Every few months I poke around for smaller games to play when I only have a few minutes, and I thought I’d share some of my recent findings here. I searched for previous mentions of these on the forums, and found one or two scattered mentions. Hopefully this won’t be repeating too much. If anyone’s found any other recent gems, I’d love to hear about them!
Within a Deep Forest is a fun and innovative platformer with great atmosphere. You bounce a ball through the various levels, and as you progress you unlock balls made of different materials.
Survival Crisis Z is an action RPG from the same guys that made Zombie Smashers. I’ve tried most of their games, but SCZ really stands out for me for its creepy feel and the way it captures some of the classic zombie movie vibe that we’ve rambled on about in various other threads.
Cortex Command is a nuttily ambitious side-scrolling duel game sort of in the vein of Worms, but with more carefully modelled physics. It’s just at the test version stage, but what they have so far is incredibly promising and fun just to play around with.
ONE TO WATCH
There’s no demo, and it won’t be out for a few months yet, but Aquaria won $20,000 and the Grand Prize at the IGF this month, and the screens/video look amazing. I’m not a big fan of sidescrollers, but an open-ended sidescroller sounds pretty cool to me, especially given how beautiful this game looks. One of the developers is Derek Yu, who produced the utterly charming Eternal Daughter.
Heh, I just recently installed that one since someone else recommended it, but it won’t run. Just opens a window and gives me a “Website cannot be displayed”-style message. Previous Popcap games worked without a hitch for me.
First-person horror adventure complete with physics engine, made by a four person-team out of their own homes. Originally started out as a tech-demo called Penumbra, and has evolved into a full-blown game, coming out in three episodes.
(Seriously, don’t know of many people who didn’t like at least the first Ecco. Though I’ll throw in with you in hoping it’s more like Super Metroid than Ecco simply because I can’t think of many better 2D games than Super Metroid. Enough so that I’m now wondering whether the SNES emulator for the PSP is good enough to handle it so that I can play through it again. Hell of a game, that was!)