I honestly can’t decide if Happy’s Humble Burger Farm is a good or bad game. There are parts of it that I thoroughly loved, like the creepy storyline, the gritty, dated aesthetics that really immersed you in the game’s world, and the jump scares that got me every time. But those controls are just atrocious, hindering the game to the point it felt nearly unplayable at times. There are a lot of awesome, interesting, and unique ideas here, but unfortunately the execution just wasn’t there.
Overall, I was left a bit perplexed by my time with Sense. I don’t regret playing it, but I also don’t know that I would go out of my way to play it again. With the story largely told through journal entries and letters that you pick up along the way, and with so many references to folklore I simply had no knowledge of, I was left without a particularly satisfying conclusion.
Seven Pirates H is a flawed but enjoyable game. An extremely unique system of leveling up, light-hearted plot, and cast of adorable characters somehow manages to mix charming and lewd in a surprisingly effective way. Unfortunately, the game is hampered by uninspired dungeons, combat that eventually grows repetitive (especially considering enemies tend to be far, far weaker than boss fights, which can be a slog), and an over-reliance on the booby training gimmick. Perhaps the game’s most damning flaw is my least favorite design choice ever: forcing players to revisit every single dungeon to fight a new boss as part of the story. Still, even with the obvious flaws, if you’re looking for a silly RPG with over-the-top fanservice, Seven Pirates H is very, very likely to scratch that itch.
Cat Cafe Manager is one of those games you don’t know you need until you start playing it. It’s cozy, heartfelt, charming, and silly in the best of ways. And so soothing that you’ll find yourself still playing even after you’ve completed all the in-game objectives. Which is why it pains me to give this game the score that I did. Because, as thoroughly enjoyable as everything I’ve described above is, the game has some serious issues that need addressing. Scrolling to read additional information frequently didn’t work; if you accrue enough skills, they escape their assigned boxes, spreading out across the screen and getting in the way when you try to view them; even with litter boxes, at the same time every day all of my cats would spontaneously void their bladders wherever they were in my cafe; finally, there were days I would set my advertising for a specific customer type and wouldn’t get customers for days. Perhaps worst of all, there were a couple times when the game wouldn’t let me do anything at all – time would continue to pass, and customers would appear, but I couldn’t prepare food, interact with anything, or even access the menu. Still, if you don’t encounter these bugs, or, better yet, they get fixed, I think there’s something really special in Cat Cafe Manager. It’s relaxing, lighthearted, sweet, and just overall comforting. Whether you’re a cat lover or not, there’s a lot to enjoy here.
Overall, Blackwind is a regrettably forgettable game. Unable to decide if it’s a twin-stick shooter or a hack-and-slash, with repetitive (and sometimes downright boring) level design, and cringe-inducing voice-acting, there’s little to recommend here. Honestly, the best way I can describe this game is in terms of food: Blackwind would be unflavored, plain oatmeal. Sure, it’s edible, but do you really want to eat it?
Overall, I had a good time with Skyforge. The combat and the missions were enough to make me want to return to it, and the story was passably entertaining, if not exactly riveting. While it’s got some issues, I think that if it gets a little polish, it’ll be a pretty solid game. Pending the necessary currency clarity and a bit of cleaning up, it could fill an enormous void on the Switch and give us an MMO we need.
Empire of Angels IV is a perfectly fine game. But you may have noticed that’s a recurring theme of this review; the combat is okay, the story is okay, and the artistic direction is okay. The game does everything just fine, but it doesn’t particularly excel in any one area. If you’re looking for a nice casual game with a pleasant level of challenging content, but aren’t looking for anything deep and engaging, I think you’ll enjoy this game. You can pick up and play whenever without really forgetting much of the story or what you’re doing.
SkateBIRD is a fun, if flawed, experience. Charming, with a light-hearted story and a good sense of humor, there’s plenty to enjoy, even with the overly floaty feeling that hampers the controls. While it’s likely not the best skater you’ll ever play, it’s probably one of the more unique ones. I don’t think I’d really recommend it to hardcore fans of skater games, but for people looking for a casual experience you can pick up anytime and not feel too invested in, it might be worth a look.
Overall, Red Colony is a fun game, but not a great game. I think if the dialogue was polished up, if the weapon system was rebalanced some, and if the puzzles were just a little more challenging, this game could have been something special. Like a house in need of work, it’s got solid bones. It just needs to be spruced up a bit. As it stands, you can beat the game in under 3 hours. I was entertained during my hours with the game, and I got several enjoyable jolts of adrenaline for my troubles. If you can look past the flaws, I think you’ll find an enjoyable experience.
I don’t have too many complaints about The Witch’s House MV. Yes, the game is short, and sure, the story is lacking. But when this game is on point, it’s really on point. The Witch’s House MV expertly utilizes its creepy atmosphere, unsettling sound effects, and delightful jump scares to ensure at least a few moments of increased adrenaline. While I wish the game was longer, there is a decent amount of replayability, with the newly added difficulty mode offering different puzzle solutions and an ending you’ll definitely want to obtain. For such a short and simple game, it was certainly a memorable experience.
Bad Writer feels uncomfortably realistic at times. Sure, it sometimes feels good (or maybe even necessary) to spend all day in bed or chilling in front of the TV, but the depression that follows afterwards can be all too real. Although it feels perhaps a little too short, there’s something oddly special about Bad Writer; the dread and excitement of trying to follow your dreams, the anxiety of waiting to discover if your work was accepted or rejected, and the daily struggle are all surprisingly poignant. If you’re looking for a unique life-sim that won’t always be particularly relaxing, Bad Writer might be the game for you.
Divination is unique, and explores some pretty intense topics, with an appropriately dark art style to match its themes. It definitely gives off vibes of those 80’s dystopian sci-fi films, which all focus on the same question: are any of us truly in charge of our own fates?
Other than the aforementioned problems with the doll-finding puzzles and the frame rate hiccups, this is an intriguing game. Sorrowvirus explores the endless death-and-rebirth cycle of poor Wyatt, with each successful playthrough shifting the dialogue, the information learned, and the very look of his personal Purgatory, all underscored by an incredibly haunting melody. You’re certain to be left wondering if immortality is really as promising as it sounds.
As a whole, Anuchard is a fun game. It’s quirky, it’s perfectly pixely, and it combines city building and dungeon crawling surprisingly well. Unfortunately, the game gets bogged down by repetition, repetition, repetition. Even when puzzle solving elements build off the fundamentals, it just isn’t enough of a change to the mechanics to keep it from eventually starting to feel like a slog. While undoubtedly a solid game, Anuchard is unfortunately just a little too mired in the past.
As a whole, The Letter is an awesome visual novel. With a literal ton of dialogue, extremely well-developed characters, a deliciously creepy, slow-burning story, branching story paths, and an interesting relationship system, there’s quite a lot for horror fans and visual novel fans alike to enjoy. Unfortunately, the awesome story and stellar character writing is bogged down by the ceaseless grammar mistakes. Still, if you can get past it, I think you’ll thoroughly enjoy it.
Ghosts and Apples is a thoroughly enjoyable game. Simple controls, Tim Burton aesthetic, and unique, addictive gameplay make for a great experience. While the difficulty curve is a bit steep for my tastes, the challenges are certainly part of the fun. There’s also a solid versus mode for two players. I played several matches against my husband and it’s just as addicting as the story mode. If you’re in the market for a unique puzzle-y, arcade-y, increasingly frantic game, Ghosts and Apples may just scratch that itch for you.
Indigo 7: Quest for Love is an earnest, enjoyable attempt at a new puzzle game. It’s fun, it’s quirky, the art style is endearing, and the gameplay is solid. Honestly, I’d be giving this game a higher score if it didn’t have some bugs and issues that pop up here and there. Those problems aside, though, if you’re looking for a great multiplayer puzzle game that isn’t Tetris or Puyo Puyo, give this game a shot.
Do Animals Dream? is unlike anything I’ve ever played. Its cute exterior masks an intensely serious interior. You’ll question what you think you know about what you eat and why. And you’ll likely be very uncomfortable during most of your experience. Yet the discomfort is a compelling factor in the game. Push through it, and keep an open mind. While I doubt it will convert anybody to veganism, it may make you connect more with your food, which is never a bad thing.
Although Smashroom was at times too difficult for my liking (and/or abilities), it’s a pretty solid game. Killer art, great music, fun mechanics and combat, and an engaging level-up system make for a fairly polished experience. If I had to find something to nitpick about (other than the difficulty), I’d say that the controls don’t always feel as tight as they could. Sometimes it feels like you’re li’l shroom is a touch too floaty or slide-y when he shouldn’t be. And while it may not stand out as one of the greats of the genre, Smashroom is still a fun experience that platformer fans will likely enjoy.
Save Me Mr. Tako: Definitive Edition hits a lot of the right notes: beautifully nostalgic, quirky, and fun mechanics and catchy music. With a surprising amount of dialogue, secrets to find in each level, and 50 silly hats to discover and wear, there’s plenty to keep you coming back for more. If you’re in the market for a game that pays homage to the good ol’ days of the Gameboy, I think you’ll find plenty to love here. Especially since the game offers adjustable difficulty, so if you, like me, aren’t super great at platformers (but love them anyway), you can scale the game somewhat to your abilities.