Best Undownloadable Games for under $20

December 20, 2006

Beyond Good and EvilChristmas is on Monday. Today’s your LAST chance to get anything by Dec. 22 if you order from Amazon. So get your last minute on-line shopping done and over with. Here’s my suggestion of fun, yet amazingly cheap, games playable on any home or handheld console. (In no particular order, might I add).

Escape from Monkey Island — Windows ($19 from Amazon Sellers)

This jewel case version for Windows (it works on XP, if anyone’s wondering, although it’s made for older versions) is a little wonky with the controls, but still has that genuine Monkey Island humor to it. You play as Guybrush Threepwood (Mighty Pirate) as he wanders (erm… sails) through the Caribbean trying to bring his wife back from being legally declared dead. And other mishaps leads him back to that place he was before: Monkey Island. Fun all around.

Sidenote: Okay, fanboys, eat me up now, since I know you think this is the worst of the Monkey Island series. Read the rest of this entry »


Puzzle game turns your time into gold (I think)

October 17, 2006

talismania1.jpgTalismania Deluxe 1.0 (that’s the whole, mouthful of a name) is one of those downloadable puzzle games most subscription game services offer. Unlike its puzzle-game counterparts, Talismania presents a quirky storyline with a thoroughly enjoyable gameplay.

You take the role of King Midas, the man whose touch turned everything to gold. Unfortunately, this time, he made quite a mistake: he turned his daughter into a gold statue. Now, he needs to do charitable deeds around the (Greek) neighborhood in order to restore his daughter to perfect health. You need to raise coins to build such monuments as the walls of Troy and the Temple at Delphi.

All you need to do is connect pathways between various animals made of precious metals. Okay, you’re probatalismania2.jpgbly thinking I could do a better job of explaining myself. I probably could, but that would involve a lot of convoluted writing. Looking at the picture on the left will probably be easier. You have to connect the like talismans together. Unlike other games, this game does not reward speed so much as your ability to make the longest possible trail between talismans (men?). Some talismen cause problems (the Medusa turns your paths into stone), and some reward you with extra coins.

happy.jpgAll in all, Talismania is a great puzzle game. It’s simple, so there’s not much more to say about it.

Talismania can be downloaded from many subscription games sites. I downloaded it from Shockwave Unlimited.

Not so “Delicious”

October 10, 2006

delicious.jpgDelicious is a game about serving food. For those of you privy to such games as Diner Dash and Cake Mania, you can somewhat garner an idea of what it’s about. You play a girl named Emily (I’m quite sure that’s her name; you don’t really get an idea of her character throughout the game so she could be named Restaurant Master for all I care) who has dreamed of owning a restaurant. Perhaps the only reason I know this is because the first restaurant is called “Emily’s Dream.”

Okay, so games that you download off Shockwave Unlimited or Yahoo! Games aren’t necessarily the best at setting up a premise. What you go download a game for (and the reason you pay $8/month for RealArcade) is to have fun and indulge in original gameplay.

So, here’s the gameplay. Each level looks nearly identical to the one before. You have a counter space where various foods can be prepared (milkshakes, cookies, salads, bagel sandwiches, etc.) and where your customers can pay for their meal. There are also tables in the restaurants where customers can sit if they don’t want to walk to the counter to order. That’s when you have to become super waitress and serve the sitting customers, too.

Sound complicated? It’s not. I found myself falling asleep during some levels. The game practically cdeliciousangry.jpgrawls until the middle of a shift when everyone decides to order at the same time; and even that doesn’t happen until about the fourth restaurant. You can even manage to win a level with a few red-faced customers storming out. On the other hand, you could play a level perfectly and not reach the goal points.

Even worse (or perhaps, this is a blessing), the game is short. There are only seven restaurants with five levels each — a grand total of 35 levels that all look the same. You don’t even have a real indication of the fact that the game will end. It just ends and tells you to go play its equivalent of Endless Mode.

sad.jpgThe verdict? It’s fun for an hour or so, but then there’s nothing left. This game has no replay value. It could have been a great game. Instead, it became a repetitive mush.

Delicious can be downloaded from Yahoo! Games and RealArcade. RealArcade has a game subscription service that allows you to download one free game a month for around $8 a month. Then they allow you to take $5 off the base price of any game. You should not pay the $20 price tag for Delicious. Either take advantage of RealArcade’s free download or download the free one-hour trial from .