Tattletail
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Virtual pets get the creepy game they deserve

Sign up to receive each week’s Playlist e-mail here! Also check out our full, interactive Playlist section. Tattletail (Windows, Mac) By Waygetter Electronics The ’90s had a lot of creepy toys. Remember the adverts boasting that a new doll would actually crap in its diaper? What about those gross snot monsters that were made to let kids shoot slime at people? There were also virtual pets and Furbys. Remember those? A new horror game called Tattletail does. In fact, it has you looking after one over the nights leading up to Christmas. You have to feed and groom it, even play hide-and-seek, all…

High Scores 2016
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High Scores: The Best Videogames of 2016 – 4 to 1

This is part of Kill Screen’s list of the best videogames of 2016. To see the rest of the list, check out all the other parts. /// 4. Anatomy If Kitty Horrorshow is the new mistress of videogame horror, then right now Anatomy is her masterpiece. It’s as unsettling as it is smart. You’re tasked with collecting cassette tapes around a dark, silent house. As you listen to them, a monologue suggests the house is alive. One line that sticks: “There is even a fair number of comparisons to be drawn between those organs of the house and those of the…

High Scores 2016
Feature

High Scores: The Best Videogames of 2016 – 8 to 5

This is part of Kill Screen’s list of the best videogames of 2016. To see the rest of the list, check out all the other parts. /// 8. Hitman What have I done? I accidentally killed this golf instructor in Sapienza—automatically a huge knock on my final score—and I feel terrible. This dude wasn’t my intended target. I just wanted his outfit. As I don this mystery man’s uniform, I wonder; what was this man’s life like before I threw a knife into his head? Before I, the ever-bald and temporarily golf-loving Agent 47, placed an exploding ball onto an isolated…

High Scores 2016
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High Scores: The Best Videogames of 2016 – 12 to 9

This is part of Kill Screen’s list of the best videogames of 2016. To see the rest of the list, check out all the other parts. /// 12. The Last Guardian You don’t mind when Trico delays the journey to splash in a puddle. This large mythic fusion of cat, bird, and dog is the most lovable videogame companion yet—both daft and majestic. Tasked with escaping a megastructure made of carved stone and rickety wooden plinths, the boy and Trico learn to cooperate, but also to care for one another. They climb up high and fall back down, over and over,…

High Scores 2016
Feature

High Scores: The Best Videogames of 2016 – 16 to 13

This is part of Kill Screen’s list of the best videogames of 2016. To see the rest of the list, check out all the other parts. /// 16. Abzû Abzû is an underwater opera about the precious cadence of ecosystems. Its ocean world feels like a fantasy as you swim downstream with dolphins and weave between the tropical leaves of aquatic plants. But for the most part it is not. The game only takes what beauty already exists (or once did) in the seas and attaches a full-blown orchestra to it. In a year when scientists have announced the human impact…

High Scores 2016
Feature

High Scores: The Best Videogames of 2016 – 20 to 17

This is part of Kill Screen’s list of the best videogames of 2016. To see the rest of the list, check out all the other parts. /// 20. Darkest Dungeon Darkest Dungeon will punish you. The “dungeon,” a dusty and generic RPG fixture, is twisted into a locus of psychological torment and trauma. Relentlessly grim voiceover and inky Mike Mignola-esque art drive home the game’s hammer-blunt central message: violence takes its toll. There is no happy ending, no glory as you sentence yet another band of recruits to the serpentine catacombs coiling beneath your ancestral estate. They return—if they return at…

Broken Breakout
News

Here’s a tip: Break games to find new ones

Sign up to receive each week’s Playlist e-mail here! Also check out our full, interactive Playlist section. Broken Breakout? (Browser, Windows, Mac) By Tim Garbos One person’s trash is another person’s treasure. That’s how the old adage goes. But can it be applied to videogames? Tim Garbos seems to have set out on a solo mission to prove that it can with his Ludum Dare 37 entry Broken Breakout? The game follows the same rules as the Atari arcade classic but takes away some of the mechanics. For starters, the bat is immovable and the ball isn’t perpetually bouncing around. But…

Walkie Talkie
News

An online chatroom isn’t where you’d expect to find a platformer

Sign up to receive each week’s Playlist e-mail here! Also check out our full, interactive Playlist section. Walkie Talkie (Windows) BY DANIEL LINSSEN Daniel Linssen must see platformers everywhere. He’s already made one inside a computer interface and one that works in tandem with a separate game. Now he’s made a platformer inside an online chatroom. It also doubles up as one of the most easy-to-use level creators ever conceived. Called Walkie Talkie, the game is a fully-functioning online chatroom where people can talk to each other by typing into a box. You can scroll through the entire conversation and, at…

shenzen
News

SHENZEN I/O is here to make you code like it’s the 1980s

Sign up to receive each week’s Playlist e-mail here! Also check out our full, interactive Playlist section. SHENZEN I/O (Windows, Mac) BY ZACHTRONICS Some games and educational apps try to ease you into the art of writing code. SHENZEN I/O isn’t so soft. It’s a throwback to the 1980s, when there wasn’t much so media geared towards teaching people how to code. Hence, it begins its lessons by throwing a hefty manual (which you can print out) and a number of circuit-based challenges at you, and then leaves you to figure it out. There’s a little bit of guidance at first but…