|Counterclockwise ||Nenad||Action/Arcade||7.07 MB||Click here to download|
Counterclockwise is a perfect demonstration of the quality of entries submitted to the Retro Remakes competition this year. Essentially Tron in 3D, this remake puts you in a ship that leaves a trail during flight. Your basic objective is to destroy enemy chasers, either by shooting at them or using the EMPs supplied.
Ammunition is limited, but it's possible to replenish them by collecting power-ups or executing tricks. These special moves can be practiced in a special trick trainer section. A multi-player is currently being developed, although the online high score table has already been implemented in the current version.
|Transformice ||Tigrounette||Platformer||Browser||Click here to play|
Transformice is a multiplayer flash game, where you control a mouse whose goal is to try and return with the cheese faster than all of the other mice. You are assisted by a Shaman who has the ability to summon various physics-based objects to help the mice get the cheese and get back safely.
The Shaman is a mouse with the ability to summon physics objects, and in some cases must overcome an otherwise insurmountable obstacle to clear a path to the cheese for the other mice. The Shaman is separated from the other mice with various markings on his fur and a feather on his head. The array of objects the Shaman has access to varies from map to map; in some cases, the shaman can't do anything at all.
|Ikachan ||Pixel||Action/Arcade||0.15 MB||Click here to download|
Ikachan has been largely ignored by many due to the Japanese text, but finally a proper English version was recently released and made available for download. This translation is much better than the one that has been making it's rounds, with most of the storyline kept intact and understandable.
The game itself is a nice little underwater exploration number that won't take more than an hour or two to solve. Fans of Cave Story certainly wouldn't be disappointed with one of Pixel's earlier work.
|Arachnos ||Bootansoft||Shoot 'em up||7.27 MB||Click here to download|
Arachnos is an effort by BootanSoft that is reminiscent of arcade shmups from the early 80's. I could not get this to work full screen, but changing to a lower desktop resolution helps. Controls are shown under the configuration menu. Set BLT scale to double for a larger game display window.
The graphics may appear to be bland but does improve after the second level. Several weapons most commonly found in Konami's classic shooters make their appearance here, such as ripple lasers and options to name but two. Your ship does not explode immediately when hit, allowing options to be recovered after the loss of a life.
End level bosses have several attack patterns, guaranteed to test your bullet dodging skills. The asteroids in stage two can actually be used as a temporary shield during the boss battle, assuming that you don't crash into any of them.
|NaaC ||Bloody Monkey||Action/Arcade||10.6 MB||Click here to download|
NaaC is a pretty good Smash TV clone with all the action focused in one room for the entire game. Aliens will barge through walls from the top of the screen, then left and right. Fortunately better weapons occasionally appear out of thin air, although ammo conservation is vital since they run out pretty fast.
|Karoshi Factory |
|Jesse Venbrux||Platformer||7.62 MB||Click here to download|
Karoshi Factory is a new sequel to Jesse Venbrux's suicidal platformer series, where players must find unorthodox methods to kill all suits on screen in order to progress from one stage to the next. Use the Z key to jump, press the X key to shoot once a gun is acquired, and tap the space key to switch characters.
Press the R key to restart a level at any time. The F4 function key can be used to toggle between full screen and windowed modes. Note that touching the blue button causes a random effect, one of which is disabling the character switch function.
- Windows, Mac
|Michael Mateas, Andrew Stern||Adventure||167 MB||Click here to download|
Facade is an artificial intelligence experiment by Michael Mateas and Andrew Stern, an attempt to move beyond traditional branching or hyper-linked narrative to create a fully-realized, one-act interactive drama. Within this architecture they have built a dramatically interesting, real-time 3D virtual world inhabited by computer-controlled characters, in which the player experiences a story from a first-person perspective.
The character you play is a longtime friend of Grace and Trip, an attractive and materially successful couple in their early thirties. During an evening get-together at their apartment that quickly turns ugly, you become entangled in the high-conflict dissolution of Grace and Tripfs marriage. No one is safe as the accusations fly, sides are taken and irreversible decisions are forced to be made. By the end of this intense one-act play you will have changed the course of Grace and Tripfs lives, motivating you to re-play the drama to find out how your interaction could make things turn out differently the next time.
Somewhere between a video game and a drama, Facade takes advantage of voice acting and a 3-D environment, as well as natural language processing and other advanced artificial intelligence routines to provide a robust interactive fiction experience. Using full typed sentences the player can coach the couple through their troubles or drive them to be more distant from each other.
This work is unlike hypertext narrative or interactive fiction to date in that the computer characters actively perform the story without waiting for you to click on a link or enter a command. Interaction is seamless as you converse in natural language and move and gesture freely within the first-person 3D world of Grace and Tripfs apartment. AI controls Grace and Tripfs personality and behavior, including emotive facial expressions, spoken voice and full-body animation. Furthermore, the AI intelligently chooses the next story 'beat' based on your moment-by-moment interaction, what story beats have happened so far, and the need to satisfy an overall dramatic arc.
The player can take an active role in the conversation, pushing the topic one way or another to provide an interactive stage-play. These stage-plays are saved as scripts which can be saved after the game is finished.
|Kingdom of Loathing ||Asymmetric Publications||RPG||Browser||Click here to play|
Unlike some of the popular multiplayer RPGs these days, Jick (real name Zack Johnson) first created Kingdom of Loathing as a simple game that had stick figures for character illustrations, seemingly random items and odd combat encounters with inhabitants of the land. KoL now boasts over a hundred thousand active users - an amazing achievement for a game which looks and plays exactly the same way as when it started out five years ago.
|Shift ||Antony Lavelle||Platformer||Browser||Click here to play|
Shift is a platformer with puzzle elements based on the idea of shifting dimensions, not unlike one of Nitrome's controversial release from last year. Use the cursor keys to move your character, and press the space key to jump. The left shift key can be used to switch positions.
The game is rather short, but an online high score table which tracks players with the quickest completion time has been included to increase replayability by a small measure.
|Untitled Story, An ||Matthew Thorson||Platformer||19.3 MB||Click here to download|
An Untitled Story is a shareware platformer which was recently released as freeware by Matt Thorson, developer of the popular but frustratingly hard Jumper series. The game world is expansive but players with anything less than incredible reflexes would find it difficult to progress very far, since most of the challenges revolve around precision jumps and a knack for perfect timing.
Switching between full screen and windowed mode is only possible once a new profile has been created. Press the space key to bring up a pause menu, then choose the options tab to find this well-hidden feature.