceptis gets on board with another in their popular series of browser versions of pen-and-paper puzzles, and this time the focus is on perhaps the most popular remix of that ongoing phenom, Sudoku. Chain Sudoku Light Volume 1, designed with the same care as its fellow works, is a twisty variant that's very, very good.
Our little hero feels out of place and ignored by society, but a new power to manipulate shapes might bring him the wrong kind of attention. A strange and somewhat clunky but silly little narrative wrapped up in a physics puzzle platformer, with some good old fashioned ancient cult business as the cherry on top.
There's a bomb in your keyboard, and only you and your trusty-dusty screwdriver can point-and-click through the puzzles that hide it to safely defuse it! This latest installment in the popular Dismantlement series might give you a serious case of deja vu, but if you're a fan of explosive everyday objects you'll probably still relish another opportunity to save the day.
Dummy never fails, but how about you? Can you guide him to the target on each level (after shooting him out of a cannon, naturally) and get him past all the obstacles... without sustaining much damage? This physics projectile puzzler is trickier than you might think, especially when you toss in gravity manipulation and a whole slew of pop culture dummies into the mix.
Check out this early effort from the great room escape designer Kotorinosu. While Color is a pretty basic, bare-bones escape it is definitely worth the effort, especially to see the genesis of what would come later. Even in this early design there are hints of the clever puzzles and solutions which would eventually make them one of the most popular room escape designers we've ever featured. Time to learn some color theory!
The Podge serves up another installment of this popular bloodless shooter series, this time dropping the tiny commandos into a jungle environment full of Baddies to blast, buildings to blow up, and civilians to save. Run, jump, and shoot your way through missions, earning stars to upgrade your units and cash to hire more powerful mercenaries to your cause.
The hero or villain of Goblin may look like a garden gnome but he's packing outsized malevolence in that tiny frame, because he's swallowed the colors of the sun and the moon. Point and click your way around his cottage to complete this slightly twisted fairytale and get the colors back.
- • Rose & Camellia
- • Grow Island
- • The Majesty of Colors
Who says weird is bad? This week's installment of the Vault focuses on three games we've branded "unique" that all take the moniker and run with it in different directions. From a soul-searching sea monster to a bustling island, to stately women slugging it out for respect, these are all games that might be a little different, but are more than a little memorable and awesome.
In Bullet Audyssey by Rete, it seems we've been invaded by celestial bodies, ones who send out their bullets to a thumping galactic rhythm. It's up to your tiny ship to weave your way through their forces, absorbing energy for your interstellar counterattack. Will the world rave about your shooter skills, or will the aliens just leave you in a trance?
The masters of the jigsaw at Plexus certainly weren't bundled up for winter when programming their latest mind-bending picture puzzle: FlutterBy. This time the subject is bugs and blossoms, drawn in a softer, more childlike style than we usually see from the developer. But don't let the big noses and sproingy antennae fool you: This is a puzzle that will take all your visual acuity to resolve into the final big picture.
The Ultimate Monster-Maze Puzzle Adventure. Any game with a tagline like that had better be a good game. The game stars Bark, a lovable floppy dog whose toys and friends have all been stolen into a dimensional portal to a world of monsters. As he rescues his companions, he gets their aid as well in solving the fiendish puzzles this world has to offer.
Bouncy Fire Fighters is a remake of an obscure 1989 Japan-only Famicom title, about a firefighter who rescues people from a burning building via an extremely bouncy form of the classic arcade game Breakout. Of course, the Nintendo one featured tiny 8-bit pixel art, whereas in this one the female fire victims put the bouncy in the title, if you know what I mean. Time marches on.
In Nitrome's 100th game, a fast-paced multiplayer shooter, two players have had enough with the developer's frustrating games and decide to take it out by launching a two man siege on the massive tower the company resides on. You'll need to nab power ups, weapons, and blast your way through floors of enemies and more to make it to the top. But don't think you can just tackle the tower on your own! Nitrome Must Die is a two-player game, meaning you can team up with a friend to reach the top... or perhaps fight against your ally.
If you have a keen eye, a love of solving puzzles and a high tolerance for pixel hunts, After Golden Bells by Timefall has quite a few charms. The key to escape is found via eight golden bells hidden amongst the modest surroundings; as you investigate every angle of the room, looking for answers to the puzzles that guard the bells, gustoso guitar music keeps pace with your efforts. After golden bells, then what? Just the simple satisfaction of a puzzle solved.
The latest in the Creeper World series of real-time strategy games, Creeper World: Evermore. With the same controls as the popular Creeper World: User Space, Evermore is easy to pick up and get to playing right away. The addition of a survival mode (in which you play out to Odin City's doom) makes this game really stand out and is sure to give you hours of fun!
If you aren't at all into real-world strategy board and card games, you probably haven't heard of Dominion. You're probably looking at the screenshot to the right, perhaps intrigued, maybe a little wary, but wondering nonetheless what in tarnation is going on. Luckily, once you've grasped the fundamentals, online Dominion is easy to jump into. If you're already a Dominion fan, you know why you should, and if you aren't yet a fan, you just might become one.
So, you're in the middle of a road trip, and it looks like there's some construction up ahead. The sign clearly says that cars need to merge to the left lane, but it seems like some geniuses are going to speed past the line forming and try to cut in at the last minute.Doesn't it make you judge want to climb on your roof, commandeer whatever vehicles come along, and carve a swath of explodey destruction across the interstate? Freeway Fury 2, an arcade racer new from Serius Games, lets you fulfill your wildest road rage fantasies in the comfort of your own home.
Lift for Life is an escape game by SuzumeDr, whom you may remember for Triangle a while back. The game takes place in a room with a somewhat athletic theme, as well as an adjustable glass table that's a little too low, a nice TV hooked to a game console, two strange pedestals that seem to react to one another, and a few other fixings. Naturally, you've got some puzzle-solving and some inventory management to do. It's a splendid escaper that's definitely worth a try to break up your weekday blues, so go out there and get your Lift on! For Life!
Every other member of the rebel army is dead, but in Armed With Wings: Culmination, the tyrant Vandheer Lorde is finally within your grasp. Can you hunt him down and put an end to his threat of world domination? Grab your katanas, folks, because Sun Studios has outdone themselves again with their latest action platformer of the Armed with Wings series.
In this room escape game by Nanchette, find a box of crayons and put them to use around the room building shelves and drawers, keys to unlock doors and other assorted useful objects. Scrawlings on the wall and floor transform into the beautiful creations you always knew you had in you, but Mom just couldn't see (Sheesh! You'd think she'd appreciate your amazingly affordable home redecorating.) Graffiti 2 is oodles of chromatic fun for the puzzle-solving interior designer in all of us.
Be a rogue, mage, or warrior and get your turn-based RPG fix as you struggle to stop an evil villain bent on a demonic ritual. Featuring solid writing, an excellent tutorial, and plenty of side-quests, it's amazing that Legend of the Void was all created by just one person.
Pixels! Love 'em or hate 'em? You might have no choice but to do the latter in this action-packed arcade shooter. Soak in the retro vibe as you blow apart incoming pixel enemies, raining laser fire down on the field to blast chunks off of them, and nabbing power-ups that drop to increase your strength.
- • Level Up!
- • endeavor
- • Robot Wants Kitty
Cats, gems, robots, and dwarves. What do they have in common? They're all starring in this week's installment of The Vault that celebrates some of our favourite Metroidvania style games! Running, jumping, exploring, tracking down new items and power ups... it's everything we love, and here are three of the games that have done it the best.
Pixel Quest is a retro-themed platform adventure starring Rex, an adventurer who wears a spiffy little hat. Finding treasure is his favorite activity, and today he's on the hunt for the Golden Frog idols. It's your job to keep Rex alive as you dash through several dozen levels, each well-stocked with falling spikes, lava pits, and traps that come out of nowhere. You know, standard treasure-hunting stuff!
Nobody knows how to make relaxing yet still brain-teasing puzzle games likeYoshio Ishii of NekoGames, and his new game OUKA is no exception. Move your cursor to a symbol of a cherry blossom (the meaning of "ouka" in Japanese) and click on it. Sound easy? Well, the symbol doesn't always play by the rules, and it's your job to figure out what the catch is in each of sixteen levels.
Just over two years ago from this day, a relatively unknown indie programmer called Notch posted about a work-in-progress version of a sandbox building game on the TIGSource forums. It was called Minecraft, and at the time, people thought it was really very cool. Fast forward to the present and Minecraft has sold over four million copies, been through extended alpha and beta phases, spawned the Mojang indie studio, and gained so much popularity, the launch of its official version took place at a Las Vegas convention dubbed MineCon. That's an impressive feat for any game, let alone one started by a single person. But now, Minecraft is officially out. No more beta, no more alpha, it's here. Time to lose yourself in a voxel world all over again!
Imagine that you want to get some delicious jelly beans. However, when you attempt to get them, you set the floor beneath you on fire, and if you're not quick enough, you drop into the unfathomable ocean. That would pretty much suck, right? How about if there were also disturbingly cheerful creatures hanging around who seemed to take unseemly joy into bursting into flames and setting ablaze floor you hadn't even gotten to yet? Such is the unfortunate life of Firebug, star of his own puzzle platform game.
How shall I kill thee, zombie? Let me count the ways. Whether it's spinning blades of death, the classic fire, or a bazooka to the head, you can get your fill of both physics puzzling and zombie destruction in the new TurboNuke game Flaming Zombooka 3.
Just because things don't always go the way you expect doesn't mean they won't turn out the way you always hoped. From Small is Beautiful comes another short but cheery spot-the-difference game about a little caterpillar who doesn't let a setback stand in his way. Older gamers will find it too easy, but kids will love the cute artwork and simple, breezy, cheerful story.
The bad news is, the zombie apocalypse has returned. The good news is, so have the strangely charming, incoherently jabbering, self-sacrificing heroes who saved mankind the first time around. The team at Dreamgate Company brings us the sequel to their original, entertaining, and ruthlessly addictive action puzzle platformer with Mad Bombs 2, and it's chock full of as much zombie-exploding goodness as its predecessor. Bombs away!
Captain Beef is dead, but with monsters pouring out of the ruins and a mysterious masked man pulling their strings, the three town guardians on patrol can't stop to mourn. Stop an invasion in this short turn-based fantasy RPG that offers strategic gameplay and is the first chapter in a larger narrative.
If there's one thing all of us could use in life, it's a sense of perspective. At the very least, having one will certainly help you in Blueprint 3D, the new puzzle game from Zedarus . You must use the mouse to rotate an apparently incomprehensible mass of illustrations to find the point of view where the whole plan will come together. It's a game that certainly won't leave you blue.
It's always fascinating when a developer, having come up with an engaging idea for a puzzle game, tries to justify the premise after the fact with a storyline. Case in point: Mysterious Treasures by Sky Mill, which spins a simple grid-based strategy game of getting more coins than the CPU into a high-seas pirate adventure. It's a simple little game that makes for big fun.
Chuck's a sheep, but unlike the rest, he doesn't want to wait around for the farmer to shear him bald. He's hatched a daring escape plan, and it's up to you to help him soar to freedom in this adorable new launch game from jmtb02 and JIMP that features a unique upgrade system, tons of achievements, objectives, and more.
Ever wondered what happens when diminutive grey puffs stuffed with only personality and chutzpah have a hankering for a lip-licking, tummy-rubbing breakfast to start the day? In this point-and-click adventure, your goal is to guide them safely through their first expedition to the fruit and vegetable planet where they will gather the perfect ingredients for their favorite meal.
Welcome to the strange and somewhat twisted world of Tesshi-e, where the news of a friend opening a new restaurant means not only free food but a restaurant that is specifically set up as a room escape game as well. Escape from the Brick Room is a rather unimaginative title for a quite imaginative and tasty escaping experience. With gorgeous graphics, fun puzzles, and the usual twisted logic Escape from the Brick Room is a mid-week favorite for both escaping and a lovely snack, even if it is virtual. Time to visit your friend's new eatery and enjoy an escape from the everyday.
Do you think that art and science enhance each other? That's the basic premise in Wondermind, a set of four mini-games that are not only fun to play, but also serve to illustrate the fascinating ways our brains work. The mini-games are all of classic type: a card matching game, a pipe connecting game, a path drawing game, and a light angling game. The game is aimed at kids, but while adults might find it a bit easy, it's certainly beautiful enough to reel anyone in, and the facts taught about the mind are, well, yes, wondrous.
Xenos is a new form of energy discovered in the 22nd century. It's being used for evil, however, and as our giant robot hero Asterus it's your job to make things right by destroying all the Xenos generators in this arcade action title from Oddity Games.
The Mother Tree is under attack from corrupted spirits and it's your job to tend the garden and weed out the baddies in this fun tower defense game from Juicy Beast. Plant trees based on their different specific powers in strategic locations along the enemy's path or call upon your own mastery of the elements in order to fight off wave after wave of spirits to restore peace and the natural order to the grove.
- • Mass Attack
- • Dot Action 2
- • Klikwerk
Sometimes you'll play a game so memorable it'll stay with you for days. Other times it's the game's soundtrack that stays with you. In this week's Vault, we visit a rhythm game, a platformer, and a balance puzzler, all of which have some pretty intense earworms for audio. Prepare to get some catchy music stuck in your head.
Bill is back and he's having a blast in this fast-paced side-scrolling arcade game. Guide one of Mario's oldest enemies on a side-scrolling journey through destructible levels, fight bosses, unlock new characters and powers, and maybe even invent some colourful new profanity in the process... or make use of the level editor to make your friends suffer instead.
Get your ommmm on with Hakim El Hattab's zen-like avoidance game that sends you soaring through a field of red dots to soothing ambient music, snagging power ups and soaking in the atmosphere as you pursue the high score.
Minute Hardcore is an arcade shooter with shades of the classic bullet-hell Ikaruga. The sparseness of instructions is the game's biggest flaw, but generally, you direct your ship with the mouse, automatically shooting at the spacey invaders. Your bullets come in red, green and blue varieties, and you switch between them by clicking. However, since your bullets do not affect enemies of the same color, it soon becomes a game of constant chromatic changes as you try to keep one step ahead of the clock. If you can spare 60 seconds, it'll be well worth your time.
A priest, a rabbi, and I forget who else all walk into a bar and order a pizza. Long story short, they eat three slices. And three slices is all you get in Gaz Thomas's newest physics puzzler, 3 Slices! You've got to rid the screen of as much of the red material as you can using three swipes of your mouse, so cut to the chase and see if you can tackle this elimination challenge.
Nine-ball is a unique form of pool in which players take turns pocketing balls, in order, beginning with the lowest numbered ball on the table and continuing until the last ball has been sunk. Turbonuke uses this premise as the basis of play in its latest game, Blueprint Billiards, a single-player, straightforward billiards game with some very nice features.
As an engineer in Jazza Studios' new tower defense shooter, our hero can construct turrets, structures and bombs using scrap from defeated enemies and scrap piles found throughout each level. Your goal in the main story mode is typically to hack several consoles in each level, a task complicated by the armies of angry robots out for blood.
There is nothing gloomy or sad about this beautiful apartment, lavishly appointed in warm autumn colors and textures. Adding cohesiveness and a thematic element to the escape gameplay, Autumn Melancholy sends guests riffling through furnishing and around corners on the hunt for picture fragments that need to be reassembled by game's end. The pursuit is made pleasant by every helpful feature an escape game fan could want: a light up cursor to indicate interactive areas, textual reminders when more clues are needed before attempting a solution, and several diverse puzzles to stimulate the mind.
Bicicletas Hoy isn't the first interactive music video on the web, but it's definitely one of the most charming. Developed by Argentinian design team Videogamo, this pixelated piece of interactive art features the musical stylings of rock band Bicicletas and their infectious song Hoy. It's short and not much for challenging, but makes for an engaging two minute romp.
Danger Dungeon is a fun little exploration-based action RPG from InsaneHero. There's a huge world to explore, with some cool pre-rendered 3D graphics to look at and a ton of ways to customize your character to your play-style. Some aspects feel a little rushed: particularly noticeable is how your CPU allies have the kind of AI that flits back and forth between "useless" and "suicidal". Overall, though, it makes for a fun love letter to old-school dungeon crawlers and should satisfy anyone looking for a little fantasy action during their coffee break
Click and drag to launch a ball and knock blocks off a platform. It's a simple premise, but IGrek Productions has used it to steal the time of many an online gamer. Now the popular series of physics shooters is back with Blosics 3. The blocks and bullets are anthropomorphized this time around, which probably has something to do with the popularity of those enraged avians everyone is talking about these days. Still, whether or not the sprites have eyes on them make no difference when it comes to gameplay.
Antony Lavalle's pirates are back with a vengeance. Using more than a pin, you'll be shooting down plenty of blobs and their kin in this tower defense, strategy game. Arm the pirates, set cannons on the ship and position many other weapons on the ground. But you'll also have to make room for the oil rigs, which fund your defenses. Fire away to earn as much grog as you can drink!
If you're big on frustration games (it's okay, you can admit it) then Bullet Maze is here to be your next Everest. Use the mouse to steer your orb around through bullets and click to shift polarities. Each level becomes a sort of puzzle; there's almost always a way to get through that involves carefully recognizing the pattern of bullets and working with it.
Ninjas have all the cool gadgets and powers. They have a seemingly limitless array of grapple hooks, shuriken, and the physical strength to use them. They even have an inner strength that rivals that of their outer strength, with some able to control the Qi that surrounds all things. Such is the life of the little Ninja in the point-and-click puzzle game, Ninja Delivery.
Fans of physics puzzles could do a lot worse than Swift Turn 2. It dodges a lot of the frustration that puzzle games tend to run into which is a great breath of fresh air. Your goal is to collect all the stars and then hit a goalpost, but naturally this isn't as easy as it might sound. There's a variety of mechanisms around each stage that do wacky things to physics.
A fantastic escape game designed within the constraints of a single room puzzle scenario and packed with tons of logical and tricky puzzles. Robamimi makes the escaping chore entertaining with elegant puzzles and solutions, along with top-notch controls that include the easy to use inventory and fantastic hint feature. Resembling the Japanese omelet this game is named for, Tamago is a wonderful, sweet, multi-layered joy to consume. Dive in and take a bite!
In the latest installment of Launching Pad's magical puzzle platformer series, you, a desperate stage magician, are still trying to track down all the souls of your audience and escape from the alternate world you accidentally teleported everyone to. (It's a long story.) Can you master the new elemental powers at your command to find your way home through new tricky environments, or will the crotchety old sorcerer chasing you and your assistant, Eliza, prove more powerful than you expected?
Think you've got what it takes to be an Olympic pole-vaulting champion? You might think twice after you play this two-player versus game from the creator of QWOP and GIRP. Try to score against your buddy's goal by mastering the surprisingly tricky intricacies of pole-vaulting in this hilarious and challenging little physics action game.
Fun, frantic, and addictive, Mushroom Madness 3 is a kicking tower defense game and a great way to vent all of your inner pent up rage and frustration on a wide variety of animals, insects, and birds. Mushroom Madness 3 has added new levels, new scenarios, and best of all many new weapons and upgrades to the mix, including a fantastic "auto-click" feature that saves the gamers' mouse finger from the muscle cramps that ensue when rapidly clicking to annihilate all of the cute and cuddly yet annoying fauna of the forest.
- • Magic Pen
- • Music Bounce
- • GemCraft
Bright colours and music abound in this edition of the Vault, where we take a look back at two very different creative puzzlers, and a tower-defense game that spawned a fan base that's rabid even today.
In this sequel to the original strategic tower defense hybrid, the titular dark lord you controlled in the original is back! It's your job to show him what happens to dark lords (hint: it's not tea and cookies.) Your goal is to claim the enemy's castle at the opposite side of each stage from your own, getting cash and building units, while casting spells of your own to help out directly.
Cling, swing, bounce and jump kick your way to the head of the class in Sticky Ninja Academy, an addictively unique take on the classic puzzle platformer genre from LongAnimals. Careless speed and reckless abandon won't get you far here; true mastery of the art of the sticky ninja depends primarily on patience, timing, precision, and, apparently, lots and lots of Velcro. Deftly maneuver though each stage in as few jumps as possible to achieve a perfect score, avoiding environmental hazards, collecting treasure, and defeating rival students along the way.
A puzzle game about a thief who steals his loot by solving block pushing puzzles. Get rid of all the blocks on the screen by pushing like colored blocks adjacent to one another. This game offers a great introduction to the experience at 25 levels with more to available as a mobile app for iOS and Android devices.