demo, Game Reviews, games, indie, Reviews

Love Ritual DEMO review

Hello everyone!

Sorry for the silence, but life has been busy. Today, I am going to share a little demo with you, which I have truly enjoyed. I am hoping for this to be a little warmup for me – and, if luck allows, in upcoming weeks there will be more posts!

Click on the picture to check out the game!

riilai02

Today we are going to talk about the demo for game called “Love Ritual” by Xand. Love Ritual demo is not very long but it does give you an idea where the developers want to take it and what you can expect from it. You are welcomed by beautiful backgrounds and sprites, including subtle animations which add up to the feeling and expression of the game. It is always hard to create a visual novel that tells the story the way you want it to be told, but Xand’s approach surely seems like a good one. Personally, I always enjoy it when visual novels have little details like that.

For me, art style go towards realistic while not losing the appeal of less realistic styles – it’s somewhere in between and I think many will be able to enjoy it. Writing is clear and even in the demo, I haven’t spot any typos, mistakes or anything like that, which is a big plus.

riilai03

I really don’t want to focus on the story too much, as I don’t want to describe all or most of the demo. I want you to dive in and let the atmosphere pull you in. Personally, I was really sad when demo ended – I wanted, even needed more, as this game did nothing but amaze me and I desired more. But, we all gotta be patient!

Nevertheless, I probably should tell you a little bit about Love Ritual. This is a little detective merged with romance story, and we are in the shoes of a sweet Riilai, who is called to solve a mystery… and in the process, meets two gentlemen, a very, very interesting gentlemen…

rillai01

Demo gives you a feel of aesthetic, a couple of choices, and let’s you get an idea what kind of protagonist Riilai may be. I am looking forward to the release of Love Ritual!

Note: I have been contacted by the developer, but of course, demo is free of charge, so this is not #ad. The game looked interesting, I played it and genuinely enjoyed it. I decided it deserves a little blog post.

Advertisements
demo, Game Reviews, gamejam, games, indie, Reviews, update, Youtube

Back to Youtube?

Yes! Surprising even for me, I have started uploading on youtube once more!

But this time, it will be different kind of content.

You can expect:

  • game reviews (especially indies)
  • walkthroughs
  • collabs with other youtubers
  • sims stuff
  • overwatch

And possibly more!

If you have a game you want me to review or walkthrough, leave your suggestions in the comments!

Game Reviews, games, indie, Reviews

Adventures of Pixels

Pixel art adventures were one of the very strong milestones in the history of video games.  King’s Quest or The Secret of the Monkey Island are a great example of that. Nowadays, it is mostly that indie developers try to bring them back. Pixel art adventures made by indie developers are succesful because they bring back what was the secret of succes of old adventure games: freedom and innovation.

Don’t get me wrong – AAA games are innovative from time to time. But, very often, big studios are scared of trying new things, fresh ideas and going with the idea in hopes player will love it. Back in the day, nobody knew what people wanted because the whole market and playbase was still in the making. Possibly why Sierra created all kinds of different adventure games, of different themes (fantasy theme, police theme, space theme, etc) to gather a full range of audience, people of different tastes and likes.

Indie developers do not have an easy job either. It is often working two jobs, and putting your passion first. But in the case of an indie studio, where you do not have to worry about paying hundreds of people, just couple – you can allow yourself to take risks. Maybe not big risks, because you still need to eat, but this is how pixel art game suceed.

The sad true of success of an indie developer is to create for passion and for love for creating rather than making enough money of it, although for many of them it does pay off. It is a mixutre of skill, dedication and sheer luck.

But, pixel art adventures became a well known genre created by many indie developers.. It is a one of those smaller risks, because of the popularity of the genre. Turns out that a lot of us, especially us gamers remembering the times of first pixels, don’t mind lack of 3d high quality graphics, if the story or gameplay or both are stunning.

And today we are talking about something stunning.

There is a very skillful creator called Octavi Navarro that has worked on quite a few such productions, like Thimbleweed Park, and is a truly talented individual. Recently, he has released his second short game called “The Librarian”, and on this ocassion, I decided to write this little piece.

Navarro has created two short games, but it’s shortness show you just how time consuming and how tough it may be to create game on your own. Yes, Navarro created almost all of the assets by himself. Fonts were done by SomePx, and some of the sound effect were taken from royalty free assets.

First of his games is Midnight Scenes.

0mid

Midnight Scenes is Navarro’s first game and much more spooky one. Of course, point-and-click horros are not fully scary, but they do not intend to be. They are about building atmosphere, and Octavi Navarro has a tremendous talent in that. He builds atmosphere so perfectly it makes you shudder. I am amazed at how many little things his games have that help set the atmosphere.

You follow a story of young woman being stuck on a road and… some very interesting events happen. I am really curious about the story and all the things that weren’t said.

Midnigh Scenes is a very short let intriguing story, and feels like it has potential for much longer, bigger game. I would love to see what could be made out of this, and how the story could develop.

His newest game, The Librarian, shows even more professionalism and beautiful design.

0l

The Librarian has one very specific feature that I adore. It is not as hard to tell a story, if you can tell it through words.Many mysteries and secrets can be revealed this way. Navarro shows his skill by telling us a story through no words what so ever. Midnight Scenes had very few words as well, but still they needed some because of how the story went. Librarian defends itself through it’s design and the only time you read something is at the beginning. One, short sentence and later you need to observe the game and solve puzzles to learn the story.

Both games from Octavi Navarro are beautiful, a bit spooky adventures that you need to check out. Details in character’s animation, beautiful art and other assets, and amazing design are what makes those games truly delightful. In anticipation I am awaiting Octavi’s bigger production, because I am certain it will be the real GOTY. Navarro is the artist you want to follow and see just how he will surprise you next.

Here is the link to his website, when you can see how to support him, see some beautiful pixel art and more!

Game Reviews, games, Reviews

How to get away with murder…?

The Deed is a short crime adventure created by Pilgrim Adventures, developer that have created quite a few rpg maker adventures. I think with accesibility of rpg maker and such engines, there is a lot of not bad but also not good games. It is not as easy to find really enjoyable and intriguing RPG maker adventure, and many dislike those games, right away labelling all of them as “bad”.  However, The Deed is ever so short game, that could take the place of one of those more unique adventures, from the art to the story itself.

ss_dc3a8b320553da45acd9e1dfedd47f235f5d12f2.1920x1080

Do you like crime stories, figuring out who’s the culprit and all that? Good. This time you are on the other side. You are the murderer and it is your job to make sure you are not caught. What I like best about this game is that it is programmed well, so it’s not as easy as it seems to get away with murder.

Your character had a tough life as a child, and he has escaped his family house. Now, he is back since learning that all his inheritance is going to be taken away from him, and promised his cruel sister… He cannot allow that, and decides to put his sister out of her misery.

ss_e96676ca335dbfc49db88cbaa8b31970147a10cc.1920x1080

It seems easy at first glance. You need to find incriminating evidence that will cover you and then you choose a weapon of murder. Simple enough, eh? Not exactly. Every little thing you did, and what response you have given anyone during your conversations, counts. And because you are that black sheep of the family, if police have even one small reason to be suspicious… you’re a goner.

The Deed is a short adventure for, maybe half an hour, maybe an hour. It surely has replayability value, and there are quite a few ways to reach your goal. There are also 17 steam achievements you may want to grab while you’re on it. But at the same time, you keep on doing one thing – trying to get away with murder – so after an hour or so, you reach the maximum of the entertainment the game can provide.

ss_cbe309f94a3f9ae77114e21abfd0e3c03d45c859.1920x1080

If your evening is too lonley or if you would like to know how does it feel to plan murder – this short game is for you.. Original art, fitting music, despite it’s shortness story pieces and plot that you can learn if you care for it, and that gives your character the reason to kill… All that together is a nice piece put together by Pilgrim Adventures, and makes me wanna try their other creations.

There is also The Deed: Dynasty which I am planning to check out really soon so look out for the review!

 

Game Reviews, gamejam, games, Reviews

Movie Game Jam 2018 – My Choice of Entries

Movie Game Jam is a game jam that run through the month of February. It is basically choosing your favorite movie scene or movie in general as  a base for your game idea. Intriguing? Of course, but it is much harder than it may seem. Moving the story from the screen into the game, within time limit and make it enjoyable for all and not just people who have watched said movie is a real challenge!

I have not been able to check out every single entry in this jam, so I may have missed some amazing ones, and I apologize. But, there is only so much one person can do; I am certain I checked out a big bunch of them, and I am going to show you the ones I liked the best.

Super Lobby Shootout

i+TPHE

 

A really nice little game, using a very popular movie so I think it is easier for most players to grasp what you’re supposed to do. Simple, but well made. It is using mechanic that I feel has been used many times before, but I enjoyed the simplicity of the game itself.

 

 

Love or Math

loveormath

A bit challenging platformer, short, but enjoyable. I feel connection to the movie reference was more subtle, but platformer was very endearing. It is rather short, as most jam games, but it is surely worth the time. It challenged me enough to make me try my best to succeed, but not too much to make me give up.

Party’s Over

party over

After watching a scene it was based off (very gory) I was put off, as while being a horror movies fan, I really dislike gore. However game itself wasn’t as gory and I actually enjoyed it much more than expected. It feels too short, and too hardcore in my personal opinion, but I think for a game jam entry it is a well-made little adventure, even if ever so quick and simple.

 

Zombie Mall

KgpjT4

Back to the zombie-land. Challenging, well-made, well-designed. I actually managed to play it for a longer while, despite enemies not exactly being put perfectly in the area (sometimes not enough of them, sometimes too many). Again, I clicked on the link not expecting myself to enjoy it, and yet I was kindly surprised. It seemed shallow in a way, but I think the mechanics and how basic idea was, made this so enjoyable.

Simulation

simulation

Another simple, little game. Graphics in this game are completely plain but you stop thinking about that as soon as gameplay kicks in. It is another very simple, basic game, and another example of a well-done game design. Simplicity in it is very entertaining. It did kept me in the game for longer than expected.

It is also one of those games were the movie reference is a nice addition, but not needed thanks to the basic gameplay design.

Think and Click

thinkandclick

I am usually not so good with puzzle games, because I am the worst when it comes to ANY kind of puzzles, to be fair. I still enjoy those puzzle games, it’s just that often without walkthroughs I never finish them. However, Think and Click simplified the puzzle idea, and even though it was still challenging, I think it’s a very lovely puzzle adventure for everyone to enjoy.

Martha’s Temp

martha

This was a really short, but endearing little adventure. Easy to catch on what to do, well connected with the movie chosen, simple gameplay that can amuse you for a little while. The only problem I had with it, that it was so strongly connected to the movie at hand, that to understand gameplay you had to know the movie. On the other hand, gameplay is simple enough that you will catch up on it quickly anyway.

Temptation’s Table

tempt

This is a really, really short game. But a good depiction of the movie, and very intuitive gameplay, with a really nice graphics. I would say scene chosen has been rather difficult to portray in a game setting, but creators did well. It was first game I played in the jam, and it surely showed me that Movie Game Jam 2018 had some talented participants.

The Assasination

assasination

This one was a bit confusing, I do not think it is perfectly designed, but also I don’t think it’s badly designed either. It is simple, with a nice art and one goal: assasination. Game surely strongly takes from the movie reference, but at the same time, it explains itself very easily, so I don’t mind. It’s challenging, as well, and surely worth your time!

Between the Worlds

hAeK20

This is a wonderful, little adventure made of many inspirations and many movies’ references. Sassy and full of emotions voice acting, challenging environment full of puzzles and secrets and really lovely gameplay mechanics. This is what ‘Between the Worlds’ will give you. Ready to find all the worlds hidden in this game?

You Played Yourself

played

Oh boy. This one really took me on the ride. Spend actually a pretty big chunk of time playing it, which I think is also because of how the game is designed, and of how much gameplay and story dev prepared for you. This one is based on a very popular movie, so again, most people know where the inspiration was and what could it mean for the gameplay. And it is nicely explained in the game itself as well.

Graphics are as basic as they can be, but game will get you focused on the story and gameplay more than that aspect of the game. Obviously most work was put into how game is played rather how it looks, and I think it was the right choice. ‘You Played Yourself’ will take you on an exciting adventure, and will surely keep you entertained for a long while.  It is a challenge surely worth taking.

 

Oh! Is This Baseball

baseball

This is a creation from the devs that I have been watching  for a while, and they surely showed a very interesting take on Movie Game Jam. It is heavily based on the movie reference, and it is a bit confusing at start, but after a while you do grasp what you need to do, and it is a short, fun experience. I enjoyed the design of art A LOT, silhouettes are something that I love as an aesthetic for games.

Mimi’s Delivery Dash

mimi

This is my very number one. This list wasn’t in any particular order but MDD was surely the best I have played through. Gameplay very interesting despite simplicity, game reference well done but you do not get confused if you haven’t seen the movie. Challenging, with beautiful pixel-art graphics. What more you can ask for?

 

And that is what I have for you for Movie Game Jam 2018. A very succesful game jam I would say! There were plenty of wonderful entries, as this post shows, I had a lot to show you and I recommend you trying them all out, and finding all those amazing creators. I do hope they are ready to show us even more beautiful creations.