Definitely not reviews, just notes about my experience, mostly to myself.
Missing because they are not on itch: Bernband, Proteus, Cesure
HIFI: RPS Freeloaders column
Amazingly good. Innovative and polished. Especially impressive is that unlike most walking sims that look good in screenshots, it looks even better when playing.
I doubt my experience is very representative, since I was too distracted by assessing its techniques.
So many things here that just work - everything about the grass, especially. It's up there with Bernband in terms of pushing forward the craft of low-detail walking sim art.
A few of the innovations need a bit more work to be *perfect*: the tree leaf motion tends to look "wobbly", too fast, and/or too sinusoidal close up (for some trees), and there are issues with leaf billboards popping in front of one another. The faking of volumetric lighting is gorgeous, but seems to have an issue at certain angles (maybe it should be faded out at those angles.)
HIFI: RPS article.
Very very good. Arguably a terrible art gallery simulator though - where are the people? Why isn't anyone standing in between me and the art? I want procedurally generated chin-stroking! Obviously they thought so too since they created a sequel with just that (Joy Exhibition).
HIFI: itch recommended it.
A good idea.
Some technical issues make it harder to enjoy - the loading screen took a very long time for me, and the music could not be adjusted to less than somewhat too loud (that's arguably my OS's fault though.)
How I found it: original art technique, shown in GIF form on RPS.
Beautiful art, original graphics technique. I especially liked the dragonflies darting aside with a little buzz as I approached them.
Also, the way it kicks you out after a while (in a stylish way) feels like it prevents you from quitting due to boredom - essentially it's like a prompt for "maybe you've had enough", as well as forming a nice end to the day.
How I found it: recommended by itch, liked the abstract art in the GIF.
I want to see the other levels, but not enough to keep rolling the dice and getting the same ones - maybe later. So I've only seen two of them.
Some really nice, abstract graphics here. The trees level is really nice.
My exceptionally low tolerance for repetition in/of music is probably what made me stop playing.
HIFI: recommended by itch, intrigued by the clean geometric art style
Beautiful art - feels very procedural although I guess it's purely handcrafted.
Annoying control scheme though, unfortunately.
HIFI: recommended by itch, also on RPS I think - liked the colorful "low-poly" art, generally interested in the "make your own music" hook.
I think I'm just not into the ambient music tweaking genre, despite my interest in procedurally generated music and digital instrument simulation