My Week Unwrapped: October 1, 2021 – VITRIOL, I Saw Black Clouds, Svoboda 1945, Dad’s Monster House, Kitty Q and More

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Hi everyone, and welcome back to My Week Unwrapped, where I discuss all the games I’ve been playing over the last seven days. This has been a pretty quiet week for me as far as games go because I spent the weekend in and out of emergency vets with my cat, which ended in emergency surgery to remove a string from her intestine. It was scary, but she’s home now and recovering and doing well. It just means I didn’t have a lot of time to play games, so I’m behind on the ones I started last week and only got to play a few new ones. I made time for Genshin Impact every day because of the time-sensitive content. Anyway, there’s still some good games to discuss, so let’s get to it!

VITRIOL

VITRIOL is the latest game from Broken Rules, the folks behind Old Man’s Journey and ELOH. It’s a narrative puzzle game in which you have to rearrange letters to form new words. It’s got some crossword puzzle mechanics and you can’t leave any letters behind that don’t themselves make a word. I played through the whole game today and enjoyed solving all the puzzles. I also love the whole presentation. But I had some trouble following the story since I spent so much of the time solving puzzles. I would have liked a way to re-read the story at the end once I was done, but it just started the game over from the beginning. I might play again and try to focus more on the story this time. Either way, I think it’s worth experiencing if you like word games. It’s very different than anything else I’ve played.

I Saw Black Clouds

I’m a big fan of Wales Interactive, as they not only keep making full-motion video (FMV) games, but they’ve brought quite a few of them to mobile. Their latest is a psychological thriller called I Saw Black Clouds. It starts off with a young woman named Kristina attending her friend’s funeral. As she start to investigate why her friend would commit suicide, she finds her journal and starts seeing strange things. I was pretty into it for a good while, wanting to see where the story led. She learns that her friend was also seeing things and it brings her to an abandoned mental institute. The game dragged on a bit, but I was still interested. That is, until the whole plot changed and by the time the game ended I wasn’t really sure what I just watched. The last third of it was like a completely separate story and confused me to the point that I still can’t make sense of it. I was also distracted by some pretty poor sound design. I’m used to FMV games feeling a bit choppy since they’re made up of lots of short scenes spliced together. But the music was getting spliced up, too. It was hard to ignore because it was start and stop so abruptly. Overall, it wasn’t a horrible experience, but I wish it had better payoff. It’s possible the alternate endings shine more light on it but I’m not sure I feel like playing through it again, even with the ability to skip scenes I’ve seen already. If you still want to give the game a try, though, it’s free to start with a one-time IAP to unlock the full game.

Svoboda 1945: Liberation

Last year, Charles Games brought their educational game, Atentat 1942, to iOS and I was impressed with how realistic it felt. It was based on stories from World War II survivors and told through FMV interviews and cartoons to keep the stories alive when there’s no survivors left to tell them. It’s historically accurate with powerful writing and very convincing acting. If you haven’t played it yet, please do so. This week, Charles Games brought their latest game, Svoboda 1945: Liberation to iOS, which which is a follow-up to Atentat 1942. This time, you’re sent to the small village of Svoboda near the Czech-German border to investigate an old school with historical significance and determine if it can get landmark status to prevent it from being torn down. You need to interview survivors once again, people who worked or lived in the school right after World War II. You also find a photograph of your grandfather and try to find out how he was involved. I haven’t gotten very far yet, but once again, I’m glad games like this exist. It’s educational but very accessible. The interview format works really well for this kind of story and I definitely plan to play more. You can check out some of my gameplay video below if you want to see what it’s like.

Dad’s Monster House

Dad’s Monster House is the latest adventure game from COTTONGAME, which seems to take place in the same universe as Isoland. You receive an urgent message from your dad and head to his house where you find his journal. Inside, he describes all the different monsters he built or created. And as you solve puzzles and explore the house, you’ll bump into all of them. Each of them wants something from you and you have to figure out how to get it for them. It’s delightfully weird and perfect for the month of Halloween. I am stuck at the moment, but hopefully I can figure out what to do next and continue making progress. If you’re a fan of adventure games, you can’t really go wrong here at the low cost of $1.99.

Kitty Q – A Quantum Adventure

Kitty Q is an upcoming game from Philipp Stollenmayer, the developer behind a number of memorable games, such as supertype, Bacon, Song of Bloom and Sticky Terms. Kitty Q is a free puzzle adventure that aims to teach children about quantum mechanics by helping Schrödinger’s cat escape the quantum realm. I had an early copy and played through the game and wrote up some thoughts here, so I won’t rehash them. But definitely pre-order this one so you don’t miss it when it releases on October 13th.

Night in the Woods

With everything going on, I still managed to squeeze in a bit of time to continue Night in the Woods this week. I first went into the forest with Gregg to hit some lightbulbs with my bat. Then I got to enjoy the Harfest, which is Possum Springs’ version of Halloween. It was perfect timing, since Halloween is just around the corner. Oddly, I saw someone get kidnapped and then my aunt the cop didn’t believe me. So that doesn’t seem good. I’ll continue playing this coming week and hopefully find out what’s going on.

Genshin Impact

This week is the one year anniversary of Genshin Impact and, aside from some anniversary rewards, we got a huge event to celebrate. Moonlight Merriment, aka the Moonchase event, brings together tons of characters we met over the last year in one giant reunion. It also brings us back to Liyue, which is nice, as I hadn’t had much of a reason to revisit once Inazuma was added. The story part of the event is also bonkers but in a good way. Xiangling’s pet bear steals the spotlight, running around in the background as the characters are speaking. Besides that, there are tons of chests to find as part of the event. Altogether, this makes for one of my favorite events so far.

Sky: Children of the Light

And last, the Season of Flight starts next week in Sky. The a adventure pass is available for pre-order already, so I made a video showing off all the cosmetics in case anyone wants to see them before deciding whether to buy the pass. I’ll have more about the Season of Flight once it’s out in the live version.

And that’s everything I’ve been up to this week! I also binged The White Lotus, which was fine but not as good as I expected. I’m now watching Scenes from a Marriage, which is a bit intense but really well done. Anyway, let me know in the comments section which games you’re enjoying and I’ll see you back here next time with more of My Week Unwrapped!

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