I’ve decided I’m going to make it a goal to be as much of a patent gamer as possible this year. I don’t particularly have the money to buy new games and I don’t need them either since I have a huge backlog of games that I missed that grows by the week with all of the games given away by different services.
I can’t sleep and really just wanted to gush over the games Ive played this January!
Into the Breach – turn based puzzle game. In my first attempt at this game I crashed and burned on the first island. But my second attempt was so unbelievable. One by one I made my way through the islands, without any knowledge of what was to come, getting by by the skin of my teeth every single time. And yet somehow we kept on surviving. And I managed to defeat every island and the final battle! It is one of my proudest gaming moments to date. I got the game free on Epic but immediately bought it on sale for the Switch once I’d finished. Absolutely blown away by the complexity of the simplicity of this game. It scratched the Xcom itch I was having in its own way and it’s something that I will hopefully jump back into for many years, because that first win is definitely just the beginning!
Man of Medan – horror narrative game. I’m a huge fan of the ‘interactive movie’ style games like the Quantic Dream games and of course Until Dawn, although I am not a horror fan. I played this on Shared Story mode with a friend. We were on voice chat when we were together, then muted when our paths divided. I went in to this game with low expectations and I was so surprised how much it blew me away. I feel that although the game may not be under-rated (yes it is not the longest, it can be janky at times etc), it is severely under appreciated. The experience that we had isn’t something that could be achieved on any other medium. Last year I went searching for good co-op games and honestly the results were a bit disappointing. These games are being bold and trying things that have never been done before, and I really really hope the mediocre reception doesn’t put them off trying some more because I feel like we experienced the game the way they intended and it was an absolutely awesome experience that I 100% want to see more of. To top it off this was just totally my brand of horror.
Contradiction: Spot the Liar – murder mystery fmv game. This is the longest fmv game that I’ve played and it was very enjoyable. It took me a little while to see the first Contradiction, but after that it got my detective juices flowing, and now I just see in contradictions. It is very British, very campy and Jenks is a treasure. I am very interested in video so it was really interesting to me to see how they made the game, and it was also just a fun, daft murder mystery. I think my biggest complaint is that I felt there were a lot of questions left unanswered.. I would kind of love a sequel.
Her Story – murder mystery fmv game. I’ve had this one in my library for a while and finally decided to play it after Contradiction left me wanting more fmv. It is a one sitting game and it was quite a rollercoaster. I loved the way you are just free to conduct your own investigation. I got quite a big reveal early on, but that was only the tip of the iceberg as there are plenty of other avenues of questions to go down to try and figure out what actually happened. This game is is polar opposite in tone and gameplay to Contradiction, and this one actually haunted my thoughts a little for a few days after. I decided to 100% it and there is a really neat in game trick to be able to see all of the videos without too much trouble. The thing I like about it the most is that even with all of the answers, you can continue to ponder and there are still multiple theories that make sense. The more I think about it, it is masterful storytelling.
Oxenfree – spooky, coming of age, narrative, adventure game. Another game I missed out on and I’m glad I have now caught up on. I had heard that it was spooky but I wasn’t prepared for just how spooky it was going to be at times. I got goose bumps multiple times and I think that was cause by two things. One was the sudden change in tone. Half of the game gives off these chill, carefree vibes that makes you forget that this is actually a horror game. The second is the great great sound design. There were parts I didn’t like – like when characters would talk over each other – but one of the main features of the game is a radio, and the use of audio was just super. At first I was a bit overwhelmed by the dialogue system but I got used to it pretty quickly. I did lose my patience a couple of times when certain characters just would not stop talking, but there are people like that in real life too. While I think it’s a shame that I didn’t really get attached to the characters – some of them were just downright awful – I appreciated other things that I took from the game, like how it made me feel inspired by how unique it is, and made me want to pursue my own projects. Finally, I found the ending to be slightly disappointing, just in a way that I didn’t feel like it came together as well as I’d hoped, and it didn’t leave us with a good mystery like Her Story did. Oh, I also really liked the art style, and the whole atmosphere was excellent.
That’s my January list, I have also dabbled back into ESO for the first time in years which has been fun, and finally picked Dragon Age: Origins back up. For February I’m aiming to play Concrete Genie, Night in the Woods, Uncharted 3, and a game that I just realised is already making me break my patient rule, but I do already own it so I don’t really feel like waiting. If anyone read that thanks, just waiting for the sleep to arrive and had a lot of thoughts. Would love to hear people’s opinions on the games above, especially if you’ve just played them for the first time recently!
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