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Juicy Realm is an action shoot em up roguelike over 4 biomes where you have to blast your way through waves of fruit and veg along with some other edibles trying to make your way to find out why all these fruit have become sentient and are at war with humanity.

It’s easy to make comparisons to the binding of Isaac and enter the gungeon, and these similarities aren’t entirely unjustified although the gameplay in this game is room to room rather than being over a procedurally generated floor, and the variety of floors and enemies at least at time of review is rather limited. Don’t put this against the game though as the binding of Isaac first started with a small selection of bosses and enemies and as the game became more popular more and more was added to the game to play on the variety and make sure replayability remained at the top of the agenda.

There are a few things to unlock beginning with additional gameplay characters, but also mid point bonuses between realms that aid you such as the gun shop and the upgrade store from defeating the first two bosses of the game, I’m unsure if there are further unlockables due to the fact that anything you unlocked is not stated or shown in any way and you simply have to discover that you’ve unlocked the extra playable characters on your own, there may be more added to the game as time progresses but even as it stands now it’s a very playable game and very approachable.

I would suggest if you’re an experienced gamer to start on the hardest difficulty if you want to get the most out of the game as it might be a little easier than you would expect but don’t take this as a negative because this game might have been designed for a younger audience with the colourful fruit and veg enemies and the easy gameplay mechanics without complex and numerous varieties of combinations of powers and weaponry.

It is worth considering that the bosses are also very unique each with their own mechanics to be dispatched, with a watermelon who has a hide too thick to be pierced naturally that you have to stun him with explosives and expose his soft innards in order to defeat him, and the method to take down all the bosses have their own mechanics you have to master and learn in order to progress.

The characters themselves have their own powers and unique abilities so they are different to simply cosmetic choices although the main path to victory is finding the best weaponry on your run and ensuring you keep your ammunition and health at suitable enough levels to defeat the game.

Every run in the game traverses four worlds each with their own boss and the length of a run tends to be under an hour of gameplay from start to win even on the hardest difficulty which feels about the right game length especially if they wanted to consider adding daily runs with high scores or fastest times, although the level and enemy variety might want a little adjustment if they were to consider adding such a feature so that runs feel a lot different, but you can understand that there are set groups of enemies in each world and those are the ones that you will always encounter and this isn’t an expensive game and adding such features and variety would take up a lot more work and really require the game to be more expensive than it is, so taking the game as it stands and at the price they ask for the game it’s very reasonable and a game worth a purchase for sure, and if you’re unfamiliar with this style of game it’s a great entrance into the genre as very much a roguelight with some very unique and fun gun styles, and remains a fun action blaster to fight your way through to win.

The storyline could come or go especially as the end of the run seems a little anticlimactic and like the whole lore was pointless and remains unexplained throughout, or like there’s more to be added beyond the dark forests at the end. You won’t be buying the game for the story however, you’ll be playing it for the gameplay and the fun you’ll get out of it and you’ll have fun blasting all the fruit with all of the weaponry available as you discover how to defeat the bosses and work your way to your first victory.

Check out juicy realm for yourself on steam at https://store.steampowered.com/app/732370/Juicy_Realm/

Copy kitty is a modern retro action platformer from nuclear strawberry, having spent 7 years in development you can see how much effort has been put into getting this game right at every stage of the game from the sheer weapon variety, through the the many and varied bosses throughout the game.

This game stands out so much that I don’t hesitate to say you must own this game because not only is it a bargain at the price and you’ll get many hours of enjoyment out of it but there are elements that stand out above and beyond any other game in the genre. Many games with projectile weapons tend to be very limited in what they provide, whereas this game has the unique ability of combining many of the basic elements into what seems like hundreds of very different weapons from basic splitting and exploding weapons to super powered swords all of which vary depending on what elements you combine while also having solo weapons that can’t be combined.

The developers seem to have been quite clever getting guest developers in to design the boss battles, this not only helps make sure the boss battles feel very unique and different in style from the rest of the game and other battles, but also ensures you can include some special unique weapons for these battles also. Most developers would tend to have essentially reskinned versions of the same boss throughout with slightly different weaponry and fighting styles but the same repeating evil boss which can add to the identity of an evil you follow throughout the game trying to foil, like bowser or dr robotnik (also known as eggman) and this isn’t missed out entirely in this game either as a repeating miniboss half way through each stage inevitably becomes a greater evil towards the end and holds a following evil that gets more powerful everytime you defeat it, shadowing your copy ability in many ways.

There are two different playable characters and every effort seems to have been made to ensure they both play very differently to ensure much larger replayability when going through the same levels, in relation sonic vs knuckles did have a clever feature where knuckles was able to break through the walls and traverse a very different path through the game eventually leading to different levels and a different ending pioneering branching path’s in the genre this game does stick to the same pathing however because both characters feel very different you might not notice the similarities. Boki essentially is grounded but can gain access to special vehicles at times and has the ability to combine up to three powers together to create very varied and ultra powerful weapons whereas savant only has the ability to combine two powers together and is constrained to shooting them from his coding box. He varies by his ability to fly throughout the level and that his coding box is always separate from him so navigating the level and where your projectiles fire from becomes a bigger challenge throughout the game, also depending on which order you combine the weapons creates a very different outcome.

Another way that savant’s abilities vary is that the way his weaponry combines creates very different projectiles and weapons to what boki would create with the same weaponry, and these differences will make the playthrough feel very different without taking into account the fact that the storyline elements are different when playing through as boki and savant.

Separate to the main quest there is also an “endless” mode where you have to try and defeat 100 waves of enemies which become ever more difficult as you progress with only one life, and includes separate combination bosses to the original game and a hidden secret world unlockable by defeating a specific enemy within this mode. The difficulty of this challenge alone will add many more hours of gameplay to the game and you’ll be wanting to play more so it’s not an unwelcome addition to the game, and if that isn’t enough if you’re feeling up for a true challenge there’s not only harder versions of the main quest but there’s a marathon mode where you can play through the main campaign with only one lifebar and see if you can defeat the entire game without ever leaving it which would be a true challenge considering how many hours of gameplay the game itself has.

A final thought on the art style of the game, where many retro styled games would go down the route of saving graphics going 8 bit ignoring the fact that many retro games actually had very high res cute styles, this game creates a good balance between the high res and low res worlds with enemies having great art styles and very varied natures and looks while the world around can tend to be lower resolution much like the “simulation” world you’re stated to be in, of course it goes beyond this with the inclusion of a glitch world as a nod and homage to old games which would often glitch out and create obscure unintended elements, this game uses it to traverse from the simulation to what may indeed be a different reality in a different dimension which you may or may not be invading and defeating the boss to perhaps free savant from being locked in a simulated prison depending on how you take the storyline. I like that there does seem to be a hidden alternative ending if you give up to the final boss this is a clever feature, and when you’ve traversed the glitch world the nature of the universe seems a lot more realistic, and if you unlock the bonus world the nature of the way the game ends there certainly asks a lot more questions over the nature of the reality of the simulation.

I can’t wait for a sequel to this game, however you may have to wait a long time for this because of how long this took to develop. That being said with more funding and income from the sale of this and the essential ground work already in place a sequel may be able to come far quicker than another 7 year wait but even if it takes so long I’m sure it’ll be worth the wait indeed.

All of these features, with the great variance of gameplay and elements between the worlds and throughout the entire game and for a fantastic price is why this game has earnt an indelacio star, an award that only goes to something that is truly exceptional and goes above and beyond expectations. If you want a very fun and varied action platformer with great gameplay and a fun and cute storyline then this is the game for you and I would suggest everyone should own this.

Get copy kitty for yourself on steam at https://store.steampowered.com/app/349250/Copy_Kitty/

Peregrin is a narrative driven story with puzzles and synchronized turn based combat throughout. The game itself took me around 3 hours to complete, and whilst having a nice story the puzzles and combat felt a little constrained.

The game itself revolves around a post apocalyptic world where you play a girl on a quest to explore an area that takes away the memories of those who venture into it to discover and hopefully put right whatever caused the world to fail as it stands. You have taken on this quest as one of the few with the ability to take control of creatures and this is how you not only solve the puzzles of the game but also succeed in the combat scenes.

The puzzles of the game involve the possession of three native creatures, a troll who can pick up heavy objects and also heavily weigh down buttons, a bull like creature who can bash objects and bridges around, and a frog who can carry attraction points of creatures and tnt as well as trigger switches from a distance, and through a combination of possessing the various creatures and activating the totems which amplify your control ability and in essence create the area you can navigate the creatures around you have to solve the puzzles to allow you to progress to the next area’s. This is interlaced with combat scenes against native elementals, however the combat scenes are very constrained, often only allowing you to take control of one specific enemy which you then use to take down enemies creating shields and follow a very obvious combat direction which destroys any replayability to the game as well as potential to fail and experiment in combat which would also add to the game length, add to this the fact that the creatures puzzles is also very constrained with what you can do I felt a little let down where the game had so much potential and a promising premise that the actual gameplay elements were so restricted that in essence you were playing a very on rails experience.

The puzzle elements have very specific places you can move objects and they haven’t allowed for you to place things in an incorrect area or to really fail at the puzzles so for the most part these weren’t too much of a challenge to an experienced puzzler and it would have been nice to have more options on where to place objects and more ability to fail in these aspects.

The combat as stated through most of the game restricted which enemies you can select often to only one enemy that it became no question what you should do in order to progress and to fail in the combat would be more of a challenge than succeeding, unless you were planning on playing through without the obviously signposted possession mechanic as perhaps there are ways to defeat the battles without possessing any enemies but it was so signposted that this was what you must do that you couldn’t fail in most instances, and I didn’t fail in combat until chapter 5 the final chapter where the mechanic had changed slightly to possess then attack then possess and perhaps if there had been more variation and more choice in enemies the challenge might have been more enjoyable but I was left constantly feeling restricted and that it should open up at any second and allow me to fail and make my own decisions in combat but this never really opened up the gameplay as much as I expected.

All in all it was an enjoyable experience, the story did make some references at times to things abi had encountered which were never actually visible on the screen and never signposted, including where she references how she’s stopped counting the steps when it never gets mentioned that she is counting her every step, also it implies that she was given a seed that eventually becomes a branch or a tree and implies a much longer time passing than you will experience but this isn’t overtly explained in the storyline.

The ending of the game does perhaps allow for dlc to explore all of the other quests who had previously attempted this adventure and perhaps activated the four previous monoliths and satisfied the steps necessary previously for abi to succeed in her own adventure as nobody alone could atone for what had passed. However the ending also provides a secondary story for the entire game told from a more scientific point of view where you had played the faith side and followed a storyline of that nature.

All this being said I would still say the game is a fun experience and worth playing, however the £11 price tag might be a little high and for what you get it might be more reasonable to pay £8 as the replayability is definitely effected because of just how constrained the puzzles and combat is that you would only play again if you had planned to run speedruns of the game, and I note that at least one combat scene can be completely skipped and simply walked around.

The story is touching and emotional and combines science and faith as well as consequences for humanity reaching too far and being too greedy for what really I don’t understand why people desire so much, without spoilers. And the main enjoyment of the game is going to come from keeping your eyes out and discovering the storyline as it progresses and putting together the mystery of what happened, and it would be nice if some of the things stated to have been found could be seen beforehand even as a brief mention, and if you could perhaps go back at the risk of spending too much time and failing entirely in your quest because you must press onwards and complete your journey without looking back at the risk of losing all of your memories, but these don’t take away from the enjoyment too much just a few nice touches that could have been added.

Check out peregrin for yourself on steam now store.steampowered.com/app/573080/Peregrin/

Also available on green man gaming at https://www.greenmangaming.com/games/peregrin/?tap_a=1964-996bbb&tap_s=4707-cadadd

On a whim I decided to take a gamble on one of the loot boxes on green man gaming, they were fairly cheap and at essentially 50p per game I thought it was worth a little gamble and I got a pretty good win out of it as titanfall 2 is noted to be one of their lucky prizes and although it’s for sale on the green man gaming site for £50 it’s a lot cheaper on origin itself and discounted so it’s worth bearing that in mind if you’re planning on purchasing it but for the £3.50 gamble I think I did pretty well out of it.

Bear in mind that if you’re taking the gamble yourself that keys are random and what I got isn’t guaranteed what you’ll get and could be on any of the platforms listed and I did pretty well to get mostly games I didn’t already have too only getting one duplicate, but as duplicates go it’s not a bad game to get another copy of, you can’t guarantee anything you will win and you could get a cheap game or one with terrible reviews there’s absolutely no guarantee of the games but you’ll probably get at least one thing reasonable and worth the cost of the gamble so that’s what convinced me to go ahead with it, and who knows you could get lucky and get that $500 credit prize, I got titanfall 2 so pretty reasonable as prizes go.

Titanfall 2 obviously the main prize and a first person shooter, but it’s an origin only game

Toybox Turbo’s is a casual driving game a lot like micro machines and by codebusters so pretty good quality assured

Ballistick is a fun looking cheap stickman game that you might be able to get pretty cheap in a summer sale but still looks reasonably fun considering I got it cheap anyway

Post Master looks like a sim city style strategy game and I would have to play it to give my opinions on it but at 50p not so bad a risk

CTU Counter terrorism unit has some pretty bad reviews, but considering I got it at maybe 95% discount it’s probably worth the price

Vive Le Roi looks a pretty fun and cute puzzle platformer and is fairly cheap naturally and considering the price I paid I’m not going to complain for winning it.

Action Alien is the last game I won in the gamble and looks like a bit of a serious sam clone, would have to play it to get the feel of it, might not be bad and for the 50p price I got it for I’m sure I’ll get the price value out of it for enjoyment.

Those were the games I got in my gamble and I’m fairly happy with what I got on the whole, some games I’d enjoy and a major prize and those that maybe weren’t the most ideal are probably still not too bad for the price, so why not take a gamble yourself maybe you’ll get something pretty decent and maybe you’ll discover some fun looking games you’ve never heard of before like I did, some of which are newish games too. The pack can be anything though and that’s why I’d like to hear what you get out of the loot box if you do take a gamble, either way it’s a cheap game bundle just that what you will get is completely unknown and a mystery.

Get a green man gaming loot box for yourself at https://www.greenmangaming.com/games/level-7-loot-box/?tap_a=1964-996bbb&tap_s=4707-cadadd

Antihero is a turn based strategy game based in the victorian times where gangs of thieves and street urchin’s could rule the streets and has a cute storyline to go along with the art style as well as a fairly easy to pickup play system that makes the game fun and enduring.

The main campaign as it stands seems to act more as a tutorialisation for the game where you would spend the majority of your time in the online multiplayer having honed your skills on the streets against the AI and mastered the basics of the skill tree and play styles, while the campaign does a good job of introducing new elements and varying up the missions with some alternate victory conditions in locations where for example you have to infiltrate your enemies base with 12 urchins, or when there are map specific victory points such as infiltrating ships to steal their cargo and holding them through the enemies turn.

For the most part the gameplay is fairly standardised, where you have a base level master thief and your skill tree has three options the first being to be able to recruit urchins and infiltrate the location always opposite your guild that gives you more lanterns per turn to use on the skill tree and this is usually the correct first option, on some missions it might be ideal to get an early gang and take out an npc so you can get ahead of the curve with the individual gang upgrades where every kill they obtain allows them to level up either the money they earn on a kill, the damage they can do or the number of urchins they can evict from a building, and obviously this is where the strategy element comes in and how you wish to take down your opponent, what you choose ultimately effects what you can also unlock next turn.

The skill tree alone isn’t the only strategy you have to take into consideration, and also if you lack any smart move or need a little urgent cash you can choose some charity instead of an upgrade to get an extra couple of lanterns for future upgrades or emergency gold to get that unit you desperately need right away. All units tend to have a single move of their own, with urchins infiltrating buildings, gangs evicting and beating down opponents and npcs, and thugs either guarding the map blocking progress or joining gangs to level up their hp. Through all of this and scouting with your master thief the aim is to control as much of the map as possible and take as many specialist buildings as possible to maximise your chances of victory.

Victory points ultimately come in three forms, firstly through blackmailing the church this will always be three urchins in specific buildings, the second is to bribe officials with lanterns and the third is through assassination contracts that spawn on the map and move around, bribes and contracts become harder as you go along in significant ways which mean getting in their first is usually ideal as victory points will become harder and harder to get. Some maps have special victory points which add variety to the game, such as taking and holding guard towers to enable the crown jewels to be stolen for victory points, stealing masks from around the map to enable infiltration to a large party in order to steal their valuables, and also infiltration of a boat in order to steal the goods and hold the boat during your opponents turn while you offload the goods.

Ultimately the main story is a little short, I only had to replay one of the later missions once, and as a result it took me around 3.5 hours to complete the entire campaign on normal difficulty. There was a little cliffhanger that suggests the main story would be continued and I assumed this would be through the book club dlc however this seems to be purely cosmetic online avatars, however don’t rule out that they could make an expansion with some map specific goals and perhaps two levels per character, for example sherlock holmes could theoretically be attempting to solve a murder and you would have to gather the clues from houses and locations before he does and submit the evidence to the police headquarters for victory points, all while avoiding jack the ripper (or moriarty) assassinating randomly at intervals some character on the board which could include your urchins, gangs or thugs, or even incapacitating your master thief for a turn. Alice could be in a hurry to attend the mad hatters tea party, and the table sits a number of guests each victory point, increasing in guest size per party where one random lucky guest wins a victory point and on her secondary mission you must team up with the queen of hearts to take her head and provide thugs and gang members to the queens army to help capture her (and take her head), scrooge and tiny tim might play on the same map and where scrooge would have unlimited gold and no urchins tiny tim would be poor but have unlimited street control, where victory would be a challenge to take them both down together, before they team up on a secondary map where scrooge has given all his wealth away but ultimately still holds all points on the map to begin with where you have to take the city back and I’m sure they could add enough references to the ghosts of christmas past, present, future and bill murray.

Obviously these are just a few suggestions they could implement to include these characters, the last getting pretty obsurd but it would be nice to have an expansion to the main storyline, and it does seem like they left it on a cliffhanger where they intend to continue the story, but for the most part this game will ultimately live or die by it’s online games and obviously as a new release it’s hard to judge by the online at present as depending on how well the game is taken up and how well it sells will determine how successful the title is, the game is robust and fun, not too challenging to pick up so it’s fairly easy to get into and have fun with and the skill tree is pretty well thought out, it’s not over saturated and when you ultimately need something it’s always fairly easy to work towards and get hold of especially the special characters which can turn the tides of the match like the sisters and the truant officer. Getting them free with an upgrade definitely strategises when to purchase and the threat of the saboteur is fairly real as not only can he take all of your master thiefs actions away he can also keep those expensive units on the field to be taken out without ever getting to be used.

All in all the game is very well designed it plays well and there aren’t too many things to worry about as it could be very easy to oversaturate the game with complex mechanics, they keep it fairly simple with the power of threes, there are three victory points (with bonus map specific ones) each that get harder as the game progresses, units purchased on that turn become more expensive to strategise when to purchase, and there are three skill tree’s to progress through and it’s rare you ever complete a skill tree fully in fact I never have. Furthermore there are three basic characters all with a single action, the urchin to infiltrate buildings to gain resources and victory points, thugs to hold board control and bolster gangs, and gangs to evict urchins and defeat enemies. There are then three support roles which have a single use, the truant officer who can fully evict a building of all urchins immediately, the sabateur who can trap a building for two turns stunning whoever triggers the trap leaving them on the field, or taking all the master thiefs actions for the turn, and the sisters who can deal 6 points of damage immediately.

There are a few minor gripes that you will have to put up with, firstly when you’ve got your actions down and you know exactly what you’re going to do you may feel the animations are holding you back from playing as quickly as you would be able to if they didn’t happen but you have to accept that this is important because in online play you will need to see the animations to see what your opponent is doing on their turn so disabling such animations would make online play essentially impossible and not strategic, the second is sometimes it isn’t so clear you have to double click your upgrade option in the skill tree especially when you know exactly what you’re getting and what you want it might be nice to be able to just have the one click purchase as it seems a little odd to confirm throughout the entire game when you’ve got a handle on what all the upgrades do and you’re upgrading the skill tree fairly automated and perhaps miss that you should’ve confirmed after selecting, but it’s only a minor gripe.

I like the game and I hope they add an expansion to the single player story soon, and I will continue to look at the online multiplayer and probably bring you some combat video’s soon, ultimately they have added a casual online multiplayer option but in strategy games like this I personally don’t enjoy playing out waiting days for an opponent to take their turn as you’re out of the moment and out of the match and ultimately won’t play and enjoy the title as much and can make some fairly glaring mistakes you might not have made whilst in the heat of the moment, I can’t say whether this will hurt or help the online mode as on one hand some people may just opt for casual matches if they can’t find online matches, and on the other if there wasn’t a casual mode people could abandon the online play altogether if they can’t find a match.

Ultimately I will say if you’re buying this you’re probably buying it to play online as at present the main campaign is very short, but the game is good and definitely makes a good online turn based strategy game which is different to anything on offer presently, and games do feel just about the right length of time so you’re not tied in for hours in a single match the balance is just right and keeps it fun.

Check out antihero for yourself on steam, it’s a fun strategy game and worth a play http://store.steampowered.com/app/505640/Antihero/

Some games I wanted to play but didn’t do a full series on, more and more games will be added to this playlist with one off gameplay video’s so if you want to check out the links to the games you’ll have to go to the individual video for that game, however this playlist will show off many games which perhaps have more simplistic gameplay that wouldn’t need showing in a full review, or just some games I have got in bundles in the past or just something I want to show off a little without playing a full series on the game.

Check out the playlist for yourself at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLQSi3zjTHLGIHM8tVt7-9xsfOS2oCScEW

Games are added to my steam curator page over at https://store.steampowered.com/curator/6860437/ feel free to follow over there to see when deal’s on these games are available on steam.

Othello is a board game translated to steam, also known as reversi, it involves playing on a board of black and white stones which can be flipped as you play your pieces to flip every one of your opponents pieces between where you place your stone and any connecting stones of your colour on diagonal and straight lines, and you have to strategically place your pieces in order to end up with the most of your colour stones at the end of the game to win.

The game is noted to be easy to learn but take a lifetime to master as strategies constantly develop and while it is easy to pick up in order to defeat the better players you have to adapt and learn new strategies. There are AI modes with sometimes unfair computer opposition as well as online ELO rated matches and local play options so you can play this either against people online or as a friendly local game with just one copy of the game.

There are a few glitches I have noticed in that sometimes the game will allow opponents to take turns when it isn’t their turn or you to take double turns, and sometimes even place the wrong coloured piece and glitch the game entirely by the board somehow flipping pieces which were unflippable as though someone tampered with the board while you were away. This is a little unfortunate especially in an elo rated game, but I have reported these issues to the developers and hopefully they will be resolved and removed so that the game can be enjoyable without faults.

Another problem is the timing, while you can set games to be 1 minute, to an hour in integers the timer doesn’t start until your opponent joins the game and if this happens while you are away waiting for someone to join they can time you out and you will automatically lose in between, and the fact that you only then have the option of 1 day or 7 days and no timings between mean you can be waiting up to 7 days for your opponent to make a move when perhaps you would like to limit it to 2 days, although live play is more fun catching someone online while the game is relatively new is difficult.

The problem is that this is a board game, and while it is fun and enjoyable the market is obviously going to be smaller than in other games available on steam, so it might take a while to build up games to a level that there are abundant games so you can always setup a game and enjoy a live match, but it is still enjoyable over a timed basis longer than this just waiting for days and perhaps forgetting as a result of the wait can be an issue for me.

Other than these faults which can be easily enjoyed it is good to have a reversi game on steam for times when I’m not feeling like playing something major, and in university I always used to play reversi that came with xp, however latest windows versions lack this game so having a steam version becomes an essential if you’ve always enjoyed the game. I would also suggest that perhaps other layouts like in battle panel in ergheiz could be a fun variation for starters in the game, opening up to new strategies and evolving gameplay beyond the traditional 4 square central beginning, but who is to say if this will be taken up.

Either way if you enjoy reversi this is the game for you as now you can play it again, and rank up your elo against other players on steam.

Get othello on steam now (also known as reversi) at http://store.steampowered.com/app/307430

Woven is a story driven point and click adventure game around a metalic flying creature which finds itself thrown into a woolen world where there is an immediate bond of friendship with stuffy, a toy elephant of sorts and the two of you set out exploring the world and meeting new creatures and finding new colour patterns along the way.

Narrated much in the style of dr seuss the quest is narrated along the way, with rhymes of the chronicles unfold while you play. Yes that was intentional, so you can see what I mean with the rhyming and it is definitely intended for a younger audience and it is nice to see a friendly colourful world to explore and a good setting for a game for children as most of the games you see released these days tend to be much more adult and action packed where this is definitely an adventure for the younger audience, and a good way to play and learn with each animal part having it’s own skillset to solve mild puzzles in order to progress and based on a disneyesque theme with mild danger and dark elements not too scary for a younger player but enough to add a motion of tension and excitement to exploring the colourful world.

The game is still in kickstarter phase and as a result not fully developed, but essentially as it stands the story revolves around discovering why the metal creatures are invading the woolen lands and what this might ultimately hold for our two characters each with their own skill sets and learnable abilities.

There is a demo available on the kickstarter page and there isn’t long left, I was hoping to have my better pc in time to get better footage but there were problems and that had to be sent back, but check out the page there for updates and more information about the goals and what you can get for your funding of the project.

I think it’s nice to see something aimed at the younger market in modern times and would be an ideal game for a younger child as a first game perhaps, learning about animals as well as being entertaining but hopefully not too scary, saying that disney/pixar movies themselves these days have scarier concepts at times so this should be no more of a worry than any of those.

Support the kickstarter for woven at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1355836783/woven-solve-puzzles-by-reknitting-your-character

Human Fall Flat is a physics based puzzler in which you take control of bob, a morph like character who you can paint to any theme or meme you desire as you explore the 8 dreamscapes of the game. Obvious similarities have to be noted to gang beasts and your character as the control and shape of the main character are obvious however where gang beasts is a multiplayer adversarial brawl in human fall flat the objective is to make your way to the emergency exit through any means at your disposal, and while there are obvious laid out paths with a little human ingenuity there are a plethora of intended and unintentional ways to progress through the game.

Since the alpha two extra levels have been added along with an expansion on the castle level along with additional plans to add steam workshop functionality which could lead to unlimited dreamscapes and puzzles as well as the possibility to create your own scenario’s, even without this though the main game itself will take around 6-7 hours in a single playthrough so if you go through a few times having fun experimenting and exploring the different area’s and ways to solve the puzzles there is a lot of replayability in the game, and if you have the capability there is local co-op as you can take control of an extra bob along with a friend which adds even more ways in which you could get around the obstacles that stand before you.

Each dreamscape has it’s own theme both in the level design and the methodology in which you can solve the puzzles, with simple box and button puzzles, manipulation of platforms, levers and switches along with brick walls to knock down! and even electronically themed levels with batteries and vehicles to drive. The range of items and solutions also means that steam workshop compatibility will allow for any creative idea to be realized due to the diverse range of puzzle items available for use in the gameworld with little difficulty.

If you want to create your own bob however this can be a time consuming process depending on how clean you want the final look to be as lining up paint jobs without accidentally painting on another surface can be a little difficult, and if you don’t have a good webcam, especially if you try to use an android cam service putting your own face on bob might not be as ideal as if they had the ability to simply upload a photo and resize this to fit bob’s face, but with a little human determination you can make this work, my personal second bob did take 2 hours to get right and still didn’t match what I would have liked for facial clarity!

Other features include adventure mode upon completion of a level however this is currently not as intended as bob will be unconscious on the floor while you move the camera around which doesn’t allow you to make mini-sodes much like on the remote control’s as bob lays sleeping on the job rather than moving with a dynamic camera and not even attempting to spawn a second character fixes this issue at present, but the developer is still working on some features and there may be more that happen in the future that aren’t available at the time of release of this review, but without all of these the game is a very fun game, even in a second playthrough finding new things and still enjoying traversing the levels again I can definitely recommend a purchase especially if you like what you see as there is a lot more fun in playing the game than simply watching someone else play.

Get Human Fall Flat on steam now at http://store.steampowered.com/app/477160 with a launch retail price of £12

Life is strange episode 5 Polarized has been out for a while now and did polarize people in many ways with some hating the whole series as a result of how the game ended and some still loving the overall theme despite how it ended, however many seem to have missed the possible explanations for why and how things have gone as crazy as they did in the final episode through the natural plot progression.

This review will contain heavy spoilers so I would advise simply buying the game and checking it out for yourself if you wish to avoid these spoilers, however if you have played and completed the game or don’t mind spoilers feel free to read on, in the meantime you can find the game at http://store.steampowered.com/sub/56692/

Episode 5 begins in a natural position captured by jefferson waking up from being drugged at the end of the last episode and attempting escape, it is worth noting how jefferson establishes that max has this way of staring blankly into space as though daydreaming perhaps as she always has and how under his drugged state allows her to fall into her daydreams feeling them to be real, and how the entire game has been max’s way of escaping what has really happened to her. There are many points in this episode where she “escapes” the dark room by focusing on photo’s to enter their timeline and enact changes allowing her to escape, however in a drug induced state these could easily be explained away as a daydream especially as in every instance within the game no matter what she ends up back in the dark room with jefferson even when reality had no way to establish her ending up there poorly explained as jefferson burning her photo album, however this was in a halted timeline so having escaped and not been his victim this should never have occurred unless she never escaped the room other than in her mind.

Max does initially manage to escape to a perfect possible reality in which she has won the everyday heroes competition, where the other entries in the gallery are more heroic themed photo’s like firefighter’s, people training for running, pets etc, however max’s wall of selfies somehow wins the competition perhaps simply for being award winning jefferson’s prize student, or as it is max’s delusion of true happiness of course she won the competition, however a nosebleed quickly reminds her that arcadia bay is doomed and she cannot stay in this reality. These nosebleeds continue in the darkroom with jefferson noting how it must be a result of using too high a dosage of the drugs to incapacitate her and leave her malleable. Don’t forget that in previous episodes in the rewind you can hear voices stating to “stay with me max” as though she is dying and attempted to be coaxed back to life.

To save chloe once more she rips up her prize winning photo, which she had always ripped up in the original timeline before “altering” thing’s with her powers in order to save chloe’s life in the first place, her childhood best friend who she had not had a chance to reconnect with since returning to town, who’s death in the original place may have lead her to investigate the situation in a similar manner to the main game plot but on her own and to investigate why nathan shot her and the unraveling plot from there leading to her inevitable kidnap by jefferson for snooping.

So why do I believe she is still in the dark room and always has been? There have been far too frequent opportunities throughout the entire game to “sit” at every opportunity as though it is a common theme that you’re always sat down in thought, and while jefferson was photographing you he kept the dose rather low, but at this scene just prior to “escaping” he notes how it will be the final time she will have to listen to one of his lectures knowing it will be the last time she is conscious and alive. It is at this point when she has the needle to her neck that miraculously she is saved by chloe’s stepdad cop, and being heavily induced by the sudden drug overdose she enters the storm itself attempting to save the residents of arcadia bay on the way to the diner to see warren in order to be able to save chloe, however altering the timeline on this occasion doesn’t result in escape or reality forming to her will instead she awakes back in the classroom again, with jefferson wanting her to say how chloe deserved to die, how her selfies are shit etc and max’s subconscious states how she doesn’t want to say any of the options provided however her drug induced compliant state means she has to make one of those options before she can leave the classroom which itself has reminders that max is in fact “dead” already, and after getting out of the classroom she enters the corridors of her dorm (and perhaps symbolic of her mind and memories) with kate talking like jefferson’s puppet stating how max was responsible for her death and everything that happened to her as though he is roleplaying her or saying these things to her on the floor as she slips away as jefferson had liked kate as his new muse and felt max’s interfering prevented him taking it further.

After a few crazy corridors with the facts of rachel, haunted memories of victoria and her own life and time’s flashing through as selfies on the wall the drugs overdose really starts to kick in with time flowing backwards while max moves forwards and everything being woozy before everything goes dark and she’s hiding from a plethora of jefferson’s coming to hunt her down and take her back to the dark room, now unfortunately she follows the symbolism that escaping the light is staying alive, perhaps as he flashes a flashlight across her eyes checking if she’s alive or even the possibility that someone has discovered her body perhaps on the side of the road where she begin’s the game attempting to revive her, but rather than go into the light and awake she hides from everyone and everything following the road to the lighthouse at the end of the tunnel, which if she was actually going into the light could be considered holding onto life but she does avoid it at every turn sticking to the dark. There is an optional bottle hunting mission here which can even be accidentally skipped without realizing, perhaps symbolic of your own torture trying to find that fifth bottle in the first place! However you once again return to the familiar seated position, where if you escaped and examined your chair you will note max “still feels the bind’s” as though she never escaped and was still tied up in that chair in that dark room.

Reality begins to unravel further as the drugs take further hold, as you find yourself escaping reality within the snowglobe sat on chloe’s mantelpiece seeing yourself perform the actions you had made in the past, although knocking off the snowglobe and shattering it would have been a fitting snap from this scene transition to the next it’s not essential as max passes onto a room trying to find the combination from a million possibilities carved into the walls. If you find the combination it leads to a diner filled with all of the people significant to max with an etheric reality outside of the diner filled with all of the other meaningless souls which may have passed.

The diner is a mirror of symbolism for judgement in death, filled with all the people you’ve helped in life and those you’ve wronged to sit in judgement over your eternal soul, and you can hear the voices echo out to you some questioning why you didn’t help them and others thanking you for saving them or helping them resolve issues in their life which leads me to wonder whether there might have been a perfect possible ending to the game hidden away in which you help absolutely everyone there and turn all of the voices positive and perhaps allowing you to leave the diner and escape back into the room and take down jefferson once and for all with him being in shock at you surviving the overdose. However instead you talk to yourself the only true judge over your soul as to whether you are deemed worthy of heaven or deserve eternal damnation in hell, this perhaps is mirrored in your actual decision at the end of the game as you move on from the diner to watch the last moments with chloe you shared flash by as though your life was flashing by in the last moments before death, heading into the lighthouse at the end of the road, of course you return to a reality within the storm with chloe to face the final decision as to who to save.

The end choice here is rather a silly one and does render the entire game pointless as regardless of who you saved and what you did in the game everything is the same if you choose to save arcadia bay, you get the happy ending with everyone alive and happy, even kate regardless of whether you saved her or not. This does fly by in a flash though, with flashes of photographs quickly explaining how jefferson was taken down somehow by simply not saving chloe this resulted in him being arrested and kate never jumping! Ending on chloe’s funeral without a word being uttered as life fades away, and focusing on max’s face looking into the light perhaps happy fading away to heaven, whereas if you choose to save chloe you have doomed arcadia bay and everyone in it to utter destruction and you know that no matter what you will always be fighting to save chloe over and over never learning from your mistake as the world and universe continues to rain down destruction wherever you go hurting the lives of everyone around you and destroying the entire world for the sake of one life who never should’ve lived, truly creating hell on earth and always being in danger and with something to lose which you would always have to protect.

I do feel the ending could have gone better but if it is explained as either passing away peacefully or continuing to defy the reality of the situation as the drugs rage through your system to an inevitable painful death the crazyness at the end can be explained away, and this is the only way it leaves room for a sequel season, as if you are max again following on with the time travel abilities she knows she can’t change anything for fear of causing catastrophe’s or she fights on in a universe falling apart keeping chloe alive and neither would make a good game, however a narrative where jefferson (or someone else) has kidnapped a new victim knowing or not knowing they were kidnapped and drugged trying to come to terms with it (perhaps realizing later and actually having a chance to escape depending upon the choices made and the information gathered) could make for a good second season, and jefferson noted himself he wanted to kidnap kate again, so perhaps season 2 could focus on kate having been retaken by jefferson trying to figure out what is going on and using time travel abilities to gather the facts and attempt to wake up and escape from her inevitable fate. This would make a compelling second season and allow for different narratives and timelines and different effects and influences, as max was influenced by the stormy weather for her dreams perhaps kate or whoever is the new victim would have other thing’s going on around their delusional state.

Those who have played season 1 would also for the most part be unaware of what was going on as they took the time travel ability for granted and didn’t question the possible natures of realities within the game, so a reveal that she is kidnapped later would be a good twist to the plot and this allows for a narrative world to be established without having to be fully influenced by the factors of the first game as for the most part it was all in the delusional state of max’s mind as she slipped away inside jefferson’s dark room. If the victim was kate obviously thing’s could take on a more biblical front as she is very religious and takes influence from her experiences and thought processes, and the game could even begin with her in the hospital recovering and perhaps believing she has been granted these powers by god to change things for the better and that her life was spared for this very purpose.

Of course I am expanding and theorizing heavily on what could be coming for season two as nothing is known but simply following max would not make a compelling game it does need to be a new protagonist and with a reasonable explanation for what is happening, and in my opinion max dying in that dark room from that final overdose is the only thing that explains why the walls of reality collapse as much as they do, and the symbology used within the game at the end fits the theme’s of dying and the end of life far too well for there to be any other explanation. Go play life is strange for yourself and explore the game and experience the plot and the emotions as that is the point of a narrative game such as this, and make up your own mind as to what is going on.

The full season of life is strange is available on steam at http://store.steampowered.com/sub/56692/