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 the week sick as a dog and didn’t play anything. There were days I barely even got out of bed. And then when I was feeling better, a huge Genshin Impact update hit. So most of my time since then has been spent playing Genshin, though I did manage to fit a few other games in. There’s quite a bit to discuss, so let’s get started.
Words in Progress
Words in Progress is a new word game available on Apple Arcade, in which you’re given a few letters at a time and need to combine them to form words. Each time you combine a letter with another, you’ll get a new letter to work with until your deck runs out. The game gets its name from the fact that you don’t actually have to make a word immediately. You can create parts of words and combine them later, or even take a gamble by starting to make a word in the hopes that you’ll get the letters you need to complete it. There are several different modes to keep things fresh, too. I haven’t tried playing against friends, but there’s a daily mode to see how you do against everyone else who’s playing. There’s an endless mode in which you complete challenges in order to earn more letters. It gets harder and harder, as before long you’ll need to make an 8-letter word to get new letters added to your deck. The game only ends when you run out of letters, so the goal is to not let that happen. And last, there’s a practice mode that lets you hone your skills without worrying about a score. It’s a pretty solid addition to the word game genre and I can see spending some time with it. Definitely check it out if you have an Apple Arcade subscription.
From Eva with Green
From Eva with Green is a very relaxed pinball game in which your goal is to make the board grow plants. It has a lovely minimalist art style and relaxing music to complete the chill vibe. I’ve played through the first five chapters so far, and from what I’ve seen there isn’t a way to lose your ball since a bumper blocks the exit. Basically, what you need to do in each level is hit the hanging pendant to make it drop seeds. Then you pick up those seeds and use them to grow plant life. My only real complaint is that holding and swiping up to make plants grow feels awkward. It makes the ball slow down and kind of messes with the rhythm. But since there’s no way to lose the ball and no penalties for taking your time, it’s not a big deal. If you want a relaxing game that isn’t too demanding, this might be for you. I recommend watching some of my gameplay video below to help you decide.
8/8/88 Needle, AL
8/8/88 Needle, AL had been out for a while already, but I somehow missed it until developer Moolion released another game this week. It’s from the developer of Wardwell House, which I played 8 (!!!) years ago and had mixed feelings about. I was more impressed with this one, mainly for its story. You follow a character through the woods in Alabama in 1888, as he’s trying to understand how everyone else vanished. You explore the prison and the Temple while getting the back story through him. The writing had me glued to the screen until I completed the game. The ending was a bit unexpected, but the overall experience was a positive one. It’s a disturbing game that knows how to hold your attention. It’s also completely free, so give it a try for yourself.
The Holyburn Witches
The Holyburn Witches is the newest game from Moolion, and I was hoping I would be as enthralled by it as I was by 8/8/88 Needle, AL. Unfortunately, this one seems to do away with all story, and instead it’s a survival game in which you need to collect wood and mushrooms around the forest so you can use them to survive the night. I don’t know if it ever gets more interesting, because both times I tried to play, it bugged out once night fell. I could access my inventory to eat or add wood to the fire, so I eventually just starved to death. And, sadly, there wasn’t even a witch to be found anywhere. It’s possible the game gets more interesting if you survive longer, but I’m not about to try a third time. Hopefully the bugs will get worked out, or maybe others won’t encounter them. In any case, it’s free so you can try it out yourself.
Of Two Minds
Of Two Minds is a Full Motion Video (FMV) game over thirty years in the making. The videos were all taken in NYC in the eighties, but they weren’t turned into a game until now. Its goal is to both educate and entertain, and as you play you’ll learn about different terms related to psychoanalysis. It reminds me of Sam Barlow’s games in structure, since you’re finding and watching clips out of order. The way it works is that you play a clip and then tap on different words as they float across the screen. Then, after you’ve watched the clip, you can circle two of the words to look for any clips that contain those two words. There’s clips about different characters and they’re all sorted after so you know how many you’re missing from each. There’s definitely something compelling about it, but you might say I’m of two minds about it. On the one hand, I like finding new clips. On the other hand, the acting is downright terrible. Some clips seem to be intentionally over-the-top (I swear I saw Shakespeare in one?) so it has me wondering if everything is intentional, including the laughably bad acting. I’ll probably stick with it because there’s something endearing about it, but I wouldn’t blame someone for quitting after the first few clips. The game releases on February 5th and you can definitely expect to see more gameplay videos from me, at the very least.
Genshin Impact finally got its big 4.4 update that adds a new area to Liyue called Chenyu Vale. There’s new mechanics, new bosses, and even goats! I’m always excited about new areas to explore, but this update is even better because it brought two new characters and I’m loving both of them. Gaming is a 4-star dragon dancer who specializes in plunging attacks. I haven’t been this obsessed with a character since Kazuha released. I decided to pull for him and the new 5-star, Xianyun, because she’s his best support. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I ended up loving her, too, especially for exploration. So I’m having a blast running around the new area with both of them in my team and also building them at the same time. I was hoping to get more copies of Gaming, but unfortunately I only got the one despite around 80 wishes on the banner. Hopefully I’ll be able to get them sometime in the near future, because I want the best for my new favorite character. Hoyoverse really outdid themselves with his animations and the overall feel of his kit. It’s stuff like this that makes me stick with the game for so long and also makes me wonder what they’ll come up with next.
And that’s everything I’ve been up to this week. I also finished the second season of the The X-Files and started the third. Maybe I’ll actually stick with it through the end? There’s a lot of episodes, so we’ll see. Anyway, let me know in the comments section which games you’ve been playing and I’ll see you back here next time with more of My Week Unwrapped.