NEST is a cute game poem about best bird buds

Crows, it turns out, are probably smarter than you think. They seem to be able to recognize human faces and craft tools to solve problems they run up against—the problem pretty much always being a lack of food, but still. You learn this as you play Cullen Dwyer’s new game NEST, which he gives a kind of epigraph for on its page: “Explore the forest as a crow/ and try to make friends/ with whom to find treasure and secrets.” NEST is a short game, and more than anything else it resembles Knytt or the small and atmosphere-heavy platformers…


Watch the coordinated beauty of birds flocking in digital form

Bird flocks are ruthlessly efficient convoys, though that is not always obvious from the ground. As thousands of birds fly overhead, it is not immediately apparent that they are maneuvering at remarkable speeds or turning on a dime. Enough of this amateur description, however. Let’s turn this thing over to the expert—in this case, Richard Wilbur: As if a cast of grain leapt back to the hand, A landscapeful of small black birds, intent On the far south, convene at some command At once in the middle of the air, at once are gone With headlong and unanimous consent From…


Aer’s beautiful skyworld gets even more inviting in its latest trailer

Last time we saw cubist flying game Aer, its bird girl protagonist Auk was left quivering, alone and scared, in a distant ruin. She had just been threatened by a large monster, one she had met before, only soon afterward finding herself surrounded by ominous blue spirits as an ethereal crescendo swelled up around her. As the game’s newest trailer resumes her journey, however, this unsettling tone is set aside, instead introducing us to the friendlier side of the game’s world. When the trailer opens, we briefly find Auk in what appears to be the same temple as last time, praying to a…


Crow money, crow problems

Sign up to receive each week’s Playlist e-mail here! Also check out our full, interactive Playlist section. Crowtel (PC)  BY Sinks Imagine this: you’re just another crow hotel manager, living their simple life and minding their own business. You don’t want to be the next Ritz Carlton or anything—your aspirations are much more laid back than that. You just want to keep your business afloat without much effort. But, one day, some fat cats from the health department come in for an inspection, threatening the livelihood of your Crowtel. Now you’re finally forced to face all those niggling death traps you’ve…


Gathering Sky lets you conduct flocks of birds as you would a piece of music

Think of all the words that an eagle typically conjures: mighty, inspiring, soaring, majestic. The eagle in Gathering Sky is none of these. I don’t think I’m going beyond myself to say that, frankly, it’s a bit of a shit. I know we shouldn’t wish an excruciating death on any of Earth’s creatures—especially in the wake of the whole Cecil the lion incident—but I can’t help it. I hope that eagle dive bombs a buzz saw. Made of angry claws and a screech that inspires only terror, the eagle in Gathering Sky exists for one purpose, and that is to…