The Day of a Ten Game Run: Block Heads and Combo Fever Part II

For the stunning conclusion to the Day of a Ten Game Run, please see this blog! For the epic beginnings, see this other blog!

Continuing on with the final six of my glorious day yesterday, this is the better portion of play I had. I'm sure everyone will be able to agree on that.

Warning Forever

Eat lead, blinky!
I can't quite remember where I heard of this title from (probably GameSpot when it was buzzing). In any case, Warning Forever caught my attention with how devious the continual onslaught of bosses are.
Let me back up just a tad. For those not familiar, Warning Forever pits you, an aerial craft, against mechanical boss after mechanical boss until you are no more. Based upon how you take each of these giants down, the next boss adjusts not only what it's equipped with (lasers, rockets, the works), but how it uses them against you. It's very hard to get two of the same bosses to appear because of how customized this variety is.
That next boss? I call him grandpa.
To some, this might sound like a formula for frustration, and I hardly doubt it can be, but for me, Warning Forever is a challenge. Who's to let a robot defeat mankind? Not I, sir.
Not I.
I must've spent at least an hour on this game, desperately trying to think of new ways to infiltrate each beast while being served lasers to the face. My hard earned efforts got me to stage 14. That's not even close to where some pros have gotten. Take a guess at what I'll be playing when I'm done writing this entry though? Which game? That's right, Cloth Demo.

Noitu Love 2: Devolution (Demo)

Pirates sailing the land. When should I expect "Every Sperm is Sacred?"
Being the cheap indie game lover that I am, I had to try out Noitu Love 2. Why do I say that? To be frank, it's the graphics. I'm a sucker for a bright, well-pixelated art style no matter what the context, which explains why I can still appreciate horrific images like this (click at your own risk. Watch at your own risk). Blame it on conditioning, childhood trauma, even unfulfilled desires. Facts are facts. Cheerful colors are awesome.
Well, darn it all.
Knowing this, I should also say I'm not a complete slave to the graphics style. I had a feeling that this game was going to be another instance of my many, many bad gaming experiences with cutesy graphics, so I braced myself. Lucky for me, my gut was wrong. I ran through the two stages, bashing everything in sight, grabbing as many combos as I could, going well past sixty at one point, while being the badass in green the game sets me out to be.
The only bit that slightly jarred me was the story, but that has to be because I haven't played the first one. From what I gather, some Darns are back to destroy the world or whatnot, and there's some blonde dude that runs around being all side kicky off-screen with doctor red-head chick. If green lady is the heroine, shouldn't she be the one to get some mackin' action? I'm sure the actual scenario makes sense somewhere, just not in Jacki land.
Might buy the full game just to rough up some more robots. That is a ton of fun, flying through the air consecutively. Still not firm on buying though, so just stick it up to a maybe for now.

Gravity Bone

This better not be a paddling from you, old man.
If I had to choose a favorite from all the games I've played in this set, it has to Gravity Bone. Actually, it's probably the best title I've played in a few months. Problem is, I can't very well say much about it without spoiling what makes it so damn good because it's so damn short. Obviously, the story is a plus, starting you off at a party called The Saturday Club, which evidently means a lot of square-noggined (which is oddly aesthically please) people standing around in black masks, mimicking the teachers in Peanuts, while a bunch of butlers circle round and body guards stare you down.
In the context of The Brave Little Toaster, I'm sure this makes sense.
Small touches, such as the subtle tutorial signs scattered throughout the game explain what controls do, add a lot of class to Gravity Bone. It says, "Hey, we care that you know how to play the game, but we aren't going to jerk you out of the environment to teach you," and there's nothing quite as great as that in a game. The game has a classy atmosphere about it.
The best bit are the requests, but since I'm not going to go into that, I'll just pretend I didn't say a word and go on about how jumping off ledges rocks. Blood and gravity, man. Blood and gravity. Splat. Ter.
Bam.
Download this now and play through it. It'll only steal maybe ten to fifteen minutes of your life away.

The Mirror Lied

Girl Should Have a Face season five, episode twenty-one: Paper bag edition.
Where could I possibly start with this? The Mirror Lied...well, it's interesting and I did enjoy playing through it, but the biggest factors are a lack of sense, explanation, and of mirrors. I can understand the mirror part; the little girl's parents probably took them all down in fear of her noticing she doesn't have a face. No explanation for that either, naturally, though I theorize it has something to do with either a honey incident with a bear or a prank loving uncle who accidently filled his squirting flower with acid.
Good for you, Mr. Newspaper. Where's the weather forecast?
The uncle was a senile scientist, alright?
The Mirror Lied revolves around exploring the house, interacting with practically every object, and answering the phone when this guy dubbed Birdie calls. The story leads me to believe that Birdie is a bird, but by the way he talks, and by the fact alone that he talks, I have my doubts that he actually is one, even when met. There's just too many things that do not make sense. Why is this girl stuck in the house by herself? What's up with that furnace? And what's up with that ending?
The ending made even less sense than the story, if that's possible. I went looking on the Freebird Games' forum, hoping to find some sort of explanation for all of this. One person said something about World War II, another said the title probably has to do with the girl's lack of face, and the creator gave the best explanation of all: "It's pretty ambiguous...but it lies, you don't actually exist...rather [you are] just some figurative metaphor."
Art talk. As my old music business teacher, Fat Bastard, taught me on the first day of class, art is really just missing one vital letter, and the way he explained this was incredibly classy. He wrote the word Art in huge letters on the chalkboard, proceeded to stared at the class, grinning all smug at us for nearly a full minute, and then chuckled maniacly as he placed a giant F in front of the word, completing the masterpiece. His word will stick with me for life, unlike this pile of confused game.

Within a Deep Forest

And here's where daddy worked while mommy and Mr. Sanderson went on vacation.
I'm not quite sure why I downloaded this one. I knew I wasn't going to like Within a Deep Forest because it revolves around playing as a small, bouncing ball. Not that I don't like balls, far from it. As a kid, I did nothing but play with big, rubbery balls, until my damn neighbor kicked my favorite ball, a pink one with a large, goofy face on it, over this incredibly high fence bordering my other neighbor, the pond. Although my father forced the girl to pay for a replacement, the damage was done, and I forced myself into seculsion. That, folks, is how I got into video games.
Lady, look at me. I'm stuck talking to you on my head. Screw flying.
Seriously though, games like Marble Madness, Super Monkey Ball, Kirby's Dream Course, and pretty much any golf game, they not only bore me, but they frustrate me as well. Although Within a Deep Forest is a game that I find boring, it, surprising, is not frustrating at all.
The game readily makes you feel like a bouncy ball, giving the appropriate sproingy sounds and look for bouncing. At first, it's a little difficult to control the ball, which, according to the story, was originally suppose to be a bomb (go science!), but the practice stage gives plenty of room and tasks to get the moving thing down. You can even return to that stage after obtaining other ball skins, skins that provide other abilities such as being able to bounce higher. Each of these balls can be switched mid-level at any of one the many check points found throughout the stages in order to get past obstacles.
Unfortunately for you (not me, I'm ball trauma lady), I haven't played past getting the first skin out of sheer lack of enthusiasm. Don't get me wrong, the game executes everything quite nicely, but I just found myself saying, "Eh. I'm a bouncing ball, bouncing all over the place. Big whoop," and cut it from there. There is a story about saving the world from freezing, but being a ball and all, I don't care.
Moving on with my life.

Little Wheel

Beer: the downfall of robots.
Within a Deep Forest was going to be my last game of the day, but considering the experience I had, I decided to end my day with a flash game instead. Little Wheel is a very short point and click adventure about a land of robots that suddenly lost power one day, leaving the city desolate, until one fateful day, a robot mysteriously rises from the grave to save them all.
Subtler advertising can not be found.
It's very straight forward, highlighting every single interactive item available with a gigantic circle, as if to say, "You'd have to be blind not to click me!" The game does have some puzzles in them, but they're all simplistic, and even without the circles, a senile puppy could probably just click around randomly and get through it all without a single hitch.
Still, Little Wheel does have a certain appeal to it. I can't quite put my finger on it, but I believe the adoration stems from a combination of the artwork and the little robot's persistence to fix what little is wrong with the world. Because of how easy it is, I'd rather call it a slightly more complex interactive story than a game. It's all about how he brings back the robots, not the difficulty of the puzzles.
...but damn it, I still want to see an indie game with both good art, good puzzles, and a worthwhile storyline. And a version of Gravity Bone that lasts at least an hour long.
9 Comments
10 Comments
Posted by JackiJinx

For the stunning conclusion to the Day of a Ten Game Run, please see this blog! For the epic beginnings, see this other blog!

Continuing on with the final six of my glorious day yesterday, this is the better portion of play I had. I'm sure everyone will be able to agree on that.

Warning Forever

Eat lead, blinky!
I can't quite remember where I heard of this title from (probably GameSpot when it was buzzing). In any case, Warning Forever caught my attention with how devious the continual onslaught of bosses are.
Let me back up just a tad. For those not familiar, Warning Forever pits you, an aerial craft, against mechanical boss after mechanical boss until you are no more. Based upon how you take each of these giants down, the next boss adjusts not only what it's equipped with (lasers, rockets, the works), but how it uses them against you. It's very hard to get two of the same bosses to appear because of how customized this variety is.
That next boss? I call him grandpa.
To some, this might sound like a formula for frustration, and I hardly doubt it can be, but for me, Warning Forever is a challenge. Who's to let a robot defeat mankind? Not I, sir.
Not I.
I must've spent at least an hour on this game, desperately trying to think of new ways to infiltrate each beast while being served lasers to the face. My hard earned efforts got me to stage 14. That's not even close to where some pros have gotten. Take a guess at what I'll be playing when I'm done writing this entry though? Which game? That's right, Cloth Demo.

Noitu Love 2: Devolution (Demo)

Pirates sailing the land. When should I expect "Every Sperm is Sacred?"
Being the cheap indie game lover that I am, I had to try out Noitu Love 2. Why do I say that? To be frank, it's the graphics. I'm a sucker for a bright, well-pixelated art style no matter what the context, which explains why I can still appreciate horrific images like this (click at your own risk. Watch at your own risk). Blame it on conditioning, childhood trauma, even unfulfilled desires. Facts are facts. Cheerful colors are awesome.
Well, darn it all.
Knowing this, I should also say I'm not a complete slave to the graphics style. I had a feeling that this game was going to be another instance of my many, many bad gaming experiences with cutesy graphics, so I braced myself. Lucky for me, my gut was wrong. I ran through the two stages, bashing everything in sight, grabbing as many combos as I could, going well past sixty at one point, while being the badass in green the game sets me out to be.
The only bit that slightly jarred me was the story, but that has to be because I haven't played the first one. From what I gather, some Darns are back to destroy the world or whatnot, and there's some blonde dude that runs around being all side kicky off-screen with doctor red-head chick. If green lady is the heroine, shouldn't she be the one to get some mackin' action? I'm sure the actual scenario makes sense somewhere, just not in Jacki land.
Might buy the full game just to rough up some more robots. That is a ton of fun, flying through the air consecutively. Still not firm on buying though, so just stick it up to a maybe for now.

Gravity Bone

This better not be a paddling from you, old man.
If I had to choose a favorite from all the games I've played in this set, it has to Gravity Bone. Actually, it's probably the best title I've played in a few months. Problem is, I can't very well say much about it without spoiling what makes it so damn good because it's so damn short. Obviously, the story is a plus, starting you off at a party called The Saturday Club, which evidently means a lot of square-noggined (which is oddly aesthically please) people standing around in black masks, mimicking the teachers in Peanuts, while a bunch of butlers circle round and body guards stare you down.
In the context of The Brave Little Toaster, I'm sure this makes sense.
Small touches, such as the subtle tutorial signs scattered throughout the game explain what controls do, add a lot of class to Gravity Bone. It says, "Hey, we care that you know how to play the game, but we aren't going to jerk you out of the environment to teach you," and there's nothing quite as great as that in a game. The game has a classy atmosphere about it.
The best bit are the requests, but since I'm not going to go into that, I'll just pretend I didn't say a word and go on about how jumping off ledges rocks. Blood and gravity, man. Blood and gravity. Splat. Ter.
Bam.
Download this now and play through it. It'll only steal maybe ten to fifteen minutes of your life away.

The Mirror Lied

Girl Should Have a Face season five, episode twenty-one: Paper bag edition.
Where could I possibly start with this? The Mirror Lied...well, it's interesting and I did enjoy playing through it, but the biggest factors are a lack of sense, explanation, and of mirrors. I can understand the mirror part; the little girl's parents probably took them all down in fear of her noticing she doesn't have a face. No explanation for that either, naturally, though I theorize it has something to do with either a honey incident with a bear or a prank loving uncle who accidently filled his squirting flower with acid.
Good for you, Mr. Newspaper. Where's the weather forecast?
The uncle was a senile scientist, alright?
The Mirror Lied revolves around exploring the house, interacting with practically every object, and answering the phone when this guy dubbed Birdie calls. The story leads me to believe that Birdie is a bird, but by the way he talks, and by the fact alone that he talks, I have my doubts that he actually is one, even when met. There's just too many things that do not make sense. Why is this girl stuck in the house by herself? What's up with that furnace? And what's up with that ending?
The ending made even less sense than the story, if that's possible. I went looking on the Freebird Games' forum, hoping to find some sort of explanation for all of this. One person said something about World War II, another said the title probably has to do with the girl's lack of face, and the creator gave the best explanation of all: "It's pretty ambiguous...but it lies, you don't actually exist...rather [you are] just some figurative metaphor."
Art talk. As my old music business teacher, Fat Bastard, taught me on the first day of class, art is really just missing one vital letter, and the way he explained this was incredibly classy. He wrote the word Art in huge letters on the chalkboard, proceeded to stared at the class, grinning all smug at us for nearly a full minute, and then chuckled maniacly as he placed a giant F in front of the word, completing the masterpiece. His word will stick with me for life, unlike this pile of confused game.

Within a Deep Forest

And here's where daddy worked while mommy and Mr. Sanderson went on vacation.
I'm not quite sure why I downloaded this one. I knew I wasn't going to like Within a Deep Forest because it revolves around playing as a small, bouncing ball. Not that I don't like balls, far from it. As a kid, I did nothing but play with big, rubbery balls, until my damn neighbor kicked my favorite ball, a pink one with a large, goofy face on it, over this incredibly high fence bordering my other neighbor, the pond. Although my father forced the girl to pay for a replacement, the damage was done, and I forced myself into seculsion. That, folks, is how I got into video games.
Lady, look at me. I'm stuck talking to you on my head. Screw flying.
Seriously though, games like Marble Madness, Super Monkey Ball, Kirby's Dream Course, and pretty much any golf game, they not only bore me, but they frustrate me as well. Although Within a Deep Forest is a game that I find boring, it, surprising, is not frustrating at all.
The game readily makes you feel like a bouncy ball, giving the appropriate sproingy sounds and look for bouncing. At first, it's a little difficult to control the ball, which, according to the story, was originally suppose to be a bomb (go science!), but the practice stage gives plenty of room and tasks to get the moving thing down. You can even return to that stage after obtaining other ball skins, skins that provide other abilities such as being able to bounce higher. Each of these balls can be switched mid-level at any of one the many check points found throughout the stages in order to get past obstacles.
Unfortunately for you (not me, I'm ball trauma lady), I haven't played past getting the first skin out of sheer lack of enthusiasm. Don't get me wrong, the game executes everything quite nicely, but I just found myself saying, "Eh. I'm a bouncing ball, bouncing all over the place. Big whoop," and cut it from there. There is a story about saving the world from freezing, but being a ball and all, I don't care.
Moving on with my life.

Little Wheel

Beer: the downfall of robots.
Within a Deep Forest was going to be my last game of the day, but considering the experience I had, I decided to end my day with a flash game instead. Little Wheel is a very short point and click adventure about a land of robots that suddenly lost power one day, leaving the city desolate, until one fateful day, a robot mysteriously rises from the grave to save them all.
Subtler advertising can not be found.
It's very straight forward, highlighting every single interactive item available with a gigantic circle, as if to say, "You'd have to be blind not to click me!" The game does have some puzzles in them, but they're all simplistic, and even without the circles, a senile puppy could probably just click around randomly and get through it all without a single hitch.
Still, Little Wheel does have a certain appeal to it. I can't quite put my finger on it, but I believe the adoration stems from a combination of the artwork and the little robot's persistence to fix what little is wrong with the world. Because of how easy it is, I'd rather call it a slightly more complex interactive story than a game. It's all about how he brings back the robots, not the difficulty of the puzzles.
...but damn it, I still want to see an indie game with both good art, good puzzles, and a worthwhile storyline. And a version of Gravity Bone that lasts at least an hour long.
Posted by Sparky_Buzzsaw

I've played Little Wheel, and like you, I thought it was enjoyable but lacking in a whole lot of essential areas.  I've yet to run across an indie adventure game that really jumped out at me, which is a shame.  Most of them seem a bit juvenile in story-telling or mechanics, and there's just no excuse for either.  If I had the knowledge and the time, I'd love to try to develop some sort of adventure game in the vein of Quest for Glory or something silly and fun like Monkey Island or Space Quest.  I started writing a novel once about a pair of bumbling brothers who set out as intergalactic private eyes, which I think could translate well to an adventure game series.  Eh, oh well.  In another lifetime, I suppose.

Moderator
Posted by JackiJinx
@Sparky_Buzzsaw: Dude, the time you make is the time you have. If you really have a vision you want to see, make it happen. Now.
Posted by Sparky_Buzzsaw
@JackiJinx:  Moved on to bigger and better writing projects since then, but it's an idea I still like and will revisit at some point.  As for coding a game, I just don't have the head for programming I had as a teenager.  It's been ten years since I programmed anything, and even that was on QBASIC and VisualBasic.  I'm hoping to pick up a few programming courses when I go to graduate school in the next few years, so it's a possibility then.
Moderator
Posted by KaosAngel

I have no idea what his post is about but I just wanted to bump it because you're Jacki and I would like you to explain what this thread is about.

Posted by JackiJinx
@KaosAngel: Kaos, sweetie, baby doll, not darling, this is a blog running down my gaming runs from yesterday. This is part two, and part one gives that explanation.

Fight the power. Play some indie games.
Posted by Claude

Gravity Bone seems pretty cool, I'll have to check that out.

Posted by ahoodedfigure

Hey!  I forgot all about Warning Forever.  Great series of links!  Please do more when you get the chance! :)

Posted by Johnny5

Hey Jacki, thanks for the blog. I actually just finished The Mirror Lied because I liked the art style. I really like the theory about WW2 and I can draw plenty of parralells. (The map, the bird, the date on the painting being July 16 1945 etc).

Watering that fucking plant was annoying but overall I liked the game.

Next on my to play list is Warning Forever as I like the concept. どうも!

Posted by Johnny5

Ok so another update... I spent like 3 hours playing Warning Forever and i think im hooked. Damn you jackiii!!