Check out Forget-Me-Not, a tough as nails riff on the gameplay mechanics of the arcade games of the 80’s. It’s free on Windows and OSX and $1.99 for iOS. I bought it on the phone but didn’t like it because it’s hard to control on a touchscreen. No such difficulty with a keyboard though and you can’t beat free. Gameplay is a combo of pac man-esque pellet munching, simple shooting mechanics, and maze escape. Did I mention it’s tough? Remember – you can (and will) shoot yourself, and that’s not a good thing. Gameplay video:
Glorg is worth checking out simply on the strength of its design. It’s a minimalistic one button rpg inspired by roguelikes with great art design and music. This isn’t a deep experience, but it’s perfect for your friday lunch break. Pay attention to the timing on your mouseclicks – it’s not obvious at first that timing plays an important role. A video is below:
Super Crate Box is a windows-only blast from the past that I could imagine playing on my Atari 2600 back in the day. Collect boxes to score, shoot or avoid baddies to stay alive. The more boxes you collect, the more weapons you have access to. Frenetically paced and harder than it looks, this is a perfect friday fun link. The trailer:
Inspired by arcade games from the 80’s, Hydorah‘s a very capable riff on the classic old shootemup Gradius. It’s free, runs only on windows, and is pretty damned difficult. Definitely check it out if you grew up in the 80’s and enjoy shootemups. Here’s a video to give a sense of how it plays:
Cursed Treasure is a fantastic flash-based tower defense game with a level up system. If you’re a fan of the genre you don’t want to miss this one. It doesn’t bring anything new to the table, it’s just really well executed, has good graphics, UI, and sound, and enough depth to keep you engaged. I finished all levels with a brilliant rating. A hint: the fear power of Crypts is really powerful. I found it easiest to focus on leveling that tower type up. Also holding down shift lets you repeat actions, something that’s not obvious and which is critical to beating Ninjas with your fireball.
Graphic adventures have made something of a comeback over the last couple of years, thanks in no small part to the success of the wonderfully funny episodic Sam and Max games, but they’re still very much a niche game genre. This wasn’t always the case – back in the 80’s graphic adventures were one of the most popular genres, and one of the biggest producers of this genre was Sierra, now sadly long gone. Their games live on though, and Sarien.net is this week’s friday fun link – they have many of the classic old Sierra games from the 80’s available to play for free in your browser. If you fancy a walk down memory lane from back in the day, check them out.
Mix together Jumpman, your favorite roguelike, and some inspiration from Indiana Jones, pour it into a PC and offer it up for free and you get Spelunky, a fabulous little platformer featuring retro 8-bit style graphics, rock solid platforming controls, and procedurally generated levels that are never the same. It’s a complete blast. Check out the video below then go download your copy over on the Spelunky site. Oh, and I should note the developer’s being rewarded for his excellent work – this is coming to Xbox Live Arcade.
Today’s friday fun is Kickabout League, a browser (java) based arcade soccer game that’s great fun and evocative of old SNES soccer games of years past. It supports multiplayer and league play and it’s free, loads quick, and is super fun. Check it out! I’ve posted a video below to give a sense of how it plays:
Apparently Ferrari‘s marketing budget is so large they can afford to give away a quality racing sim for the PC to help sell their cars. I doubt anyone reading this is in a position to buy a new Ferrari, but you can make your way over to their site and register to get yourself a copy of their racing sim for free. This is not a quick knockoff, this is a quality release comparable to a commercial title you’d pay $40-60. Definitely worth checking out. Some video to give you a sense of it (fast forward a couple of minutes, the demo shows off the menu system in the beginning. The actual racing starts after a bit):
Their plan is to continue to enhance this as time passes with new tracks and cars, including historical Ferraris.