Hi everyone, and welcome back to My Week Unwrapped, where I discuss all the games I’ve been playing over the last seven days. I spent most of this past week playing through Beyond a Steel Sky (BASS2)on Apple Arcade, so this will be a short roundup. I’m still working on a review for BASS2, but if you need help with any of the puzzles, I have a complete walkthrough guide here. Anyway, let’s talk about the games!
Outsider: After Life
I’d been watching development of Once A Bird’s sci-fi point-and-click adventure, Outsider: After Life, for some time now, and after four years it’s finally out on iOS and Android. It starts with you solving a series of puzzles to fix an android, which you then take control of. As you explore, you’ll learn about what happened to humanity, make contact with another planet, and then set off to find it. The game features a strong original soundtrack from Jo Pereira and striking artwork from Tiago Louren╬ô├╢┬úΓö¼Γòæo. The puzzles themselves are a mixed bag, though. Each device you fix involves solving a series of puzzles that get increasingly harder with each one. Many of them are fun to solve, like the ones where you have to figure out a route to escape an evil droid. But others I could have done without, like the satellite puzzles, as they felt too reliant on trial-and-error. There were also some I liked initially but overstayed their welcome. Overall, I enjoyed my brief time with the game, though I found the ending a bit confusing. I wouldn’t say Outsider is a must-play, but it’s a pleasant enough experience that I would recommend to anyone looking to spend a couple of hours solving a variety of puzzles accompanied by a great soundtrack. I also have a full walkthrough here if you get stuck on any puzzles.
I really wanted to like SPHAZE, a puzzle game about helping little robots through round mazes. Unfortunately, certain aspects made it too frustrating for me and I threw in the towel long before completing it. I still had a lot to say about my experience, so I ended up writing a full review, which you can read here.
Dungeon Warfare has been out so long that it already has a sequel. But since I never played it, I decided to grab the original for $0.99 when it went on sale recently. I played some this week and was very impressed. It’s a tower defense game in which you have to protect your dungeon from greedy adventurers looking for treasures. You start off with only two traps — floor spikes and wall darts. The idea is to set them up around the room so they kill all the incoming enemies before they reach your portal. You earn gold, which is spent on traps, and experience, which is both used to unlock new traps and also counts as your score. You get gold and experience bonuses for killing lots of enemies in a row without a break, so there’s a ton of strategy involved. There are also modifiers you unlock that can be added to a dungeon before you play to make it harder but also worth more points. Each level has its own GameCenter leaderboard so you can compete with others, and there are a lot of levels. I’ve only played through a few but can see this is a quality game. If you haven’t played it yet but enjoy tower defense games, I don’t think you’d be disappointed with it.
Dark Mist is another game that went on sale for $0.99, so I grabbed it despite not really needing another card game that plays in landscape mode, especially now that Slay the Spire exists. I didn’t do well on my first game, as I was still learning the rules. But I managed to defeat two bosses on my second game and then died before making it to the third. The way it works is that enemies are represented as cards and laid out in rows. You can only attack enemies in the front row and they’re the only ones that can attack you — unless either of you have ranged weapons. You play cards to damage them until you run out of energy. When you kill an enemy, the next one above them drops down to take their place. The idea is to clear out all the enemies on the board and then take on the boss. As you defeat enemies, you earn experience and level up, which then allows you to add new cards to your deck. What I found a little confusing, though, is that your health is represented by your deck of cards, and your defense is represented by your discard pile. It made it hard to keep track of my health and death kind of just snuck up on me. It’s still an interesting game that’s worth checking out, especially for $0.99. But what will probably keep me from playing it much is that there’s no leaderboards to compare scores with other players, and the fact that it looks like it should play in portrait mode but doesn’t. I would be much more likely to play if I could do it with one hand on my iPhone. Still, you can watch some of my gameplay video below and decide for yourself.
Kosmonavtes: Academy Escape
I wrote about LKMAD’s Kosmonavtes: Academy Escape a few weeks back, but I haven’t had much time to devote to it. I did finish the second chapter this week and made a walkthrough for it here. I’m still enjoying it, though I think some clues could be a bit more obvious. I plan to continue with my walkthrough, so keep an eye out. And if you want a chance at getting a promo code for the premium version of the game, keep an eye out on Twitter, as a I still have a few left to share.
Donuts Delivery is a puzzle game releasing on July 7th in which you need to organize donuts according to the customer’s order. They’re essentially sliding tile puzzles in which you need to shift the donuts around and make room so you can add the last one to the box. There’s a move counter that rewards you stars based on how many moves you used and you earn coins after each level. I didn’t play that long, though, as the ad-removal IAP didn’t actually remove the ads and I quit after the first interstitial after popped up. The game is also just way too cluttered for me and my eyes don’t even know where to look. There might be an interesting game here, but it’s burdened by a need to copy every aspect of every hyper-casual game out there, down to the meter at the top of the screen that shows your progress in the level. Perhaps when a cleaner interface and just less junk, I might be inclined to give it another chance. But as is, it’s unpleasant to look at. Still, it’s free to download, so give it a try for yourself when it releases.
Tepes Ovidiu churns out games pretty quickly. His last one 1/2 Halfway and I enjoyed it to some extent but found it too easy and lacking any real challenge. He now has another one releasing on July 13th and at first glance I thought it looking promising. Railway Canyon has some nice low-poly artwork and takes place in the Wild West. The idea is to rotate pieces of railroad track to make one continuous path for the train to follow. Unfortunately, it’s just an overall terrible experience. The levels I played so far weren’t the least bit challenging, but each one takes forever to solve simply because rotating each piece is an excruciatingly slow process of tapping many times until it’s in place. For some reason, it requires two taps for each tiny move, so that after just a couple of levels I was ready to delete it. I pushed through for a few more levels just to see if it gets more interesting but it hasn’t yet. And even if it did, I can’t see playing it with those awful controls. The music is also terrible, just repeating the same five notes over and over until it drove me crazy. And the train’s physics are all wonky, as I’ve seen the coal cart get tossed around all over the place. And to top it all off, it makes my iPad burn up just from a few minutes of play. The fifteen minutes I spent with the game were pure agony and I would not recommend the buying it unless it gets a serious overhaul.
Sky: Children of the Light
And, as usual, there’s some Sky news! In beta, a mysterious shop appeared at Home with a pendant from the Season of Rhythm as decoration. The shop is empty right now and no one knows what it will be used for, but there’s plenty of speculation. Also, there’s a new party hat available in the Office for three hearts as part of the one year anniversary celebration. I also showed off the handpan and manta cape ultimate gifts for the Season of Sanctuary, as well as some changes made to the Sanctuary Islands. As usual, only watch the videos below if you don’t mind spoilers!
And that’s everything I’ve been up to this week! I also played some more Grindstone, but I’m starting to get tired of it. I was playing a level that required I kill 300 enemies to open the door, but I ended up in an unwinnable state at around 275. I’m not sure I have the patience to do it again. Anyway, I should hopefully have a review of Beyond the Steel Sky next week, but if you haven’t played it yet you should. Let me know in the comments section what games you’re playing and I’ll see you back here next time with more of My Week Unwrapped!