What the deuce has happened in the past month? There’s been a sudden explosion of indie-related bundles from places on the internet that you never thought existed! Anyone would think it was nearly Christmas or something.
A little while ago it was the Indie Music Bundle to titillate your ears with fantastic vibes, but right now you have a choice of not one, or even two… but four different game bundles to check out – and they’re all asking you to pay as little or as much as you like! One is even completely free to download!
Since a couple of them are also supporting charity, now is a great time if you’re just starting to dip in to the world of indie games and are looking to snag some great deals at the same time as helping a good cause. While it’s possible to take the dimmer view that it’s an easy way for an organiser to make a quick buck, that would be pretty unfair – if you believe in the charitable roots behind a couple of these bundles then they’re doing a lot of good at a time of year when it matters the most. Even if a bundle doesn’t donate part of its proceeds to charity, it’s still a good way to get some games you might otherwise have overlooked for an excellent price. Stocking fillers ahoy!
Read on to see all of the currently running bundles that are clamouring for your attention…
‘Tis something of a story to explain the route I travelled to discover this and one which I will no doubt mention in a future post, but for now I simply have to share my delight at finding such a promising remake.
The Gnome’s Lair led me to Reprisal, an in-development Flash game that oozes style and promise. If, like me, you spent many a happy hour conjuring swamps, earthquakes and pillars of fire whilst directing your lemming-like followers towards crushing those of the opposing god in Populous, you’ll seriously want to check it out - hopefully a certain big company’s lawyers won’t leap at it and drag it off into some dimension of copyright hell.
Even at this early stage the gameplay is compulsive and there’s plenty of time for it to improve further. Follow its evolution through the dev blog and be sure to give the developer, Electrolyte, some support!
Aside from being a little under the weather this weekend, due to my internet provider being so fantastically naff I actually had to type this post up twice. Pfeh. But you don’t want to know about any of that – let’s get on with the lushness of today’s four Assemblees, three of which you can play straight from your browser!
Mushroomer by Jotapeh
Seeing the phrase “Just like a real video game!” immediately made me smile, but sadly the rest of the game couldn’t quite pull off enough to keep that smile on my face. A run and jump platformer made vaguely interesting with slidey controls and ninja rope goodness. Escape the cave before you lose all your lives or a ten minute timer expires. Competently done (nice backdrop!) and points for the rope, but a tad plain. 63%
Mushroom Stew by iarwain
Wahey, more mushrooms! You can never have enough mushrooms, folks. In this case you have to blast through a story of confusion and deception to find out why your mushroom buddies are suddenly trying to kill you. Use your crouching and time-bending skills to reach the end. Technically very good with several tricks used to enliven the graphics – sharp gameplay too, if a tad repetitive. Even has a level editor! 77%
Oh Crackers, Not Again! by The Greenest Banana
In a spicy, tangy twist to normality, here you have to protect a helpless little girl as she tries to get back home following a path which is infested with monsters. You take the part of her faithful and happily indestructible hound who can jump on enemies’ heads to stop them from being such a nuisance. A charming Flash effort but quite challenging even on the easiest difficulty. Needs more levels but still a great effort. 78%
One Pack by MrRoboman
Being a toned ace space pilot is all very well but it’s oh-so-easy to pile on the pounds in your retirement. Such is the problem Ace Fatman now faces in his quest for… okay, I have no idea what his quest is, since this game is one for the “unfinished” pile. But it’s enough to raise a guffaw at the creative use of assets. Multi-purpose flab, anyone? Throw a can or three of polish at this and it could have an entertaining future! 52%
Since there are only a couple of days left until the Assemblee voting closes there’s one particular entry I really think you should play. I wouldn’t have reached it within vote-time had I not skipped ahead a little – that’s my excuse, anyway! Anyhow, it’s time to venture into the…
Realm of the Mad God by Wild Shadow Studios
In the most literal sense of the phrase, I can’t help but believe that the duo behind RotMG have created a monster. More than just one, in fact; we’re talking tens of thousands of the blighters, each one of them alive with primitive sentience and ready to kill you as soon as they set their pixelly eyes upon your feeble mortal frame. Even if you win victory against even a split fraction of their legions and claim the shiny loot they carry, more will come, until eventually they will fulfil their master’s wish: to kill and eat you.
The Mad God’s realm is a multiplayer Flash RPG where you explore a massive map and kill things with swords and sorcery depending on which of the four basic classes you pick. So far, so yawn-worthy, you may be thinking. But soon you will find yourself succumbing to the fiendishly addictive nature of the beast. Combat is fast and fluid and grouping with other players during your travels is silky-smooth. No party invites – just wander close by and you’ll start to share XP fairly. Roguelike-style permadeath actually encourages and rewards such cooperation between players. And finally, when you’ve defeated enough of the horde, alone or with friends, Oryx the Mad God himself comes out to play for a grand finale!
Yes, it has flaws – starting out can be tough, on occasions it’s a bit tricky to find monsters that aren’t stupidly easy or frighteningly hard, and the chatbox gets cluttered quickly when it’s busy. Some may feel the gameplay just doesn’t have enough depth. But me personally? I think there’s something fundamentally, undeniably fun here – and surely, for any game, that’s all you need to worry about.
That, and being killed and eaten, of course… 93%
Thanks to Captain_404 on the TIGForum and the Wild Shadow team for some of the screenshots!
You might want to go grab yourself a cup of tea to sip on while you read today’s epic collection – I surely consumed a few myself while putting this random tangle of words together…
Today we have:
- Have Adventures
- Higher Still
- Hubris Quest Online
- Led’s Get Shooting
- Mechwar (Battle for Narita)
- Mr. Kitty’s Quest
- Mulder’s Totally Bogus (Rabbit) Journey
Off we go, then!
No need for faffing about. You know the routine by now, surely! Here’s another four entries for your inspection…
Free Dee by LemonScented
Entitled using a cunning “pune”, or play on words, this one gets bonus points for supporting those cutting edge owners of bonafidy 3D goggles! Normal visuals are also available but that sort of defeats the object. The game itself involves using the incredible powers of transdimensional vegetables to defeat the Lizardoid menace and protect your home village. Switch platforms between 3 layers in order to solve the puzzles and get through each level to the exit. Short ‘n’ sweet. 71%
Goblin Treasure by Reiss
Tsk. You’d think that if a treasure box had been cursed so badly that it could eventually bring its surroundings into ruin, people would learn enough to leave the bloody thing alone. But ohh no. Those crazy adventurers have to go and try and dig it up… but, ahem, anyway. Make your way through a random maze of rooms in your hunt for the fabled box o’ treasure. Fight minibosses with both sword and arrows. Open doors locked by pressure plates. Find the box! Nicely polished but could use more variety. 75%
Great Dungeon in the Sky by Lord Tim
Adventure through a giant floating rock in an attempt to kill the ultimate epic boss of doom protected by his four dragon pets. This game reminds me of Pixelships except with a fantasy theme, and that can only be a good thing. With some balancing and some different level environments I could see it becoming a very interesting project indeed. Buggy but great potential! 82%
Guyman Hero by feeblethemighty
A veritably multicoloured retro adventure! Clever use of artwork means a distinct look from most other Assemblee entries so far, but in terms of gameplay, you should be warned: this platformer is so hard you could cut diamonds with it! Yet despite the frustration (or because of it, whichever fits you best), the experience is hard to put down. Looking forward to see a future expansion of this. 77%
Hello there and welcome back to another spifftastic batch of Assemblee hopefuls! Only three tonight – sorry, but for some reason I think I’m already starting to suffer from review burnout. Don’t worry, though… I’m not giving up yet!
Dungeons of Fayte by pulsemeat
My favourite Assemblee game so far. A relatively large adventure that supports up to 4 players in co-operative monster bashing. Superb mix of RPG ideas, and would be even more fantastic if it were playable via the net – but still great even if played solo. Fight against the Bone Lord by training in the village and embarking upon the occasional dungeon crawl. Can you prepare yourself in time?… 90%
Extreme Turbo Dungeon by Inzaniak
In the words of the author: “It is extreme because there are a lot of enemies, turbo because it’s fast and dungeon because there are fantasy creatures.” Can’t say fairer than that! It’s a scrolling shoot ‘em up that is actually quite addictive. Earns points for achievements, unlockables and wacky powerups. Loses points for low difficulty, sluggish controls and bouncy screen edges. 66%
FlxAdventure by SeiferTim
Take a stroll around your village and the evil lair of ultimate nastiness that lurks below, all the while fighting off baddies left right and centre. Monsters move in real time when you are not engaged in combat, which is turn-based. Good quality evident throughout, though this is another game that’s a tad on the easy side, and sound is sorely missing. A worthwhile play nevertheless. 78%
Right, I’m going to have to pick up the pace a little since we’re running behind schedule. Badly, in fact. Today makes it 19 games down, so only another 54 to go – over seven days, that means eight a day. Haha! It’s all going pear-shaped, I tell ya! But enough of that. Onwards and sidewards into section D we go, and it’s quite a selection that awaits us…
Darker Than Your Soul by KissMaj7
Explaining the story too much would be a spoiler since this game is so short, but suffice to say that you play the part of a mighty warrior who is sent upon a quest. Try it and be surprised! DTYS is a lo-fi throwback to the classic RPGs of old like Dungeon Master with a first-person view of the dungeon and real-time combat. Points lost for being far too short (I wanted more!) and poor monster AI (they won’t chase you around corners). 72%
DEBT by floatstarpx
Intergalactic traveller Owen has fallen upon hard times. Help him to eradicate his debt by platforming your way through 3 distinct planets to collect all of the valuable goodies within. I like the mix of 2D and 3D effects, and the game itself is quite addictive as you hurry around grabbing loot. Forces you to think tactically on a short game – figuring out which planet you can scavenge the most from is key if you’re going for the world’s best online highscore. 75%
Dog and Bone are Friends by Jake Elliott
A very pleasant Flash puzzle game. Help Dog and Bone get around various obstacles so that they can meet up and play together. As you might expect, both characters have unique abilities: Bone – who doesn’t like birds – can climb ladders and use magic statues to rearrange the landscape, while Dog can jump around and bark to scare birds away if he’s close enough. Level design may seem too easy, but you’ll be playing through them again with added challenges later! 79%
Dot Dot Dot by Noyb
Ah, now here we have something quite shallow, and yet at the same time, very deep! Tell me, are you a philosophical gamer? Do you like analysing true meaning and the exact nature of whatever the deuce you’re doing? Find out! Take part in a short series of minigames and decide for yourself whether there is some greater purpose. The style is actually quite good, and while I would normally dismiss a “game” like this, I found myself smiling at the end. Bonus points for cat usage! 68%