Okay. I won’t say this week is abysmal, because there are just a couple of games that look at least interesting, but there isn’t anything stellar happening this week in video game land. Still, it’s worth taking a brief look at what’s coming out. After all, you may be done with all the greats from last year (I just finished Dark Souls, finally, myself) and need something to pass the time until Street Fighter X Tekken. So read on, fellow Flushers, it’s time for another installment of the Early Swirly!
OilRush – MAC, PC, PS3
Well, that was perhaps one of the most uninteresting trailers I’ve ever seen. Just helicopters, jets and submarines blowing each other up for two minutes. And why am I supposed to care? Of course, this says nothing about the game’s game-play, which could wind up being decent, but I doubt it.
OilRush is a real-time strategy game based on group control. It offers mechanics of a classical RTS combined with a Tower Wars genre: control the upgrade of production platforms as well as their defence forces, and send battle groups of naval and air units to capture enemy platforms and oil rigs.
ScaryGirl – PC, PS3, Xbox 360
I’ve never read ScaryGirl, but I am familiar with it. Unfortunately for series creator, Nathan Jurevicius, this game looks as fun and entertaining as most game-from-book adaptation. And my guess is the music in the trailer is probably recycled throughout most of the game. Well, if you’re buying this one, I’d head to the drugstore and pick up some Tylenol too.
Based on Nathan Jurevicius’ Scarygirl graphic novel – winner of the 2009 Aurealis Award for Best Illustrated Book/Graphic novel – Scarygirl presents a wondrous adventure into a distinctive and beautifully bizarre world. The titular character Scarygirl is an abandoned child with a tentacle arm who dresses like a pirate, and is haunted by a strange man in her dreams. She sets out into the world to discover the meaning behind her bad dreams, but Scarygirl is hardly helpless, as she has a tentacle-powered arsenal up her sleeve.
During her adventure, Scarygirl will be aided by her friends and guardians from the graphic novel, Blister the giant octopus and Bunniguru the mystical, kung-fu rabbit. Her friends and an ever-improving arsenal of combat moves will help her face down enemies like the adorably deadly hedgehogs of the Owl Woods, the violent Goat Clan along the Old Man Mountains, Hairclump spiders deep in the Stinky Swamp, and the most enemiest enemies of all: the clueless crossing guards around Bad Town!
Puddle – PC, PS3, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360
Okay, well, I have to be honest. This is the game that looks the best this week, based on the trailer. I mean there is something ingenious in the simplicity of the design here: tilt your screen to move your puddle of slimeish stuff across a maze of platforming and puzzles, with out losing a significant amount of volume. Will it win game of the year? No. But I always can appreciate a company that thinks outside the box and does something a little innovative or at least different.
Experience a brilliantly designed physics-based puzzle/platform game where you must guide a puddle of fluid to its target destination, not by moving the fluid, but by tilting the game world. The player must work with friction, momentum, and the unique properties of each type of fluid and environment to send as much of each puddle past fires, rifts, potential spills and more. But watch out: the fluid motion is realistic! Tilt too quickly and some droplets are left behind; tilt too slowly you may not be able to make certain jumps or may simply evaporate away.
Mutant Mudds – 3DS
Okay, well maybe Puddle isn’t the only good title this week. I’m always a sucker for good platformers (I did grow up on Castlevania and Mega Man, after all), plus the game does have that retro look (and I do some times fall ill with the Retro Virus). Again, probably not a game of the year contender, but really, I don’t feel a game has to be. If it’s fun to play and entertaining enough to help pass the slower moments in life, or just give my brain a nice rest, then I’m sold. This one might be a good new game for The Farr this year!
Mutant Mudds is an exciting new platform game for the Nintendo 3DS from award-winning developer, Renegade Kid. This marks the company’s first self-published title, available exclusively on the Nintendo 3DS eShop in 2011.
Our hero may be a 2D sprite, but he can take advantage of the third dimension by jetting between the background and the foreground playfields in this unique dimensionally-woven platform adventure (the stereo 3D effect looks amazing on the 3DS).
Armed with a heavy-duty water cannon and H20-powered jet pack, Max steps out onto the porch of his (parents’) home; determined to thwart the filthy plans of the Mutant Mudd army by blasting and hovering his way across the soiled landscape.
Margaritaville Online – Web, iPhone
Look, I’m never going to bash a product just because it was inspired by a Jimmy Buffett song, because Cheeseburger in Paradise is amazing (the restaurant). Still, I will bash the creation of yet another useless Facebook game trying to suck the life out of a bunch of unsuspecting stay-at-home moms and the employed and unemployed alike. To me, these games have no appeal then again, I’m never sold on MMORPGs anymore, having played EverQuest and Final Fantasy XI at length), but I’m sure there are plenty of you looking to tank hours of otherwise precious time collecting fake items just to look at them sitting in your fake island home. Just take a vacation, would you? And leave the laptop home!
Margaritaville Online is an everyday escape to a virtual tropical paradise. Friends party and play in the islands in a stunningly immersive 3D world filled with margaritas, music and adventure. It’s more than a game…it’s a lifestyle!
Also out this week: Quarrel, Victoria II: A House Divided (expansion pack), The Sims 3: Master Suite Stuff and Assassin’s Creed: Revelations: Mediterranean Traveler Map Pack.