The simulator genre has certainly been busy over the past few years. Farming Simulator has made a name for itself through its emphasis on realism and “hard work”. Meanwhile, Goat Simulator is a deliberately nonsensical parody, turning the genre on its head.
It’s been a long and stressful couple of years, and finding distractions has been a difficult business. The most effective games I’ve found have fallen into one of two categories. My first category includes involved games that require you to pay attention, like The Dungeon of Naheulbeuk. As for the second, it’s been peaceful, hand-drawn games like Wind Peaks.
In the magical, musical realm of Balan Wonderworld, you’ll discover endless possibilities waiting for you! But if that sounds too good to be true… then you just might be onto something. If you’ve done any searching into Balan Wonderworld, you’ve probably already run into its less-than-stellar reception. An unpopular demo, dismal sales, and a (since-patched) bug that could trigger epilepsy… the list goes on.
When the High Elf Deedlit finds herself in an unfamiliar land, she swiftly sets out in search of answers. Unfortunately for her, these can only be found by battling hordes of monsters, and some familiar opponents from her past…
Sometimes, I like to ignore problems until they go away. In Nicole, a slice-of-life mystery visual novel from WinterWolves, you can do just that! Arriving at college full of optimism and energy, Nicole is ready to make the most of her new life. However, she’s soon caught up in a series of kidnappings, and perhaps more concerning, the world of dating.
When Rie, a cynical and insular 9-year-old, finds Licia, a young demon from Hell, stealing cookies in her kitchen, her life undergoes a sudden and dramatic change. Just how things develop is up to you in Strawberry Vinegar, a slice-of-life (and cake) visual novel.
Based on a French audio series by the same name, The Dungeon of Naheulbeuk isn’t a franchise I’ve encountered before – most likely as it hasn’t been formally translated into English. It has its own fervent fanbase, and has split off into comics, novels, and even a band.