Hip Witch is a free adventure game released on Steam this week by developer Studio Hip Sword. The environment is handmade, and the storyline involves a lost young witch boarding in a state park, where she begins a quest to investigate odd happenings on the park’s grounds. It is playable with a controller or keyboard and is short but charming and cozy met with positive reviews.
Sometime about 100,000 years ago Owls became all the rage. I joke, since owl knickknacks and stories have surged in popularity over the past couple of decades. But they've long symbolized intelligence, wisdom, and ability. Which is good, because those are common themes in Owlboy. I tested this game on Nintendo Switch, but it is a cross-platform Metroidvania, an acceptable umbrella term for a whole ton of games out there.
The game Moonlighter is a combination rogue-lite dungeon-crawler mixed with trade simulation and story-rich RPG elements. This timeless, beautifully rendered pixel top-down was released by Digital Sun in 2018, and is available on most platforms.
"Onirism" is a good example of another game where French indie dev teams are making games potent in fun and translates to a wide audience. This goes beyond exaggeration and is an interesting subject to me, but one which I don't know a lot about. Regardless, I committed to this game, so I'll take you through a brief but satisfactory run down of the world of Onirism. Additionally, the game recently received a major update and has a ton of new content. Let's go!!
Demetrios: The BIG Cynical Adventure is an indie interactive-fiction/visual novel cartoon adventure. The interactive feature is much like you'd see in a hidden object story as well, although clues that you find unlock different possibilities. The story is very comical on purpose and can get as fresh out of the outhouse as you please. Despite this, it is a very well-thought-out mystery story about a complex theft and the clues can leave you curious about what's around every corner.
I sat down this morning, had something to drink and thought, let’s play that really cool game that makes me feel good whenever I see art from it. Let’s play… Phoenotopia: Awakening. Heads up: this is based on the demo on Steam. There’s quite a bit of content in the demo though. Don’t contemplate the parallels of one or the other too much, at least for this review. Probably better to get the full game, yeah. First off, I am so grateful for the demos that some of these game publishers are releasing these days. I wondered if the demo…
HEADS UP: Moderately creepy imagery is in these games, this will be my only warning. I don't generally review horror games, but Lasanga Boy made me laugh, and then, it intrigued me. It merits analysis based on absurdity alone but also design. I also personally understand people like illustrating and drawing creepy monsters because... well, it's fun! Why not throw in a third or fourth eyeball here and there. We've been doing that for ages. Direct link to the games on Itch.IO a the bottom of this article.
Finally, my love of tile board games like Carcassonne has been revived. But it’s completely different mind you. Carto is a tile-placement puzzle released to much praise last year. My first impressions were very positive, but I set it aside until today. It’s a terrific game! While it’s probably the best adjective, I’m not real fond of describing games as cute anymore, because there are so many vocabularic adjectives for a game of this caliber. Perhaps this, “clever,” “witty,” “minimalist,” “pleasant,” “empathic.” There’s a whole slew of wonderful descriptions. So, let me garner your attention and put the pieces together…
This one in particular is about a young boy who rescues an injured bird in the forest near his school. More specifically, he fends off a badger which tries to catch the bird in a forest clearing. The rest of the story flows organically from this incident and it is the primary purpose of the narrative.
You’re an adventurous protagonist named Beatrix who has settled down on her uncle’s ranch on an alien planet where the landscape is occupied by canyons of shiny cute blobs in a variety of species and value. Also some chickens. Which… some slimes eat. Moving on. Yer not from around here, are you? So, what is the point of this? Or the goal, to be a little more specific. Well, it’s basically a high quality vacuum cannon survival sim. This game is super wholesome–and fun. The slimes remind me of the sparrows that visit our backyard in the daytime to get…