I have to admit that despite its flaws, Infliction really impressed me. It has a deep and tragic story with well fleshed-out, complex characters. Not everything in here is wholly original, but a lot of it is. This game shows that Clinton McCleary has a lot of creativity and genuinely unique ideas. If he could make a game this intriguing by himself with hardly any money, I can only imagine what a talent like his could do with a larger budget.
It’s a shame because there are some really good elements in here and hints of a much stronger tale to be told. Maybe if it had been developed longer or had better funding, more of the story surrounding the village and its citizens would have been better fleshed out. The game itself is only about three hours long, so it could have definitely benefited from some extra chapters. As it stands, Draugen is a beautiful borefest that is better left abandoned.
3000th Duel is a thrilling game that does a fair job of blending 2D metroidvania-esque action and platforming with Souls-like bosses and leveling up structure. It’s a beautiful game, even if not all of the environments are the most dynamic, and it runs incredibly smooth. The stark contrast in difficulty for bosses and normal foes can be a bit shocking at first, but you’ll quickly be able to enjoy to the carnage of the hack ‘n slash sections as well as the strategic intricacies of the boss battles.
60 Seconds! is a game that feels underdeveloped. There are some good ideas in here, but the game controls during the sixty second supply blitz are incredibly frustrating. Things get better once you get into the bomb shelter, but since everything is presented to you through a journal, you won’t feel as invested after a while.
Monster Viator is a delightful throwback to JRPGs from the early 90’s. It has all of the charm of games from that era with its colorful 16 bit art style, adorable sprites, and awesome tunes. However, it also adds some modern day improvements like the ability to save at any time, increase the battle speed, and an auto-battle option.
Neon City Riders is an absolute blast to play, especially if you’re a fan of retro-gaming and 80’s pop culture. Much like games from that time, it can be difficult with its fast pace and precise timing, but it’s punishingly fun. For gamers from that era, like myself, it’s one giant nostalgia bomb.
Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition is everything fans of retro RPGs are looking for. It has well written characters, beautiful environments, decent combat and class systems, a fantastic musical score, and a story that gets deeper and more compelling the farther you delve into it.
All in all, I really did enjoy my time with Obduction, even if there were a few issues that hampered the experience. It’s beautiful, fascinating, and creative. Although, the second half definitely slows down a lot due to huge backtracking sections and long loading times.
A Fold Apart is an enjoyable time, but I feel like it’s promoted in a slightly deceiving way. It’s not a cutesie upbeat game about two people missing each other. In fact, it’s a serious look into the hardships of being in a long distance relationship and how quickly things can go wrong when you can’t express yourself properly.