It’s hard recommending games to people. You’ve got to take individual tastes into account, how fresh a game is, and what the recommendee will think of you afterward. But that’s also what makes recommending games so fulfilling, when you nail it you nail it. Fortunately you can make conditional recommendations -- my favorite kind. I like to think that while not every game we feature here will be everyone’s favorite game ever, there’s still something you can learn from each of them-- something you can take with you once you close the game. Let’s dive into this week’s games.
I’ve been working in the games industry for a long time now, so it’s very rare that I see a game that pulls me in so completely just with a trailer. Baobab’s Mausoleum Episode 1: Ovnifagos Don’t Eat Flamingos is one of those games. As of writing I’ve watched the trailer 6 times and most of those were directly in a row. So what is this magical game like? I’m not sure. I don’t even think the developer knows.
Baobab’s is billed as a JRPG but it’s not. Not really anyway. Sure there are menus and fights, but there are also FPS sections, a Zelda bit, and you’re playing as a vampire eggplant. While the game is certainly flawed, it’s one of the strangest and most stylish projects around.
I’ve been debating recommending Walden, a Game for a while now. Sure it’s an interesting adaptation of the life of one of America’s most famous authors, but there’s something strange about it. Maybe that’s what makes it good? The story of Walden, a Game is the story of Thoreau’s year on Walden Pond: The story of a man philosophizing about self-reliance while his mother did his laundry. Walden, a Game ignores the flaws of the Walden mythos and allows you to buy into and live in the revised narrative of Thoreau.
With that in mind, Walden, a Game is an interesting take on the story. It’s my hope that folks can learn from this game in their own way, and it's a fresh take on a 100+ year old work. It is interesting to see some of the liberties the development team has taken with the periphery characters in Thoreau's work, and some of the area around the cabin. Walden, a Game is available now.
Did you play VVVVVV and want more? What about more featuring a guy in a suit? Well Necrosphere is here to scratch that itch. Caught in hell after some unnamed events, you have to explore your way around a version of the underworld that is more precise platforming rather than fire and brimstone. Also the devil must have stolen your knees because you can’t jump.
The developer promises “no filler gameplay” on their page, and they mean it. Every screen contains a dense set of puzzles that have to be navigated in a shockingly open order. Now are you ready for the real kicker? This is only a demo. The final version of Necrosphere is due out in September. The current demo of Necrosphere is totally worth the 3 hours you’ll put into it and is sure to move the full release all the way up your list of anticipated games.