iOS, Android, PC/Mac/Linux • It’s okay, you can say it. I miss a shitload of news. I know it, you know it. I’d like to blame it on the fact that I’m the only one working the Stately Play news beat these days, but it’s more an issue with me just being a lazy bum and focusing only on the stuff I really enjoy. I don’t think I need to tell you that the stuff I enjoy is board games. I’m going to try and be better and cover more than whatever Asmodee is currently up to, trying to write about at least one non-board game every day. Will I stick with it? Mostly. I’m sure I’ll have days where I slip, but it’s going to be better than it has been. Promise. Today’s non-board game is Card City Nights 2 which hit the App Store late last week.
iPad, PC/Mac • Hey, everyone! It’s Monday and I’m still sick! This announcement has nothing to do with the game we’re about to discuss or with garnering sympathy (I’ll take it, but that’s not the main point), but I wanted everyone to understand why content might be a little slow over the next few days. The flu I seem to have picked up is accompanied by migraine level headaches, and staring at a screen makes it about 100x worse, which is kind of an issue when writing a blog. Hopefully this clears up quickly and things can get back to normal, but I thought you should know. Back to our regular programming: Let’s talk about Subsurface Circular.
Tabletop • While board gaming is still a fairly small niche of the hobby world, it’s made up of many smaller niches. Many of those I’ve dabbled in: war games, miniatures, 18xx, smelling like you haven’t showered in three weeks. One group I’ve never participated deals with something called Print-and-Play. These are the crazy people [I only say this because a good friend is one of these people and he’s only slightly not crazy -ed.] who spend a lot of time to handcraft beautiful copies of games released for free and posted on sites like BGG. I haven’t even been one of the lazy ones who just print everything on regular paper and tape it together with Scotch tape. Nothing in this process interested me in until I helped design a Print-and-Play game of my own, and now I think they’re the greatest thing ever. Well, this game is, at least.
PC/Mac/Linux • INTRODUCE Capped off 12 East Games’ Trackless some days ago. Still thinking about 12 East Games‘ Trackless today. Surely a very good sign. CONTINUE
iOS Universal, PC/Mac/Linux • You’re probably sick and tired of me talking about Thimbleweed Park around these parts, but I know a lot of our readers are mobile gamers first and foremost, so I also know many of you have probably ignored my earlier praises of the game. You’re probably also aware that the previous sentence is an abomination of word structure and nearly, but not quite, a run-on sentence. That sentence wasn’t much better. Shorter, but not better. What I’m trying to say is, mobile gamers can now experience the joy I’ve had playing Thimbleweed Park because it’s currently on the App Store.
iOS Universal, Android, Consoles, Switch, PC/Mac • While I absolutely adored the PC/Mac version of Thimbleweed Park earlier this year, I’ll admit that I still haven’t fully solved the Twin Peaks-like murder mystery that lies in the game’s center. The game is big and sprawling and while it looks and feels like a 1990’s LucasArts point-and-click title, there’s much more here to unravel story-wise. I’ve kind of been waiting for the mobile version to launch so I can follow the exploits of Agents Ray and Reyes–who are in no way anything like Dana Scully or Fox Mulder–on my couch. The wait is nearly over! Thimbleweed Park is coming to iOS next week and Android in October.
iOS Universal, Android • Tin Man Games left their usual gamebook fare in the dust when they released Miss Fisher and the Deathly Maze earlier this year. Instead of reading pages of text and then picking where the story goes, Miss Fisher was a full-fledged adventure game with a rather awesome protagonist and a slew of other interesting characters wrapped around a compelling mystery. It’s good enough that I started bingeing the Australian series on Netflix and have been loving every minute of it. Over the weekend, Tin Man added Episode 2 to the mix and, in the process, made the first episode free-to-download.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac, Console • While it’s sad to think that we won’t be getting any more Sorcery! titles from the mad geniuses at inkle Studios, it’s comforting to know that we’re getting something. Heaven’s Vault is their upcoming title and I say “something” because we really don’t know much about what the hell Heaven’s Vault actually is. A few screens of a woman and her robot looking over a desolate landscape is all we have to go on. That and the fact that Raymond Chandler and Gene Wolfe were mentioned as inspiration. That’s all they really had to say, but they keep throwing more info at us anyway.
PC/Mac/Linux • Nostalgia is a tricky beast. Some creators will use it like bad wallpaper, covering the cracks of their leaky foundation while trying to remind us of the wallpaper in our childhood bedroom as if that would make us ignore what’s underneath. Other creators will use it to enhance the story or characters by dropping us deeper into whatever it is they’ve crafted. Last year’s X-Files reboot was the former, Stranger Things was the latter. Nostalgia can only take you so far, and if the product isn’t good to begin with then nostalgia won’t suddenly make it worth your time. Thimbleweed Park drips with nostalgia. In fact, they could have called it “Nostalgia: The Game” and I would have nodded and thought it was a good choice. Thimbleweed Park exists solely to remind you of classic point-and-click adventures from the 80’s and 90’s, especially those from LucasArts, but it does it with a deft hand and excellent new mechanisms, making it far more Stranger Things than X-Files. This is nostalgia done right.
iOS Universal, PC • Other than the upcoming adventure title Thimbleweed Park, the future of classic point-and-click adventure titles on the App Store looks pretty bleak. Sure, there’s Telltale, but their titles feel more like interactive movies than the point-and-click adventures of old. Luckily, we still have Wadjet Eye Games, makers of the fantastic Blackwell series of games for iOS. They’re the lone soldiers on the point-and-click frontier and their latest, Shardlight, has just made its way from PC to iOS.