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24
May 17

Zombotron on Steam Greenlight

Hey friend. Day got you down? Not enough mutant mayhem or rampaging zombies to brighten your mood? Well, good news! After a lot of hard work, Zombotron is now on Steam Greenlight! Awwww yeah. Ant Karlov is bringing the classic series of spacebound zombie carnage to your desktop in a brand new adventure of action platforming goodness… and headshots, of course.

Zombotron Greenlight

The latest game from Ant Karlov is not just a remake of the original series, it features all new content, like enemies, weapons, skills, areas, and more. You’ll go beyond the original series in Zombotron’s biggest title yet. The game is still in development, but you can vote for Zombotron on Steam Greenlight now and follow our progress.

Because we know that for a lot of people Zombotron is an important series, and that’s why as we continue development with Ant Karlov, we want to hear from you! In the comments, please tell us a bit about why you love the Zombotron games. What to you makes a great Zombotron game? What does it NEED to have? What do you absolutely not want to see out of it? We’ll post more news and previews of Zombotron for Steam as progress is made, and we can’t wait to share this new game with all of you! The original free Flash Zombotron games gave been enjoyed by millions on Armor Games alone. Never played them before? You can check them out here! As always, thank you for your support.

Zombotron Greenlight

For more about Zombotron, vote for Zombotron on Steam Greenlight and follow the official Zombotron twitter account. Follow Armor Games on Facebook and Twitter.

16
May 17

Cursed Treasure 2 Greenlight Campaign

Greetings, cherished reader! As you may have heard, we’ve been working behind the scenes with developer extraordinaire IriySoft to bring one of their most popular titles to Steam. Hit tower-defense game Cursed Treasure 2 is currently in Steam Greenlight, and if you love the series as much as we do and want to support the creator for years of fine, free games, we’d appreciate it if you could take the time to vote “Yes” and help it over the edge. It’s what your inner evil overlord would want you to do.

“But Dora,” I hear you say, “Cursed Treasure 2 is already on iTunes and Google Play. What is it going to have on Steam?”

Excellent question, my little narrative tactic! The ultimate goal with this version is both to make it available to a wider audience, and to ensure it feels like a proper desktop game, not just a port from your phone. This includes the basics you’d expect, like massaging and reworking aspects of the UI to take advantage of desktop functionality and real-estate. It also means sprinkling in the Steam-based goodies you’ve come to expect… trading cards, achievements, emotes, and wallpapers.

Cursed Treasure 2 Greenlight

If you’ve never played Cursed Treasure 2 before, well, there’s no time like the present! It’s a tower-defense game, where you’re the bad guy… and that’s good! See, you’re trying to protect your cache of magical gems from the wretched heroes who are trying to carry them off, and by building towers that have their own unique powers along the terrain, you can stop them before they reach your treasure.

The undead towers, for instance, can be upgraded to slow or frighten enemies into turning back, while demon towers can turn the ground into painful molten lava. Each set of towers has various effects you can choose to make use of, in addition to being able to enhance them permanently using stars you earn for beating levels. Heroes like the ninja, who can turn invisible, or the heavily armored paladin who can shield his companions might seem formidable, but, well… that’s for smiting is for. Spend some of the mana you accumulate to drop a massive fireball or two and you’re golden!

We hope you’ll consider checking the game out and voting for Cursed Treasure 2 on Steam Greenlight. Your support of indie developers makes not only games like Cursed Treasure 2 popular, but helps further the development of even more games down the road. Please help us spread the news, and join the fight against the heroic hordes!

Cursed Treasure 2 Greenlight

For more about Cursed Treasure 2, visit the official website and visit Cursed Treasure 2 press kit. Follow Armor Games on Facebook and Twitter.

9
May 17

Warfare Online Now Available

They say war is Hell, but they clearly weren’t talking about Warfare Online, the multiplayer RTS from Con Artist Games. It’s been available to play free on Steam for a while now, and as of today, Warfare Online is finally out of Early Access and it’s still free to play! Con Artist Games has been making awesome free games for years now, with titles like their other popular MMORPG, The Last Stand – Dead Zone, and we’re thrilled to support their latest and greatest.

You’ll need to register for a free Con Artist Games account to play, which takes just a moment and only requires an e-mail address for activation. The in-game tutorial will take you through the basics, but Warfare Online is a multiplayer real-time strategy game where you deploy and direct your troops against your opponent, utilizing cover, support, and the proper units to achieve victory by destroying your opponent’s base before they can destroy yours.

The game is free to play, though you can choose to buy a premium subscription for varying lengths of time that boosts not just what you earn in terms of experience and credits, but also provides a small boost in experience earned for the people you play against. Who says war isn’t about togetherness? Get Warfare Online on Steam, and be sure to play Con Artist Games’ other titles right here free on Armor Games.

Warfare Online

Get Warfare Online on Steam, visit the official website, follow Warfare Online on Twitter, and follow Armor Games on Twitter and Facebook.

10
Mar 17

Top 5 Golden Oldies

In the world of the internet things are old news before a week is out. Not even cat videos can survive this short, intense, ever-changing flow in these tubes, which is a reference 10% of you may actually get due to this very fact. While this keeps things fresh, encourages new ideas and improvements on the old, sometimes it’s nice to look back at things that once were the Keyboard Cats of pop-culture.

Letting the fluttering childish feeling of nostalgia wash over you just by clicking a link is indeed one of the smaller joys in life. There’s a deeper connection when it comes to games though. We didn’t just see them, we experienced them. And many of the good ones are still as fantastic, if not a little dusty, as the day when we first played them. Here’s our top five games that made our hearts warm to see again. How many did you first play those many years ago?

Sushi Go Round

Sushi Go Round gave many of us the first taste of time management games… besides the blue apron wearing waitress. But this game was one that had you not only trying to serve and clear dishes, but also make the deliciousness that lines your wallet with green. Not only are you having to keep your stocks in good supply, but even the order in which the sushi goes out. You need to plan carefully so that a fresh customer who snags a seat closer to the where the sushi funnels out doesn’t swipe it out of reach of another much more impatient patron.

It is a game that simultaneously makes you want to go out for sushi while at the same time suddenly makes you feel guilty for ever ordering a deluxe combo platter as you now know the pressure you placed on the chef.  Sushi Go Round was unique at the time and still has its seaweed wrapped around fans’ hearts.

Bloons Tower Defense

Ever seen a monkey and immediately started hearing popping sounds? Then you’ve probably been a fan of the Bloons Tower Defense series by Ninja Kiwi. If you haven’t played it and still hear popping sounds… I’d get that checked out. But while you’re waiting to see a doctor you can have a chance to enjoy the simple yet fantastic tower defender. Before its many sequels and branch-offs, Bloons Tower Defense made people go bananas for these balloon popping monkeys.  

Simple in its design yet complicated in its strategies, this silly monkey throwing dart game made many curse those air filled rubber tubes. Though bright, colorful and kid friendly these games have you thinking hard to make sure every last one of those balloons was destroyed with a bubble wrap style pop that soothes the soul. This game was so good, no one ever questions the odd spelling choice but instead celebrated all five of the releases. So sharpen up your darts!

Dark Cut

Back before the day of bootleg medical procedures games that have you fixing teeth and doing Botox injections on baby-ized versions of popular cartoon icons, the medical emergencies were treated a lot more seriously. And much more… darkly? Dark Cut arose from the grimy shadows in 2007 and let us all step into the (most likely stained) boots of a medieval doctor. This game requires a steady mouse and a strong stomach to make it through these grisly tales as you deal with both real wounds and some mythical lore.

The only downside to Dark Cut is the limited instructions, like needing to use the spacebar on the last “patient”, though it does bring in some more realism as back then they didn’t have all the knowledge that would have been helpful. One of the best things though is that there’s two sequels; so wake up your leeches and get your bone saw sharpened.

Monster Basement

Down in the basement something is brewing, something is stirring. And you’re in the dark with it. Patrick Majewski’s Monster Basement once terrified the younger versions of ourselves as we tried to find an escape while terror and death loomed overhead. Some of us probably couldn’t even finish it after seeing what was behind the door, let alone dare try Monster Basement 2. Before the time when jump scares were popular and basically made up horror games, Monster Basement brought in all its fears with the foreboding doom that loomed. As well as the fact that that doom could end you and ensure you’d never escape.

While it is more of a collect-item, use-item type of escape game it still holds up after all these years with its creepy sound effects and chilling music. Definitely worth going back and trying again now to see if you can’t be brave enough to finally see the ending for yourself. An ending that caught many of us by surprise. Or at least, those who could finish it and didn’t cave in to the terror, exit the browser as fast a possible and hide under a flowery blanket singing Never Gonna Give You Up in an attempt to soothe ourselves. Not me of course. Totally finished that game. Yep…

Several Journeys of Reemus

In Ye Olden Times the only way you could revisit an adventure was to hear a bard sing the tale of all the heroic adventures. In modern days we just go back and play through them. Which one blue bear will hear as a relief as he can finally take a break from telling about the Several Journeys of Reemus by Zeebarf. This little point and click adventure game had some of the oddest journeys we ever ventured on.  While bright and cartoonish this tale was for anyone but young kids as it held a good balance of black comedy, and puzzle solving.

While this journey of our mullet-ed exterminator never had a good solid ending on its web based side it still holds some good laughs and some interesting conundrums to find your way through this odd land. You never know what lies beyond the next screen, whether it’s flesh eating trees, beetles the size of elephants or a very dangerous Visitor. These wacky adventures are just as good as they were when they first came out, but now you don’t have to wait for the next episode to be out.

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Written by Lori, who one day hopes to fill this line with many links to show off all her creativeness, but as she suffers from a serious case of procrastinitis and must do many horrible, boring things known as “adulting” it may be a while.

1
Feb 17

10 Things You’ll See in Escape Games

They sound so ordinary, don’t they? Room escape games. There’s a locked door and you need to find a way to open it. Ha, easy! Too bad everybody locks their doors with elaborate mechanisms and stumbling into a dark room means you go blind. If you’ve ever played a point and click room escape game like Cube Escape: Theater or The Watchers’ Chamber, you might have seen some of the following.

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Combination locks
Some of them spin, some have keypads, some just have plain old clickable numbers. No matter what they look like your goal remains the same: enter the correct code to proceed. If you’re like the rest of us you’ll try guessing the code a few times before giving up and solving the puzzle like a real person. No cheating!

There’s something in the fireplace
Too bad you can’t reach it, not with those fumbly hands of yours. Oh, sure, you can see it just fine, and it looks like there’s enough room to drive a truck beside it. But to get that item, you’ll need some sort of grabby utensil. It’s probably in the kitchen behind the cookie jar, where most of us store grabby things.

This room is too dark
In escape games it’s impossible to do anything in a dark room except poke around for a light switch. If that carried over into the real world, going to the bathroom in the middle of the night would be an epic quest of lighting lanterns and refilling them with oil cans you found in the shed. Let’s keep it in the games.

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Weird keys
Regular keys exist in the room escape realm, you see them all the time. There are also keys shaped like triangles and leaves and burritos, and they’re all color coded so you know which lock they belong to. Seriously, can we get these in real life?

Puzzle locks for ordinary doors
Escape games love to seal off perfectly ordinary rooms with crazy locking mechanisms. This would be a catastrophic failure out in our world. Imagine nipping the store for some milk and getting stuck in the snow for an hour because you can’t solve the sliding block puzzle on your front door. Just crawl through a window.

Important items under the bed
Most real world beds have nothing underneath them except dust bunnies and that one sock that’s been missing for a month. But in escape games, that’s where you find keys, puzzle pieces, and so much more. Also, don’t forget to move the pillow to see what’s under there. Bet it’s another vital clue!

Strategically placed rugs
Have you ever spilled something on the floor and just thrown a rug over it to pretend it’s not there? Every house in every escape game is inhabited by someone who does that. They also write important information on the floor, then cover it up with a tasteful area rug. Just because you live in the warped reality of escape games doesn’t mean you can’t have good interior decorating sensibilities.

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Clocks never work
Have you ever seen a working clock in a room escape game? Ok, a few do exist, but more often than not those clockwork gizmos are frozen in place. Turning them to the correct time will unlock some sort of secret, which is far more exciting than making an annoying chime every hour. Not as practical, but who cares?!

Vines and cobwebs
Vines, cobwebs, grass, bits of string. These things might as well be concrete walls in the room escape world. The last item on your list is just visible behind a tangle of vines. You can’t just take it, though. Where’s the fun in that? Instead, go find something sharp. Didn’t you leave a pair of garden shears by the toilet?

You’ve got mail!
If there’s a mailbox, there’s something important inside. Nevermind the bills or the credit card offers, you need that hammer to open the back door of the mansion!

 

Ready to get some room escape puzzles solved? Check out tons of free point and click and escape games and you’ll never have to unlock your front door again!

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Written by JohnB, who has been kicking around the indie and browser gaming worlds since 1865. John currently lives in a hut atop a frozen lake where he tweets things about games, books, writing, and occasionally, cookies: @itsamejohn

17
Jan 17

Top 5 Challenging Games

When most people think of playing Flash games, they think of a lovely break from their day. A time to de-stress, play with friends and maybe have a good laugh as they enjoy a lovely, pleasant trip through Gamer’s Land. Others scoff at this naive idea. “Games shouldn’t be like strolling through daisies! They should challenge you to your very soul, where you question everything you know and scream at the little pixel man… Why can’t he just jump! a! little! HIGHER!”

This group of hardcore gamers know if you’ve never had your mouse slippery from sweat or haven’t felt the plastic of the keyboard vibrate below your fingers as you smash them out of rage, then you’ve never known true gaming. For when you have finally succeeded against all odds, you now know that you have won the rights to the very universe! Or perhaps just the chance to brag to your friends about your victories. Here are five of our most difficult games, so you can have that taste of victory made even sweeter through your tears of pain. Let us know if we missed a game whose victory you wear like a badge.

 

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When the game is titled with a command for you to lose, you know you’re in for a challenge. The Give Up series (with a sequel completed and a third in the works) started by John Cooney and Tasslefoot, later continued with Massive Monster, has embedded itself in our hearts just as the little blue man embedded himself on those spikes. There are really only a couple of levels and one goal; to reach that exit door. Every time you do, however, the stage restarts and something more deadly than the last is added in, or things are shuffled around to cause you to trip up… usually onto something sharp or explosive.

Actually…. I lied. The real goal of these games is for the orange computer eye to mock your failures enough that you push the always present and very easy to click “GIVE UP” button. As the challenges become nearly impossible and the A.I. snarkier than ever, you’ll find the temptation to press it grow and grow. How far can you make it before your resolve crumbles?

 

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A good warning sign that a game is going to make your blood boil is how simple the controls are. The easier the mechanics, the harder it’s going to be to win. Space is Key is testament to that as Chris Jeff takes you on a world of pain. All you need to do is tap the spacebar to fling a small box into the air to avoid anything other than stars as it moves forward without stopping.

Bright colors and upbeat, fast-paced music keep your spirits as high as your death count. Even with a more simple level design than Give Up, you’ll still have your nose glued to the screen. The action never stops and now you won’t have to either as Space is Key is also a finger-smashing app ready to go wherever your phone can. 

 

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If you need something more light-hearted and bubbly to look at as your anger grows, Bullet Heaven 1 and Bullet Heaven 2 will fulfill that need. As cute as it is deadly, Matt Roszak’s games will have you dodging literally thousands of bullets as you try to collect enough gold before you die so you can upgrade and get a little bit farther the next time you go. While there are difficulty options to chose from, you’ll find that their definition of “normal” is… not so normal. Things ramp up quickly in this fuzzy little adventure that will leave both you and your mouse out of breath.

 

whereami1

If platforming and constant deaths aren’t your thing, Bennuk’s Where Am I can give you that hair-pulling frustration before the leap of joy that comes from conquering its mind-twisting levels. In a plane of gray, you must find the exit, and the only way to do so is by hitting into the invisible walls that light up for brief moments from your blind searching, leaving you guessing where you are and where you’re headed.

The short little organ sounds of the *bings* and *bongs* as you bounce off the walls are sure to give you a smile even as you find yourself running into the same dead end again and again. The most painfully hard thing about this game is dealing with its ending that comes way too soon… the curse of all Ludum Dare games. But the silver lining is you can sneak this game into any busy day.

 

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Of course, no list would be complete without the game that ended up defining hardcore games; Jonathan Mcentee and Edmund McMillen’s Meat Boy. Playing as the squishy and drippy titular hero, you have to save your love, Band-Aid Girl, in these treacherous levels. Tight controls are hard to do when you’re a pile of uncooked flesh leaving a sludge trail on every wall you squash into, but that is what makes Meat Boy… well, Meat Boy, of course.

Not only are there levels to play (and skip when things get rough) but there’s even a custom map builder so you can try levels others have crafted or make some yourself. This is definitely a game everyone who even slightly enjoys a challenge should play. If you can’t say you’ve rage-quit Meat Boy, then you haven’t truly lived.

If these games gave you a taste of the thrill you’ve been missing in your life, check out other games that will have you raging against your machine.

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Written by Lori, who one day hopes to fill this line with many links to show off all her creativeness, but as she suffers from a serious case of procrastinitis and must do many horrible, boring things known as “adulting” it may be a while.

26
Dec 16

Flight! iOS Update and Giveaway

No matter what your day has been like, a pocket full of falling stars can put a spring in anyone’s step, and on the way to make a little girl’s holiday wish of seeing her mother come true, you’re going to be covered in stardust from head to toe. Flight!, originally released in 2010 for Flash by Krin (yes, that Krin!), Flight! has been spreading starshine on iOS since 2012. So what better way for us to celebrate the holiday season than with an update and a giveaway? Check out Flight! on iTunes, and view the full changelog and giveaway details below the trailer.

Flight! has been updated with two minor fixes:

    + Fixed the bug which could cause the app to crash on iOS10
    + Updated graphics for new devices (iPhone Plus and iPad Pro)

If you’ve never played Flight!, it’s a launch-based action-arcade game where you guide a paper airplane around the world. You swipe to toss your plane, then direct it to catch stars and other power-ups, using the cash you generate to upgrade your plane to enhance it further, moving to a different location each time you travel far enough. You can still play the original Flight! for free right here in your browser, but on iOS Flight! can go with you wherever you want, plus a host of other improvements, including a shiny new visual style.

From now until January 2nd, we’re going to be giving away free iTunes codes for Flight! on the official Armor Games Facebook or Twitter. To win on Twitter, all you have to do is tweet at us something positive you wish for in the New Year, being sure to tag it #flightcontest, and we’ll randomly select winners throughout the contest period. To win on Facebook, just leave a comment telling us your positive New Year wish on the contest post, and we’ll select random winners until the contest is over. Good luck, and may your New Year be bright!

Flight!

For more about Flight!, check out Flight! on iTunes, visit the Flight! presskit, play the free Flash browser version, and follow Armor Games on Twitter and Facebook.

24
Dec 16

Top Five Holiday Games

Nothing gets that Christmas mood going like a big stack holiday themed games. For optimal enjoyment, play these games while wearing a Santa hat and at least two sweaters with Christmas trees or snowflakes.

 

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A Bonte Christmas – A Bonte Christmas is a simple game with simple goals, but it’s also the kind of game you’ll spend the entire afternoon playing. All you have to do is deliver sets of colored balls to the house near the top of the screen. Sounds pretty easy, right? Now do all of that while walking around miniature planetoids, wading through snowstorms, and dealing with an angry moose. Collecting items in the correct order is crucial, which means you’ll have to do some thinking and planning before you embark on your collecting quest.

 

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Gibbets: Santa in Trouble – Santa, his reindeer, and the Christmas elves are in trouble. You see, someone decided to hang them up with ropes, and now they’re dangling in the freezing snow slowly losing their health. Fortunately you’re armed with a bow and arrows and can set them free with a single well-placed shot. Or three moderately well-placed shots, depending on your skill. Power-ups and presents give you points and new abilities, but at the end of the day it all comes down to accuracy. It’s the same great Gibbets formula on the surface, yet somehow it’s more entertaining to shoot arrows that narrowly miss Santa’s smiling face.

 

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Into Space 3: Xmas Story – Aliens have ruined Christmas, isn’t that just the worst? Don’t worry, though, you can help the elves get things back on track. All you need is a little luck and a rocket fueled by sweets, something that isn’t completely out of the ordinary in a game like Into Space. Fire the rocket from the launchpad and pilot it through the skies, collecting candy as coinage and avoiding things like storm clouds and elf-piloted helicopters. Bring the loot back to the ground and use it to upgrade your ship so you can actually make it to space and show those aliens a thing or two about the real meaning of Christmas.

 

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Pajama Boy: Snow Adventure – Pajama Boy is a puzzle platform game about a boy who loves the snow but can’t go out and play because he’s sick. Hey, we’ve all been there, right? Jump across spikes, dodge cannons, climb walls, and navigate spinning ice traps to reach the key and exit through the locked door. Be prepared to fail about a dozen times before you get things right, as this game demands near perfect platforming and fast reflexes. It may be a little light on the Christmas theming, but you can’t go wrong with snow and hot cocoa and icy spikes.

 

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Infectonator – Christmas Edition – Nothing says “holiday spirit” like killing pixel people wearing Santa hats and watching their zombie corpses rise to kill again. The Infectonator series is a whole lot of click-based fun. Add a Christmas theme to it and it’s still a lot of fun, only now it’s… well, it’s weird, sometimes, but that’s kind of the point. Infect citizens who just won’t shut up about the joyous time of year, collect the coins they drop, and use the loot to upgrade your weapons and abilities. The perfect game to vent your frustrations after hearing Jingle Bells for the 500th time this week.

 

Need more holiday cheer in your life? Check out even more free Christmas browser games right here and stay warm no matter the weather with a pixel or two.

19
Dec 16

Stories in Flash and Pixel

To a lot of people who don’t know any better, Flash games are placeholders. Something simple to mess around with when you’re trying to fill time, but ultimately lacking in depth. They’re wrong, of course. Just because a game is made in Flash doesn’t automatically make it the McDonald’s Happy Meal Toy to the rest of the gaming industry. (And thank goodness, because lemme tell ya, those tiny plastic parts are a real choking hazard!) If you want a game with a great story, there are a lot out there that will surprise you. Here are just a few of them, covering everything from shooters and visual novels to action-RPGs and point-and-click adventures. Be sure to share your favourites in the comments!

 

The Last Door

The Last Door is a moody, supremely point-and-click adventure series from The Game Kitchen, and you can play the entirety of the first season for free right here on Armor Games. A young man receives a cryptic and concerning letter from a childhood friend, and because he has no sense of self preservation whatsoever, he pursues it and memories he thought he’d buried to uncover some truly disturbing truths. It’s moody, jumpscare-tastic, and perfect for fans of genuinely unsettling Lovecraftian-style horror. Pleasant dreams.

 

Crystal Story 2

A bad-tempered young man falls from the sky like a flaming comet as this turn-based RPG by Emmanuel Salva Cruz opens, but the plucky, overconfident young thief who takes him under her questionable wing is the least of his problems. Crystal Story II is a surprisingly meaty classic-styled adventure that’s going to feel right at home for fans of old school console games. If you feel like supporting the developer, make sure you check out Crystal Story II on Steam, which includes a ton of new content and enhanced goodies, like a new chapter, card battles, and more.

 

Phoenotopia

So you couldn’t save the Earth after a massive intergalactic attack. In some games, that’s the bad ending, and you roll credits. In science-fiction platforming action RPG Phoenotopia, however, that’s just a footnote in history. See, while some of humanity took refuge underground, others headed to find safety in the stars, and hundreds of years later, one simple villager’s life is turned upside-down when a shooting star crashes into the forest nearby. With its dreamy pastel pixel aesthetic and whimsical setting, Phoenotopia is absolutely captivating for anyone who likes a little magic with their robots and space travel.

 

Starwish

If what you crave is the dramatic camp of space operas and the over-the-top fantasy and romance of anime, then allow me to introduce you to RPG shooter Starwish. It’s a unique hybrid of sidescrolling shooter action, and relationship-building visual novel, where between action-packed sequences that have you pew-pew-pewing your spaceship against overwhelming odds and huge bosses, you decide who to talk to and grow a relationship with as you advance the story. And what a doozy! Space pirates, rebels, evil empires, and magical beings, as a man named Deuce unwittingly finds an entire galaxy turning against himself and his rag-tag crew. Add in a whole bunch of endings and the fact that everything except the music was made by one person, and you’ve got a recipe for a whole lot of hours.

 

Small Worlds

Sometimes the best stories are the ones you have to put together, and short but engrossing exploration game Small Worlds lays everything out in front of you while leaving it up to you to decide what’s happened and why. Unlike the other games on this list, Small Worlds won’t take you hours to play through, but fans of environmental storytelling will love piecing together the narrative through the things they uncover. As you explore, finding pathways through the area, the view pulls back to let you see more and more of the bigger picture, beginning with your humble abode… a mysterious dome. Creepy? Cool? Why not both?

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Writer: Dora Breckinridge / Gamer. Writer. Annoyance.

23
Nov 16

Top Ten Escape Games

Here’s something to try. Take a random stranger, throw them in a locked room full of strange mechanisms and obscurely interrelated objects, and tell them they can leave when they solve your puzzles. See how quickly that gets you thrown in jail and a bad made-for-TV movie on Lifetime made about you. Bonus points if you tell them you did it because some random woman on the internet told you. But, funny thing, make that into a video game and suddenly you’ve got fans galore instead of an unsettling Wikipedia entry about yourself.

Escape games are traditionally very straightforward in concept… you’re trapped in a locked room and must click around to find items and clues to solve puzzles that eventually lead to opening the door somehow. Some developers have toyed with the mechanics and definitions, however, and the results… well, we think they’re pretty fine indeed. Here are ten of our top escape themed games. What are your favourites?

 

Cube Escape: Seasons

Rusty Lake’s Cube Escape series hasn’t been around that long, but they’ve made a reputation for themselves for good reason. Beginning with Cube Escape: Seasons, and, played in order, The Lake, Arles, Harvey’s Box, Case 23, The Mill, Birthday, and Theater, they tell a story that spans decades and some seriously dark secrets. Imagine if you forced Quentin Tarantino, Clive Barker, and Hunter S. Thompson to make a game after a marathon session of Twin Peaks and you might have an inkling of what the Cube Escape games are like. Play them, but be warned that the games don’t shy away from trying to make you jump or showing you gore.

 

Morningstar

Red Herring Labs’s Morningstar is one seriously impressive story about trying to escape from a seemingly deserted planet after a terrifying crash, and once again proof positive that nothing nice ever happens in space. From its excited animated opening scene to its high-quality voice acting and presentation, it’s easy to see why Morningstar dazzled when it was released, but it’s not just about being easy on the eyes and ears. If you like a big, complicated game filled with tricky puzzles and twists and turns, Morningstar is worth the time and effort.

 

The Great Kitchen Escape

If you like free online escape games, then you’ve probably come across the work of Mateusz Skutnik before, and working as Pastel Games, he served up some pretty colourful titles like The Great Kitchen Escape. As the title might imply, you’re trapped in a kitchen, and to get out, you’re going to have to get a little creative with your culinary surroundings. It might not sound like the most exciting premise, but I guarantee that the soundtrack at least will have you feeling like you’re the protagonist in some direct-to-video tween spy movie on the Disney Channel. Be sure to play all seven games in the series… Bathroom, Basement, Attic, Living Room, Bedroom, and House!

 

Bars of Black and White

You ever get suspicious of the real world? In Gregory Weir’s odd escape game Bars of Black and White, one day blurs into the next until the day you get a mysterious package that literally, like, opens your eyes, maaaaaaan! Admittedly, once you get past the initially obtuse navigation, Bars of Black and White can come across as a bit like the uncle who “lives off the grid” and corners you at Thanksgiving to tell you about teeth fillings, but hey, maybe a bit of paranoia is a good thing. Be sure and find all 30 barcodes hidden throughout the game to scan.

 

Samsara Room

Studio Maarten’s Samsara Room might look stylistically familiar to you, depending on whether you’ve played other games on this list. In it, you wake up in a strange room, but you’re feeling even stranger. The more you explore and begin to pick apart your surroundings, the more you discover there’s something fishy going on here. (That’s a pun. I’m very witty. You’ll see.) It’s a game that’s great at layering its imagery and oddness with dream logic to make some clever puzzles, and well worth the constant “???” your brain will be putting out as you play.

 

Escape from 26

In Big Loop Studios’s Escape from 26, you wake up in a cage. And not, like, you’re in some Liam Neeson movie and you have to escape the bad guys using only your gravelly voice and stubble. But a huge bird cage with a small house inside. How did you get there? Who is holding you captive? Why do you have to wash this smelly kid’s clothes? Then who was phone? It’s strange, sure, but that’s a big part of its Roald Dahl-esque charm, and it’s not too bad to look at either.

 

Submachine

Okay, obviously you can’t make a list about escape games and not talk about Mateusz Skutnik’s Submachine. The Submachine series is one of the internet’s best loved for fans of mystery and adventure for over a decade, and for good reason. The plot is complex, full of twists and turns that will keep you guessing and theorizing throughout, and they’re wonderfully eerie and complex. As Submachine opens, you’ll be climbing through a series of rooms with cryptic notes and obscure machinery. At no point, sadly, does a drunken, profane grandfather and his nervous, awkward grandson stumble out of a green portal to help you, but the games are, despite that, still really great. Get your thinking cap on.

 

Alice is Dead - Chapter 1

ImpendingRiot and Hyptosis crafted a beautiful and deliciously crazy spin on a classic with Alice is Dead – Chapter 1, as well as Chapter 2 and Chapter 3. It goes without saying that you should play them in order, but as the series opens, you wake up trapped inside what appears to be a giant tree with no memory of who you are or what happened. Your only company is a very prettily dressed skeleton, and she’s not much for talking. I’m not going to sugarcoat it… things are going to get freaky. But, like, in a good way. You’re into that, right?

 

Deep Sleep

You know that feeling when you think you’ve woken up from a bad dream but you’re not entirely sure? And everything in your room is mostly dark, especially that one heavy shadow in the corner you don’t want to look directly at, because, well, what if? scriptwelder’s Deep Sleep is like that. Followed by Deeper Sleep and The Deepest Sleep, Deep Sleep is a gloomy pixelated journey through a nightmare you’re struggling to wake up from. And no, not the kind where you realize somebody else ate that last piece of pizza in the fridge you’ve been saving. Whew! Scared myself with that one. Some forces shouldn’t be trifled with.

 

40xEscape

If you’ve never played a Bart Bonte game before, there are two things you should know. One, that you’re going to get a truly funktasting soundtrack no matter what it is. And two, that they’re both cute and clever in equal measure. 40xEscape plops you in front of what seems like the same door 40 different times, but each time you manage to figure out how to open it, the next time presents a new puzzle. You need to figure out what you’re expected to do each time, since you’re never given any instructions, and I like to imagine that the little yellow bird watching you is actually the evil mastermind behind all of it. The motive? Only the finest grubs and suet! Mua-ha-ha-ha! Take that, stupid hairless primate!