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 a good chunk of my week — close to 30 hours — with Hero Emblems II, and I’ll talk more about that in a bit. But that didn’t leave me with a whole lot of time for other games, so this will be a fairly short roundup. Still, there’s some great games here so make sure to read through it all.
I mentioned Glitch Games’ latest work, Incoherence, last week and also had a giveaway that ended a couple of days ago. The game is out now, so I started on my walkthrough. I had already finished playing last week, so I don’t really have anything new to say. But I really enjoyed the format of this game, where you play through a set of four escape rooms and then have to figure out the order they should be in to solve one last puzzle so you can unlock the next set of rooms. It felt really innovative and was satisfying to solve. I’ll hopefully work on more of my walkthrough this coming week, but the game includes free hints if you’re really stuck.
Hero Emblems II
Hero Emblems II released last week after seven years in development. I loved the first game and was eagerly awaiting this one. I mentioned in my last roundup that I was enjoying it but had a few complaints. Now, after 30 hours, those problems built up to the point that I’m regretting all that time I spent playing. My main issue with the game is that it encourages exploration — there are hidden chests and bosses to find — but then throws random battles at you every time you try to move around the map. While there is a “retreat” option, it just sends you back to the previous node and you end up back in the same battle when you move again. I see no reason for the game to punish players like this. It just slows down progress. If I complete a dungeon and want to get back to town to turn in the quest, it should take about 30 seconds if nothing interrupts me. But a number of battles can turn that short journey into a 10-minute waste of time. If someone wants to grind for gold or experience, they could just enter a dungeon — even dying gives you some. So I don’t see the need for these random battles at all. And after 30 hours with the game, it’s the number one reason I’m considering dropping it. It’s a game that wants you to explore but then punishes you for it. It’s equally frustrating to be exploring a dungeon and building up the special gems in preparation for a boss, only to choose a path that takes you out of the dungeon instead. Or, perhaps even worse, get to the boss and discover you don’t have the right elemental skills equipped on your characters. On top of all that, I’m not sure that the matching in this game is as important as the equipment and skills you have on your characters. Every time I get to a new area, I’m overwhelmed until I can get enough gold to buy out the shop. It was like that at hour 5 and it’s still like that at hour 30. That makes it feel weighted more towards the RPG side of things and less towards the matching, even though that’s 90% of what you’re doing. The writing is also atrocious. I paid attention in the beginning, but haven’t for some hours now because it’s painful to read. I can’t believe I’m saying this after waiting seven years to play, but I’m not sure I’m going to stick with it to the end. I’m at least going to take a break for a few days and see how I feel about it then. I also have all my gameplay videos here if you want to see more of it.
I mentioned HOOK 2 last week in my preview and have since completed all 86 levels. It got quite tricky near the end, as those last 36 levels took me almost an hour to solve. New mechanics were added on top of the old ones and it got more difficult to follow all the lines and make sure I didn’t miss anything. Because a level resets if you make three mistakes, it’s a game you really have to pay close attention to. I enjoyed it, even if it was stressful at times, and look forward to more levels when the first update comes. I also have a full walkthrough here if you get stuck.
The Sea of Death
The Sea of Death is a strange adventure game in which you wake up as a seaweed collector without any memories. As per the usual adventure game, everyone you meet has a task for you. But this time, you’re actually doing forced labor. If you want to retrieve your memories, you have no choice but do agree to all this work so you can try to get from Lamp Town to Sky Town and find the answers you seek. I’m impressed with the writing, as well as the whole atmosphere. The puzzles themselves haven’t been groundbreaking yet, but they’re varied and keep things interesting. I’m looking forward to playing more and finding out what’s really going on. You can also try the game for free, so I recommend doing so.
And last, I’m still playing Genshin Impact, and there’s a new event this week. It has use collecting items in order to construct toy robots. The event only just started and hasn’t been that interesting yet, but it looks like a lot more is still to come, so I’m optimistic. Version 2.8 is also coming soon, and that should have a lot more new content to explore.
And that’s everything I’ve been up to this week! I also binged all of Chloe on Amazon Prime and liked how the mystery slowly unraveled. Now I’m watching Barry on HBO and wondering why I never tried it sooner. I’ll probably get Netflix again soon so I can watch Stranger Things and also play some of the new games that are coming. 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!