November 2012

Entropy

A game where you master lava, electricity and even time.

When I first saw this game, I went "is this Portal?" This game looks and feels like that game, except that you don’t have one-sided conversations with murderous yet snarky AI or murderous yet stupid AI.  

City Tuesday

A nod to real-life terrorism.

I tend to not gravitate toward games with too much realism. Real life is full of realism already: some good, some demoralizing bad. So many like myself turn to gaming to escape reality and find something positive in our day.

But some games bridge that in such a way that you are left having to figure the puzzle out, having to live it out because it is that engrossing. And best yet, it tackles such a topic with tact.

XenoMiner

Minecraft in space.

Heard of Minecraft? I’d be very surprised if you haven’t by now. The exceedingly popular sand box game where you can craft to your heart’s content has captivated many a gamer. Realistic renderings of other universes and real life buildings showcase the amount of time and artistic skill a very dedicated Minecraft player can get up to.

But Minecraft and its many, many clones all have one thing in common: they all take place on normal land with generally medieval tools. Pick axes, shovels, swords, touches; things that you can see someone kind of figuring out while lost in a lush jungle or wooded area. 
 
But this clone I found is not a true clone.
 

XenoMiner Release Trailer

"qrth-phyl"

I have no idea how to pronouce that.

This game is simple yet not. Strange yet not. The name made no sense to me like some computer cracking code generated the title and named said file. At first I thought this was simply a 3D version of that Centipede game that came on older PCS with minesweeper. I mean the whole changing things on a screen while avoiding colliding into your body is there.

Sententia

Defend your ideas.

I enjoy quirky games. I love games that have an engaging plot. I even enjoy the simple mindless fun or other games. But I have a special place for those games that try to give a message, that propose some ideas that can cause one to think long after the game is over. Xenosaga made you think on what constitutes life. Morality, kinship. Metal Gear Solid made you reflect on the truer costs of war. So many games try to put in a message even if that message is troubling or subversive.

But Sententia is a bit loftier than even that. Its whole premise is of one defending their very ideas from destruction. Ideas. Ideas are what everything is made up of. In order for that house to have gotten built, there had to be a plan. To have that plan, you had to have a set of ideas to help conceptualize said plan. Ideas are the backbone of creation. But ideas can easily die. Doubt, no encouragement and even having others cut it down can cause ideas to disappear.