Hi everyone, and welcome back to My Week Unwrapped, where I briefly talk about all the games I’ve been playing over the last seven days. I spent a lot of time this week working on some walkthroughs, so there aren’t a ton of games to cover. But there are still a few worthwhile mentions that will hopefully help you find something new to pick up. So let’s get right to it!
Tick Tock: A Tale for Two
Other Tales Interactive’s co-op adventure game, Tick Tock: A Tale for Two, was definitely the highlight of my week. I had access to it months before, but couldn’t get a friend to play with me and then the release snuck up on me before I knew it. So I reached out to less local friends and found a fellow puzzle fan who had the time to play. We couldn’t do so in person, but it turns out the game is just as fun using voice chat to communicate. The way it works is that each player sees something different on their screen and has to describe it to the other. Together, you solve puzzles and progress through the three chapters. There’s also a grim story I wasn’t really expecting, but which was the icing on the cake. I wrote a proper review here, so I’ll just let you read that instead of repeating myself. I don’t have any gameplay video, since it’s a two-person game, but it’s better that way. Anything you see would give you an advantage if you do decide to play it. But I’m including the release trailer instead. I also have a walkthrough guide, but I must stress that it’s going to be far more enjoyable if you rely on your partner and not me.
The Birdcage 2: Magical Creatures
I worked tirelessly this week to finish my walkthrough guide for The Birdcage 2, including the secret level. I liked this game more than what I played of the original, though I do think most of the game was still on the easy side. I liked the introduction of the magic wand, but being told which spell to use every time kind of took away all the challenge. The secret level, on the other hand, was a whole other level. You needed to read the scrolls you find in each level and then use them to find five secret items hidden in the game. Each scroll gives you clues either for the location, the shape to draw for the spell, or the direction to draw. It can be quite tricky, especially getting the drawing exactly right. But it was fun deciphering, and I hope to see more like that. Pine Studio has been releasing some great puzzle games, and I look forward to whatever they have for us next.
Sprout: Idle Garden
I don’t play idle games or clickers. Like, ever. I tried Spaceplan and Universal Paperclips since they weren’t free-to-play with tons of mictrotransactions. I was still bored out of my mind and unimpressed. But I liked the art style of Sprout: Idle Garden, and the fact that there were no IAPs to be found. So I gave it a try and an hour and a half later I had to pull myself away. What makes Sprout different is that it’s super chill and I never feel like I’m missing out by not watching opt-in ads for rewards. Yes, it’s an idle game and the main goal is to earn gold so you can keep buying more flowers and other items for your garden. But the game constantly rewards you with gold, and your flowers earn quite a bit on your own. You also have little gardening women picking the flowers for you, so you can spend your time decorating and figuring out how you want your garden to look. You can focus primarily on optimizing your earnings or prioritize appearances. It’s up to you and the game makes it easy to just relax and mess around without any pressure or intrusive ads. You can also easily build over something you don’t want or trash it to get your money back (although there’s currently a bug where painting over tiles might not give you back your gold). So there’s plenty of room to experiment without much risk. This is not a game for someone looking for a challenge, but rather more of a decorating game that doesn’t put a million walls between you and your goals. I’ve never even been tempted to watch an opt-in ad for more gold, as I never feel pressured to make more than I’m able to normally. As far as idle games go, this is by far the most generous and least stressful. I only wish it had iCloud, because I’d be more likely to do some proper landscaping if I could play on-the-go instead of only at home on my iPad. Still, it’s worth checking out for the lovely artwork and if you have any desire in designing a garden.
I reviewed Vignettes back when it first released on iOS and had only positive things to say about it. Since then, it’s gotten several updates, like the Spooky content for Halloween. Well, this past week it finally got released on PC and the iOS version got a small update to go along with it. The new objects have an underwater theme and more secrets to uncover, including little plankton musicians. It’s not a big update, but any new Vignettes is welcome by me. If you need help with any of it, I have a complete walkthrough guide here.
I can’t think of another paid game that has gotten as many continuous content updates as Meteorfall. I already loved the game back when it released, but then developer Slothwerks added my now-favorite character, Muldorf the Necrodude, who commands an undead army. Then came the Demon update, which added five levels of difficulty for each character, also giving you a chance at higher scores. And if that wasn’t enough, he added the Queen of Shadow update, which gave healer Rose an alternate personality in which she wields curses as her main weapon. Still not satisfied that he’s earned our $1.99 – $3.99, he just recently added daily challenges. Each day, everyone is given an identical game to play through in which only your choices make a difference. There are modifiers that affect gameplay, such a Loot Hoarder, which means all equipment cards are equipped at the beginning of each battle. There are others that give you extra points for each level 3 card in your deck, and others that make all shop cards free. It really shakes things up and gives me a reason to play every day. Sometimes I fail miserably and other times I get a great run near the top of the charts. But all the modifiers make it feel like a new game each time and the leaderboards give me a sense of competition. I’m just baffled by how good this game is now. If anyone asks for a card-based dungeon crawler, I instantly blurt out METEORFALL! Oh and he’s working on another hero, Varfa the Ranger! I have no idea how Eric manages to devote so much time to free content, but I’m so thankful that he can and does. And I’m definitely looking forward to the next game he’s working on, which takes place in the same universe. If you don’t have Meteorfall yet, for God’s sake, man, don’t make me come over there and install it for you.
I already reviewed Avo last week, but I was still looking for some bonuses I missed in Episode 7. I managed to find them all and some were actually pretty clever. I’m glad I went back to get them and see everything the game has to offer. Despite some minor complaints I mentioned in my review, I still highly recommend the game, especially for anyone with kids. You can also use my walkthrough guide if you’re missing any of the bonuses.
When Dandara first released, I was curious about it but it certainly wasn’t something I had to have at $15.00. I’m not much of a platformer fan, so there was a good chance I would have been throwing that money away. But this week, it went on sale for $3.99 and I decided that was low enough to take a risk on it. There’s some really cool aspects to it, like the way you use the left joystick to point at a salt mound and then jump to it. You can only land on salt mounds, so it’s very different from a traditional platformer. To an extent, I was enjoying myself, but I didn’t enjoy dying and losing the salt I earned and that’s needed for upgrades. When you die, you lose anything you earned since your last campsite visit. And those campsites aren’t that frequent. While it’s somewhat enjoyable to explore, the fear of dying and losing everything is keeping me from playing. I wish it was a bit more forgivable and maybe saved every time you entered a room instead of only at camp sites. I do appreciate the iCloud sync, though, and it’s possible I’ll be more willing to play it I take it on the go. If you’re curious about it but still not sure of the $4 price point, you can check out my video below to see if it’s something you might like or you’d get frustrated with it like I did.
Rest in Pieces
Itatake’s endless swinger, Rest in Pieces, is also way out of my comfort zone. It’s free to download, so I gave it a try and used up all my lives in about three minutes. Basically, you tap left and right to pick up momentum or slow down, trying to swing around obstacles. If you crash, you shatter, as you’re made of ceramic! The graphics are pretty cool, and the bosses remind me a bit of Thumper, even though I haven’t actually made it far enough to see what the bosses are like. I haven’t made it very far at all, in fact. The game only charges $0.99 for infinite lives, so it’s pretty cheap. But looking through the menus, I’m not sure I’d be able to get far enough to make it worth buying. I have enough trouble with runners when the controls are simple, so I can’t see myself getting used to this. But it’s a unique idea and definitely worth trying out for the very low price of FREE.
And that’s everything I’ve been playing this week, aside from trying to complete ELOH (I have one level left) and the Fidel dailies. I’m not sure what next week holds for me, though I do plan to check out Baba is You on my PC because I simply can’t wait for it to come to iOS. It looks too good. There’s also some notable released the following week which I hope to cover. In any case, I hope this helped you find some new games to play and I’ll see you back here next week with more of My Week Unwrapped!