Smaller games that should be tried
Costume QuestThis game captures the feeling of going Trick or Treating on Halloween night. It's an RPG lite full of charm, candy and awesome costumes. When you go door to door, you either get a person that gives candy or a monster that wants to fight. The monster encounters trigger a battle in which your ordinary costume transforms into a real version of that costume. For example, the cardboard robot costume which you start with turns into a Gundam like Mech in the battles. In order to block or dodge enemy attacks and in order to perform most of the attacks requires the completion of easy quick time events. The candy which you find, earn from battles, or get from Trick or Treating can be used to purchase battle patches. These patches are quite useful in battle. They give bonuses like increasing the damage done by your character, making it easier to block or dodge an attack, adding splash damage to all your attacks, or enabling an automatic counter-attack upon a successful block. The combat never feels like a chore or as if it's just extra padding like with most RPGs. This is most likely because most RPGs are incredibly lengthy games. Costume Quest avoided this by having a reasonably focused scope, so it ends up feeling well paced. This game is simply the best short experience that I had in any game that was released in 2010.
Greed CorpIt's a turn based strategy game on hex based tiles in layers. Resources are quite scarce and harvesting will lower the tiles around a Harvester until in falls into the abyss. The maps are usually small as this makes the task of conquering or outlasting your opponents a manageable feat. You conquer and defend tiles on the map with the Walkers built at the Armory. In order to move Walkers to tiles that aren't connected you need to use a Carrier to transport them every time. Cannons can destroy some of the enemy Walkers and lower one tile a layer or destroy critical connected tiles. Or you can self-destruct a Harvester that you control in order to send all connected critical tiles into the abyss. The game has a great short and simple tutorial which explains everything you need to know in order to play the game. The single player campaign has four difficulty settings, the higher ones are against more challenging AI opponents and a progressively stricter time limit per turn. The Freemen campaign is the easiest and has no time limit per turn. The harder difficulties are unlocked by earning conquest points on each map by outlasting your opponents. However, you don't need to earn all the conquest points in the current campaign before starting the next one at a higher difficulty. Greed Corp is a game with rules that are simple and easy to understand, yet mastery will require thinking several steps ahead of your opponents. Oddly enough, nothing is so satisfying as sending your opponent falling into the abyss below.
DroplitzThis is an addictive, yet challenging puzzle game. Rotate pieces clockwise or counterclockwise in order to create a path for the drops starting at the top of the board. However, you cannot create a path for the drops that goes against gravity. When these drops called droplitz reach a split in the path they separate. The more paths that you create to the collection segments at the bottom of the board, the higher the score multiplier. You can also opt to speed up time for a short period of time for an increase in score. If too many of the droplitz don't get collected then the droplitz will deplete and it's game over. It's simple yet can be a big hectic depending on the speed of the flow of the droplitz and the size of the board.
QuantZThe quantz are basically marbles that are placed on a three dimensional object that need to be cleared by matching like colours of quantz. Alternatively, if you surround a different colour of quantz with four other quantz, it generates an explosion. For example, four blue quantz surrounding a single yellow quantz will generate an explosion clearing the blue quantz and create a special yellow comet-like quantz that can used to clear other yellow quantz. The shadows of quantz help place the quantz where you want them. There are three modes action, strategy and puzzle. Action is most generous with the number of Quantz that it gives you to clear the object. Puzzle is the most restrictive giving you a very small number of quantz to clear the object. Only frozen quantz are fixed in place on the object, other quantz can be moved by rotating the object. Although, it is easier to shift a single quantz than other groups that are stuck together like magnets. It's a simple fun small game, but I recommend starting with action or strategy mode first.
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