NetHack is a twenty-year-old free roguelike that's still actively played and updated. It's as complex as it is fun. This time, I'm not even going to attempt to explain it, because this article (http://nullprogram.com/blog/2008/09/) does it much better than I could. Tvtropes also has a great article: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/NetHack
To play it, you'll need to telnet to nethack.alt.org. It's probably best to download a Telnet client, since the ones that come with Windows aren't very good. Putty works nicely for me.
Friday, April 29, 2011
I Wanna Be The Guy is renowned for being one of the most difficult games created. It's a platformer that was made with the sole intent of being stupidly hard. You control a protagonist called The Kid, who intends to defeat the evil Guy and become The Guy himself. Not only do you have to execute pixel-perfect maneuvers, but you have to memorize many traps that you really can't anticipate. One does not normally expect cherries in trees to fall *up* at you and kill you. The game features a lot of references to various old games such as Tetris, Kirby, Mega Man, Metroid, Street Fighter, Mario, and others. The traps are almost always incredibly unfair, and will leave you shaking your fist at your computer screen, possibly laughing. There are various routes to utilitize; you'll have to find and beat all the different bosses if you want to win. There are also bonus secret items, which do absolutely nothing but are fun to get. In fact, there are no items at all. All you have is a gun that you'll rarely use, your ability to double-jump, and your ability to burst into a strangely huge amount of gore at the slightest amount of pain. This game doesn't cost anything, but it's not free: you'll pay in RAGE. Have fun. Or not. http://kayin.pyoko.org/iwbtg/downloads.php
Thursday, April 28, 2011
So, I just finished a little freeware game called Eversion. This came out a couple years ago and I never bothered playing it until now. You control a flower protagonist called Zee Tee, who has the ability to switch between alternate realities by "everting." Z is jump. X is evert. You can only evert at certain areas, but the music changes during those areas and the colors on the screen change. It seems like a cheerful game at the start, but it gets darker quickly; the surroundings change from "cheerful" to "post-apocalyptic scenario full of monsters" pretty quickly. The music fits the mood quite well. You can collect gems by solving little puzzles; to get the true ending, you'll need to collect them all. The game took me about two hours, but I played it pretty slowly. That's pretty much the gist of it. TvTropes, as always, has a nice list of tropes pertaining to it: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/SugarWiki/Eversion?from=Main.Eversion, and the download link is here: http://zarat.us/tra/offline-games/eversion.html
Obviously. This game is possibly the best I've ever played, and I've played a lot. The graphics are beautiful, the voice acting is perfect for every character, the dialogue is funny, and the gameplay is fresh and interesting. Portal had a huge hit on the gaming world when it was released in the Orange Box a few years ago, and it was praised for its interesting concept and gameplay. Now, there's a full-price and longer sequel out. The campaign was, for me, about three times the length of the original Portal's. There's also a co-op campaign for playing with a friend that took me about the same amount of time as Portal. Unfortunately, there's not much replay value beyond getting all the achievements but I still recommend the game, on the grounds that it's awesome. Hopefully Valve will release some free DLC for us. This game will alternate between making you feel like a genius and making you feel like an idiot; the former moments are worth the latter. The story itself, while a bit predictable as a whole, has some twists and turns that are impossible to anticipate and will leave you staring at your screen, smiling vaguely, saying "What." This game is a wonderful experience, and you should definitely buy it.
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
The Touhou Project is a series of bullet hell shooters full of moe anime girls, awesome original music, and some fairly ridiculous gameplay. It's a top-down shooter that's become very popular on the internet, and has inspired a lot of memes. You can find the games at a Japanese import store or download them off the internet.