A Review of the Indie Royale “Mighty Bundle”
Go to Indie Royale, get cool games for cheap. Let’s check them out.
Another game from the Indie Royale that refused to let me take a screenshot. I even tried using Puush, but I get nothing but a solid black screen. So I gave you an unrelated wacky pic instead.
This is a game where you control ball that runs along a waveform (the squiggly line that indicates that the music you’re listening to has been ruined by the loudness war). Well, actually, you don’t control the ball, you move the shape of the waveform that the ball travels down in order to pick up score orbs, jump through hoops, and avoid mines.
Waveform has many of the trappings of a rhythm game but it really isn’t one, it’s a simple on-rails action game. A decently entertaining but shallow one.
Avadon: The Black Fortress
The setting in this game is unbelievably generic. And wouldn’t you know it, the first quest involved going into a cellar to kill rats. But I gave it a chance anyway. Though this one didn’t let me take screenshots either.
The UI made this appear that it was going to play like the early Ultima games (which are a definite influence) but it plays more like the first two Fallout games with its grid-based, turn-based combat. I was unimpressed with the bit that I played. It could very well get better later on (if one of my readers thinks it does, I might be willing to give it another go) but I don’t have the patience to swing a sword at vermin to watch numbers go up. Let’s move on to the next one!
When I started up Zafehouse: Diaries, it warned me that it contained “mild themes”. Just because the MPAA uses vague meaningless language like this doesn’t mean that you have to. It also said that it needs DirectX9.0c runtimes, even if I had a newer version. I didn’t get them and the game worked fine.
In this game you have a randomly-determined group of five survivors of a (sigh) zombie apocalypse which you assign to run through a mansion, get items, and kill the undead. You give each character orders (move here, barricade this area, set traps here) and the game reads the results to you in a diary-like format. Your purpose is to get at least one character to a rescue location when a helicopter arrives.
Three out of my starting group (including one of the black people) had biographies stating that they mistrusted black people, and another one of them hated gays. Because when I’m trapped in a house with zombies clawing at the windows it’s important to know if there’s any papist wops or Eskimo creationists watching my back. Gotta keep your priorities straight, you know?
The self-destructive group that Zafehouse: Diaries gave me ended up being more interesting than the game itself, which is basically the same as the old DOS game Wilderness Survival 2.0: The Case of the Rugglestone Ripper (which I still can’t find on the internet after years of searching). Once you know what everything does, skill is eliminated and it’s just a test of the random number generator to see if you won or not. It’s a more creative work than the typical game with zombies in it but Zafehouse didn’t hold my interest.
Derrick the Deathfin
One part Ecco the Dolphin, one part Uniracers, and maybe a bit of Donkey Kong Country thrown in the mix. I can dig it. The art style owns, too. There’s a variety of challenges to be found in swimming through the levels; some are timed, some are mazes, some are puzzles. I need to play this one some more, it’s pretty good.
Not a fanmade sequel to Crystalis but Lumines with the twist that you have to line up arrows of the same color and not just have blocks touch each other. This game is a surprisingly complex, pleasant time-waster, though it can reach Puyo-Puyo levels of intensity on the action stages and is similar to Puzznic in the “brainteaser sampler”.
This is a thoughtful puzzler that belies its sparse presentation. You’re not just lining up falling blocks, you can’t reposition them and thus are forced to turn them at 90 degree angles towards each other so they form an abstract line. I wish there was an option to save your current arrow configuration, like in Chu-Chu Rocket. Instead, you have to start a level completely over if you didn’t get the brainteaser right on the first attempt.
Looking back on this microreview I’m embarrassed at how much name-dropping I did. I just like good puzzle games, though, and this is one of them.
War of the Human Tanks
Goo-gooing bug-eyed anime children blowing each other up on wacky battlefields. Resembling a dumbed down version of the Advance Wars series or maybe the board game Stratego, War of the Human Tanks features a simple war-torn grid covered in the fog of war in which you deploy military units to find and destroy your enemies.
I quickly skipped past the scads of dialogue to get to the part of the game I could actually play. It’s not a bad game by any means, but I can’t see it serving as anything other than a babby’s first Advance Wars.
The “Mighty Bundle” was not good as the previous bundle, but it always feels good to support underpaid indie game developers. Tidalis is probably the best one of the bunch, so if that one interests you, consider buying this. Five days left to buy this pack. I reported, you decide.