iPad, PC/Mac/Linux, Switch, Xbox, Playstation • When Darkest Dungeon came out for iPad last fall, I instantly became addicted and played it more than I had in the previous three years it had dwelled on my laptop. I know the love for DD wasn’t universal with many complaining about the wonky UI that could be both tiny and fidgety at the same time, while others saying the difficulty level went beyond their definition of fun. Both were valid points–it’s close, but not a perfect port–but I loved it and kept throwing my hapless adventurers right into the woodchipper with the hope that the Crimson Court and other expansion content would soon arrive on the platform. Today is that day.
iPad, Switch, PC/Mac/Linux • One of my favorite titles of 2017 was the iPad version of Darkest Dungeon. Strangely enough, one of my favorite games of 2016 was the Steam version of Darkest Dungeon. Santa brought my youngest a Switch this Christmas, but I’ve been finding loads of time to log onto it myself. Today, Darkest Dungeon released for Switch and I have a feeling it might pull of the hat trick and become one of my favorite games of 2018 as well.
iOS Universal, PC, Switch • Every now and then you’ll see a screenshot for a game and realize you need to buy it even without knowing what the hell the game is about. I do this with board games all the time, and have shelves of games with gorgeous art that I never play because they’re dull as sin or just not something I could ever introduce to my game group. Gorogoa was released earlier this week and the screenshots are incredible–even the icon is cool as hell–so I immediately jumped on it. Would Gorogoa sit on a virtual shelf, unplayed, or would the gameplay match the visuals?
iPad, Switch, PC/Mac/Linux • It would shock you to learn how little I actually do around these parts [not really -ed.]. Sure, I’m the one writing up the blurbs you see on the front page, but the real work comes in tracking down these stories and that’s mainly done by everyone in our forums. They bust their backs to find cool stuff, then I steal it and report it like I stumbled on it all on my own. It’s a great system (for me) and really goes to show just how great our readers are…so far, they haven’t called me out on it. Today’s theft of a story is about one of my faves of 2017, Darkest Dungeon. New DLC is coming in Spring called The Color of Madness and it sounds even more Lovecraftian than regular Darkest Dungeon if you can believe it.
Switch • I like to imagine that Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle was pitched by the most dependable, sober person at Ubisoft. You may have heard that it’s mostly XCOM, but with much less uncertainty and with some light puzzling elements replacing base management. Add a manic, child-friendly theme and remove permadeath, and that’s pretty accurate, which makes me think that pitch involved a virtuoso in the projection of normalcy. The characters are pre-made (so I can’t do what I’ve long done with XCOM and learn my kids’ classmates names by assigning them to my soldiers*) [I, on the other hand, change all my soldiers to British redheads named Amy Pond. It’s a bit weird. -ed.] but they have distinct skills trees which allow them to specialize in quite varied ways. Consequently, you have a lot of freedom to build the tools you want, but the game is correspondingly free to offer rather off-the-wall challenges.
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.
Switch • With a daughter turning nine in March, I had an excuse to pre-order a Switch and the new Zelda. The one-sentence review I would give of it is this: it’ll make you feel like a kid again, until you watch kids play. If I could add another sentence, I’d note that I’m only writing about it because I promised my kids I wouldn’t do the thing I just started doing in the game until they could watch me, and they’re in school. As I have now been gifted with an unsought opportunity to reflect, I’m going to make the most of it to try and excuse playing Zelda to the exclusion of writing for you wonderful people for weeks. It was “research” for this piece.