Lost Ember

Give Lost Ember all your money so you can play as a good boy

A gentle breeze rustles the tall grass that surrounds you, causing the blades to sway back and forth lazily to the soft rhythm of the wind. Up ahead lies a dirt path, leading to an unknown destination whose name was lost to time long ago. You’re curled up on a patch of soil near a bank of water, taking a short break from exploring the environment. The ripples created by the wind roll slowly toward you, splashing at your paws. You catch a glimpse of your resting form in the reflection—distorted, but beautiful. Your coat is thick and long, and…


Beads of Orange Glass is a wonderful piece of generative art

Commissioned for the No Quarter exhibition at the NYU Game Center, Loren Schmidt’s Beads of Orange Glass is now available for download on itch.io. The game is not interested in holding players’ hands through a guided narrative; instead, players shape their experience themselves as they explore the game’s rich textural space. A two-player game, one player navigates the pixelated landscape while the other adjusts the minimal landscape, triggering rain showers and falling stars, growing moss, and planting trees. Players can change themselves, too—into deer, birds, and trees. Without words, Beads of Orange Glass tells stories through a generated world with random sets of verbs…

life of sundura 6

An upcoming microbiological videogame looks pretty chill

Existence is stressful. This is what the passage of time teaches us as we trade our carefree childhoods for a decision-ridden adult life. Modern life can fill us to the brim with anxiety. Our brains conspire against us, pumping our minds full of negative thoughts, paralyzing our bodies with indecision as we are asked to confront the long road of our lives and the individual choices that form the paving stones beneath our feet. Wow, that got a bit real there. But, hey, if ever you need a respite from the chaos of everyday life, return to the basics in…

The Norwood Suite

The creator of Off-Peak is making another uncanny museum

Early last year, independent game maker Cosmo D came bursting onto the scene with Off-Peak (2015), a bizarre exhibition of artifacts that is museum, musical, and story all at once. It threw you into a train station on the very edge of reality and gave you a task to do, begging you not be distracted by the infinite staircases or the inexplicable, repeating figures. Like lots of games, it was a “love letter to a lot of things,” and like lots of games, it evokes the desire to re-explore. Luckily, Cosmo’s new game The Norwood Suite is being realized in the same…


There’s more Tacoma footage and it just keeps getting better

IGN has released the first 15 minutes Fullbright’s next game Tacoma, and it’s looking astonishingly good. We’d already gotten glimpses of its ship as Amy, the protagonist, slipped around in zero-gravity, transferring from surface to surface to navigate the empty ship, and we’d seen the first echoes of those that used to inhabit it: colorful human-shaped holograms, going about their lives on loop as Amy stayed quiet and watched. we watch them converse and lament, joke and flirt and worry But with this new footage we get an even closer look at the AR ghosts that drive Tacoma’s plot—we watch them…

The Church in the Darkness

How to stealthily infiltrate a real-life 1970s cult? Let The Church in the Darkness show you

The Church in the Darkness has been pitched as an “action-infiltration” game based on a real-life cult since its announcement. But even though what we knew of it was colorful—far-left radicalist group in the 70s moves to Latin America to create a socialist utopia, goes full cult—we still didn’t know much at all. The game would include some element of stealth, but there would be options on how to play it, and you would never be forced into combat. The moral status of the Collective Justice Mission’s leadership would remain in question, and could even change from playthrough to playthrough. Until…


Venineth promises nothing but ancient alien landscapes

Venineth’s internet presence is currently composed of three narrative-less videos, a handful of screenshots, and a loose description of an exploration-based puzzle game. Besides that, what you’ll be doing in its world is unknown. Their website mentions “ancient alien technology,” but the worlds that have been shown so far are barren but for a few beams of blue light. There are no characters, at least that have been shown so far, and no words, just a pinball-esque reference point for the player—you literally play as a ball—that rolls gently around the desert. It pushes one of the blue lights to…

Inflorescence City Volume 2

Let Inflorescence City Vol. 2 flower before your eyes

What is a city? It’s a question we rarely consider: that word, city, being such a useful label for the dense, multi-layered, contradictory, opaque, ever-changing, utopic, perverse, magical, and mundane piles of decaying masonry where most of the world’s population spend their lives. A city can be a landscape, or a home, but it can also be an instrument, played by a multitude, a fiction re-enacted daily by its population. Describing a city is a fool’s game, as you can see, with most descriptions simultaneously too big and too small to encompass the idea of a city. But perhaps that…

Near Death - interior

Near Death is a little too numb

Near Death begins when a woman crashes at the abandoned Sutro Station in the Marie Byrd Land region of Antarctica. There is no ceremonious setup, only the bare-bones facts of her situation: the temperature, the location, the condition of polar night, and the wind chill. She fumbles through the dark with the dim glow of a flashlight before finding one of the buildings of Sutro Station and uses a small personal heater to circulate warmth. Her situation only worsens as her contact cannot extract her in extreme conditions, and she resolves to find some way to survive or escape before…