My Week Unwrapped: March 20, 2018 – #WarGames, Fortnite, Death Coming, Urban Legend Blindman, Armello and More

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Hi everyone and welcome back to My Week Unwrapped, where I talk about all the games I’ve been playing this week, whether they blew me away or were a complete and utter letdown. There have been some big releases this week, but not really games I get excited about, so this will be a bit scant compared to other weeks. A lot of developers are also at the Game Developers Conference, so I imagine there aren’t too many independent studios releasing games right now. But there’s still some to cover, so let’s get down to business.

#WarGames

Her Story was one of my favorite experiences in any medium, so I of course was looking forward to Sam Barlow’s WarGames reboot, #WarGames. It turned out to be targeted more at a younger audience, so I wasn’t quite as sucked in as I was with Her Story. But the main character is likable and it deals with some relevant topics. Then, of course, there’s the unique technology that gives each viewer their own personal experience based on which characters they focused on while watching. It’s pretty trippy and completely free with an ad between each episode, so I highly recommend trying it. You can also read my impressions and interview with Sam Barlow here.

Fortnite

Epic Games’ Fortnite Battle Royale is basically a cartoony version of the hit game, PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS (PUBG), in which you get dropped on an island with nothing but the shirt on your back, scavenge for weapons and other useful items, then try to take down other players so you’re the last one standing. You can have a squad so you’re not going at it alone, but for the most part it’s every woman for herself. Both games actually released this week, but I’m having more trouble getting used to the controls in PUBG since there are more on-screen buttons to worry about. I like how Fortnite has things more simplified, allowing you to tap pretty much anywhere to shoot, instead of having to hit a button. I also wrote a bit here about the monetization model, which I’d like to see more games utilize. But at the end of the day, I’m just not a big fan of first-person shooters, so I don’t see myself playing much of either game. But give the game a try, since it’s free.

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Death Coming

The Next Studio’s Death Coming is advertiser as a puzzle game, and to some extent it is. But it’s very heavily reliant on trial-and-error. That in itself isn’t a bad thing, but the problem is it sort of punishes you for messing around and making mistakes. I was enjoying it at first, but as it got more and more punishment, I started to get annoyed with it. The basic premise if you’re a reaper who has to kill people, and you have a quota. But the death traps you trigger are limited and not reusable, so it’s easy to mess up and be forced to start a level over after spending upwards of twenty minutes on it. It’s still cheap, though, at only $1.99, so even if you don’t finish it there’s some fun to be had. It’s a humorous game and there are thankfully no IAPs. You can read more about it in my review here.

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Urban Legend: Blindman

Urban Legend: Blindman is a murder mystery in the form of a visual novel. The underlying story is interesting and to some extent I do want to find out how it ends. But some overly wordy dialogue with somewhat poor translations makes it hard to stay interested. I wrote more about it here, but I suggest watching some of my gameplay videos before deciding whether to pick it up.

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.projekt

I played more of Kyrylo Kuzyk’s minimalistic puzzler, .projekt, this past week and added more to my walkthrough. I’m still not completely enthralled by it, but I don’t really have any complaints either. It has iCloud sync, it has advanced goals to offer a bigger challenge, and it looks pretty good, too. I just don’t find myself getting pulled into it. It’s not a bad game, it’s just not spectacular either. In any case, I would recommend watching some of my gameplay videos before deciding whether to buy it.

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Armello

I’d been looking forward to the iOS release of League of Legends’ Armello for quite some time, not least because you play as humanoid animals and the artwork is something you’d expect out of a graphic novel. However, I was a bit skeptical when I saw the confusing monetization in place, including subscriptions. So I didn’t jump into it right away. But I finally gave it a chance and played through half of the tutorial (it’s a long tutorial!). So far, I’m finding it a bit confusing, but the biggest problem is that the text is blurry on my iPad Pro. The oddest part of it is that the 2D artwork of the animals are all super sharp. And occasionally some text is, as well. I’m not sure why most of the text is blurry, especially if it was ported from the PC version, which would have needed even higher definition text. But as it stands, it bothers my eyes and is too distracting. I might still complete the tutorial and try playing a game, at least far enough to see how intrusive the monetization is. But I do hope they can polish it up. In either case, it’s free to download, so at least give it a try and see if you like it.

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And that’s everything I’ve been playing this week, along with some pre-release games I can’t talk about yet. I know none of these are must-haves, but hopefully next week will be better. Let me know what you’re playing and I’ll see back here next time with more of My Week Unwrapped!

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