Firegirl: Hack ‘n Splash Rescue – With Updates (IGC Showcase)

The idea behind Firegirl: Hack ‘n Splash Rescue is in the title, Firegirl. I find myself drawn to this game due to its slight quirk and frank concept. But the game deserves a little more credit than assuming the entire plot is based on a conjunction of the words “fire” and “girl.” Although you are exactly that in the game, Firegirl is the type of game that should have been made, conceptually, at least in the 90s. But three decades later, here it is with a shiny package. Classic nods from many of the old-school NES-style games are here though, and the rest of the characters are brash and slightly exaggerated. I like this a lot.

There’s not a heap of complexity to this platformer, but it is fun, and I’ll run you through some features.

Missions in Firegirl

The idea is simple. You have a water pack and an ax. Break through doors and debris to get through hotels, apartment blocks, forests, and hotels to rescue citizens in the blazing inferno that is on each level. Your water pack knocks down flames and other firey monsters. Importantly, your pack also allows you to blast off into stair wells or collapsed floors to move upward or across gasps. This last feature is pretty darn fun and helps display the innovation of the game.

As you conquer massive fires and rescue citizens, you become eligible for awards and prizes that help you upgrade your fire station or buy new equipment. There’s not a whole lot of pressure to be perfect at this since it is essentially a rogue-like, but I discovered that there were still rewards even for a failed mission.

With the combination of old-school art, mixed with streamlined graphics plus environments, the game feels really sophisticated for an indie. Environments are side-scrolled, but the depth of floors and open spaces creates more of a 2.5-dimensional style.

Clearing the Air

Fire is not necessarily everybody’s favorite topic, but lots of games are based on things that are just as real as anything else but don’t get a lot of coverage. Actually, this spin on the heroic platformer theme works for me, because I’ve always respected firefighters and have honestly wanted a game like this.

The game is really quick to progress through, but the gameplay is endless. Missions are procedurally generated but have a lot of character from what I have observed in other screenshots. I think the missions are fun and dynamic.

The game is in a mid-range category of indie releases, but with the quality of the art and the continued support, it is priced for value.

Where to get Firegirl: Hack ‘n Splash Rescue

I have a link to the Steam Store page below here. If you like the game, maybe leave a positive review. If you wanted to buy this game but weren’t sure, I’m here to confirm this game is ready to go.

Thanks for reading Mr. Dave Pizza. Please explore as much as you want and come back!

Haiku the Robot – First Impressions (IGC Showcase)

Yep, Haiku the Robot is about robots, although you’re more likely to catch on fire before most of its poetics! It’s a dystopic pixel platformer with a variety of routes to navigate through. The tunnels are left from the aftermath of an apocalyptic turn. It does have somewhat of a narrative for the first minute. Mostly, you’ll be in the heat of battle. You are thrown into the general theme of trying to find your way around immediately. Thankfully, maps are available.

Collect bits and bobbles to fund your robot hack and slash lifestyle. This game is as challenging as platformers like Dadish 2; although the mechanical obstacles feel more like being in a large machine. Enemies across each level wander, bounce, and get into your business. There are secrets and puzzles everywhere. If you take a wrong turn, well, you’ll end up back at your checkpoint. These checkpoints are around enough to challenge you, in the general areas of your exploration. Let me give you somewhat of a mental map for this.

Playing Haiku the Robot

The theme of Haiku the Robot runs a bit melancholic. The pixel art effects and the grim backgrounds are smoldering and dark. Luckily, the game is packed with hard-boiled noir robots who vend goods or present challenges–and generally add the only social elements of the game. And the areas you make your way through contain secrets. New areas can have treasures of monetary value and levers that with a slash of a sword unlock even more areas.

The game is kind of weirdly cute yet dystopic in a style that’s approximate to that feeling you get when you see a Jack-o-lantern out of season. Haiku the Robot is so fleshed out though and with several levels in the robot world of Arcadia, you get your money’s worth.

There is also a feature that I wasn’t able to experiment with before I got wiped during my gameplay session at the boss while recording, and that is the chip system. With the chip system, you can customize your gameplay. I guess this is sort of like the skill tree system of various RPGs and could be an interesting resource for later moments in the game.

Yet, even without a play style upgrade, the hack and slash plus movement mechanics of Haiku are fluid and smooth. I never felt that I was not in total control of my character’s fate, leading to some fail-defying heroics as I tried to reach the first boss.

Out Now on Steam!

Based on the level of engagement I gave the game and for its return, I should honestly be thankful. Most enjoyable platformers find their merit in the flow of the gameplay. I feel strength when playing this game. The way it will challenge you to use experience with these types of games is a thoroughly rewarding experience. Perhaps, as the yin to the yang of its theme, the balance of dark and light is potentially the zen quality origin that makes playing Haiku what it is.

Haiku the Robot is out now on Steam for $19.99. I have to note that I received a promo copy of this as a publisher showcase with the Indie Game Collective. Make sure to check them out and please enjoy the content here on Mr. Dave Pizza where I have covered many indie games of all genres and categories.

Thanks again for reading. Enjoy your games!

Vesper: Zero Light Edition – Nintendo Switch (IGC Showcase)

Vesper: Zero Light Edition is out on Nintendo Switch and PC today! Players can find this new version, plus the big debut Switch release, on eShop and Steam. It’s an innovative platformer with arcane space vibes and shimmering, colorful environments. It also includes a compelling and innovative storyline told through holographic recordings and plentiful checkpoint diversions. I played the first twenty minutes on my Switch for you. I have to say it’s one of the more stylistically compelling platformers I have played a release version of.

You might be familiar with one of my other past articles on the game Hollow Knight. It has earned plentiful imitation with no resistance, in a genre of platformers that is dominating the Nintendo eShop line-up. I particularly enjoy these types of games and am grateful to give it the full treatment for this showcase. So, I’m here to share more of its treasures with you. So, here I go.

Thank you to the publisher of, Vesper, Cordens Interactive, and also the Indie Game Collective for obtaining a showcase copy.

Synopsis and Diving into Vesper: Zero Light Edition

This game is not a shadow of any predecessors at all. Early in the game. I found myself stunned by the serious and ornate structure of the game. The intro strikes like a best-running serious sci-fi drama on television. I’d be lying if I said this didn’t impress me. It felt nice to work my way up to the ability aspects of the game; after getting acquainted with the immediate state of our main hero.

The planet is crumbling, and it is up to you to escape into a labyrinth of unlikely obstacles. These obstacles cater to every ability you’re given to solve them. This is classified as a puzzle platformer, which is maybe a genre on its own now. It’s the only way I can figure out all these Nintendo Switch releases.

The game is not really big on combat–at least within the early stages of gameplay; probably not at all from what I’ve researched. You will have to hoodwink and duck, dodge, hide, and roll past sentries for lack-of-a-better-term.

Features of Vesper: Zero Light Edition

  • Beautiful game cinematography and environments
  • Paced Progression through a falling but stunning world
  • Use a device called a drive gun to unlock obstacles in the game
  • A haunting sci-fi story that can be unlocked throughout the game
  • Intuitive prompts that lead you above and beyond areas
  • Use natural insights to decide the way you’d like to solve problems
  • Encouraged exploration
  • Now on Nintendo Switch and Steam

Final Thoughts

I couldn’t believe that Cordens Interactive gave us this game for the Switch release to try. At $9.99 USD, this is a masterpiece at a discount. Do you think this could be a game you’d be interested in trying? Because I do. Hollow Knight fans should take note of this one as an addition to a growing genre of HK-inspired games. And it has platform mechanics that are innovative and compelling.

This game is found in the Nintendo eShop on your console. (eShop web link here: Vesper: Zero Light Edition.) It is also available on Steam with the same updates I’ll have a link below.

Thank you so much for reading this showcase for IGC on my blog MrDavePizza. I hope you enjoyed this feature. Please continue to look around my site to find other game recommendations to consider for your own collection. Enjoy your games.

Rotund Zero (IGC Showcase)

Back with another Indie Game Collective showcase for Rotund Zero. It’s a precision platformer with a Game Boy monochrome style that uses directional keys only to solve puzzle levels made of bouncing blocks. It’s only $1.99 on Steam at the moment and encourages problem-solving in timed runs. You have 5 minutes to complete as many levels as possible, and there are 26 levels, 1 for every letter of the alphabet! You’ll be on your toes to speedrun all of those levels, but the pressure is mild. Watch the YouTube video at the top of this article to see me run, a genuine but beginner, 5-minute run. I’ve been trying to cover more Game Boy-style retro games, so thank you to the developer and publisher Dahku for providing the key!

Some Backstory on Rotund

This is an economy version of two grander design-level games also on Steam within the last year and a half. Rotund Rebound (out just last month) and Rotund Takeoff (released last January.) And if you really want to dive into the backstory, here’s a really surprising fact, the Rotund series is based on a remake of the 2014 Wii U game Chubbins! Wow, that’s a long-time circulation for a platformer series, and exciting to retro gamers who enjoyed the Wii U. Also, here’s a fun obscure detail, the rabbit in Rotund Zero is named, Chubbit!

If you’re really into this type of platformer, or if you’d like to see full-color versions of this series, please check out these former releases on Steam mentioned.

Where To Get Rotund Zero

The major selling point here is probably going to be the YouTube gameplay I recorded, but for the record, I found the 5-minute countdown a perfect time to test my platformer skills. If you get lost, pay attention to the directionality of the blocks and other mechanisms throughout the levels. Also, not all of the platforms or blocks are visible immediately, so you may need to explore in the heat of perilous bouncing.

I don’t feel the need to go into too much depth about Rotund Zero, but it is enjoyable and the dev has some great ideas to learn from. The game is $1.99, so just get it. And basically, that’s all I’m going to say.

What an action-packed MrDavePizza showcase for the Indie Game Collective. Well, a brief one at least! Thanks for reading, please have a look around and explore my archives for many more wonderful, weird, and fun games covered in the past. Most of them are a bit more in-depth than this, but I hope you enjoyed this coverage here. Enjoy your games.

Here is a link to Dahku’s Rotund Zero on Steam.

Labyrinth City: Pierre the Maze Detective (IGC)


It’s been some time since a game like this has been featured on MrDavePizza. Labyrinth City: Pierre the Maze Detective absolutely belongs. As a game that originated in a book series, the game takes many cues from the visual classics of growing up for me. Incidentally, I was a big fan of books like Where’s Waldo? and Eye Spy, which are similar in scope and content as Pierre the Maze Detective–perhaps you remember too. So, let’s get into this, what is Labyrinth City? It’s a top-down puzzle game with hand-drawn characters in a visual feast of eccentric characters and scenes. You must navigate through a maze of people to track down the devious “Mr. X.” I spent some time playing it so you can know what to expect from this delightful indie with a charming and surprising origin to a perfectly playable game form. Okay, let’s have a look.

Having a Look Around Labyrinth City: Pierre the Maze Detective

So, before I give the breakdown of Labyrinth City, please note that I received a free copy of this as a showcase opportunity to my friends at The Indie Game Collective and Darjeeling’s publisher Pixmain. Thanks, guys!

Labyrinth City: Pierre the Maze Detective starts off with a cinematic introduction Mr. X, the story’s villain, and Pierre, the maze detective. Mr. X has stolen a magic stone from the museum that is leading to all sorts of chaos. Get your feet wet and navigate through large crowds, who usually obstruct any obvious paths, to track down the location of Mr. X.

Once found, the chase continues onto the next individual location where the process starts over.

Achivements and Features

Each level is taken from pages of the original illustrations book and animated to provide over 500 interactions. You could certainly speed run through each level at an average of 10 minutes per area like I did, or you can take your time to savor the many sites and sounds of the game.

There are prompts next to several characters and objects throughout each scene. This can provide story depth and entertainment as well as completable achievements. Examples include a mail carrier with a letter, lockboxes spread through the maze, or up to three collectible stars which you’ll need to search to find. There are many many ways to interact with fully animated locations.

These achievements aren’t necessary but add an enjoyable boost of gameplay to solve. If you are either still trying to find Mr. X or want to enjoy the content throughout the game at your own pace, these are a satisfying way to enjoy Labyrinth City. Many puzzle games grab players with a hook of being able to provide lots of content to tease your mind and test your reasoning skills; this is one of those games.

More Info & Where To Get It

If you’re interested in finding out more about the game Labyrinth City: Pierre the Maze Detective, check out the Steam store page or look for it on Nintendo Switch.

If you enjoyed this content, please be sure to return for frequent excellent content. There are tons of indie games. I am thinking of starting a mailing list/newsletter with a summary of new articles, so stay tuned for that. I hope you enjoyed this article. Thanks for reading MrDavePizza.

Village Monsters – I Love This Spooky Town Sim – Review

Village Monsters is a solo dev project from Josh Bosser. It’s a pixel art town sim that departs from conventional titles with an alternative community of friendly monsters. The game plays on similar genre themes as Stardew Valley but the content goes into the outsider/quirk genre of games with its monster acceptance communicated in each character’s unconventional friendliness. It departs from too much comparison by offering a vast amount of exclusive unique story concepts in each characters’ backstory and dialogue. Players can also enjoy activities like treasure hunting, fishing, exploring, working, and contributing to the town itself. Village Monsters is pleasantly surprising and the subject of this indie game collective showcase/review post. So, let’s see what’s inside!

Platforms: More than you’d expect, including PC, Switch, Mac, Xbox, and PlayStation. Wow!

The Progressive Charm of Village Monsters

There is a lot of thought packed into the charming presentation of Village Monsters. There is no leaf unturned when it comes to the purpose of the world’s layout, although I had approached the whole thing sort of skeptically at first due to the promised scope of the game. It really is all here though, and the threads of its connectedness are not unraveled into inconsistency. Instead, the game offers a solid experience is offered. The result of exploring Village Monsters is interesting and rewarding.

The premise of the game starts with a casual plotline involving being the first human to visit the village of monsters in ages. As this is fairly disruptive to some villagers, your character awaits trial by a court at the day’s end to determine what will happen. This introductory period is enough time to explore the main spots in town and see who is who and even make a few friends. That’s helpful since this is basically the main premise of the game.

I really enjoy the variety of characters and hobbies in Village Monsters. It’s not by any means a horror concept; actually, it is very definitely a cozy title, and not to a fault. I’ve had a generous interest in monsters for years. One thing I love about the topic is how neatly they wrap a metaphor into a character by merging appearance with its archetypes. Friendly monsters become the foreign mutant/alien counterpart that exists to fill the remaining areas of monster lore. In Village Monsters, this form of expression is the purpose of its story. It is also an interesting dip into what I consider the outsider art area of the indie game community.

Screenshots of Village Monsters

Features of Village Monsters

The game is availably by purchase, but no fret because there are tons of features that allow for some vast replayability and quality value.

  • A diverse world filled with friendly monsters.
  • Hobbies like treasure-hunting, fishing, gardening, and collecting/training creatures.
  • Make friends and learn a well-written backstory
  • Check out other areas of the world with different climates
  • An immersive environment with seasons, weather, and corresponding events
  • Cozy pixel-art that engages monster themes in a fairly pleasant way
  • Get your own place by refurbishing a fixer-upper
  • Find yourself bobbing your head to a pleasant soundtrack
  • A storyline quest involving collecting “glitches” and fixing the game (intentionally)
  • Discover secrets and explore!

Additional Thoughts

My exploration of Village Monsters fills a void for me in the town sim genre. While cozy games are nice, I like a little more creative diversity sometimes. There’s a massive chasm to the games out there that bounce between ultimate comfort and its awkward weird counterparts. There’s plenty of room for all, but I often just want to skip the social hyperbole and just escape into a neat game. That’s what’s here, and it gets a near full pie of recommendation for me. There are a couple of features that I couldn’t figure out the intentionality of, but I suspect this is explored further into the Village Monsters’ gameplay.

So, I guess another IGC game has managed to captivate me by helping me try a game on the leading edge of artistic indie games for you. If you’re looking for something a little more unusual but comfortable to play, there’s a whole world to explore here with lots of story-rich characters. Make sure to check out the game’s listings on a whopping profile of consoles and PC/Mac.

And as usual, thank you for reading Mr. Dave Pizza, be sure to explore the many reviews and articles on this site.

For information on the Indie Game Collective, go here.

To purchase Village Monsters on Steam or find more information, go to :

https://store.steampowered.com/app/679830/Village_Monsters?curator_clanid=40853436&utm_source=IndieGameCollective

Pompom: The Great Space Rescue – First Look – Review

The recently released pixel platformer Pompom: The Great Space Rescue ran across my desk as a showcase opportunity through my friends at Indie Game Collective. It’s a precision platformer, sort of, with a feature I’ve never seen before this involving time slowing AND improvised platform placement. You can play with a controller, or you can play it with a mouse (or hamster actually, since that is Pompom’s main character you play as.) The game balances innovative gameplay, a moderate learning curve, and generous leniency to keep your gameplay flowing. I’m thoroughly enjoying it, at the level of some other top precision platformers like Celeste. From the pleasant pixel art to the rewarding gameplay, this game earns every slice in the Mr. Dave Pizza pie. So, let me do my duty and share with you some information about this excellent game.

Platformers: Switch, Steam, Linux, and Mac

Small note, there was a video to accompany this at one point, but it was my first on-screen appearance and I’d rather forget that haha. The game is still awesome. I suggest heading to the Steam page for screenshots.

What I Like Most in Pompom: The Great Space Rescue and Why

In truth, the reason these games appeal to my creative side is the balance between challenge and personal capability. Pompom is probably a little more on the challenge spectrum, however, the rung of my comfort levels hits a positive note due to the animal character and cheerful music. You might find yourself wondering, in the words of David Byrne, “how did I get here?” over and over throughout the game. The uniqueness of the puzzles aimed at someone who has been gaming for 30 years is humble, even if it made me realize I don’t even have enough time to play. That used to be something that sold me on every game I ever played since I really wanted to just immerse and tune out. But there’s more to Pompom though than an old gamer’s appreciation.

Pompom: The Great Space Rescue demands multi-tasking. It’s like playing a drumkit. Platform there, knock the wall out, account for jump space, and block an incoming barrage. Also, this is important, you never stop moving and all movement is automatic. It’s a bit crazy honestly, although there are difficulty settings that can give you a third bubble (which is sort of like the SMB Wii bubbles) and a long or even extra-long time pause/slow ability. I really only ever made it as far as the third city level, which I almost beat, but tapped out after getting butterflies in my stomach at the last moment. If you ever see somebody like Kevin from Pursuing Pixels play these games though, maybe you are one, it is definitely possible to complete the challenges.

Some General Impressions of Playing Pompom: The Great Space Rescue

So, I guess really it was the art, music, and concept that drew me in most. I’d re-tweeted a trailer for it before playing it thinking it looked cool. And IT IS. But you might find the game more challenging than it looks, which as I’ve said, can be a really good thing. It’s one that may fly under the chart radar but has excellent replayability for the cost if that is a factor. (Yeah, I also got this for free through Indie Game Collective, so heed the slight bias, but it really is a nice quality platformer. And I love platformers.)

Oh, and there is a story. Something to do with pirate cats, which is fun. Think of them as the classic NES/SNES mobs and understand it’s about running the levels.

There’s nothing lacking here, and overall a super fun game. One other last comparison though, if you ever played Scribblenauts, you might see some similarities in the art style, a comparison I’m enthusiastic to make since it is a major reason I ever got into pixel art. If I ever get to reviewing that game, I’ll probably remember this. Notice, I didn’t even mention Captain Bucky O’Hare once before this sentence, but there is a bit of that style in this game too–it was the 90s, and things were awesome.

Features in Pompom: The Great Space Rescue

  • A game that is about controlling the platform and not the character
  • Utilize tools like hammers, cannons, springs, swinging ropes, and more
  • Delightful SNES style 16-bit graphics (or clean vector style if you want)
  • Engaging gameplay that’s always happening and challenging
  • Great jazzy soundtrack
  • Imaginative levels and all sorts of area types, mobs, and obstacles
  • Adjustable difficulty levels at any time
  • Game saves after completing each level
  • Speedrun mode

There It Is

Yep, so that’s my showcase for Pompom. Pretty interesting game, and one which I may try to get better at. I’d love to try it on Switch too. I have the link to the Steam page below. Thank you so much to the dev, publisher, and IGC for helping me put this together. I would never be fake in a review, but it was so pleasant to admire this one.

Explore Mr. Dave Pizza, Return For More; Rinse, Repeat. Thanks for reading/watching!

Learn more about Indie Game Collective.

Black Skylands: Take The Helm: A First Look

Black Skylands is an immersive fantasy sky punk RPG that takes place in the colorful airborne landscapes of another world. As an indie gamer, this is indeed one of the most optimistic projects I’ve looked at, and yet very promising indeed. Take the helm of a family airship and float between islands in the sky to claim your stake. This review is sponsored by a free copy through Indie Game Collective, which I am really grateful for, so let’s go!

Get Started in Black Skylands

I’ve played a few airship games here and there. It’s a very satisfying theme and allows so many directions in storytelling that it gives some creative opportunities for players and developers. Start off in an ordinary home where your father has just returned from a year-long journey. It’s a real casual introduction, aside from obtaining a gift to get you trained. Things aren’t particularly sentimental, but it turns out to be a nice quick start so you can get started on your adventures.

The home described is actually part of a community on a massive skyship of its own with markets and communities and a dock. This is no joke, we’re in the air! The introduction itself is, while quick, also leads into a pretty committed training session with an obstacle course, weapon use, and using/navigating your skyship. I found this to be very enjoyable and have to say one of the abilities, which is the ability to fire a grapple hook gun from mid-air to a ship to board is pretty darn exciting. All the game interactions are pretty engaging and pretty easy to get the hang of once you do a few quests.

Drums of War

I don’t generally play combat games, but I make exceptions for those of exceptional design. I’m here to say there’s a little bit of everything in this game. Just when you think you’ve got it something else happens. That said, there is an undercurrent of conflict in Black Skylands! Since the earlier era, a force known as “The Swarm” has caused terrible devastation to the once peaceful zones of this sky world. From what I can gather, these are sort of monster creatures. If you don’t mind blasting monster guts all over, you’ll probably be compatible. We’re dealing with some pretty pleasant fantasy pixel art here though, so this was fine for me.

With that, as a combat game, it’s pretty fun! And there is a lot of it as you progress. Sneak up on a swarm island and fire away with a variety of cannons that you can implement on your ship, or what you have already in your inventory. Perform aerial combat performances with other ships also.

There’s also a group of pirates that seems up to no good in the secondary scene in the game. There’s the slightly neutral claim by their leader, but it’s pretty obvious they’re up to no good. I have no doubts this plotline unravels later on.

Other Thoughts

I’ve been refueling my secret love of airships since Super Mario Bros. 3. I like that the developers categorized the genre of this game as “sky punk,” in reference to other genres of the sort like cyberpunk and steampunk. That’s pretty much what this is. There’s not a whole lot of technology in the game, although you do have a tablet. It strikes an interesting balance between renaissance naval themes and arcade-style combat. It’s a fun mix.

Black Skylands is obviously a very committed effort from the developers to create this game. Real immersion seems to occur when you enter a game and run through it because there’s so much to look at there’s almost too much to look at–which happens to be the sweet spot in some works.

Check Out Black Skylands!

So, that’s about it. It is really interesting to see some of the games I review in an early access stage before they enter the life force of the game community. I really had a lot of fun and am so grateful to be able to with such an advanced game.

Also, thank you so much to Hungry Couch Games, and tinyBuild for letting me try this game. And also my friends at Indie Game Collective for making it happen! We’re working hard for developers and reviewers. I have included an IGC-tagged link below to the game on Steam if you want to help us out and let them know you found it here first!

And of course, I especially want to thank YOU so much for reading MrDavePizza.com. I think you’re really going to like this game. If you have a moment, please take a look around the site here! There is tons of content just for you!

To learn more about this game, go to the Steam link here https://store.steampowered.com/app/1143810/Black_Skylands/?utm_source=IndieGameCollective