MOONPONG is a superb modern (and solo) iteration of classic pong gameplay. Bendy circles, gravity, ice and cloud balls, a range of upgrades, enemies that shoot back, and even bosses. Very challenging and very fun. As always with PUNKCAKE games, the pixel graphics and retro soundtrack are perfect!
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Surprisingly gentle learning curve but gets pretty hectic from level 7 and reaches classic Skull difficulty by the final level. Gameplay's best described as Tapper meets Duck Hunt. Gorgeous 1 bit pixel art and smooth controls. Very short - nice for a casual game whenever you have a spare minute.
Ecstatic is a brilliant tactical top-down shooter that quickly turns into a bullet hell. Unique controls - controlling both movement and targeting with the mouse - is an interesting challenge. The random nature of the upgrade drops force you to adopt different play styles every run, making it infinitely replayable. Great music, awesome pixel art. Bloody tough!
Rush for the Ages has nailed the "a fast game's a good game" ideology. As with any PUNKCAKE game, it's easy to learn, difficult to master, and even harder to put down. It's all about card synergy but you're playing with a shared pool of cards, slow-revealing objectives, and multiple layers of interaction. Addictive!
TwoFaceGames have an established knack for coming up with innovative ways to use the RPG Maker system. Port Traventor's their biggest game yet, and it's a unique hybrid concept that's first and foremost an idling kingdom manager that also incorporates JRPG-style quests and combat. It can get a little grindy but in a way that will seem normal to most JRPG fans. There's no downtime - always something to do and some new upgrade to strive for. Creative.
Lawn Buster for Hire's a short and sweet "puzzle" game that's conceptually very cool. All you need to do is move around the map, clearing all the grass. What makes it cool is the layers of difficulty involved; each level you gain extra rewards for leaving the flowers intact, for not re-treading, and for being quick about it. It's not always possible to do all of those things so you need to make choices and sacrifices. Only 10 minutes of gameplay but it's challenging and there's 5 endings so you'll get 30-60 minutes out of it. Would love to see a longer "deluxe" version.
Trapped is a nicely-made retro dungeon crawler that brings back fond memories of an old gameboy game that I loved - Wizardry, maybe? In any case, Trapped sees you trying to work your way through a maze while facing some very challenging enemies that require strong resource management and some strategy to defeat. Nostalgic and enjoyable.
Castle Warfare's an interesting concept, sort of a turn-based version of something like Warcraft. The gameplay is fundamentally kingdom/resource management through a JRPG-style interface and the combat's scenario-based. Features both offensive and defensive levels. There's 2-3 hours worth of game here; it's fun for what it is although it could benefit from some QoL upgrades and I'd love to see the dev take the concept further.
Top quality retro RPG with turn-based tactical combat. The overarching story's fairly generic but Esturia is really about the journey and it's surprisingly packed with choice & consequence. Along the way you will explore a surprisingly large world, meet lots of new people in a politically charged world, and be forced to make difficult decisions along the way.
Not your regular PUNKCAKE game! If you're looking for a "feels like," I got some Tamagotchi vibes from it. Keeping your little shroomies happy, fed, and busy, is the closest thing to a challenge in Shroomchitect. It's super chill. As they say, there are no bosses or goals, so you're left to kick around building cute little social spaces for them like little cottage tables suspended in the rooftops of your mushroom, surrounded by sparkling lanterns and overlooking your gardens.
Scavenger is an incredible reimagining of the Match-3 genre. First, there's two clocks - you have to keep your stacks low but you also have to stop the raiders. To make it even more challenging, each resource has its own match pattern. That would be enough to make a fresh game but that's not enough for PUNKCAKE, who have made a name for themselves for adding subtle complexity. To succeed you will need to use all the controls - grab sideways, not just underneath, throw blocks, and work in both planes. As always, I'm in love with PUNKCAKE's pixel art and Pentadrangle's soundtrack. And it's their first 2P game!
The legends at Imaginary Friends Games sent me a copy of Festive Finds as a nice Christmas gesture. I was out of town at the time so a little late getting this post up but it's a spot the difference game built on an advent calendar. Very nicely made. The kids and I love it, thank you!
I can only describe HyperRogue as "surprisingly fun" - I happily burned a whole hour just messing around in the tutorial! The non-euclidian geometry is just the surface. A real diamond in the rough. Won't be for everyone but it's one of my all-time favourite games. Read the full review here: https://www.cshpicone.com/gaming/game-reviews/hyperrogue
Pixel art and music are both glorious. Controls are simple but nuanced, based around controlling a formation rather than a single fighter. You've got nine pilots to beat three levels and three bosses. The levels are the same every time but the trick is to try to work out the best combination of pilots on each level to maximise your sustainability and efficiency. As each pilot has totally distinct strengths, weaknesses, weapons, and controls, this leads to far more replayability than you might expect, and there's also a pile of handicap-based challenges you can tack on. Might have liked another level or two but there's hours of entertainment here as-is.
PUNKCAKE have quickly made a name for themselves for reinventing the shooter genre and they've done it again. This one's a roguelite where you get stronger by unlocking new cards. The tricky part: The cards only unlock through gameplay, but they also affect your current game. And while every card may give you some powerful bonus, they also come with an equally powerful penalty. To succeed, you need to find synergy between the cards so that the penalties actually make you more powerful. And of course there's always more than meets the eye with any PUNKCAKE game. Dig deep! PS: How cool is the 1-bit pixel art!
Four Travellers is as beautiful as it is dark. It's a point and click game but it's an interactive story, not an adventure game. A tragic tale, wonderfully told and presented in gorgeous pixel art.
PUNKCAKE keep reinventing the shooter genre. This time they've crossed it with Minesweeper, and it's awesome. Loads of different baddies and upgrades, and there's a bit of a management sim going on in the background - it's not as simple as beating each level.. you have to pick your upgrades carefully and beat the system. The ability to unlock new factions makes this incredibly replayable.
I was sucked into Wratch's Den by the Dungeon Keeper-inspired graphics, but found a totally different game when I fired it up. Not disappointed at all; it's a fantastic experience. Fans of nitty-gritty tactical games (like me) will love it.
While obviously inspired by Dungeon Keeper, it's a totally different game. It's not a builder at all, it's actually a time-based tactical game. And it's loads of fun. 4 difficulty settings and an endless loop survival mode give this game pretty good mileage. Could use a little more love - some balance tweaking in particular - but it's in very good shape as-is.
Holy crap, Antecrypt is awesome. Features some really unique mechanics involving a bouncing aim point you can't control, it's like nothing else. If you're a fan of twinsticks or bullet hells, you need to check it out - this is really something special.