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Some positivity during these “dark times” the gaming industry finds itself in

So, since the state of gaming has gone down the drain and all AAA games are shit or will be shit /s, I thought what better time than now to spread some positive vibes and share a few of my favourite, lesser-known games that deserve love and more eyes on them. Some I reviewed, and if you want to get a more in-depth look, feel free to read them.

  1. Akane – A short arena-based arcade slasher. Everyone dies in one hit, except the big chungus dudes, they die in like a couple of slices. The progression is tied to how much and the way you kill. The ones that require you to keep up a combo were super fun, but also quite challenging. My Review
  2. A Short Hike – When you see today's gaming landscape, the open-world games have their UI littered with information; An icon here, waypoint there, quest logo over there and so on. I feel like im following someone's instructions on how to play, instead of letting that sense of mystery and adventure spirit guide me. So, A Short Hike does just that. It gives you a big island to explore, and a tall mountain to climb on top of. There are no waypoints, no main quests, side quests, just encounters with many unique and interesting NPCs.
  3. Baba is You – Just wow. I don't play many puzzle games, but when I do, Baba is You. It might not be a game for everyone due to how challenging some of the later levels can get, but I loved every second of it. Finagling around with rules, breaking or making them, just to finally get that "eureka" moment; Made me feel smart and stupid at the same time. My Review
  4. Book of Demons – A weird mix of card collecting and dungeon crawling. The movement is also restricted since you walk like if you were on rails. But, when you gear up enough, and when the endgame starts, the action is fantastic and chaotic. I do wish the devs didn't add a stupid achievement like "Die 8 times in Roguelike in one run", but oh well, it can't all be perfect.
  5. Battle Chef Brigade – This is a part side-scrolling brawler, part Bejeweled puzzle game. You kill monsters to get ingredients, then cook those into some succulent dishes. No doubt my favourite part was the mixing and matching of the three different taste gems, levelling them up and getting some sick combos in the process.
  6. Chuchel – If you love nonsensical slapstick comedy, then Chuchel should be on your radar. Following the escapades of a little, very hot-headed, dust bunny, promptly named Chuchel, we see how far one would go to take back their succulent cherry. My Review
  7. Call of the Sea – A nice puzzle game, but what piqued my interest was the setting – a remote island. King Kong anyone? While not exactly brimming with giant apes, this island does hold its own fair share of secrets. My Review
  8. ClusterTruck – You jump on trucks and try to get to the finish line. Trucks collide with each other and the environment, making your life harder. I would also suggest trying to finish the game without using any powers. That was quite a fun challenge and with how fluid the movement is, there was simply never a moment of frustration.
  9. Distraint – Not much in terms of gameplay, but the story is why this game is worth your time. It tackles and explores mature themes, such as greed or regret. My Review
  10. Disc Room – I have a disc, I have a room. Uh! Disc Room. The title basically says it all. You have many rooms and many discs that are sharp and will cut you. Your goal is to find the golden disc. I liked that the rooms are short. You won't last more than 30 seconds (that's what she said gif!), nor do you need to. There are some nifty abilities, some more useful than others, but overall, a very fun game, that even has plenty of difficult customization options so you can tailor your experience however you want. My Review
  11. Desperados III – If you are like me and have played those old Commandos games, then just get this game right now. The controls are amazing, the character synergy is off the charts and the interactivity between you and the level is great. One big downside is the poor story. Like, it's really really poor. My Review
  12. DeathSpank – My all-time favourite ARPG. I just love its silly humour and meta-jokes. The gameplay is also quite fun and can be challenging during certain encounters.
  13. Deponia – A absurd point and click puzzle game. And this goes both for the story, with its many twists and turns, and the puzzles, with how quirky and unusual some solutions are. I guess it makes sense, given our main character is a "great" inventor.
  14. Existensis – This is less of a game and more of an experience. You can't do much. Jump, walk left or right, and click the interact button. But the world you explore and the everlasting question of the meaning of life that our protagonist seeks to answer are what made this journey well worth my time. My Review
  15. Framed – Look, Kojima said this was his GOTY when the game came out. That comment alone should at least warrant a look at it, no? Anyway, the goal is to create comic book panels that enact a situation in a specific way where our protagonist ends up slipping past enemies. It's all followed by an excellent jazzy soundtrack. My Review
  16. Fallen Angel – While not a superb Metroidvania, it did have its moments of fun. With recent updates, the game has many modes you can mix and match to create your very own hell in paradise. My Review
  17. My Memory of Us – A grim tale about the horrors of WW2, but coated in a fairytale-like aesthetic, and narrated by Sir Patrick Stewart himself. The gameplay is that of a side-scrolling puzzler, and I must say, each puzzle was a breath of fresh air, with no repeating.
  18. Magicka – If you have friends who love to have a fun time, call 1-800-MAGICKA for a super fun 4 player co-op game that gives you a magick staff and sets you out into the world to stop a great evil from returning.
  19. Manifold Garden – The trailers and screenshots can't do justice to this game. The soundtrack, visuals and gameplay all perfectly complement one another and deliver a superb experience. It's not the most challenging puzzle game out there unless you try and finish the game without placing a single God Cube. Now that is a true challenge without any guides. Hats off to those chads who manage to do this blind. My Review
  20. Nex Machina – So far, my only twin-stick shooter and boy is it great. The controls are precise, the movement is fluid and the action is non stop. The last level and secret boss are quite a challenge. There are four difficulties, with two that only real masters of the game can beat. Just looking at their replays I die like a thousand times.
  21. Othercide – A turn-based game with roguelike elements that requires teamwork and synergy if you wish to remove the horrors from the waking world. That teamwork gameplay is what made each encounter so fun, as is the way health is used. My Review
  22. The Coma 2 – I really don't like how most horror games nowadays are just simple P.T. or Amnesia clones. They don't try to do anything new or diverge from those two formulas. But The Coma 2 did just that. It's a 2D side-scrolling horror game, that does use those same concepts but adds its own touch to it. I especially loved the exploration and how each level is interconnected with plenty of different routes for you to take. My Review
  23. Tsugunohi – Horror and humour. Both start with H and end in R. Both are subjective. Coincidence? I don't think so. Hotel? Trivago. My Review
  24. The Mull Littoral – From the same mind that brought you Existensis, The Mull Littoral explores a far darker theme – depression. Again, expect minimal gameplay, this time in the form of point and click puzzle game. This is also a prequel to Existensis and establishes many concepts and characters you meet. My Review
  25. The Banner Saga – My first real dip into the turn-based combat genre. Personally, it's not the combat itself that drew me into this game, but its world, lore and story. It's a trilogy, and I can't wait to finally play the last entry and see how it all ends. There is also a bit of decision making and management as you try and keep your banner afloat through the arduous journey you sat out on.
  26. Wizard of Legend – A action roguelike with fun card-based gameplay. The spells you use are determined by the cards you get and you can easily mix and match with no restrictions. The action is wild, fast and bloody awesome. The boss fights are also excellent, and you can play in coop as well.

So share some "unknown" games you played and enjoyed, as gaming is more than shitty ports or half baked games.


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