Barbearian, Unavowed, Edna & Harvey: Harvey’s New Eyes, Evergarden, Powerless, The Company Game, The Lone Survivor
Hi everyone and welcome back to another late installment of My Week Unwrapped, where I discuss all the games I’ve been playing over the last seven days. I pushed it off to another Wednesday so I could fit more games into it. This week was a little odd in that I decided on a whim that I just had to play Wadjet Eye Games’ Unavowed, but not on my laptop with a bloated battery that might explode. I wanted to laptop/tablet hybrid with a touchscreen. So I bought one to try out with Unavowed and it works really well with it. I’m not sure yet if I’ll keep it, but I’m so glad I didn’t skip on the game and wait for it to come to iOS. I’ll say more about that below, though. In non-gaming news, MoviePass pretty much died and I cancelled my membership. It will be sorely missed. But at the same time, I’ve been so busy with all these great games this week that I didn’t really have time for movies. So let’s get the games themselves!
I’ve had GIMBLLL’s Barbearian for a few weeks now and absolutely love it even though it makes my thumb hurt. I’m only 20% through the game, as I’ve been trying to play so many games at once. But it’s one I plan to stick with, as it feels chaotic and frantic and kicks my ass but never feels impossible. If I miss something or die, I just go back in and usually manage to accomplish everything on the second try. Basically, you play as a human in a bear skin who rescues little tiny humans called minions, who then join him and add up to form an army. You then battle hordes of monsters on a giant battlefield while collecting currency, power-ups and limited-use weapons. There’s so much going on that Im sometimes shaking when I finally finish a battle. It’s exhilarating. I want to write a proper review once I’ve gotten further, so I won’t say too much more here. But I appreciate that it has adjustable controls, accessibility settings, and care has been taken to make it feel more comfortable on a touchscreen, even though it’s cross-platform and designed for a controller. I just miss iCloud sync. Anyway, check out my videos below to see if it’s something you’d enjoy and if you’re already playing, my walkthrough guide may be of some help.
Part 4 (Megaskull Boss Battle):
Like I said above, I bought a new laptop specifically so I could play Unavowed. I had the good fortune of playing the demo at PlayNYC last year and that first 20-30 minutes had so many jaw-dropping moments that I just couldn’t see waiting for it. It’s the game I’ve spent the most time with this week, and that’s saying a lot for someone who normally despised playing games on a PC. Sure, using a tablet/hybrid laptop is not as comfortable as playing on my iPad, but it’s worth it for this masterpiece. Basically, you start off choosing your gender, name and profession. Then you play through some of your backstory and join the Unavowed, a group of people who have been dealing with supernatural disasters in NYC for centuries. You start off with two other characters joining you on your quests, each with their own unique abilities. Mandana is an athletic swordswoman while Eli is a fire mage. Later, you meet other characters, but you’re only allowed to take two with you at a time. Besides the twisted and engrossing story, some laugh-out-loud moments and relatable characters, I’m completely blown away by how some puzzles change depending on who you bring with you. Couple that with some tough life-and-death decisions, and you get a game that’s destined to be a classic. I’m almost done with the game and my walkthrough and the only negative thing I can say so far is that it makes my life difficult as someone who writes walkthroughs. And this is coming from someone who never even finished the first Blackwell game. If you like point-and-click adventures and don’t mind playing on a PC, this is a must-have. Don’t wait for the iOS release. Just play it now. Don’t even watch my videos below.
Edna & Harvey: Harvey’s New Eyes
As much as I enjoyed the first half hour of Harvey’s New Eyes when I played it last week, I simply didn’t have much time to spend with it this week. I did play another half hour, in which I heard maybe too much dialogue. But I still like the dark and twisted humor. I hope to get back to it once I finish some other games, but I don’t know that I’ll have a chance to write a review. For now, I suggest watching my gameplay videos to see whether you’d enjoy it. It’s been adapted for mobile perfectly, and the narrator is a joy to listen to. If you’re looking for a new (but old) point-and-click to play on your iPad, give it go.
Evergarden is a new endless puzzle game releasing tomorrow, which I got a couple of days early. It’s by Flipply, the makers of Race the Sun, and is a big step away from their last game, which was fast-paced and reflex-based. This one is relaxing, as you’re working out the best strategy to merge flowers in a garden, racking up points and trying to keep the game going as long as possible. Very little is explained, so you have to experiment to figure things out. The main game is the high-score chasing garden maintenance, but there are other mysteries to uncover that can help you increase your score. There are side puzzles that require triangles you earn or find, and they unlock music that can be used as a power-up in the main game. You can only take three with you, so it can be a hard decision to make. But as you play, your strategy improves and you also might learn some things by accident that help increase your score. I still have a lot to learn, but I’m enjoying it quite a bit. Once again, I just miss the iCloud sync. I should have more to say about it tomorrow, but you can watch my gameplay videos below if that’s too long to wait.
Narratio’s Powerless is a narrative game built using Inkle’s Ink engine, in which you try to keep different characters alive after a mass power outage. Their survival comes down to a series of binary choices, but the writing is compelling and the characters are believable, making for an engrossing experience. Apparently, the different characters can even affect each other’s stories. It releases next week, and I’m excited to play through the rest of it and hopefully have a review by then. But if you want to know whether to pre-order it, you can read my initial impressions and watch my gameplay video below.
The Company Game
Chain Reaction Games’ The Company Game isn’t releasing until September, but I got a copy this week and have really been enjoying it so far. It’s like if Blackbox, The Guides, and Device 6 had a baby. And the baby was delivered by a 14-year-old doctor. I mean developer. Yeah, so this cryptic puzzler was developed by a wee teenager and I still can’t get over that. I haven’t finished the game yet, so I don’t know how long it is, but from what I’ve played so far I think it’s safe to pre-order it for $0.99. If you rather wait, it will cost you $1.99 after release. You’ll definitely be hearing more about this from me and you can read some early impressions here. My video below will show you how to solve the first 12 levels, so watch it at your own risk!
The Lone Survivor
The Lone Survivor is the latest first-person point-and-click adventure game by Midnight Adventures, the folks behind The Mystery of Haunted Hollow. I started a walkthrough for it but haven’t had a lot of time to play yet so I can’t really say whether it’s worth buying. There is a free demo you can try, so you don’t have to purchase the full version blindly. I don’t have any video, but maybe I will next week.
And that’s everything I’ve been up to this week! It’s been pretty crazy. It may not seem like a lot, but when you’re writing about all these games, making videos and walkthroughs for them, believe me, it is. I still want to write reviews for the games that released this week, so keep an eye out for those. Until next time, That’s My Week Unwrapped!