2



A Steam Summer Sale retrospective: Indie games I picked up

The Adventures of Clive McMulligan on Planet Zeta Four
Darron Dixon
Darron Dixon
Jul 21, 2018 • 6 min read • Posted in Reviews


I decided to do something a little different and highlight games that I personally bought during the steam summer sale. These games don't qualify for the $1 or less series that I usually do, but I still wanted to show them off as they are great hidden gems that more people should know about.

I decided to do something a little different and highlight games that I personally bought during the steam summer sale. These games don't qualify for the $1 or less series that I usually do, but I still wanted to show them off as they are great hidden gems that more people should know about.
GameStop, Inc.


Bird Game

Bird Game



Bird Game is a beautiful game with one of the most interesting art styles I have seen done in its simplicity. The music is calming and relaxing which fits the visual identity. This is where my praise for the game mostly ends, unfortunately. It just isn't fun to play because of the perceived lack of depth; what I mean by that is it feels like everything is right in front of you or one thousand miles away at the same time. If it weren't for that, it would be a great game as the pacing is well thought out and it's fun to control the bird and learn its new abilities. Boss battles feel epic, but because of the depth issue, it sucks the fun out of them as well. If you can get over the depth issue though this is a wonderful little hidden gem and work of art that clearly had a lot of work put into it. I would still recommend it for the music and art alone as the price of entry is incredibly low.

PlataGO! Super Platform Game Maker

PlataGO! Super Platform Game Maker



PlataGO! Super Platform Game Maker is a community-based game where you make platforming levels or play ones others have made. It's still in early access, so it has a way to go but what is there currently is promising. I'll start off with the building side of things. While it's simple to drag and drop what you want, some of your options are not obvious at first, and it can be a bit confusing on how to pull certain things off. When I went to try and change the values for my character's movement on a stage, most of the time, it would not save my changes.

If you're coming from something like Mario Maker, it will probably be a bit jarring at first and take some time to get used to it. As far as actually playing levels go, it feels a bit clunky moving around stages, and spikes that pop up are incredibly annoying to time when they are officially "down" so you will end up dying a lot trying to get the timing right. What I personally hope to see moving forward is an easier "create mode" or at least a thorough tutorial to get you started on the more intricate options.

As far as gameplay goes, I would like to see improvements to the raising spikes, enemy interactions, and to see the death animation improved upon. If you love to make levels and play fan-created games/stages, then this is a pretty good bargain that will be updated going forward, so I recommend it mostly on potential.

PuzzGun

PuzzGun



PuzzGun is a puzzle platformer that is a lot of fun to play. It slowly builds up the difficulty as you figure out how to get through each level. What's neat about it is that the ammo for your gun acts as different puzzle pieces such as destroying blocks, turning a block into a trampoline, and adding extra blocks to attach to already existing blocks. It may sound complicated on paper, but once you get in the flow of the game, it becomes easy to cycle through your puzzle ammo. When new mechanics get introduced as you make your way to new levels it does a great job of letting you get used to each new ability before bombarding you with more options. This is a great hidden gem for anyone looking to scratch their puzzle itch and well worth a purchase!

SwordBounce

SwordBounce



SwordBounce is a precise platformer that is beautiful, challenging, and hard on the hands. The controls are simple enough where it doesn't feel impossible to pull off movements, but for someone with carpal tunnel like me, the repetitive nature of precise platformers are incredibly painful without a controller.

With that out of the way, on to the gameplay! The feeling you get from getting through a room is so satisfying that it will keep you wanting to push forward for "just one more." The pixel art is one of the highlights as it looks fantastic in each room and the level design is awesome. I can't speak for later levels, but it reminds me of Celeste difficulty wise, gradually getting harder with each room while it carefully introduces new mechanics for you to master. Even at full price, this game is a steal for any precise platformer fans out there!

The Adventures of Clive McMulligan on Planet Zeta Four

The Adventures of Clive McMulligan on Planet Zeta Four



The Adventures of Clive McMulligan on Planet Zeta Four besides having a long name is a neat hidden gem in the platforming genre that has secrets to find as you make your way through each level. It gradually introduces new mechanics in the levels such as flipping switches and using momentum to make your way through sections. The only significant negative so far for me is that in the second world the spikes look exactly like grass so it ends up causing several cheap deaths that you cannot control without getting lucky. A tiny negative would be that I wish you were able to use the same checkpoint twice in a row as several times I found myself doing something challenging and then dying before I could find a different checkpoint. The positives definitely outweigh the few negatives though!

This is a great little hidden gem for the platformer lovers out there. It also seems to be set up for speed runner or those that like to beat their times on levels as there is a time tracker on each stage. For the sake of reviewing it though I played it casually as I assumed the majority of players would and I can say that it never feels like it pushes you to go fast, so that was a significant relief to me. I would definitely recommend picking this up if you enjoy platformers and figuring out how to get all of the hidden items.

Thank you for reading the article! I have wanted to cover several of these games for a while but have been waiting for the opportunity to strike, and this was it. I have been contemplating revisiting several games that I have reviewed in the past because they have received significant updates so let me know if that sounds like something you would like to see. You can send any thoughts or suggestions to darron@whatevo.com.

You May Also Like

Bloody Night game logo

Darron’s Weekly Picks #6: $1 or less hidden gems on Steam

Darron’s Weekly Picks #6: $1 or less hidden gems on Steam

Darron Dixon
Jul 21, 2018
High Fives1 Comments0
Space Farmers game art

Budget Gamers Rejoice! $1 or Less for Hidden Gems on Steam

Budget Gamers Rejoice! $1 or Less for Hidden Gems on Steam

Darron Dixon
Jul 21, 2018
High Fives2 Comments2
Darron's Weekly Picks #4

Darron’s Weekly Picks #4: $1 or Less Hidden Gems on Steam

Darron’s Weekly Picks #4: $1 or Less Hidden Gems on Steam

Darron Dixon
Jul 21, 2018
High Fives1 Comments1