Since writing blog posts is more productive than doing nothing, here’s a nice boring post about some not-boring games I like.
originally for Emily
[I wrote a majority of this post several years ago without publishing it. I’ve been exposed to many different games since then, and if I went back and replayed these my opinions would likely change, but because I’m lazy I will post this as-is.]
- Some of these are browser-only, some are download-only.
- Links are either to a JayisGames review (scroll down to the yellow button for game), or a GameJolt/itch.io/rpgmaker/developer game download/description page.
- Gameplay time is also measured in how long it took for a not-savvy keyboard masher like me to play through, so it might take less time for everyone else.
- Most of these are free to play or pay what you want, but there’s a couple that aren’t, and those are starred with an asterisk (*).
- Games that I can’t recommend enough are marked with this symbol (>).
“If you only have time to play one game, please play this one”
>>Dr. Langeskov, The Tiger, and The Terribly Cursed Emerald: A Whirlwind Heist (It’s also on Steam): 20 minutes. Oh man, watch out for the tiger. It’s savage af. I almost threw up from the realism when…never mind. Also, if you pause for a bit in the elevator before you press the down button, you might hear voices. Don’t worry though. It’s just you.
(Please. Please. Please play this game. It doesn’t take long. It’s a game that you can’t explain because explaining the game ruins it, but it’s such a good game. Please play it.)
“I like nice things, and I hope you like nice things that I like”
Soul-sucking, jump-into-a-black-hole-and-never-return, time-eating games (3+ hours)
>Exit Fate: I spent like a week on this and I still haven’t finished it, oops. Lots of monsters, cool locations, a cool story, a handful of battle campaigns, and 120987019873 playable characters for a 6 character party. (More like 60, but whatever.) It’s a very solid RPG. What more could you want?
>Sage Fusion: 3+ hours. I LOVED the story and the art in this game. Everything was gorgeous. Some combat elements, but the game focuses more on the characters in the context of the story rather than trying to level them up and gain abilities/skills. Not something I was used to at all, but Kidalang really handled that idea well. I played this one about a year ago, but it’s probably been one of the most impressionable games I’ve played to date (graphics, man, graphics). There’s a sequel that I haven’t played yet (*Sage Fusion 2), but I bet it’s just as good. The rest of Kidalang’s stuff is supposed to be pretty good too.
Erayu: 5 hours, dev marked as 4-6 hours. Made by LucyFox, it’s a beautiful RPGmaker puzzle adventure tale with two endings and an interesting take on stories. I played this as soon as it was released, so there were some bugs, but they should be fixed by now, and the download has a walkthrough now if you get stuck in the swamp like I did…
*Recettear: I played this game for far too many hours. Capitalism, ho! An store price-haggling, item crafting, RPG hybrid thing. The full version costs money, but I’ve linked a demo version that’s still several hours worth of gametime. I enjoyed it to the point that I created a detailed spreadsheet for buying/selling margins. Oops.
>Starwish: Is it a side-shooter? an RPG? a sci-fi visual novel? is that romance I see?!?? hOly guAc what is this game–it’s a ridiculous hybrid of so many genres but it remarkably WORKS–it works so freaking well. I love this game to bits. Also there’s so many endings. Love endings. *excuse me cough* I love endings**
>*To the Moon: 3.5 hours.
Lighthouses and stars and love and diseasesAnd memoriesIt’s so beautifulThere’s a lot of science and happiness and emotional stuff like thatIt’s something that [former English teacher] would like
I really shouldn’t binge watch shows, so I’ll play a game instead (1-3 hours)
Ink Travellers: I took 1.5 hours, dev marked as 1 hour. A cute story about…stories. Developed by LucyFox again. Not as polished as Erayu, but still worth a play (I’d suggest playing Ink Travellers first, and if you like her style, then play Erayu.)
>Camp 1: Think it took me 2-3 hours? Overall a very excellent point-and-click game with a few frustrating moments (they generally involve pixel hunting/knowing where to click, so you may need to look for a walkthrough when you get to those few moments) but it’s one of my favorites nonetheless.
>I Object!?: 1.25 hours. A humorous rpgmaker game. [I really liked this one, but sadly I didn’t write a review for it.]
An episode of Game of Thrones, or a handful of Crash Course videos (30 minutes – 1 hour)
Think Outside the Box: ~1 hour. A game about boxes, and trying to get out of them. Or something like that. An overall cute puzzler.
Patchwork: ~1 hour. A point-and-click game in which time-traveler/magic world rift is created and must be amended. Nice graphics, nice neat game. Didn’t even have to look for any walkthroughs~ ❤
Kicks and giggles
Not everything is flammable: 5 minutes (I gave up quickly)-however much replay value you get out of this game. You are a flame that follows the transitive property. Your job is to burn things. As many things as possible.
/follow 5-10 minute game about a girl who wants to be alone but has a bodyguard following her. Her goal: get rid of the bodyguard.
90 second portraits: 7.5 minutes per round; I played ~45 minutes. Make an MS paint portrait of people (and occasionally dinos) in 90 seconds. It took many B’s and C’s for me to get my first A rank.
This should be a certified party game. It’s also way harder than it sounds/looks:
Riddle School series (1, 2, 3, 4, 5 + Riddle Transfer 1 & 2): This seven-set of point-and-click “Escape the school!” games were produced in a 10 year span of the dev’s life (age 11 to 21), and you can see the art & complexity of the series change with it. Stick it out through the first few; it gets better from there, I promise. Although the games were sometimes sort of silly/cheesy, I thought that the last few games were worth going through the entire series. The earlier games are shorter (The 1st game takes 1 minute!) but it gets progressively longer as time goes on.
Time Stone: ~30 minutes. A silly point-and-click adventure about an apprentice saving her trapped wizard mentor from the clutches of a warlock. But first, she has to escape the room…sort of. Well, you’ll see.
Canvasser: <1 hour. Try to convince people to donate money to your cause as you canvass to save the environment, working to reach higher and higher goals. I still have no idea what possessed me to play this game, since it’s not anywhere near my usual genre, but the dialogue made me laugh, and the game gave me a new perspective.
Someone else’s cup of tea, but worth mentioning
Planetscape: a sandbox exploration type game. Gather materials, craft stuff, fight enemies and rebuild your crashed ship to escape off the planet. Nice art, nice premise, but I got lazy. I played for ~2 hours and didn’t get anywhere close to finishing.
>Sandstorm: If you like minimalistic but well-thought-out survival games, play this one. It’s honestly a really well-executed game. I just suck at placing poles, navigating the desert, and finding my camel. (I gave up after 30 minutes, but it’s definitely several hours worth of gameplay + replay to find the secrets).
Iris: An ethereal platformer about a girl’s search to save her twin sister. The graphics in this game are gorgeous. I only got to the second boss fight before I quit playing, but from what gameplay I did get in, I can tell it’s a really high quality game. I sort of get freaked out by eyes though.
Missing Translation [I didn’t write a description! I don’t remember anything about this one, sorry.]
That’s everything for now! I apologize for the plethora of dashes. [Hope the blast from the past was fun, and I’ll likely do more of these posts for the games I’ve played over the past month, stuff I’ve played from the racial justice & inequality bundle, and potentially some escape room games I used to love.]