Review: Neko Can Dream Delivers a Bittersweet Nostalgic Treat

Review: Neko Can Dream Delivers a Bittersweet Nostalgic Treat

Neko Can Dream is a nonviolent, narrative-focused Game Boy-style adventure game available on both mobile platforms and in a physical cartridge for the Game Boy itself. Players take on the role of a cat-eared young woman who wakes to find herself in a strange city. An avian yakitori restaurant owner offers her a job, asking her to capture and can the dreams of the city’s sleeping residents. In order to secure these cans, the young woman must enter three dreams, each of which contains a complete story. While referencing classic games through original scenarios, Neko Can Dream expertly guides the player from one scene to the next as it reflects on the refuge that the fantasy world of dreams offers people who find themselves alienated from the real world. (more…)

Review: Pounce into Adventure with Cattails: Wildwood Story

Review: Pounce into Adventure with Cattails: Wildwood Story

Embark on an extraordinary journey in Cattails: Wildwood Story, a revamped version of the original Cattails that whisks players away to the mysterious world of Wildwood. For ages, three colonies of cats thrived under their deity, the Forest Guardian, until a calamitous earthquake and tornado shattered their sacred temple and left the Guardian in a weakened state. Now players guide the world’s feline inhabitants to the uncharted territory of Wildwood on a mission to erect a new temple and rescue the Forest Guardian. (more…)

REVIEW: Venba Cooks Up An Emotional, Cosy Feast

REVIEW: Venba Cooks Up An Emotional, Cosy Feast

Loading up Venba for the first time—a game I’ve been excited about for a while now—I immediately knew I was in for a treat. The rattle of cookware resounded over a collection of gorgeously-illustrated spice jars, each representing a menu option. As I selected the “Play” jar, I settled down for a cosy cooking game, but I wasn’t expecting the emotional heart beating at the centre of Venba. (more…)

REVIEW: Mask of the Rose Provides Character-First, Monster-Dating Fun

REVIEW: Mask of the Rose Provides Character-First, Monster-Dating Fun

Failbetter Games’s Mask of the Rose is the kind of game where I can turn my laptop toward my friend, show her a picture of a giant being with no visible face except for two glowing red eyes (?), and say, “Hey, do you think I’m gonna hook up with this thing?” and within minutes, be actively hooking up with that thing.

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30XX Is a Great Start to a Mega Man X Successor

30XX Is a Great Start to a Mega Man X Successor

In my time going through runs of 30XX, I kept feeling like I was supposed to have some more information than I already did. Like if I started another attempt and kept playing, I’d learn more about some quirks of the game’s story, layouts, and mechanics that would be better explained as I got more familiar with the game. And while I have enjoyed 30XX and gotten more comfortable every time I’ve gone back in, I’m still left with a lot of questions where I feel I wasn’t meant to. (more…)

REVIEW: Outshine Is a Thrilling Introduction to the Typing Game Genre

REVIEW: Outshine Is a Thrilling Introduction to the Typing Game Genre

There’s a degree of classism in requiring technology to hold a job and get an education. I first noticed this years back when my classmates got their classwork highly praised in grade school for having high definition (for 2004) pictures taken from the internet, and it only got worse as I lost about two years of university due to not having regular access to an internet connection, or a laptop in a world weathering a global pandemic. (more…)