Hi everyone, and welcome back to My Week Unwrapped, where I discuss all the games I’ve been playing over the last seven days. There were some surprise releases this week, one of them that I was hoping for but never expected it to come to iOS. I spent most of my time playing it, but there’s still plenty of other games to discuss, so let’s get to it.
Archaica: The Path of Light
Archaica is a gorgeous laser-reflecting puzzler that first released on PC in 2017 and then on Switch in 2020. I tried it on my Switch back then and liked the puzzles but wasn’t really a fan of using a controller to move and rotate mirrors. I had hoped it might one day come to mobile but had no reason to expect it to. So when it showed up on the App Store this week, I immediately grabbed it. The low price point of $2.99 made it a very easy decision. I then spent most of my week playing through it, only finishing the last chapter today. I thoroughly enjoyed working out each solution by messing around with the different mirrors and other devices. I appreciated that new mechanics were constantly added — like splitters and portals — so it never got stale, the game plays beautifully on my iPad, like it was designed for it. You simply tap on a piece to rotate it and drag it around to move it. Then you swipe to move the camera. It couldn’t be any more straightforward than that. My only complaint is that the level select screen is buggy, making it difficult to go back to an older level, even the secret levels. I managed, but it took a lot of messing around with it to get it to behave. Hopefully that will be fixed and then there will be nothing to complain about. I didn’t love the story you unlock as you progress, but it’s easy enough to ignore it. If you’re a puzzle fan, this is an easy game to recommend. I also have a giveaway happening right now on Twitter. And if you get stuck, I have a complete walkthrough guide here.
I hadn’t heard of Dexter Stardust before, but it released a few months back on PC and other platforms. Now it’s out on mobile and I’m blown away by the quality. It’s a hand-drawn point-and-click adventure in space that has you traveling to different planets to solve puzzles. Dexter himself is a lovable goofball, the dialogue is genuinely funny, and the puzzles so far have been logical but also surprising. One point early on had me thinking I broke the game until I realized what I did was part of the soliton and then it got a chuckle out of me. I’m especially impressed the way it recognizes whether you’ve picked up a specific item or not and adjusts different lines of dialogue accordingly. I only played a little over an hour so far because I was busy with Archaica, but I’ll definitely be spending more time with Dexter Stardust over the weekend. I recommend watching some of my gameplay to get and idea of what it’s like, or just grab it if you’re a fan of silly and charming point-and-click adventures.
I’m a big fan of Jussi Simpanen’s previous game, Total Party Kill, so I was glad to see they had another game releasing. It’s similar in that each level is bite-sized, but it requires better reflexes. Your character is intentionally difficult to control, as he’s a clown riding a unicycle and using it to jump over obstacles like spikes. I’ve only played through the first 20 levels so far. They offered some challenge but still felt doable so I stuck with it. I’m not sure how far I’ll get before I throw in the towel, but I do appreciate that the levels are short enough to keep frustration at a minimum. The game is also free, supported by ads and has a one-time purchase to remove ads. So if you’re at all curious, just try it for yourself.
that’s a cow
that’s a cow is the latest game from Crescent Moon Games and ir reminds me a lot of me of Eggggg. It’s a level-based auto-runner where instead of puking to lift yourself up, you’re expelling milk. The art style is cute and colorful and I like how you can unlock different cows. Overall, it seems like a pretty decent game, even if I’m not particularly good at it. I just find it hard to stay motivated at all when there doesn’t seem to be any sort of scoring system or even record of how you’ve done in each level. I can’t see any way to revisit previous levels to try and get all three stars. And that means I see no reason to try and get them in the first place. All stars do is give you more opportunities to unlock new cows. So I assume that would happen over time anyway. I think the game could benefit from a more robust system other than just moving on to the next level and never moving back. But the game is free with a one-time purchase to make it premium, so give it a try for yourself.
Last week I was struggling to get through the second dungeon in Pawnbarian, but I stuck with it and finally completed it. I also had a few goes at the third dungeon but I keep dying on the last floor and I’m really not sure what kind of strategy to use to defeat it. I’ll probably take a break and come back to it later. I also want to try out some of the other characters. Overall, I still like the game and would recommend it, but I need to hone my strategy.
And last, I’m still playing Genshin Impact, but there isn’t a whole lot going on right now. There was a co-op boating event that already ended and a new one with gear puzzles started, but it’s too early to tell if it will be any good. I did spend some time hunting down my missing chests in Golden Apple Archipelago. I’m now only missing four and will probably just leave them be. It’s too time-consuming to look for them and there isn’t a whole lot of time left. Mostly, I’m just waiting for the 3.0 update to come and bring a new area, Sumeru, with it.
And that’s everything I’ve been up to this week. I also watched the first season of Night Sky and I hope there will be a second season. I finally got Hulu again, so I’m about to watch the fourth season of The Handmaid’s Tale. I’ll report back next week on how I feel about it. Anyway, let me know in the comments section what games you’ve been playing and I’ll see you back here next time with more of My Week Unwrapped.