Games

Games of the Month – February 2020

So uh, the last month has been… a lot! Between the plague and the politics, it’s not looking great out there folks. But instead of turning into absolute despair hour (for that, check my Twitter), what if we talked about some video games for a second?

Doom Eternal is mere hours away at this point (UPDATE: it’s out! I have it! I lived!). Animal Crossing’s tonight. It’s time to put February to bed.

 

1. Scourgebringer

Is it time to call our Game of the Year yet? Because right now, it’s Scourgebringer by a country mile.

Without Flying Oak Games’ instant , February would have been a relatively unmemorable month. There’s still good stuff to find, sure, but this one’s in a league of its own. Scourgebringer is still only in Early Access, but wow what a showing. I know now the game’s been in alpha for a year. I wish I had known! The game’s Steam release has blown me away. Action as tight as Doom 2016’s with as many variables and options but on a 2D plane? What a weird, wonderful idea.

ScourgeBringer is fast. Like, blink while you’re watching someone play and you’ll miss them clearing a room, fast. And for me? The faster the roguelike the better. You enter a room full of enemies, figure out the most efficient way to obliterate them in five seconds, and move on to do it again. It’s not the most original idea, but the execution is done so well it’s been hard to tear myself away. And when I’m not playing, I’m wondering what next week’s content update might bring. It’s real, real good.

Go play Scourgebringer for yourself it looks or sounds remotely interesting to you. It’s quite difficult to convey just how good the game feels in your hands until you’re dashing and slicing and blasting through the hordes for yourself. Combine that with the game’s combo system and skill tree, and you’ve got yourself a game to return to again and again.

For a game that seems roughly halfway content complete, a bunch of full games have a lot to compete with already. Expect to be hearing about this one for a while. That’s assuming we survive the next handful of months, of course.


2. WORLD OF HORROR

What if the world was a terrible hellscape and only your wildest imaginations could predict what awful thing would happen next? Also, did you hear about this spooky new Junji Ito inspired game? It’s good too!

WORLD OF HORROR is a solo effort from @panstasz about surviving an onslaught demons and monsters that have been unleashed. While I haven’t put as much time into this one as I plan to, early signs are good. I participated in an eldritch ritual. I fought a demon. I got my face permanently sliced open by an evil scissor lady and lived… for a while. It’s cool! The one thing I don’t have a great grasp on so far is the combat. As an adventure game it’s all menu based, and the combat is turn-based from said menu. But there’s a bit of complexity there involving what order to take certain moves, when to defend or attack or whatever. It’s all gone over my head a bit, and I’m playing mostly to see ghosts and non-euclidean monstrosities, not to learn a light combat programming language. But, like I said, the good parts are super good.


3. Mission Zigloton

A weird platformer that I found had launched on itch.io to little fanfare: Mission Zigloton by Ben Lega! Have you been looking for a pretty simple way to kill an hour or two? Ben’s got ya.

Mission Zigloton rarely pretends to be more than just a solid platforming adventure. You’ll collect doodads to open up areas which you’ll then run and jump through to collect other doodads. Towards the later half of the game, you’re introduced to a couple of boss fights and stealth sequences that feel a bit out of place but aren’t unwelcome.  It’s neat!

Again, this was a super light month in terms of releases, but this was just the kind of appetizer I was looking for before the big big big stuff starts hitting and doesn’t stop. It’s also completely free!


Honorable Mentions

Escape Vauban

vauban

A very good, very quick escape room game.


Balavour

b1

A sad short horror story about a girl, a dog, and a flower.


The Convenience Store

cs1

Decent on its own, but pales in comparison to its clear inspiration – Puppet Combo’s opus, Night Shift.


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