Travis’ Pumpkin PWNs

October 31, 2006


Oh, how very, very inadequate I feel. Travis sent in this picture of a rather menacing jack-o-lantern that would eat my pumpkin alive.

You can still submit your pumpkin art through midnight on Halloween.  Just go to this site and get started.


Game of Interest: Don’t have a pumpkin yet?

October 30, 2006


Are you having a hard time trying to find a pumpkin to carve? I can’t supply you with the real thing, but has a virtual pumpkin for you to carve with your ever-handy mouse.Consider this my early Halloween treat to all of you (maybe… 2? 3?) readers who come around today and tomorrow.

The game is cute and it shouldn’t take much of your time. Unless you’re art-obsessed and can draw very, very well with your mouse. If you do, why not send a screenshot my way? 😉 I’ll post it on my site.

Do you sudoku?

October 28, 2006


If you’re like millions of other people around the world, you probably do it. Sudoku, I mean. You know? The game where you have to write the numbers 1-9 in boxes and they can’t repeat within a box or a row or a column? Yes, that sudoku.Well, now it’s online and you can play for free! Okay, so Web Sudoku has been in existence for who knows how long. But I’m talking yummy multi-player action. Sudoku puzzles done before you blink!

Online World Sudoku Championship 2006 (yes, the name is long; bare with me here) allows you to play against other sudoku addicts around the world (presumably). You can play by yourself, too, but the fun is in the multiplayer. You can play anywhere from one to three other people who are currently online. The game has a point system based on how many squares you correctly fill in. Those points are translated to another point system that gets carried over to other games and determines your ranking.

I only found one bug where someone else’s points were being assigned to me in game, but during the point of assignments out of that particular sudoku game, the system seemed to straighten itself out.

You do need to register to play, but registration is free.

veryhappy.jpgThe sudoku-phile in my absolutely adores this online version. But for those of you who have a problem with it, my advice is this: steer clear!

I learned of Online World Sudoku Champion from Kao-Ani. OWSC is a free sudoku game that pits you against other players.

Prelim Review: What’s slimy and green all over?

October 27, 2006


Know how people are invariably attracted to slimy things (including people, I’ve noticed)? Sling capitalizes on that strange attraction we have to all things slightly gross and weird. The main character, who is referred to only as Apprentice by a slighter older slime, resembles snot. He’s green, slimy, rounded at the edge, and hangs from spherical objects.

The storyline is basic and nothing to be surprised about.  A thief steals one of the crystals that keep the very fabric of their world together, just as the stereotypical babbling old master tells his Apprentice that they should be guarded at all costs.  It’s should be no surprise to anyone that the Apprentice needs to go out and retrieve the crystal, as the Master is, you know, too busy watching cartoons.

The game takes some time to get used to, but that time investment is worth it. I haven’t played through the whole game yet (hence the prelim review), but the basic gameplay doesn’t change. You play as the Apprentice, who acts like a slingshot. You pull down on the slime and he bounces in the opposite direction when you let go. If you pull more, he goes further and faster. The object is to turn all of the white spheres in the stage green (that happens when you manage to grab hold of the white spheres). Then you need to transport to the next level through a swirly blue… uhm… portal… thing.

The levels get progressively harder as more obstacles are added, included spiked floors and the occasional monster that steals the white spheres.

And there is no life system.  None.  Meaning, Apprentice can die as many times as you need, and you don’t have to worry about starting from the beginning.  The game will remember where you were when you left your computer.

happy.jpgThe game is a pretty interesting blend of strange (but oddly, nice) graphics and engaging gameplay.  Some levels require thinking.  Or just random experimentation.

Sling can be found at Miniclip.  A nice feature of the game is the save button.

Game offers more satire than playtime

October 24, 2006


Oil God” is one of those games that you feel slightly uncomfortable when you play it. You don’t know whether the developers wallow in some kind of sadistic pleasure in trivializing world problems or if they’re very brilliant satirists. I go with the latter, but you’ll have to decide for yourself.

You play a god whose main joy in his eternal life is manipulating the oil prices. You have a slew of tools at your uhm, disembodied hand’s fingertips. Wars, natural disasters, and the ability to change the politicial and economical atmosphere of oil-producing (and consuming) countries. You have “God Hand Credits” that you expend when you make any changes in the world. The credits replenish themselves during the game.

Although interesting, the game is short. It counts down by “days” (seconds) how long it takes for you to double the world price of oil. There are simple things you can do to completely obliterate oil fields that will make your game last for little more than a minute. Sometimes less. And even though there are three levels of difficulty, they seem to become easier despite the fact the credits replenish themselves at a slower speed.

neutral.jpgAll in all, “Oil God” makes more of a statement than present solid gameplay. The game is witty, but it offers little to keep the gamer occupied.

“Oil God” was produced by Persuasive Games and is free to play on the Internet.

“Out of Order” doesn’t break down

October 23, 2006


I think it was last week that I told myself I would absolutely stop reviewing adventure games. I’ve reviewed three in the last 14 posts. But I also told myself that I could still play them. Bad idea. I found “Out of Order,” an absolutely delicious free adventure game provided by Hungry Software and couldn’t resist writing about it.

In “Out of Order,” you play Hurford, an Arthur Dent-like character right down to the fact that he’s a British man who wanders around the game world in his dressing gown. Oh, and he was abducted by someone(s) called the Panel. Apparently, humans from the early 21st century aren’t the only victims of these kidnappings.

So, you, dear reader, must guide Hurford around, erm, wherever he is to uncover the sinister plot. Along the way, he comes into contact with many people and not-people. Whether or not the characters are human is largely irrelevant; they’re all pretty bizarre. Some things he learns to trust turn out to be his downfall. Sort of. I don’t think there’s any way to get stuck in this game.outoforder3.jpg

How are the puzzles? Doable. The game tells you what you need to do, but many of the solutions require “adventure game logic.” Adventure game logic is the rather skewed form of logic that would never apply in the real world. For example, one puzzle requires you to feed glue to a stupid, stupid person. No, seriously. But when you get into the game, many of the solutions make sense. Probably the best thing about the puzzles is that they don’t take so long for you to solve that the storyline feels like it’s stopping and starting.

The graphics and the sound also add much to the atmosphere of the game. Although there are only three main areas (plus one stuck to the end) of the playable world, you get the feeling that there is so much more happening behind the scenes that you don’t really see. The sprites and areas are large and colorful, a plus in an off-kilter game like this one.

The only small complaint I had with “Out of Order” was the ending. I felt slightly unsatisfied by the way it ended, but it did make sense in the weird way the game worked.

happy.jpg “Out of Order” is a wonderful adventure game that will keep you occupied for quite awhile. And maybe make you laugh out loud. Maybe not.

“Out of Order” is a free download from Adventure Developers.

Pong reincarnated as a circle

October 22, 2006


The basic idea of Flashy is simple. You keep the green ball out of the circle in the middle of the screen using the paddle that looks suspiciously like a URL. Which it is. A URL, I mean.

It’s also a descendant of Pong. A great-grandchild of the black and white game that basically sparked the video gaming craze. Now with power-ups. That’s right. If the evil enemy ball hits a power up, something good happens.

There’s not much to say about this game except that it’s addictive in the way Pong was addictive. You’ll play it for awhile, and then decide you’d rather be serving food.

happy.jpg Simple games that involve protecting your territory never get old. Ever.

You can play Flashy for free. And as many times as you want, straight from