All posts by Kim

Baking, movies, music, photography, binging TV series and a growing love of living healthy and event coverage! I'm all about being versatile, going on new adventures and experiencing the fullest of what life has to offer!

Steam Game Festival: First Impressions of Demos

As the Summer Game Fest is going on for the next little while, the next edition of Steam Game Festival is here. This time, it opens up a huge amount of free demos to try out. Definitely more selection than the week duration of the festival itself. Because of that, we tried to pick some more relevant titles to check out and do a little first impression on their playable demo. 

The Almost Gone (Happy Volcano)

With minimalist design and game mechanics similar to that of Monument Valley (playthrough) but with a more mysterious narrative undertone, The Almost Gone is a point and click mystery puzzle game that focuses on discovering puzzles in rooms that can rotate to discover new things on different walls and furniture as we roam around our home in the midst of moving and parents divorce and other family issues adding in the mix. 

The playable demo was the first chapter of the game. The puzzles itself are quite decent and this sort of game definitely will work well on mobile devices as the touch mechanics will work well. The story itself has some heavy content and might not be for everyone, especially those sensitive to this subject matter (they even have a warning at the beginning of the game). The puzzle design is pretty good but the maneuvering around with the arrows can get a little confusing from room to room (but maybe that’s just because I have a bad sense of direction). 

The Almost Gone will release on Steam on June 25th. 

Moncage (OPTILLUSION)

Moncage is an adventure puzzle game that plays with using different sides of a cube to put together elements of different interactive scenes that help unlock more possibilities. These connections are the key to unlocking scenes and moving through this world trapped in this cubic device. 

The demo itself shows off these elements pretty well. It is able to show off the game mechanics and much more, the well thought-out game design and imagination that is all about connecting the dots and exploring the scene. It also has the option to give hints of what items are the pieces to use in the puzzles in the scene that can be used but gives room for the player to work them out themselves. It’s a matter of patience and noticing the little details and then putting it together. Sometimes, its not easy, even in the demo there were some challenging moments. As a puzzle game, its pretty unique. The only thing left is to see what type of story they are trying to tell as each scene reveals pictures to pick up that seem to connect to an unknown narrative. 

There is no date confirmed yet for Moncage but its definitely on that should be on your radar if you like puzzle games from the first look at the demo. 

Ami (LightHouse Studio)amigame

Ami is an upcoming action side-scroller platformer. The demo is very concise and starts off with a segment of the main character riding a bike in a town without electricity and then getting chased down by two boys in a van that suddenly wants to shoot her where she ends up at a house and it cuts inside where we pull some item and activates a button to get out of the trapped situation and the demo literally ends there. 

Based on that, the world itself is fairly dark and shows perhaps something has happened to the place itself that’s caused its lack of electricity and dangers. The visuals, the movement and mechanics gave strong vibes of Limbo or Inside (which is a good thing). The game is in very dark and gloomy colors except for the main character who is a red-haired girl with a light blue dress, yellow backpack and orange bicycle. 

Honestly, the demo is too short to truly have much of an impression on this. It does have a lot of room for potential depending on what the “deep story” they plan to deliver is all about. I do like the more minimalist visual style and darker world and even the environment and music from this one or two parts. However, there leaves a lot of room to see more revealed before there’s an actual anticipation for the game. 

Arrog (尘归尘, LEAP Game Studios/Hermanos Magia)

Arrog is a puzzle adventure that takes place in a hand drawn black and white world with a few color accents that tells the story of a man who is accepting his death through his dreams. According to its Steam page, its a 30 minute narrative experience which means that the few minutes of the demo does already capture a good bit of where this is heading.

The first impressions of the game is bizarre and abstract. Those are the two words that go with these experiences that want to be created. There’s something very whacky about a game once you realize what its about as the game constantly revolves around the outline of a man lying down and then interacting with different objects on the screen that will create some change and animation to happen. There isn’t exciting gameplay but its focus is on the experience so its probably not for intense gamers as its fairly toned down in gameplay mechanics department. Its just a lot of clicking around. If you like games with deeper meanings and simple minimal style, this  might be one to keep an eye on.

Arrog will release on July 28, 2020 on Steam. 

A Juggler’s Tale (Kaleidoscube)

A Juggler’s Tale is an upcoming 3D sidescroller that actually has a narrator that tells the story of Abby, a string puppet who escapes from the locked cage at the circus to see the world outside. The demo starts off as she goes to her circus act and then to her escape while showing off some of her abilities. 

Visually, the game is set like a puppet show where all the characters are moving with their strings. These strings come into play to hold her up when she’s falling down but it also hinders her movement when there’s an object in her way. It works a little to the concept of Unraveled. At the same time, the environment and art looks a lot like the styles of movies like Coraline. The world itself has a darkness of a little girl traversing a dangerous world and ends up getting help from friends like in the demo, her circus act companion bear, Urs plays a part in aiding her escape, having some strong vibes similar to Little Nightmares (review). 

With vibes of so many outstanding games, A Juggler’s Tale definitely feels like it has a lot of potential. The only thing is to see how the mechanics get polished up in the final release which has a way to go as its planned for release in 2021 but there is no official date yet. 

Roki (Polygon Treehouse)

Roki is an upcoming adventure 3D adventure game inspired by a Scandinavian folklore which tells a dark fairy tale of a girl called Tove who explores this fantastical winter forest landscape on a mission to save her brother Lars.

In the demo, the general idea is this point and click element where there is a story narration which gives a little bit of reading dialogue. At the same time, its about picking up items to navigate the area to progress. It all works fairly well. The demo puzzles weren’t too hard to figure out. The color palette in this world as well as the game mechanics all work fairly well together. The hand-drawn art style also is pretty nice. There’s definitely a lot a to love about this one and one to look forward to: Folklores and fairy tales, a family tale as well as adventures and fun characters in a winter landscape definitely ticks all the boxes.

Roki will release on July 23, 2020 on Steam.

Here’s the a batch of Steam Game Festival demo first impressions!
Any of these games caught your attention?

EA Play Live 2020 [Recap & Thoughts]

Starting off with a Thank You message from Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Miller to first responders, their own teams working from home as well as the players and addressing some of the issues going on to share their stance on the situation, EA Play Live 2020 kicks off with host Greg Miller promising huge surprises and incredible reveals. 

Here’s what we saw

Apex Legends: Season 5 Update

Fortnites main rival Apex Legends introduced Season 5 aswell as the latest update called Lost Treasures Collection Event and will launch on June 23.

At the same time, Apex Legends will be landing on Steam and Nintendo Switch this fall along with cross play, though wether this game will far any better on Switch than the ones which came before it remains to be seen.

The Sims 4  

Compared to previous years we didn’t get a new content announcement but instead that The Sims 4 latest is heading to Steam aswell Nintendo Switch though considering how clumsy the console versions felt it remains to be seen how the Switch will hand it or if it’s destined to be another transfer which sounds good on paper but doesn’t work.

Outide of the event the latest content pack Eco-Lifestyle has been released for the game allowing your Sims to live greener livestyles, dumpster dive and recycle objects they no longer want with the fabricator.

EA Originals Upcoming Games

It Takes Two (Hazelight)

It Takes Two is the third game from Hazelight written and directed by the always entertaining Josef Fares, who previously brought us Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons and A Way Out.

Continuing to build on his love for co-op gaming experiences, this game is a co-op action-adventure platformer which if we are to believe Fares will “blow your f**king mind away” as the team at Hazelight are aiming to fully combine the story and game mechanics than treating them as two seperate elements.

as you play two dolls of a little girl Rose  whose parents are about to separate and while trying to deal with the emotions of this situation creates the two dolls you play as as they come to life

Based on his previous games, Josef Fares projects are always something to anticipate with Hazelight especially so keen to tap into overlooked concepts and it’s hard to not be caught up in his enthusiasm really making this one to look forward and more news being announced  before its anticipated release in 2021. 

World Premiere: Lost in Random (Zoink Games)

Coming from the developers of Fe, Lost in Random is an upcoming action adventure game sharing a Gothic fairy tale giving off Tim Burton-esque vibes with a style reminicint of Coreline.

as it weaves a coming of age story with a young girl and her weird dice friend Dicey roaming the kingdom of Random which is governed by rules and minimizing risk, but with Dicey’s help, the hero will learn to accept randomness and the flow of life

 It’s expected to release in 2021 and compared to the some of the trailers we have seen its kind of nice to have a title present a solid and certainly unique idea than some abstract concept of what the game will be about

Rocket Arena (Final Strike Games)

The third EA Originals to wrap up the independent game selections is a debut title from Final Strike Games called Rocket Arena.

Its title which pretty much sets out what it’s about in the trailer with this 3v3 multiplayer rocket only shooter looking more to atap into the Overwatch market than yet another Fortnite clone. Unquestionably a colourful title with it’s dynamic mapsand colourful and customizable characters all with thier own combos and special abilities

Its set to release on July 14th on PS4, Xbox One, Origin and Steam and will support cross play right from the start. while on July 28th, they will release their first content update.

Star Wars: Squadrons

Certainly it’s been awhile since we have seen a Star Wars game focus purely on dogfights and piloting the legendry craft of the franchise so unquestionably expectations are high for this title taking place after the events of Return of the Jedi which appears to be a much requested update for the Tie-Fighter and X-Wing games.

Featuring a single player campaign were you will play as pilots for both the rebel alliance and the empire with the whole game played from the beautifully designed cockpit with the option for VR play aswell for an even more immersive experience

The game also features a 5V5 multiplayer alongside the usual game modes and unquestionable looks stunning as we saw glimpses of iconic locations like Cloud City while the in cockpit chatter between pilots gives it the same feel of Lylat Wars another game sorely in need of a sequel

Add to this a wide range of customisable options all unlocked in the game including the Ewok bobblehead it’s nice to see the Star Wars games still managing to generate the excitment currently failing to happen with the the movies.

Released October 2, 2020

Next Gen World Premiere: EA Sports

FIFA and Madden announced thier yearly updates with this dynamic trailer but as always with these games your know already if your going to get them or not

Announcement: New Skate Game

Skate 4 might be one of the most requested games whenever we get one of these showcases so to finally know that a new game is in development is certainly welcome news for the fans who have been waiting since 2009’s Skate 3 for a follow up, though of course it would be typical that we wait for years for a new skate game and then 3 come along at once!

Sure it was literally just an announcement but to know a game is being developed is alot beter than another year of hoping that they are working on one.

That wraps up the EA Play Live 2020 event!
Which of these titles are you excited about?

Future Games Show 2020 [Recap & Thoughts]

Summer Game Fest introduces something along the lines of what The Games Awards usually would provide with world premieres and exclusive trailers, except without the awards part. Future Games Show 2020 was hosted by Nolan North and Emily Rose online as they introduced each game while giving time for some developers to talk a little about their game and what to expect. 

Quantum Error (TeamKill Media)

Quantum Error is a first person shooter horror game taking place in a research facility that is on fire. Playing as the firefighter captain, what starts out as a rescue mission quickly is more than it seems. Its expected release in summer 2020 on Playstation 4 and later on for Playstation 5. You can find more info on their site HERE.

World Premiere: Dustborn (Red Thread Games)

Dustborn is an upcoming story -driven action adventure, looking like a comic book story, that follows a group of misfits and outcasts on a road trip across America. Using narrative choices, aka the power of words, they need to navigate different different situations, like persuading characters.  Feeling a little like Life is Strange, this is one to keep on the radar. Dustborn is expected to release on PC and consoles. 

Ghostrunner

Ghostrunner is a hardcore fast-paced slasher action game. Looking at the trailer, its in constant first person motion with quick reflexes to kill and survive this cyberpunk world. Its main goal is to fight to the top of a mega structure to confront the Keymaster at the top level. 

Call of the Sea (Out of the Blue)

Call of the Sea is a first person adventure game set in 1930s where the female protagonist is on an expedition in corners of the South Pacific in search of her husband missing from a previous mission. The game is introduced as a balance between puzzle solving and strong narrative. The protagonist, Norah is voiced by Sissy Jones (Firewatch) and aims to tell a story of both mystery and emotional journey.  Call of the Sea is an Xbox/Windows 10 exclusive. 

Sherlock Holmes: Chapter One (Frogwares)

After some success with previous Sherlock Holmes, Frogwares continues with this franchise but this time around they take it back in time to play as a 21 year old Sherlock before he becomes the legend now. Set in the late 19th century where Sherlock Holmes returns home to investigate the mysterious death of his mother, it keeps the open world exploration and now has expanded to being able to interact with the world like people on the streets. Much like its previous games, the detective features as well as taking the right actions to make the correct deductions will lead to different results. Its set to release on PC and console in 2021.

Cygni: All Guns Blazing

Cygni: All Guns Blazing is an old-school shoot-em-up that looks like Galaga and Ikaruga on steroids, all set in a stunning sci-fi city.  

World Premiere: Morbid: The Seven Acolytes 

Morbid: The Seven Acolytes is a pixelated top-down action game that looks like Bloodborne meets Zelda with a healthy dose of pixelated gore, we love to see this get a release for the Switch especially.

Cris Tales

Cris Tales is a love letter to classic J-RPG which plays with the concept of time allowing in real time on one screen to maneuver through the past, present and future. In the developers words, “learn from the past, act in the present and rewrite the future..”. This is also a game which wears its love for the genre on it’s sleeve citing the likes of Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy 6 among it’s inspirations.

Hot Shots Racing

Release date: Summer 2020

Lucky Mountain Games’ creative director is Trevor Lay who prior to begining work on  Hotshot Racing had already put in stints with both EA and Rockstar Games and now he wants to bring racing back to it’s arcade roots with the likes of Daytona USA, Virtua Racing, and Sega Rally serving as the inspiration and Sumo Digital providing additional support whose previous games include Sonic All-Stars Racing and Outrun 2006 a perfect fit for such an old school arcade racer.

Neon Abyss

From the creator of Worms, comes another irrelevant 2D action side scrolling shoot ’em up which looks fantastically nuts packed with rogue-like dungeon system. Its set to release on July 14th, 2020 on consoles and PC. 

Skater XL

While the wait for Skate 4 continues, this looks set to help fill the void while certainly tapping into those old school Tony Hawk vibes which itself has a remaster on the way combing the first two games. Its available on Steam Early Access. 

GTTOD Get To The Orange Door

An Xbox exclusive combing run and gun antics with a real Tron Vibe and currently has a free demo to try out on Steam. 

Waking 

Waking is a third person action adventure game set within a coma as you explore a world made up of your own memories in this Inception style adventure.

Space Crew

From the makers of Bomber Crew comes this pixelated take on Star Trek. Space Crew is expected to release in September 2020. 

Maid of Sker

Maid of Sker is a first person psychological survival horror game inspired by Welsh folklore. Its main game mechanics is focused on being stealthy and using a weapon with limited ammo to create sounds to distract the blind enemies walking the hotel grounds. Three different difficulty levels will be introduced which won’t change the scare level but changes the AI reaction. Its expected to release later this year on consoles and PC. 

Future Hits Montage

Rapid fire clip show showcasing titles without full trailers including:

  • Smite
  • Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout
  • Carrion
  • Unbound: Worlds Apart
  • ANNO: Mutationem
  • Doggone
  • The Almost Gone
  • Inkulinati
  • Alaloth: Champions of the Four Kingdoms
  • Wave Break
  • Cloudpunk
  • Windjammers
  • Hammer Ting
  • Stage Hands!
  • ArcheAge: Unchained

The Captain Is Dead

The Captain is Dead is a retro sci-fi themed game which is set to tap into the current board game obsession especially as more games get digital versions. The Captain is Dead set to release in 2020. 

Blankos Block Party

Blankos Block Party is reminiscent of Little Big Planet as you play living vinyl toys in a fully customisable world running with both NPCs and other players on their colorful environment. Its expected to release seasonal content regularly. They don’t have a release date yet but it will be in 2020. 

Main Assembly

Main Assembly is a sandbox game which allows you to essentially make anything you want bringing to mind Sony’s Dreams certainly the vehicle construction options look fun. Its currently out on Steam Early Access. 

Last Oasis

Last Oasis is a survival MMO.  The debut from the Polish development team Donkey Crew who here present a future where the Earth has stopped spinning. The result being that the planet split into two extreme environments, one blistering hot and the other cruelly cold. Its currently on Steam Early Access.

Wasteland 3

Brian Fargo, the producer of the original Fallout returns with the most anticipated sequel to Wasteland 2 set for release on Xbox One, PS4 and PC on August 28 and once again featuring the same top-down action of the previous games.

Remothered: Broken Porcelain

Remothered: Broken Porcelain is a survival horror game written and directed by the Italian video game artist and director Chris Darril. It serves as both the prequel and sequel to the original 2017 game Remothered: Tormented Fathers the game will serve as the middle part of his Remothered trilogy as two young girls attempt to solve the mystery of the Ashmann Inn. Its set for release on August 25, 2020 on PS4, PC, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch.

Rogue Company

While looking similar to Fortnite, the focus of Rogue Company will be more on team play while promising cross play, including the Nintendo Switch. You can sign up for the alpha at www.roguecompany.com.

Outriders

Upcoming Square Enix game Outriders is a third person co-op shooter from Polish producer People Can Fly and featuring four different classes all with their own special abilities which have been revealed over the course of the trailers we have seen since the games announcement.

Disintergration

Disintegration is a hybrid first-person shooter and real-time strategy game from V1 Interactive taking place in a world were human brains integrated into robotic bodies outnumber natural humans. The evil posthumanist faction seek to wipe out the last “uncanned” humans. With you playing as Rohmer Shoal, the integrated outlaw gravcycle pilot, who thinks that humanity should be allowed to exist without being hooked into man-made hardware. It will be released on June 16, 2020 on PS4, Xbox One and Steam.

Paradise Lost

Paradise Lost is one of the more ambitious titles for the next gen consoles and set in a world were World War 2 never ended this mystery adventure game follows a 12-year-old boy who finds a mysterious Nazi bunker while roaming a post-nuclear Polish wasteland.  The game is said to be a journey through the five stages of grief, which will be reflected in dialogue, character interactions, and the environment with your choices gradually affect the game’s characters, as well as its visual style, environment and sound effects.

Operation Tango

In Operation Tango, teamwork is key as you team up with another player to play the roles of an agent and a hacker to save the world from evil forces as you infiltrate enemy strongholds, hack computers, break into secured rooms, and navigate areas filled with enemies and turrets. Many of the solutions push players to solve puzzles in what is promised to be a “Feel-Good Spy Thriller”. Its set to come out at 2021.

Kena: Bridge of Spirits

Little is know about this new IP from Ember Lab being developed for the PS5 as you play a young female hero facing off against forest-dwelling creatures using a magic staff that can also take the form of a bow-and-arrow while using magic to rid the world of evil, and most importantly save those doe-eyed cottonballs.

Serial Cleaner

Serial Cleaner is a top-down action game that casts you as a crime-scene cleaner. Its off-kilter hand-drawn art style is immediately captivating alongside the unique player which sees you disposing of bodies and mopping up blood puddles while avoiding guards, while the prospect of hidden movie levels makes it only the more intriguing. Its expected to release on 2021.

A packed show and certainly a step up from the PS5 launch, but what are you most looking forward to?

Let us know in the comments section below.

Summer Game Fest: Playstation 5 Event (Recap + Thoughts)

E3 might have been cancelled but another version of it spreading over the next few months called Summer Game Fest with different studios and collaborated showcases to share some upcoming games both AAA and independent titles.

The first to kick things off is Sony Playstation who is bringing their PS5 reveal as well as their upcoming games. Kicking off with a reel of Playstation 4 games that have been released, we jump into a show that shares both upcoming games and the different elements of Playstation 5.

Here’s the recap of this year’s online Playstation event!

Playstation 5 Reveal

 

So we finally got out first look at the next generation of gaming and the latest edition to the Playstation family with’s unusual book design let alone the return to white which we’ve not seen from Playstation since the PS1. Hopefully there will be an option for black to avoid the sticky paw prints showing up on the box otherwise our order for the new hardware will include a can of spray paint.

The box is expected to be released in two formats with one having a blu-ray compatible disc drive and a lower priced version being based around digital downloads which when we have seen it previously as with the PSP GO really didn’t future proof itself much less your games library making it possibly a better investment to spend that extra to get the drive

Backwards compatibility has been rumoured amongst the usual shop talk with plans for the console to be able to play PS3 and PS4 titles again pushing the argument for investing in a disc drive.

Still for those of you who like to know the specifics of what’s in the box

  • CPU: 8x Zen 2 Cores at 3.5GHz.
  • GPU: 10.28 TFLOPs, 36 CUs at 2.23GHz, RDNA 2 architecture.
  • RAM: 16GB GDDR6.
  • Storage: Custom 825GB SSD.
  • Expandable storage: NVMe SSD slot.
  • Optical drive: 4K Blu-ray drive.

You will also get a copy for GTA V which no doubt will have most players scratching their heads despite the reassurance that the game is being further expanded when what most gamers want is GTA VI

 

The controllers remain largely the same outside of looking like they have been ripped out of Mass Effect with the touch pad still bafflingly remaining with the light moved from the front to the side of this pad…again not sure who wanted these features kept.

We also see the addition of a speaker / microphone built into the controller which hopefully won’t be on all the time should you be subjected to the foul mouthed ramblings of the squeekers. We also get the share button for the social media minded but likely this will just end up filling the hard drive with mispresses as it currently does when we have seen this elsewhere.

The are ongoing plans for more VR tech aswell as a new camera both peripherals it seems that they are determined to make a thing despite hardly making an impact currently on the general gaming populous.

Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales

 

 

After the success of Insomniac Games’ Spider-Man, their next game is now in the works focusing on Miles Morales’ story which no doubt delight those fans of the first game initially excited to see him in the original game preview only to find that his parts of the game were sneaking missions.

While there was some discussion as to whether this game is a spin-off, its since been confirmed that this will be a standalone title and while the trailer showcased new suits and moves, little is known at this point about the story. Luckily its not too long of a wait as its expected to be released in time for the holidays.

Gran Turismo 7

 

Almost every change in Gran Turismo’s franchise as lead to some new way of being immersed in a new racing simulator. Gran Turismo Sport has kept its game going very well by giving monthly updates of adding new cars and tracks. As this upcoming title is in the making, we can only expect what else they can add to the game. Of course, they did talk a lot about anticipating a campaign mode, which will be interesting.

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart

 

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is the sequel to 2016’s Ratchet & Clank, also developed by Insomniac Games and will be a Playstation Exclusive. This time, the game still takes the third person shooter and platformer perspective as the duo heads into their next adventure. The gameplay shown in the trailer gives some idea on how the dimensional rift between alien worlds will look as well as some of the action parts of how the shooting elements will work and the different weapons.

Project Athia

 

Square Enix games are always something to look forward to. Project Athia looks incredible beautiful visually. However, its only a little teaser trailer that was shown with a little bit of in-development gameplay. Its a game with a female protagonist and seems to have some adventure elements in a world of danger with big creatures. Visually, its very appealing but seeing as Project Athia is still just a working title, the game is definitely still early in development. Its one to probably look forward to in the future.

Stray (Annapurna Interactive) – release 2021

 

A third-person adventure game but really it’s a cat simulator, in which the player controls a stray cat (with backpacks and all) exploring a cyberpunk city, populated by robots. It has open world elements, with a focus on the atmosphere and art while bringing to mind “Three Robots” from Love Death + Robots.

Returnal (Housemarque Game)

 

Returnal is an upcoming game developed by Housemarque Games. The player controls a space pilot stranded on an alien world. Every time she dies, the world regenerates. The game will combine first-person shooter and roguelike elements.

Sackboy: A Big Adventure

 

We should have expected the return of Little Big Planet and of course, Sackboy is back for the PS5 and now on a 3D plain moving away from the usual side scrolling fun in makeshift worlds. It remains however to be seen if the freedom to customise will be carried across to this game or not.

Destruction AllStars

 

Destruction AllStars is developed by Lucid Games and is an upcoming vehicular combat game, exclusive on Playstation. Being gamers of Carmageddon and Twisted Metal at some point previously, its nice to see more of these car destruction derby games appear. It’ll be interesting to see where this game will differ from its predecessors.

Kena: Bridge of Spirits

 

We’re always excited to see games with female protagonists. Set in a oriental story with a lot of oriental music to pair with it, Kena: Bridge of Spirits seems like a cute and action-packed adventure. The cuteness is from the little black creatures surrounding the main character but also the different creatures that she has to fight. Visually, this game looks pretty good in its world, character and creature designs. This game is set to be a Playstation 5 console exclusive.

Goodbye Volcano High 

Developed by Ko-Op, Goodbye Volcano High is an upcoming narrative adventure game set in a world of anthropomorphic dinosaurs circling a group of friends navigating through their final year in high school.  Its set to release in 2021.

Oddworld: Soulstorm

 

Picking up from the remaster of the original game New N Tasty this latest trip to Oddworld will be both a continuation of that game as a remake of Abe’s Exodus while using the power of the new hardware to really create some spectacular moments as we see throughout the trailer.

Certainly of all the games we saw this was one of the stronger arguments for upgrading your console especially for those with fond memories of the original games and looking to see it expanded further.

Ghostwire: Tokyo

 

When GhostWire: Tokyo was first announced, it was really just an intriguing idea. This year, Playstation brings it a step further revealing some gameplay to this upcoming horror IP. The Tokyo backdrop is great for this horro set in the paranormal realm with all the different types of spirits haunting the city. At the same time, we get to see some of the gameplay from its fighting mechanics to enemies. Its definitely one that looks like it will be a lot of fun.  Its set to release in 2021 as a Playstation 5 console exclusive.

Jett: The Far Shore

 

Set for release at the holidays, Jett: The Far Shore is an upcoming cinematic adventure game that is an interstellar expedition on an ocean plant looking for a new place as the future is facing oblivion.

GodFall

 

When GodFall was announced as the first game on Playstation 5 with a not-sure-what-to-expect sort of trailer back at The Game Awards last December, it hasn’t quite been on our minds. This latest trailer is definitely a deeper look as it reveals the gameplay for this upcoming action RPG. Visually, the world and its enemies look cool but then there are hints of reminders of some previous games in the same vein except this one seems to have some cool weapons to master and set in a different sort of world. Its set for release at the holidays.

Solar Ash

 

From the creators of award-winning Hyper Light Drifter, Solar Ash looks visually like its previous game and is pretty much a successor. It still features a masked character but this time heading into The Void.

Hitman III – January 2021

 

Agent 47 is back for his more assassinations with new locations including Dubai while promising the usual blend of stealth and cunning kills which we have come to expect from the series.

Little Devil Inside

 

Little Devil Inside is probably the quirkier trailer so far in this event. It follows a man on an adventure while having a parallel to the routine life of an old man. Where do these two cross their path and what is the correlation will be where it’ll be intriguing to see. The game shows off a lot of fun creatures and definitely feels more light-hearted.

NBA 2k21 – Fall 2020

 

You know what it is so your either excited or not about the yearly update to the franchise.

Bugsnax – Holidays 2020

 

From creators of Octodad, this quirky title promises 100 different bugs for plays to hunt, capture or just stumble across as you figure out the mystery of the island. If you’ve played Octodad then you pretty much know the tone of what to expect in their games and this feels right up the alley especially as soon as the strawberries turned around and scurried around with eyes.

Demon’s Souls

 

As a lot of games gets their remake, Demon’s Souls is the next action RPG in line which was originally developed by FromSoftware. Its remake however will be developed by Bluepoint Games.

Deathloop

 

Arkane Studios has developed some great games before. When Deathloop was first announced, it already looked intriguing. This time, we’re seeing a little more in this latest trailer. Its noir-esque setting, focus on stealth and first person shooter elements all looks like a ton of fun especially as its as its title says: a loop. The story is about rival assassins caught in a time loop and when you die, you just restart the loop again. Of course, the goal here seems to be to break out of the loop. This one looks like potentially a lot of fun.

Resident Evil Village

 

Set a few years after the event of Resident Evil: Biohazard as you play as Ethan once more, this time investigating the mysterious village of the title which is somehow linked to returning series stalward Chris Redfield. Retaining the first person perspective of the last game, fans will be hoping it can continue the revival of the franchise that Biohazard began. Resident Evil 8 is expected to release in 2021.

Pragmata-space-astronaut-saving a girl to the moon – coming 2022

 

Probably one of the latest titles in this batch to expect release in 2022, Pragmata is an upcoming game from Capcom set in a future with an astronaut and a little girl. There’s not a lot to go on except a first glimpse of sci-fi elements so one to look forward to future trailers.

Horizon II: Forbidden West

 

Originally planned for the PS4 this middle part of the planned trilogy now continues on the PS5 as Alloy continues her quest to stop the HADES system from destroying all life on earth. With shots of a post apocalyptic San Francisco the journey is expected to be an epic one especially as we saw shots of deserts, lush forests and icy wastelands as well as featuring new tribes and machines to defeat.

That’s it for this recap and thoughts on Playstation 5 Reveal Event!
What are your thoughts on Playstation 5? Which games are you excited for?

Glass Masquerade (2016)

Glass Masquerade is a 2016 independent game by Onyx Lute which takes its players to assemble stained glass art displays and clocks which are part of the International Times Exhibition set as a tour around the world.

Glass Masquerade is a puzzle game concept inspired by Art Deco and stained glass artisans of the 20th century. Its a casual gaming experience set with soothing and atmospheric music. There is no narrative story line. Its goal is to share the beautiful art pieces replicated as a virtual gaming experience of putting together these stained glass art representative of each country. It takes a twist on the jigsaw puzzle but translates it to something a bit more complex as the pieces are all in odd, irregular shapes and not the typical pieces that most people are accustomed to.

Glass Masquerade

For what its intended, Glass Masquerade is a wonderful experience. Its visually appealing. The world map is done really nice. The set-up for each of the different shaped clocks that acts as the stained glass frame adds some unique elements. The game gives a starting point of having certain red pieces that act as anchors to where to begin. There are also different difficulty levels to the puzzle which can be played as desired provided its been unlocked from completing a previous level.

Glass Masquerade

Available in both mobile, console and PC gaming platforms, Glass Masquerade is an indie game that can reach the much more casual gamers. Its one to play to simply relax. If the 30 levels of the base game isn’t enough for you, the game also has some free extra levels. Some are demo levels of a DLC pack that needs to be purchased as an add-on. Others are simple free themed single puzzles like for Lunar New Year. All this boosts up the level count to be a well-rounded 50 levels. If you finish with that and want more, Glass Masquerade 2: Illusions was released in February 2019.

The Game Awards: Winners & Trailers

Taking place in Los Angeles last night the 2019 Video Game Awards is always one of the big events of the year where the excitement is not only for the awards but also the trailers being premiered which in previous years have tended to overshadow the awards themselves. But before like the gather audience and folks tuning in around the around we allow ourselves to get distracted by the trailers here a quick rundown of this years winners.

The Game Awards 2019 Winners

Game of the Year: Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (FromSoftware/Activision)
Best Game Direction: Death Stranding (Kojima Productions/SIE)
Fresh Indie Game: Za/Um (Disco Elysium)
Best Independent Game: Za/Um (Disco Elysium)
Best Performance: Mads Mikkelsen (Cliff/Death Stranding)
Best Action/Adventure Game: Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (FromSoftware/Activision)
Best Ongoing Game: Fortnite (Epic Games)
Best Multiplayer: Apex Legends (Respawn/EA)
Best Mobile: Call of Duty: Mobile (Timi Studios/Activision)
Best Sports/Racing Game: Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fuelled (Beenox/Activision)
Best Family Game: Luigi’s Mansion 3 (Next Level Games/Nintendo)
Games For Impact: Gris (Nomada Studio/Devolver Digital)
Best Action Game: Devil May Cry 5 (Capcom)
Best Art Direction: Control (Remedy/505 Games)
Best Narrative: Disco Elysium (Za/Um)
Best Role-playing Game: Disco Elysium (Za/Um)
Best Audio Design: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (Infinity Ward/Activision)
Best Strategy Game: Fire Emblem: Three Houses (Intelligent Systems/KOEI Tecmo/Nintendo)
Best AR/VR: Beat Saber (Beat Games)
Community Support: Destiny 2 (Bungie)
Best Score & Music: Death Stranding (Kojima Productions/SIE)
Best Fighting Game: Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Sora/Bandai Namco/Nintendo)
Esports Game of the Year: League of Legends (Riot Games)
Best Esports Coach: Zonic
Best Esports Event: League of Legends World Championship 2019
Best Esports Host: Sjokz
Best Esports Team: G2 Esports
Content Creator of the Year: Shroud
Best Esports Player: Kyle ‘Bugha’ Giersdorf

Compared to previous years were we have seen one game usually dominate the proceeding it was a pretty mixed spread we were left with once the dust had settled with some big surprises such as Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice beating out Death Stranding twice for not only Game of the Year but also picking up Best Action / Adventure a result only made the more surprising when you consider that Death Stranding has certainly been one of the most acclaimed games of the year ultimately only picking up the awards for Best Score and Mads Mikkelsen’s performance.

Both Fortnite and Apex Legends continued to show their dominance as the Multiplayer games of choice with the bubble yet to burst for Battle Royale games while the continual (and surprising) updates for Super Smash Brothers saw it losing none of it’s dominance as one of the top titles for the Switch. Destiny 2 being included though is kind of a sad reminder of how far the game has fallen in the passing years but hey, at least they can pride themselves on having the best community support…right?

In terms of surprises Disco Elysium was certainly the biggest one as the indie title took on and beat out the Triple A competition to pick up 4 awards including Best Narrative and Best RPG.

Trailers

While the award winners were certainly a mixed field this year with no one game dominating the field compared to previous years. Still in much the same way that the Superbowl is an exciting showcase for movie trailers so too are these awards for upcoming game announcements and trailers and certainly the show gave us the following titles to look forward to.

World Premiere: Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order is gearing up to release their second DLC expansion. The Rise of the Phoenix will include Iceman, Gambit and Phoenix as well as new modes  such as Danger Room Mode and Gauntlet.

Salaam (Junub Games)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a way to highlight new developers with meaningful games, Junub Games presents an in-development footage of their upcoming game called Salaam which shares the experience of the journey of a refugee to help bring the world to see the lives of others in the world and the road that this developer has taken to get to where he is. Salaam is expecting to release in 2020.

Maneater (Tripwire)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Having been announced in the 2018 PC Gaming Show and finally getting a more fleshed out trailer at PC Gaming Show this year, Tripwire comes back this time with a more concrete trailer as well as a release date for their shark simulator where you play as a shark and eat, explore and evolve against the humans. Maneater will release on May 22, 2020.

World Premiere: Humankind (Amplitude/SEGA)

 

 

Humankind (not to be confused with Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey) is an upcoming historical turn-based strategy game with a unique in that it aims to be a customizable experience to make it a world that the player creates in a world that they rule as the leader. This customization will expand well beyond the avatar and include culture and other social elements which has us certainly excited to see how it this plays when it comes out next year.

World Premiere: No  More Heroes III

 

 

 

 

 

 

No More Heroes III  continues the series which is as much a curiosity on Nintendo’s roster as it was when the first game landed on the Switch. Now returning for a third round on the Switch it would seem the franchise has not lost a beat in the years which have passed since the last game making this one to mark on the calender when it’s released 18th January 2020.

World Premiere: Final Fantasy VII Remake

 

 

 

 

 

Can we believe that the actual release of Final Fantasy VII Remake is finally happening! With the March 3, 2020 release drawing closer it was almost expected to see a new trailer. However this time, we’re getting not only cinematic but what everyone wants to see: gameplay!

Its definitely an impressive little game as a remake that will make it quite impressive to see how it all comes together as it will be a different 3D experience compared to the original, even if the story stays the same. It definitely one to anticipate.

World Premiere: Xbox Series X

It may be still a year to go before Xbox Series X launches but Phil Spencer makes an appearance to tell everyone of how this console generation will “power your dreams” and is expected to launch Holiday 2020 with all of their 15 game studios developing exclusive titles to look forward to.

Of course, what is an announcement without showing off at least one of these projects in development and it comes as no surprise that its the one from Ninja Theory.

World Premiere: Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II (Ninja Theory)

 

 

 

It probably wasn’t a huge doubt in everyone’s mind to expect something in the Hellblade world or sequel of sorts and the project that Ninja Theory is working on is the sequel called Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II.

Sure we might not have gotten much from the in-development trailer which was mostly cinematic while showcasing a rather unsettling world and soundtrack.

Control: Expeditions

 

 

 

 

Control came into The Game Awards strong with a ton of nominations in various categories but essentially going home with one win for Art Direction. However, they will be releasing their first DLC expansion with a new game mode called Expeditions on March 26, 2020 and for Control players, this is a free update so the good news just keeps coming.

World Premiere: Godfall

Of course, we can never leave Playstation out when it comes to new console launch as Playstation 5 is also expected to launch in times for the holidays 2020. Without something more than that, they show a new IP called Godfall which is set in a fantasy land and will be a reinvented loot-driven combat slasher which can be played alone or in co-op and will be a Playstation 5 exclusive, expected to release Holiday 2020 (maybe timed with the console release).

World Premiere: Bravely Default II

Warframe: Empyrean

Warframe always has a lot of new things to offer. While its not a game that we follow closely over here, their latest expansion Empyrean will be out right now and free to play.

Magic: The Gathering – Theros: Beyond Death

It seems there is a lot of Magic: The Gathering news this time around. As the game introduces new card and new story expansion.

World Premiere: Prologue (playerunknown)

Not exactly sure what to say about this trailer as its literally a teaser from the playerunknown team. Is it a new map or a new story or a new game? You can find more info at playprologue.com. From the looks of it, its just a new gaming exploration for the PUBG team.

Fortnite + Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

With gaming currently enjoying such cross appeal Hollywood is keen to make crossovers happen in every franchise. With Fortnite‘s growth, this coming weekend will see their crossover event with Star Wars: Rise of the Skywalker, boasting a Whisper Glider at the beginning drop and some celebrities joining into the event and of course, a personal invitation message clip from J.J. Abrams.

World Premiere: Sons of the Forest

The developers of 2014’s The Forest, Endnight announce their next project and it is the sequel of their survival game in the form of a demon-hunting game called Sons of the Forest.

World Premiere: Ruined King: A League of Legends Story

League of Legends is a big deal in the eSports world especially as this year, they do take home the eSports Game of the Year as well as the Best eSports Event, so the gaming audience is definitely there. With that said, this is just one of the two League of Legend stories to be announced.

World Premiere: Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance

Montreal studio Tuque Games takes on the new Dungeons & Dragons game called Dark Alliance which will be an action role-playing game that will bring friends in to “slay together”. Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance will be coming in Fall 2020.

World Premiere: Apex legends: Mirage’s Holo-Day Bash

In the list of eSports and multiplayer games getting a ton of announcement, the only holiday themed one is with Apex Legends as they have this screen Mirage interaction with host Geoff Keighley. It was an entertaining way to introduce Mirage’s Holo-Day Bash event.

Ori and the Will of the Wisps (Moon Studios)

Its no secret that we’re big fans of Ori over here at Game Warp. The first game was a brutally hard experience but its story and visuals truly are excellent and Ori and the Will of the Wisps looks equally as charming. Perhaps what makes it even more charming for Xbox owners is that it will release on March 11, 2020 and be available on Xbox Game Pass.

Check out our podcast review HERE.

Steam Game Festival

Everyone likes free games and also free demos to upcoming games. Steam Game Festival is currently going on until December 14th 10am PST on a variety of games to try out the free demo. While this is just available on Steam this year, The Game Awards is hoping to have it available across all the platforms next year. These are the games that you can try out:

  • Wooden Nickel
  • Carrion
  • Acid Knife
  • System Shock
  • Chicory: A Colorful Tale
  • Tactical Galactical
  • SkateBIRD
  • Moving Out
  • Heavenly Bodies
  • Roki
  • Spiritfarer
  • The Drifter
  • Eastward
  • Haven

World Premiere: Weird West (Wolfeye Studios)

Previously Arkane Studios is now changed to Wolfeye Studios and teamed up with Devolver Digital, they are opening up a new game called Weird West

Set in the alternate West, a land of opportunity, ancient powers and strange entities roaming the landscape. The game shows creative art visuals with a top down style in this upcoming action role-playing game which will appeal to fans of Wasteland 2.

World Premiere: Magic Legends

The second Magic announcement goes to upcoming MMO called Magic Legends. The trailer looks pretty cool with all werewolves and humans and all the fun stuff that the Magic world has to offer. We’re not an expert over here in the franchise. If you are, then you might want to sign up for the beta today HERE.

Path of the Warrior

Oculus Game Studios is hard at work making immersive VR experiences and Path of the Warrior is their latest offering which is available now.

Ghost of Tsushima

Ghost of Tsushima is no doubt a highly anticipated title. Up to now, they have been releasing very good trailers with a good mix of cinematic and gameplay. Being the longest trailer at the show this year, this new trailer offers up a more in-depth look at the story they are telling while giving a nice look at the blood and animation and the vivid colors and a combat scene suitably paired with The Game Awards Orchestra. Ghost of Tsushima will release in Summer 2020.

Gears Tactics

Gears is one of the most beloved franchises in the Xbox Exclusives world which they have built up over the course of the popular third person shooter series only to shake things up this time with turn-based tactical combat strategy game which will no doubt instantly appeal to the XCOM fans

Paired with movie cinematic and a deep story, Gears Tactics will have 40+ hours campaign and will be both a personalized and brutal gaming experience. As with the more recent Gears games, Gears Tactics will be available on Xbox Game Pass upon release on April 28, 2020.

Naraka Bladepoint

Hailing from a Chinese studio 24 Entertainment, Naraka Bladepoint looks surprisingly nice as it start off with a slice of Peking Opera and deliver some vibrant colors and a female protagonist clad in red, with hints of both Chinese and Japanese styles with blades as weapons in this upcoming multiplayer ninja melee combat game set for release in 2020.

World Premiere: Nine to Five

No doubt a wacky way to start off a trailer to see this pastel colors with dancing bunnies with machine guns jumping around but it quickly swaps over to a much more serious mercenary going in for another day at the job in this upcoming first person shooter that will have a focus on strategic gameplay and emphasize on creating teams and making tactical changes to different issues the game will have. You can now sign up for the alpha HERE.

Black Desert Mobile

Black Desert Mobile is now available on Android and iOS.

World Premiere: New World

New World starts off its trailer a little like watching a game version of the movie Annihilation with a lot of creative beauty to come and focus on a fallen statue with multiple faces with draws people from everywhere in search of its power to fall to its corruption. Seemingly led by a female protagonist, this game tells the tale of the search for a promise of power and immortality and the journey and adventure ahead. The trailer is still quite vague but there’s definitely more to see as the release date is in less than half of year set for May 2020.

World Premiere: Convergence: A League of Legends Story

The second League of Legends upcoming game in development is teamed up with Double Stallion Games as the story focuses on the character Echo who creates a device that can manipulate time and tells a rich story of the perils of messing with time.

World Premiere: The Wolf Among Us 2

The Wolf Among Us 2 is a sequel that we’ve been waiting for (at least Kim is) and there was some incredible excitement to hear that this is still happening. There’s still a cautious excitement as Telltale Games did announce before about their closing down and now is working on a new project so as anticipated as this is, its going to be one to see whether it pans out as announced. Telltale Games does need a new engine so we will see what comes of this project. Consider us skeptically optimistic.

Fast & Furious : Crossroads

Calling in the likes of Michelle Rodriguez to announce the new installment to the Fast & Furious franchise seems absolutely perfect. Fast & Furious: Crossroads seems like an arcade racer of sorts imitating the crazy heists and driving tricks that the movie shows off.

How well it will work out is still a little questionable much like the graphics which feel kind of dated. But they did bring in Vin Diesel to bring up the hype and then had them both announce the Game of the Year award as a fantastic way to close up the Awards show in general which they get cool points for. Crossroads is expecting to release May 2020.

With that, this wraps up the trailers and awards recap for The Game Awards 2019!
Any surprises in the The Game Awards? Which games are you most excited for?

Cube Escape: The Mill to Paradox

Cube Escape series

As we step into the second half of the Cube Escape series, the Rusty Lake world expands in depth now. A lot of the questions before are slowly falling into place with these next few games as The Woman, Dale Vandermeer and how Rusty Lake and its mysterious Mr. Owl and Mr. Crow all come together to create this time travel, fate changing sort of deal.

Cube Escape: The Mill

Cube Escape: The Mill

The sixth game of Cube Escape is set in The Mill which is starts off as one of the more complex games of the series. The Mill has multiple levels which open up through the main level where it all starts. It has the normal puzzles of point and click adventure with picking up items initially but also give little additional games like its memory game as well as some other formats. The Mill itself overlaps a section of the story that was shared before and this time is reflected also as the other side of the story, which gives it such a clever play at this point. At the same time, The Mill is the center of the link between Rusty Lake and how it works and something of the operation between Mr. Owl and Mr. Crow and how they use their victims and their memories and such, giving a deeper glimpse of this own Rusty Lake world.

Cube Escape: The Mill is a nice addition in terms of story as it gives a much clearer look at how water is processed through the mill into Rusty Lake and how this lady that we’ve seen and investigated the death of up to this point called The Woman (from the beginning few games) plays into the story. However, the games itself sometimes take a stretch of imagination and also the memory game is a bit hard (for those with limited memory like myself) which turned out to be slightly tedious and frustrating. However, all the elements are well laid out and just takes a little connecting the dots and perseverance to put it all together. What’s a game without a little challenge, right?

Score: 4.5/5

Cube Escape: Birthday

Cube Escape: Birthday

What we could only assume is that the elevator that take Dale Vandermeer in Case 23 is what leads to these various memory points where he goes back to change the course of events. The first stop is at Birthday which is his 9th birthday (if I remember correctly) and things go way bad and he gets the opportunity to rewind it and change the outcome. Birthday is a solid entry with a pretty decent twist. The puzzles itself are a little crazy at times but its all about noticing the details and knowing where to find the pieces back when they are needed (something that I’m not too good at). Birthday also marks a little more interaction with actual other characters who do direct the clues and what needs to be solved to unlock another part of the escape.

Score: 4/5

Cube Escape: Theatre

Cube Escape: Theatre

Cube Escape: Theatre keeps on with the whole down memory lane as it changes to another year in the life of Dale Vandermeer. Theatre has a lot of depth as it takes place at a bar with a stage for the whole program. There are puzzles around the entire room but the big piece of the puzzle is in finding the pieces to complete the entire program of the performing show with a lot of the familiar faces played by the actor. It has a lot of little fun bits from connecting pipes to make certain things happen to balancing out different items to the same weight or even mixing drinks to get more clues. There is a lot of detail and yet so much intrigue bits. Its actually much more grounded in the last few games as the NPCs are interactable and give a direction to what needs to be done next. It might feel a bit like hand-holding for some but with the depth and complexity of some of these puzzles and where to even find the objects to combine together, it sometimes feels rather necessary.  Cube Escape: Theatre is a very complete experience of point and click and room escape meshed together and adds some depth to the whole Rusty Lake world as a lot of past elements are thrown in here.

Score: 5/5

Cube Escape: The Cave

Cube Escape: The Cave

Cube Escape: The Cave is definitely one of the longer games in the entire series. It has two different parts in the whole game. It starts off in the cave where we solve a series of puzzles in a multi-layer 4 part (ish). There are multiple components that link to the story of the premium game, Rusty Lake Roots a little. After this area, it goes deeper into the cave to this underground mechanical room of sorts where there is a multi-layer puzzle which is about 4 parts or so to solve through. There are some tedious puzzles and others where its a point and click style similar to the previous games. The Cave is a fairly complete experience and one of the more fleshed out ones but does take a little stretch of imagination at times to link the clues together. There’s a great effort to link the pieces of the story of both the characters of Rusty Lake story so far (especially since we finally know the name of The Woman) as well as the premium games.

Score: 4.5/5

Cube Escape: Paradox

Cube Escape: Paradox

And we are at the last game (unless more get released) of Cube Escape series, although it does feel like a somewhat wrapped up version. Cube Escape: Paradox is separated in 2 chapters. The first is available for free and the second is a DLC purchase (or in-game purchase if you are on mobile). A little side info that I had backed the Kickstarter project so I got the game that way. On top of the two games, there is also a short film paired with it that you can watch HERE.

Paradox is a much more complex and deeper version than any of its previous games. It links to a lot of the elements that had been seen in the previous games and brings the characters together. One of the main reasons is that there are other premium games that help add to the story with Rusty Lake Hotel, Rusty Lake Roots and Rusty Lake Paradise all happening during these last 5 games which add a lot of depth to the world and link everything together. Its not necessary to play them but it does help to perhaps piece it better together. Review for those will be coming up.

With that said, Paradox at times is a bit far-fetched and a little too complex. Some puzzles once figured out are also a tad repetitive. Its a very odd feeling that there is a lot of mystery wrapped up both Chapter 1 and 2. The first being much more fleshed out as the story leads us to why Chapter 2 is a very similar room escape scenario but with some modifications to further sink the character that is trying to escape, Detective Dale Vandermeer further into confusion. While the puzzles here is more on the complicated side, the story does put itself together really well. There’s a lot to appreciate in something more fleshed out. In comparison to the games, the movie is an absolute treat that reenacts the game and gives it some more live action depth.

Score: 3.5/5

That’s it for the Cube Escape games (unless more gets released)!
Have you played any of the Cube Escape games? If so, share your thoughts on it in the comments below!

As I keep going through the rest of the Rusty Lake games, more reviews coming up!

Cube Escape: Seasons – Case 23

Rusty Lake games is a monster mission of game reviews that I’ve been trying to get done for a long time. After some long thought its better to do them in a batch. In this mountain of games, we will work through the games both Cube Escape as well as the premium games. The story all works together as one universe so its a nice one to take a look at and see how its gone in terms of changing it up as well as how the story progresses.

Starting it off, its the first 5 games of the Cube Escape series: Seasons; The Lake; Arles; Harvey’s Box & Case 23, which are all fully free gaming experiences on mobile devices.

Cube Escape: Seasons

cube escape seasons

Cube Escape: Seasons kicks off this series which has many games to look at. For a free game, this one is very fleshed out. We play as The Woman who travels through the four seasons to change things in the past that will affect the future.

It has decent point and click elements as well as puzzle elements as well as a dark and mysterious backstory. This one adds in elements of time travel between the seasons. There’s a lot to love here from finding pieces to puzzles and connecting the different elements together from every season to further the story from the past to the future. Its intricate but never too far-fetched.

Score: 5/5

Cube Escape: The Lake

cube escape the lake

Taking place in a cabin next to a lake, Cube Escape: The Lake is a straightforward little game which if everything goes smooth probably takes about 20 minutes or so to solve. The Lake also plays as The Woman. There’s only one ending puzzle which is a tad more difficult to figure out. Its fairly creepy as well as it has some weird spirits and such. Its a weird series yet has quite a lot of charm from one game to the next. This is a revisit, mostly because its been always something to review on the list but never long enough for its own review. Free through and through, Cube Escape: The Lake is one of the lighter ones in the series and yet still shows the lake is probably more than it seems. There’s an alternate ending if you unlock another safe with a code found in Cube Escape: Seasons, just a little bonus to ponder on.

Score: 4.5/5

Cube Escape: Arles

Cube Escape: Arles

Cube Escape: Arles is another point and click puzzle/room escape sort of deal. As the painting clues towards, the player plays as Vincent van Gogh. The only time that this character is played.

It takes place in a room where there are lots of details to discover between opening locked doors to solving puzzles and a lot of it relies on noticing the little details. Its a nice little one that takes some effort to connect the dots. Its a decent 40 minutes or so to solve everything (probably faster if you link things faster than I did). However, everything in this one is all about finding the right clues and items and piecing them together so that it all makes sense. There’s even a segment similar to Paint By Numbers and that’s a fun addition.

Score: 5/5

Cube Escape: Harvey’s Box

Cube Escape: Harvey's Box

While all the previous Cube Escape games have been in a room looking for clues to go out, Harvey’s Box is set, as the title implicates, in a box. Harvey is the parrot that has appeared a few times over the previous games as well. He’s gone through quite a bit and in the first game with the Seasons, we help him narrowly escape a deadly fate.

In this one, we play as the bird Harvey which is stuck in a box. How it does all that is a mystery. Nothing in Rusty Lake universe has to make a ton of sense as its suspense and intrigue is in the weird things that happen and the rather paranormal things that occur. It has a lot of elements and genres that mix together and miraculously work to build this world. Harvey’s Box is somewhat weird and has some logic puzzles but things are fairly straightforward, making this one very polished.

Score: 4.5/5

Cube Escape: Case 23

Cube Escape: Case 23

Case 23 is structured a lot like the first game where it also has 4 chapters. It is the first game that we play as Dale Vandermeer, a detective investigating the mystery of a murdered woman in the first chapter. There are 4 chapters in Case 23 and each one is a different location on the map with some harder puzzles to piece together, ending with the last one which is the first time its a race against the clock. It follows the footsteps of the detective as he goes from one location to the next following the clues that he finds starting with the Murder Scene, Police Station, Chapel and finally the Cabin. Its an intricate one and rightfully so as this character is a key part to how the Rusty Lake series unravels.

Score: 5/5

Overall, the first 5 games of Cube Escape takes its players through a progression of the story although the timeline does jump around quite a bit for those noticing the details of the dated events and such. It introduces the key characters involved as well as finally having the detective discover what is underneath as with all the opening screens for the game after loading is a boat sinking into a red lake which of course is Rusty Lake itself.

Have you played the Cube Escape series?

Lie In My Heart (2019)

Lie In My Heart

Developed by Expressive Gamestudio, Lie In My Heart is a 2019 interactive visual novel with autobiographical elements about a man who loses his ex-wife and copes with both the loss of his son’s mother and how he and his son deal with it.

Autobiographical games are probably the hardest to talk about. After all, its someone’s life so there is no right or wrong to the story. Lie In My Heart is a cause and effect sort of story where the decisions made will affect the story. Its primarily a visual novel which means that there is a lot of reading. However, it also gives dialogue choices which will effect the outcome of the event as well as some timed actions, which probably will also have an effect by the end. At the end of each chapter, there will be a little note that pops up saying how many choices the player made that was the same as the real story. Of course, this leads to many ways to play the game again if the story intrigues the player, giving achievements of finding the complete path that the developer took or on the other hand, seeking out the completely fictional one as well as finding perhaps the good ending.

Lie in My Heart

As a one-sitting sort of game at about an hour or so in length (depending on reading speed), it paces itself quite well. There is reading but choices are also quite frequent as well as having some other actions to do. Its a neat little game that tells a rather poignant story about loss and mental illness. There are some trigger topics here so its not a suitable match for everyone or for people who are more sensitive to these topics. However, this has the autobiographical elements so makes it more real as well. Just like games like That Dragon Cancer, Lie In My Heart will be aim to make its players think a little. Games like these are reliant on how it connects with its players and that varies to the person.

Lie In My Heart

Lie In My Heart is a small game with a big heart to share their own story and experiences. The art style looks like hand-drawn like sketches with colored pencils. The music is paired very well with the story at hand. There isn’t a lot of shortcomings in the game mechanics either as everything is responsive. The choices in dialogue sometimes feel slightly odd but then, it might be done in a deliberate way to emphasize emotions and such with the punctuation (like exclamation points). Some of the reaction bits are very rare and its not very apparent what to do at first (but not hard to connect the dots). However, visual novels, especially ones interactive to a certain level is on rails so perhaps one thing here is that it may say x number of choices were similar but its easy to lose track where those choices were as it always felt less. The replayability here gives room to try again and its a quick game to play through even though, the themes here are heavier.

Bottomline: Is Lie In My Heart worth a playthrough? Absolutely. Is it something to play over and over again to discover the different endings even if its quick to play and has a poignant story? Maybe not (at least for me).

Review: 3.5/5

Lie In My Heart is currently available on Steam as of today (October 4, 2019).

*Key provided by developer*

Mobile Games Roundup – September 2019

mobile game roundup (48)

As we get back on track with mobile games roundup, this past month has been a whole new strategy to look for games to discover.

Here’s a few games with various genres that I’ve played this past month.

Project: Muse (Rinzz Co. Ltd.)

Project Muse

Project: Muse is a music rhythm game. It features different types of music featured through different characters. The playlist is extensive and the majority is unlocked through completing challenges or tasks while some can be unlocked using in-game currency collected by playing each of the levels and the “Gold Time” at the ending of each level to amass as many coins as possible. There are a few VIP levels that require in-game purchases however it isn’t in the majority.

Project:Muse is structured quite well as there are not only different levels and different speeds to play the difficulties, which is a common mechanic, however the levels itself a quite unique as it opens one to four lines of music to follow throughout which increases the challenge and the music is responsive to each touch of the screen to match with the music which makes it more immersive. Plus, the range of contact and responsiveness is balanced quite well also.

Score: 4/5

WTF Detective (Absolutist Ltd)

Screenshot_20190928-085804_WTF Detective.jpg

Looking a lot like another mobile game called Criminal Case, WTF Detective, full name Wunder Task Force Detective actually packs in a little more depth. It doesn’t only have the heavy focus on hidden objects detective game where its about collecting stars and energy refills. The story also has quite a lot of details and dialogue in the investigation of mysteries. At the same time, aside from hidden objects, there are also other types of mini games that help increase energy in forms of what it calls tests which include word games and match-3 puzzles (similar to 2 Dots).

There is some real-time elements included for the analysis, which can be sped up. The in-game currency is in stars which help unlock the parts of the case. Its a game that can be ultimately played completely for free (but can also be sped up through app purchases). Its nothing too deep but its little additions gives it a nice breath of fresh air. The only thing that might be a little more concern is that there was a bit of lag or just lack of responsiveness for touch controls for some of the smaller objects (without zooming in the image) and the image in turn is more sensitive with shifting the frame instead. Minor little issues.

Score: 3.5/5

Traffic Run (Geisha Tokyo Inc)

traffic run

Traffic Run is a simple mobile game consisting of pressing and holding to move forward a car into traffic and stopping in the various roads to the finish line. There’s traffic to avoid and coins to collect which becomes in-game currency  to unlock new cars and colors. In reality, Traffic Run fits into the mobile games model quite well: short levels, in-game currency and easy to learn model. There is two things that go against it: the frequency of ads because its a free game and the more important of the two, its repetitiveness of the levels. Traffic Run is for short bursts and even then, its easy to be a little bored with the whole concept. The difficulty increases very slowly and its never really that hard but rather just reacting fast enough to stop and anticipating that stop time before going. Perhaps it might get harder further into the game but looking at the first 50 levels or so was already enough.

Score: 2.5/5

Cookie Run: OvenBreak (Devsisters Corporation)

cookie run ovenbreak

Cookie Run has history. It first launched when tablets were becoming pretty popular years ago back in 2013. Seeing how its changed from then to the current mobile phone versions definitely is a dose of “nostalgia”. Cookie Run has a lot of new elements now from level quests to breaking high scores and then different types of runs and a kinds of events going on with their own level designs and then a multitude of gingerbread people to collect to use and their little sidekicks that float around them. There are all kinds of different gummies to collect also. If anything, its a bit of an overload of what to discover.

Cookie Run has a lot to discover but at the same time, it does sometimes feel like a grind as the life meter extends as you level up the gingerbread character and then it goes further in the level slightly. In the farming stages, despite the different levels in events and such, its still a fairly repetitive experience. The graphics and colors and design all work but the overall experience is for a short few runs and then stopping and not meant to be more than that.

Score: 3/5

Bendy in Nightmare Run (Joey Drew Studios)

Bendy in Nightmare Run

Using the character of Bendy from Bendy and the Ink Machine, Joey Drew Studios takes Bendy for a Nightmare Run as the game is called Bendy in Nightmare Run where its structured like a little story with multiple acts (which are different levels in an overall chapter). The end of one chapter unlocks the next one which will open up a new world.

The game mechanics function where Bendy is running towards the screen. He can collect bacon soup and objects like bricks, anvils and axes (at least in the first chapter) to throw at the boss running after him. There are minions in the middle to throw off the guard. The level isn’t always flat. It functions on evading the attacks while collecting bacon soup and the main goal is to decrease the boss’s life. Bendy can move left, right, jump, double jump as well as throw a weapon with a swipe of a finger on the screen.

While everything is fairly simple and its rather challenging as it gets later on in the chapter and acts, the issue with the game is always with mobile games in the sensitivity of motion. The reaction time leaves a little to be desired (maybe its a hardware issue because some scenes do lag and I’m running it on a Samsung Galaxy 8). At the same time, the swiping motions sometimes don’t work quite as intended making it rather frustrating at times as well. These are all issues with mobile gaming that commonly occur. It could be a combination of how sensitive the game reacts and senses these motions or hardware problems. Its a decent game concept but a little polish on the controls would do it some good.

Score: 3.5/5

That’s it for the September mobile game round-up!
Have you played any of these games? 
What mobile games have got your attention lately?

If you have any suggestions, feel free to also share them in the comments.