Cozy zombie apocalypse survival game with a cartoony graphical style. Crafting is a bit intense with subcombines and your items have very low durability but for the person who wants a slightly more aggro but still cozy Stardew Valley this might be a good game.
Undecember is a pretty competent Diablo style game that specifically is similar to Path of Exile. It uses a classless system where your weapon and skill gems determine how you attack enemies and as a result are your "class". Armor is all based off of raw stats which are allocated as you see fit.
The game has a fairly unique art style that combines Korean influences with something akin to Dark Souls. The game starts with you on a massive "ship" that's built on the back of a giant "sand walker" which is some sort of gargantuan camel lizard hybrid which is truly just epic. The intro ends with you shooting a ballista bolt into a neighboring sand walker that is attacking yours causing both creatures to topple and die. Metal. As. Hell.
My main concern with the game is that I think it'll be pretty strongly pay2win with the abundance of currencies and upgrade paths your items/skill gems have, but I think it's definitely worth checking out once it goes live.
This game has kickass music, like the music just S L A P S kick ass metal/hard rock for DAYS. Gameplay wise this is a real twitchy hyperactive twin stick shooter roguelite and this could not be further up my alley if you tried. Fans of Nuclear Throne should absolutely play this.
Mechanically the game uses a mixture of attacking enemies with range/melee attacks and then mining out experience gems from the walls of the level with your melee attack that provides for a pretty good flow state of "prioritize, kill, mine, repeat." which is always super satisfying.
Soulstone Survivors is a game in the same niche as Vampire Survivors, a mostly flow state triggering single stick shooter where attacks are largely automated. You can dodge on command and a few attacks will trigger towards your cursor but in general the game is solely about movement.
I think my main problem with this game is 2 fold. First: The music isn't great and I'm not generally a dude that cares about the music in games but for these kind of flow state triggering games it's better when it kicks ass and the music here is some sort of generic darksynth stuff. It's not bad, it just doesn't do it for me. Second: Graphically the game has this bright, bubbly mobile game aesthetic which just again doesn't work for me. Not a bad thing objectively but... not my jam.
On the plus side I think this game has some pretty inventive upgrades, my favorite is one called "Doom" which applies a damage effect that will take place in X seconds, and can stack and reapplications refresh the timer. Once you have enough stacks on an enemy that they are greater than its health they all trigger immediately and kill the enemy instantly. Super neat stuff.
Void Scrappers is a pretty typical reverse bullet hell. I think its stand out feature is that bosses (and therefore the weapons they drop) are on a modifiable cooldown while upgrades from collecting experience modify aspects of those weapons (damage, fire speed, amount, range etc) and that's pretty cool. I like the thought of being able to spec yourself into a boss rush style of game. The game runs at an incredibly quick pace, your space ship feels like it is a roller-skate on ice and you positively FLY around almost uncontrollably.
All my deaths were due to my reflexes not being able to keep up with my agility and while getting overwhelmed is absolutely a possibility it was never my main concern. My main concern was flying warp speed into something I couldn't see because your view is also very zoomed in on your ship and I think that's actually a pretty nice middle ground of speed and visibility which many of these reverse bullet hells miss: super slow characters and super zoomed out views is more the norm
I don’t know what the name is for games that are like Escape from Tarkov or Hunt: Showdown. These games have you spawn into a shared map with both other players and NPCs as hazards and then you have to loot, scoot and survive your way to an exit point. I don’t know what the name of this genre is but hot damn do I like the idea. Not the execution of EFT or Hunt, they’re good games just very much not for me. But this game… a top down action game with lovecraftian influences and aggressively weird? This game is one of what friends of mine have started calling “Goat games” and yeah this is definitely a Goat game.
The penalty for death isn’t too harsh because while you may go into a game with no bullets it’s pretty easy to get them during a match and you always have a basic pistol at your disposal. That alone makes this better than the other games I’m comparing it to from a friendliness perspective. PvP combat definitely rewards quick thinking and a bit of prep which is nice to see. Gear alone doesn’t matter and you can quickly gear up to be a threat during a match even when you’re starting with nothing.
Storywise it’s dreamlike and tinged with both Lovecraft and something akin to Hotline Miami’s surrealism with the story and match prep sections playing out almost like a point and click adventure. And there is room decorating so this must be a “cozy” game, right? Totes. This game is so totally my kind of nonsense.
Not a whole lot to say about this one. In typical reverse bullet hell fashion you’re shooting out tons of fire against enemies rushing towards you. It’s got a unique take on weapon allocation where they’re applied to slots on the front, back and sides of your ship and that can affect where they fire out, but some have specific locations they’ll fire out of regardless of where you equip them.
Movement is a bit different too, it’s ship relative so you apply thrust and steering independently of each other which is pretty neat. You’re able to build your upgrade “deck” as you see fit and somewhat control what build you’ll be using for each run which is something I’m always leery of because I think it’s being overused but yeah sure it’s neat. “Neat” really encapsulates the whole game, it didn’t wow me but overall it was just y’know: Neat.
This reminded me most of Holocure which is a free reverse bullet hell. The things that specifically reminded me of Holocure were the soundtrack which just RRROOOCCCKKKSSS, the slow movement and oddly the menus. Upgrades are pretty cool and weird such as a tornado that chucks tennis balls. There’s a merchant that shows up occasionally that will give you “illegal spells” which are generally pretty awesome replacements for your lowest level spell but can also be modifications to base attributes or even to gameplay such as spawning extra bosses.
Two things that are pretty interesting is that A) the game is really a build up to the endless mode that you spawn around 13 minutes in. Once you’re in that mode you don’t have to try to seek out experience anymore, it is collected on drop and it becomes a boss rush. B) shrines are constantly being summoned that will project an area around them, stay in that area and kill the amount of monsters it tells you to and you’ll get a pretty strong temporary buff. It’s a neat system, I think it’s a bit too easy, and the graphics are a bit crude but that’s also kind of it’s charm. Worth a look.
This is not my first time playing Zero Sievert. The game demo has been live in at least one other next fest and for Steam’s survival fest/sale event as well. I love this game. Zero Sievert is essentially a 2d isometric version of Escape from Tarkov mixed with S.T.A.L.K.E.R. The same basic Tarkov loop applies: enter the zone then loot, scoot and fight your way to an extraction point. Along the way you may encounter hostile wildlife, mutants, enemy factions and mysterious phenomena that will attempt to put an end to your scavenging.
The gunplay in this game is brutal and fast, with death always only a couple of rounds away. When I say it’s a 2d Tarkov I do really mean that too, all the key binds are the same and it uses the same food/water/health/stamina systems that you need to actively maintain the meters of while out in the zone. The game is brutally difficult, but super satisfying and I can’t wait to see what the full game brings in terms of story and other zones.
Reminds me of Icarus meets Raft. Mostly scavenging stuff to make components and items in 3d printers which is the Icarus part and wandering from "island" (skyscraper) to "island" for materials which is the Raft part. Also reminds me of Icarus in that it's turning my 290x into a pile of goo because apparently a 10 year old graphics card just doesn't cut it anymore. Neat game, can't wait to see what multiplayer is like with my survival nerd friends.
One really cool thing is the game involves viruses which you catch and have to treat/cure which is a neat add on to the general plate spinning act that's involved with not starving or dehydrating to death. In the demo the first virus you catch causes Photophobia which will trigger visual and audio distortions/hallucinations when you look at the sun and if you don't look away quickly enough you'll start taking damage. Annoying, but neat.
Dewdrop Dynasty is a Cave Story style metroidvania with pixel perfect movement. You've got a gun, shooting it down gives you a boost upwards, this is a HUGE part of the movement of the game. Typical Metroidvania as you gain skills you'll unlock the ability to reach new areas/shortcuts. In the demo at least a charge shot and crawling are on display and there may be more but I didn't beat the first boss. The boss was surprisingly punishing, almost more like a Megaman boss.
OTXO is a hyperviolent top down combat game set in a stylized black and white (and red) world that is utterly surreal. You have bullet time, you can vault furniture, you get buffs by drinking liquor (like the ability to hold down fire while unarmed to deflect all bullets coming towards you from the front. Hell yeah.) and much like hotline miami, which is a pretty clear inspiration, the game could be described as a ballet in an abattoir.
I think special consideration should be given to the sound of this game, both music and otherwise. First off the game is loud. Like really loud. I don’t mean you can’t turn it down, but the gun shots are thunderous, doors when kicked in sound like you’re snapping whole forests like twigs, the music pounds in your skull urging you to kill, maim and destroy to the beat. As the kids would say this game slaps.
I’m typing up these reviews after the fest has ended, and that’s, I’m sure, painfully apparent. This game makes the second one that has launched since the fest that I’ve bought. Deadeye Deepfake Simulacrum is an immersive sim with a very simple visual style that emphasis stealth, hacking and the occasional murderous rampage. One of the big draws to this game is the snarky attitude which just seeps out of everything that is said to you, be it interactions directly with AIs or in emails sent to you.
While you do have powerful melee and ranged combat options your primary weapons are your ability to think of solutions using the hacking system. Anything can be hacked. Cameras. Turrets. Most enemies. Toilets. Bullets. Yes, bullets. The amount of freedom offered to you in such a deceptively simple package is just truly awesome.
If you find death by chocolate in your fridge while playing. Eat it. I dare you.
This is an interesting take on the 20 Minutes to Dawn style of twin stick shooter. I’m not entirely sure what options will be available in the game on release but currently you can choose what default buff you want (faster casting, more damage, more HP) and what weapon to use (big fireballs, or small mini fireballs that fire quickly). The general loop consists of killing enemies till you spawn a “Server” which is a sort of monolith that locks you into a small area and peppers you with fireballs while you shoot it. Kill two of those and you spawn an “Allegory” which is a level boss, kill the boss and you get a cooler than normal upgrade and descend to the next level and by level I mean both literally as an in-game term and metaphorically you move on to a new stage of grief. The game’s got a theme it certainly leans in to.
It’s pretty basic but it has real potential.. Movement is slower than I’d like, and it looks like there is going to be some sort of deck building stuff in the full version for upgrades which I’m always suspicious of but yeah. It’s got some potential.
Not much to say about this, it's Diablo 3 but with super heroes. The setting is a cool grimdark cyberpunk kind of deal that reminds me a bit of Warhammer 40k. Superfuse seems to deemphasize standard left click attacks in favor of active special attacks of which you have 4 loaded up at any time and you can modify aspects of through a very free form skill gem sort of interface. It’s neat, but it didn’t grab me. Worth checking out when it launches.
This is the game I played the least because it kept crashing on me and I'm not convinced it was the games fault.
Movement reminded me of Wizard of Legend with its snappy dashy but the game was pretty punishing so I didn't get very far. I'm not honestly sure what to think of this game but I will be keeping an eye on it for sure. I actually booted it up after writing that last sentence to see if I was missing anything and yeah still not sure what to think. The flow of combat is really nice but I can't really get very far in it to see what's going on under the hood so to speak.
This isn't a full game but more of a tech demo. Reminds me of Blood Wake for the OG Xbox but with a neat halftone comic shading style. Otherwise gameplay is that arena based roguelite game play that you can find in titles like Sky Rogue: spawn in with a bunch of enemies, kill them, wash/rinse/repeat till you get to the boss. Neat tech demo and the weapons on display are interesting. You have a main turret and special ability you control and two auto firing side turrets plus a melee weapon for ramming other ships. Neat setup and there's lots of potential there but again it's a tech demo more than anything. Won't be rating this one.
If I ever upgrade to supporter there will be a video here... for now no pics. Go to the link, it's more visual than screenshots will do any sort of justice to.
First person shooter that recreates a John Woo film (or really any Hong Kong cop action shoot 'em up) including insane amounts of particles exploding from everything. There is real potential for a good game here but ultimately at the moment this is just a tech demo. Bonus points for the extreme bokeh on the part of the gun body that is closest to your vision. Also won't be rating.
This is an isometric wushu physics based fighter. The sense of momentum and inertia is really interesting and the game feels both floaty and weighty at the same time. This is a tech demo as well but there is a lot of potential here for a really neat fighter. As a warning if you try it there is NO tutorial. You get a list of moves and a flow chart, good luck. Last one I won't be rating.