Hey diddle o. I was going to do my reviews in video form but golly gee that is a lot of work. And the written scripts for the videos got the point across anyway. So I'm doing written reviews instead. If you want me to fast-forward and do your review next, then tell me bout it and I'll put it higher on the list. Spoiler: GRADING How am I gonna score this mess? There are five categories. Each category is rated on a scale of 0 - 5 The categories are: Aesthetic Audio Gameplay Stability Direction in every review I'm going to summarize each category and score it appropriately. These are going to be hopefully as unbiased and technical as possible. Just because I liked a game does not mean I'm going to rate it highly. Just because I hated a game doesn't mean it's not doing everything right. The score will then be converted to a percentage of Hit/Miss. Due to the nature of this, I am not going to be sparing anyone's feelings. I'm probably going to leave some people feeling like this: and others like this: Now if you'll excuse me... there is a lot of games to play ;n; =Moop= Creator: Geoff Moore Score: 16/25 // 64% Hit 36% Miss Spoiler: In depth Aesthetic 5/5 The game has a very consistent and readable art style. Audio 1/5 The audio is very repetitive and can get grating as you wander around looking for what to do. There is also very few tracks in the game. Gameplay 3/5 The gameplay is based on solving puzzles with whatever is in your inventory. Some are obvious, like the soup bowl, some are creative like the mouse and elephant, and some are unintuitive like filling the bowl with water. The Look/Get/Talk/Use command is a neat idea but similar to the messy menu of Dragon Warrior it gets very tedious to cycle down to talk. It's also inconsistent. Some objects can only be looked at, some objects can't be talked to, so it feels cluttered. I get what they were going for on paper, but in execution it just fell a bit flat. Stability 5/5 I experienced no bugs or lag during my playthrough of the game. Direction 2/5 The story is all over the place, from soup to crashed space pilots to daddy issues and it didn't mix well for me. There was also a serious lack of payoff in my opinion, but much like this category in general it's heavily based on personal preference. Gameplay direction wasn't very clear at times either. I found the cheese on accident because there was a lot of talk about prophecys and people coming from the sky but what you actually had to do had nothing to do with that and relied on you talking to the frog again after hearing something else. There were also times where I had thought up a solution to a problem, but couldn't execute it because it wasn't time for me to do it. Namely the part where you dry the wet bedclothes. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to get them to the drying thing, but eventually gave up only to find the only reason I couldnt do it was "you don't have any reason to do that yet". Maybe I just wanted to help them, isnt that reason enough? =Runner Rand= Creator: MinisterJay Score: 10/25 // 40% Hit 60% Miss Spoiler: In depth Aesthetic 3/5 The graphics are very simple and somewhat boring to look at, but it does have a consistent artstyle. All the levels look similar and lack diversity visually, however. Audio 0/5 The game has one short looping audio track for all the levels, and the sound effects are loud and out of place. Hitting spikes was a bit painful to listen to. Gameplay 0/5 The up and down buttons are far too sensitive for this game. Tapping up can send you flying into the spikes and tapping down can send you flying into the fence. Precision is not feasible in this precision based game. Some levels allow retries and others do not. The gameplay isn't very interesting. It's either the same or a very similar level over and over with added obstacles as you progress. Stability 4/5 Doesn't mess up much, but there were times I ran through the hoops and didnt get any score increase. As for framerate, Runner Rand runs rad. Direction 3/5 Technically there is only one direction you can go. Right. The game does it's job and tells you what's what. It's pretty cut and dry. No story here to judge. He likes to run. Works for me. It's just a very simple running game that needs a little better optimization as far as controls go. =Paletta= by: Cosmic Latte Score: 22/25 // 88% Hit 22% Miss Spoiler: In depth Aesthetic 5/5 The art in this game is cute as hell, but not to the point that it can't be creepy and unnerving in places. The graphics themselves are simple but despite this it is a beautiful game. Audio 4/5 The audio did a good job of setting the mood and theme of each area. Gameplay 4/5 The gameplay of Paletta is fairly well executed. Bringing flowers to life and using your abilities to solve the bulk of the puzzles just feels "right" It isn't perfect however, some parts felt awkward or controlled weirdly. For the most part however, the gameplay is fun enough that these issues are an afterthought. Stability 4/5 The game runs well, but the menus were a bit slow for me, and some transitions didn't work properly unless you walked into them juuust right. Direction 5/5 The game opens with a cutscene telling the story and sends you off. The game is linear, splitting itself into "levels" where you need to solve a problem to get a shard. None of the problems are particularly hard to solve, and the game does a good job of pointing the way without holding your hand. If you DO need a little more help though, the moon is always there to give you a better hint. Game felt very cohesive and the world meshed together naturally. ==Stay Inside== by: Ozzytheone Score: 17/25 // 68% Hit 32% Miss Spoiler: In depth Aesthetic 4/5 The graphics are well utilized and compliment the dark atmosphere. Which coincedentally is my one compliant, it is too dark in some parts, and I can't quite make out my surroundings. Audio 5/5 The game knows when to play it's somber piano tracks and when to switch to a thick heavy silence. I wasn't going to rate the audio so highly though until I tried exploring south and encountered the wolf... the sounds that came after were... haunting. I'm still a little shook. Well done. Gameplay 1/5 It is just a demo, but it is lacking some gameplay. There isn't much you can do aside from read flavor text and walk around. There's also a jarring lack of a sprint in some outside areas but on the very next screen you can dash without issue, an odd design choice. The hiding from the monster was also fully automated, which took away from the stress of the situation a bit. Stability 5/5 Game's so short it doesn't have any bugs. Game seemed to be unhampered by the light and fog effects. Direction 2/5 There is a story here, but again it's just a demo so there isn't much. The game is fairly streamlined and you just explore until something happens, which isn't a bad thing but still it could be done better? I'm eager to see how the full-game uses it's enviornments and story, but at the moment it's just a skeleton. A very spooky skeleton. =Ghost's Story= by: Lord Kuro Score: 9/25 // 36% Hit 64% Miss Spoiler: In depth Aesthetic 3/5 The game's mapping is fairly amatuer. Nothing special really stood out or stuck with me. It didn't do bad, it just didn't wow me. Audio 0/5 What audio? There is no music throughout the entire game, and barely any sound. Sound Effects were jarring. Like a metal clang when you try to open a boarded up door, just didn't make any sense, and the loud buzzing of trash flies didn't go away until you were far far away from the trash bin. Gameplay 1/5 The game is like an interactive story, where you retrace your steps to find out how you died. This is a good idea and I loved the story concept behind it, but it needs to be heavily refined. Talking to people only works in certain spots, some transitions only work when you face them from a certain angle, you have several things to find in the game but no possible way to see what can and cannot be interacted with. Currently the game itself is not very fun to play, and relies on the story to keep you playing. The idea is there, and it's a good idea that has been executed well before, but it really needs a second look. Stability 3/5 Passability is bugged to hell and back. There's no telling where you can and cannot walk. That said, I did not encounter any game breaking errors or major bugs during my playthrough. Direction 2/5 The story isn't expertly written, the dialogue is sometimes good and sometimes not... but to be honest I am a bit of a sucker for this particular trope, and it served as an alright method of holding my attention. As far as direction goes you are often just dropped into an empty space and must interact with every single part of the room if you want to find anything or proceed. Cutscenes end abruptly, and as mentioned before it is very hard to tell what is a transition and what isn't so you end up smacking your face against everything until you end up somewhere else. The ending was also a bit bland in my opinion. =Einherjar= by: Watermark RPG Score: 19/25 // 76% Hit 24% Miss Spoiler: In depth (WARNING LONG) Aesthetic 5/5 The game begins with a very cinematic intro. From there on out, the mapping ranges from average to slightly above average. The Einherji are all visually diverse and capture their respective hero or heroine very well. Audio 4/5 The audio is pretty standard stuff, and is used well, but the style is somewhat inconsistent and goes "rpg battle music" to "a digital song with vocals" back to "battle music" instead of keeping a designated theme throughout. Some might like that, I wasn't into it. Gameplay 3/5 Einherjar was one of the games I was most looking forward to playing, and did it meet my expectations? It did. It didn't really go beyond them, sadly. The gameplay is turn-based battles with a sort of Pokemon-esque mechanic where you pull shards from the enemies and use them to either power up your Einherjar, Summon the enemy they came from as a new Einherji, or sometimes fuse one of your Einherji with it into a brand new one. That sounds really great on paper, and for the most part it is... but there are a few flaws. You can't actually see what abilities you will get until you get them, losing the shard. You can work around this by saving and re-loading but that would be tedious as hell. Another thing is that unlike in a game like Persona or Pokemon where the enemy you get starts at the level you acquired them at, they instead start at lv. 1, and fusions are the same way. Fusing your level 10 Cerwiden with a Sun Priest Shard will net you a much weaker lv. 1 Einherji, and that's no fun. These are minor-ish issues though, and aren't so big a deal. What IS a big deal, is that Penelope tells you there is a way to swap Einherjar mid-battle and then DOESNT TELL YOU. So if you get into a fight where your Einherjar are weak to the enemy OR the enemy resist your attacks, get ready for a tedious fight. Another somewhat major issue is that enemies have weaknesses but as far as I can tell, they don't display them. You have to guess if they are weak to your elements based on how high or low the damage output is, which can be harder to remember than just seeing a "WEAK" popup. (if there IS a WEAK popup, I didnt see it during my hour and 15 minutes of play). Also the areas are very linear and there is only a little bit of exploration. Stability 4/5 A little slow to load most transitions. Other than that I didn't run into any major bugs. Direction 3/5 Now I don't judge the games too much based on the stories themselves. Which is good, because I really didn't care for this one. It's dripping with the most basic teen girl drama that I just can't relate to. To top that, you play as the mean girl. Which would be interesting if I had any sympathy for her at all or found her enjoyable, but I didn't. Maybe she gets better later on, but for the first hour of the game, she's an insufferable ass with no redeeming qualities. But let's toss the details of the story aside because that stuff is hella subjective, how's the game's sense of direction? Pacing is a bit fast and we're jumping from location to location, but it's not so fast that you get overwhelmed by it. I never really got lost or anything except once where I skipped some text on accident, but I was able to figure out where to go just based on my knowledge of where the story was at the moment. One thing I did not like was the Cemetary. Not the area itself, but the fact that I had to go there for no reason other than "if I go to the Pool Party now I'll be underleveled". It made the area feel like a chore or a grinding trip, and it would have been better if the pool party was restricted until after I had went to the cemetary, any excuse would have sufficed. Invisible bonus point ♥/5 Two dudes are in the cafe reminding us to be excellent to each other, and given that there is a movie about two dudes meeting legendary figures from history, it's a very clever and relevant reference, that's worth a ♥ =Eremiel= Creator: Frogboy Score: 15/25 // 60% Hit 40% Miss Spoiler: In depth Aesthetic 3/5 The game's style isn't bad but it isn't very good either. It gets the job done but doesn't stand out. Solid average aesthetic. Audio 3/5 Again, average. The sound effects for picking up a power-up feel nice, but the music choice feels a bit bland for a shoot-em-up. Gameplay 3/5 I like Baulders Gate. I like Gauntlet. I like Eremiel... sort of. The gameplay is a really arcade-y top down shoot em up dungeon crawler like the two I mentioned before, and while it does feel like one of these games it has a few issues. Rescuing souls feels a bit slow because they talk every time you rescue them, and they don't really say anything helpful. Then you have to wait for the animation to play out before you can pick up your currency that they drop, which can be a bit frustrating because enemies will swarm you like nobodies business. There are shops which you can use to buy upgrades and such, but because the only way to get more money is by killing enemies and rescuing souls, this feels a bit grindy imo. It's fun, but not too fun. Stability 3/5 There were some issues with transitions. I got stuck in a wall upon exiting a shop, just to get stuck in another wall when I went inside again later. Then there is the issue of enemy hit-detection. I have no idea when an enemy can attack me. Sometimes they're a full tile away, sometimes they need to be right on top of me. It's very crude and needs to be refined. Framerate didn't drop despite the large number of enemies on screen, but it did drop on the Frogboy logo. Weird. Direction 3/5 The game is pretty clear in what you're supposed to do, which is to: Save souls, shoot monsters, and go deeper into the abyss. It's solid, but it needs a bit more polish. I don't really care for story, that should be obvious by this point in my reviews, but even more so when it comes to action games. I'm here to shoot stuff, not read. There were a few times in the cutscenes where everything was so slow moving and slow paced I couldn't help but say "come on, let's get back to the game! Why am I watching a guy walk around his ghost-shop when I could be out shooting things!" One bit of direction that I wasn't fond of was the enemies. Enemies are stronger based on their color, but that's about it. Problem is, while it's easy to differentiate slimes into Blue=weakest, Green=Medium, Red=Strongst, other enemies aren't so clear. I couldn't tell you off memory which bat took more hits to kill, and that's a problem in a fast-paced "Oh my god theyre everywhere" situation. I also feel like enemies need a bit more identity. Bats move faster than slimes, but aside from that they are the same enemy. All that in mind though, it was an enjoyable game and these are nit-picks or suggestions for improvement rather than "problems" =Project Heaven's Door= Creator:: Joeseph Seraph Score: 11/25 // 44% Hit 56% Miss Spoiler: In depth Aesthetic 4/5 Graphics-wise, it's lovely. Looks like Final Fantasy on steroids. Unfortunately several animations and some parts of the game were drawn unfinished. It would have looked better to use RTP animations than leave in these unfinished blobs of color for your attack skills because they just look bad, if I'm being honest. The menu was pretty, but the names Frerrje Frejejerj and Frejejrerjerjernj or whatever they were took me out of it everytime I saw it. Audio 4/5 The music is bammin, slammin, and jammin. It was so good I had to look up the authors website and download it myself for personal listenings. *air guitar intensifies* Wingless Seraph's music really gives off that PS1 Rpg vibe that this game is shooting for, and I dig it. What I don't dig is the footstep sounds. They repeat too often, so everywhere you walk sounds like someone is shaking a wet chicken breast, and it starts to sound a little out of place after a bit. Gameplay 2/5 Another unfortunate thing. The gameplay is fairly unbalanced, and unrefined. There are a lot of skills to use, but you don't need them. There are items, but you don't need them. Several enemies to fight, but you can just avoid them. All enemies I fought could be defeated by spamming attack without consequence, especially seeing how you fully healed after every encounter. Because listen... Having a ton of diverse or interesting skills is always good, but they need to actually impact the combat, and the skills here didn't do any better than spamming attack, and so I spammed attack. The only exception was the Mimics, who were unfairly overpowered by comparision and had a massive hp pool. I could not defeat them even by utilizing my skills and upgrading my characters ability points. The ability to shoot a beam was neat though, and was one of the parts I liked. The puzzles involving this mechanic were pretty fun to figure out as well... or they would have been, if there wasnt the option to cheat and skip the whole thing. Why even have the puzzle if the point isn't to play the game? Stability 1/5 The game is super buggy. Game breakers, sequence breakers, tileset errors, and several other issues abound. The framerate stayed consistent in spite of the flashy visuals at least. Direction 0/5 There is none. Despite a beautiful cutscene at the beginning there is no dialogue in the entire game save for a battle tutorial and a very immersion breaking/lazy bit of dialogue from a boss later on, and no direction given whatsoever. Who are we, what are we doing? Who are we fighting? Where are we? Where do I go? Who knows? =Quidget the Wonderwiener= by: Dezue Score: 12/25 // 48% Hit 52% Miss Spoiler: In depth Aesthetic 5/5 The artstyle of this game is undoubtably it's highest selling point. Everything blends together into it's own thing perfectly. Audio 3/5 The audio was decent. Sounds and BGM set the mood fairly well, but could be a little loud and bombastic. Gameplay 0/5 Wonderwiener doesn't really have gameplay. It's similar to a point and click adventure game, in the way that you "go here, do this" but the puzzle solutions are all really obvious or you are flat out told the solution, and constantly punching the Electric Igor to get the solution to the problem was very very dull imo. The other half of the gameplay is it's humor, which I'll expand on in Direction. Stability 4/5 Game runs like sweat down a dogs back for the most part. (I know dogs don't sweat. They don't talk or invent things either.) But one part soured it. The cutting cables part. For me this part was unresponsive, and I had to press the button BEFORE the cutters reached the point making it feel less like precision and more like "keep trying until it works". Direction 0/5 This game is very hand-holding to the point that it isn't so much a game you play as it is a game you experience. So how is it as an experience? I can sum that up in two words: Sex jokes. The humor may appeal to some, but I found it to be very juvenile and sometimes downright mean spirited (why is this dog such an rear end in a top hat to his assisstants? Bad dog! NOT a good boy!) Speaking for myself and myself alone, I found Quidget to be an mean-spirited unlikeable character, his assistant is purely a sex object, and Electric Igor to be a switch that you have to constantly walk over to and press in order to continue the story. I didn't enjoy it at all, but if this sounds like your kind of humor then you probably will have a higher opinion of the game than me and you should definitely try it. If you don't like this kind of humor, then I recommend against playing Wonderwiener as aside from some cute visuals, that is frankly all it has to offer.