Tacoma - Game View

Tacoma finally came out today.
I actually had the chance to help beta test this game a few weeks ago

Let me just say this. I loved Tacoma.

There will inevitably be some comparisons to Fullbright's 2013 game, Gone Home. However, where I felt Gone Home was missing 'something' to really bring it together, Tacoma feels like a complete experience.

Tacoma basically requires you to walk around this abandoned space station after a tragedy has occurred, and you see various scenes of what happened to the crew. This is shown through a rather brilliant "Augmented Reality" overlay, where you can pause, rewind, and walk around and through the scenes as you're watching them.
What I really found most brilliant, is that characters can and will walk around and even go away from each other. So you would end up rewinding a scene to follow a specific character, to see where they go, or even to see where they were coming from. This would be required a few times to access specific rooms.

Everything will basically push you in a firm direction in the story, and you are not affecting it. Everything you see has already happened.
However, with the way you follow the scenes, you get to see more information about each character, and you come to empathize with each unique person. I am trying hard to not give away anything, but I will say that I was totally surprised by the ending, and it had me experiencing several emotions in rapid succession.

Once you really feel like you're getting into it, it comes to an end. I wish there were more to explore. I also wish that there were more interaction involved. Perhaps more puzzles where paying attention to different elements of the AR playback would be required to access other areas, or find other secrets/lore.

That being said, I still ended up feeling very satisfied when I finished.
If you like games like Gone Home or Her Story, then you'll love this game.
If you want to just relax and get lost in a story for a few hours, then give this a try.

I think Fullbright has a real winner on their hands with Tacoma. I just wish it would last a bit longer.

Yonder - Game View

Yonder came to me as quite the surprise. I hadn’t seen or heard anything about the game, until basically the day before it came out.
I’m glad that I did find out about it though.
It’s SUCH a cute game. Everything about it is just cute.
You’re in an open world, and can complete various quests at your own pace. Or just ignore them and do gathering, crafting, farming.

But there’s just so many little things that I see, and I’m like “OMG.”

Like when you jump off of a high ledge, after you fall for a short bit, your character opens up an umbrella and gently floats the rest of the way down.
(And SPOILER: if you do that from a sufficiently high ledge, you earn a Steam achievement titled “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”, which is of course a reference to Mary Poppins, and her floating down via umbrella.)

And various craft leaders will speak in very corny puns. Such as the woodsman crafter will say something like “Usually I wood axe you to join the guild”, and that just totally caught me off guard, and I laughed for a long time.

The game is scattered with little cute things like that.

I spent about 12 hours playing the game so far, before I reached the credits. That included a fair amount of side quests. And I still have more side quests to complete.
But the ending.. left me feeling rather empty. Like, suddenly you look at something, and then it cuts to credits. And there’s no music or anything over the credits. It feels hollow.
After the ending, you’re back to where you were at the end, and can continue on as if nothing happened. So you can go back to doing whatever side quests, or unlock secrets, or just play with the farming and crafting mechanics.

All-in-all, I liked the game, and the developers are very active in their Discussion forum, and have released several updates to the game to fix various issues, and adjust different balancing complaints. They have also promised further content updates as well.
So this is definitely a game to check out and keep an eye on!

The Sexy Brutale - Game View

Yesterday, I lost track of time, because practically all day I was playing this game.
I really like this game! Everything just works well together.
Your goal is to prevent the murder of various guests of this mansion.
Everyone dies during the same day, but you have the ability to start the day over whenever you want.
This lets you take the time to watch and see where people are going throughout the day. (And your map will keep track of what you've seen, you can always see where you've seen someone, at what time.)
As you prevent the murder of someone, you gain the power of their mask, and gain access to a new area of the mansion.
So as you progress, you've got more areas available to you, and you see where people you've already seen have crossed paths of other people you're trying to see.

It really strikes me as clever how the developers were able to make it so intuitive how to follow a character. And there's not really any penalty for rewinding a day, so you are able to basically take all the time you need to watch everyone, and carefully plan things.
Even though the end solution tends to be something relatively simple, it still gives me a sense of satisfaction to successfully solve each puzzle.

So yeah, I'm really satisfied with this game.
Here's the game page on Steam: The Sexy Brutale