Saturday, September 30, 2006

Panic! Coin-op arcade style shooter

Got yourself too lazy and need a game to waste your time? Panic is what you're looking for. With it's simple coin-op arcade style, it's a good way to have some fun. The game's idea is very close to Astro-Panic, a game released for Commodore 64 back in 1984.
Your objective is to shoot down all the flying saucers in the screen before one of them hits your space ship. For every wave of saucers you clear, another saucer is added on the next level, faster and though harder to eliminate. The higher you hit a saucer and the faster it is, the more points you get. Panic features a highscore list also, a fact that could make you go for another game after you loose.
The game's visuals are following the arcade theme, so everything you see is made of back, grey and white lines, spiced up with red coloured particle effects to animate the destruction of a saucer. Background music is in the same style and so are the sound effects. Plain sounds combined, bringing a good result in sum. An option to disable music could be useful though, in case the player is bored to hear the same track repeatedly. There's an option to disable sound completely, but this way you will not hear the sound effects.
Panic has pretty easy gameplay and you'll get in the mood as soon as you start playing. To move around use your mouse. Click the left mouse button to shoot. And that's all.
A good game coming from Coin-Op Interactive, created by Sander van der Vegte.
Link: Panic!
Historical information: Astro-Panic 1984 review page A and page B.

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Sunday, September 24, 2006

What's wrong with my feed?

It started yesterday, and continues until now.. I don't know what's the reason, but from yesterday the blog's feed is down. If you try to visit my Atom feed on your browser you'll get an error page containing the text "Invalid request URI". And my Feedburner version shows up an error page saying that my feed is making a "clunking" sound. That's normal of course, if we consider that Feedburner generates the burned version from blogger's original Atom feed.
I've searched Blogger Help to see if I can find a workaround to the problem, with no results. So I sended them an email and now wait patiently.. :(
If you had or are having the same problem, I'd like to hear from you. Especially if you know how to fix it ;)


Saturday, September 23, 2006

Zwok - Multiplayer madness!

Have you ever played Worms? The funny turn-based game where you control a group of worms armed with crazy fire-power and battle against another group of worms? Well, Zwok is very similar to it. Except that you don't control worms but only one funny guy, you don't have so many weapons to choose from and you can only play in multiplayer. The game has two teams, the Blooz and the Grienz. When you enter the game for the first time, you can easily create a new account for free, customize your character appearance and join one of the game's teams.
And then the action begins! You are randomly placed in a game with two members of your team and battle against three opponents of the other team. Gameplay is very simple: On each round you have ten seconds to move, choose your weapon, aim and fire. To move use the left and right arrow keys of your keyboard. Everything else is done with your mouse. The team that takes out every member of the opposite team wins. Zwok also features a ranking system where your rank is determined by the points you score during the games and by your shot accuracy.
Go ahead and try it out, it's totally enjoying! If you're bored to create an account, you can choose the available "I'm Lazy" option to check if you like it or not.
Link: Zwok game.

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Friday, September 22, 2006

Final Fortress - Flash Strategy

Final Fortress is a "defend your base" flash strategy and shooting game. Like in most of games of this style you control a cannon and have the option to buy various upgrades and weapons to enhance your base's defence against the waves of enemy troops coming to take you down. At the end of each level, you are awarded with money depending on the results of your defending and shooting accuracy. You can spend the money to upgrade your base and repair your units. This is the strategic part of the game. If you want to survive you have to deploy new units in the right place and the same time save money for repairing them.
The visuals are good, with nice sprites used for the units, realistic images for the battle field and cool explosion animations. The sound is good also, every event of the game is accompanied by a proper sound effect and there's battly music in the title screen to get you in to the mood.
If you like this kind of games you'll enjoy playing Final Fortress and probably will finish the demo levels, but I personally wouldn't spend 14.95$ to buy the full version.
Click the image above to play the game in it's own window. If you're reading this post through an aggregator this will not work.
External link: Final Fortress

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Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Samorost 1&2 - Weird Adventure games

Samorost is a point and click adventure game with the story going on at a strange meteor-sized planet. You control a funny guy who's the habitant of this tiny planet and help him to get past his troubles. The game in overall is very clever, demanding from the player to solve various riddles. You cannot distinguish those riddles for their complexity or difficulty, but you can certainly do for the smart way they affect the story's progress.
The game's graphics consist of very good looking artwork spiced up with fine animation. I really like the extraordinary theme used to compose the game's world. And there's cool background music helping you to get in Samorost's atmosphere. Of course, the game is armed with the necessary sound effects to accompany every event.
Everything in the game is done by pointing your mouse clicking over the items on the screen. That's why it's called "point and click". So, to progress you'll have to find where to click next in order to activate the next event in the story. Some times you'll have to click at certain time periods or in synchronisation with other events. Experiment a bit and you'll find the way.
First I found and played Samorost 2, after finishing it I wanted more so I tried the original. Both of them are pretty cool, but the second one is a demo version where you can only complete the first chapter of the game's two in total.
Samorost 2
Game created by Amanita Design.


Sunday, September 17, 2006

Tontie ver.1 - Crazy "Hit the Mole" game

Tontie is a game coming from Eyezmaze, a talented Japanese game designer who has created a series of beautiful games like GROW and Vanilla. Check his site and you'll understand what I'm talking about. All of his games have a special Japanese style, from graphics to level up features.
This one, named Tontie, is in the style of those "Hit the Mole" games. But, while the majority of those games are mouse controlled, Tontie utilizes your numeric keyboard to achieve the same goal. All of the game's controls are done using the numpad and you'll realize that as soon as you start the game.
Eyezmaze injected his level-up system in Tontie by using coins. When you hit one of those "moles" sometimes they'll leave a coin or more behind them. Hit the coins to collect them. When you have enough, hit the store(witch appears in the same way the "moles" do) and a menu will become available for you to spend your coins. You can by health, new hammers and power-ups to make your life easier.
I really liked playing this game because of the variety of "moles", the previous mentioned level-up system, the funny in game music and sound effects and it's fast gameplay. In total, the game can stand as a complete flash game and I believe it worth a try. Possibly you'll get addicted for a while.
Here's the original page. Click the image above to play Tontie in it's own window.


Saturday, September 16, 2006

Sycolux - Innovative block clustering game

Block clustering games are very popular and fun to play, with the category counting numerous titles. Bright examples are Tetris and Puzzle Bobble(or Bust-a-Move). In this kind of games the player's target is to cluster blocks of the same color, or create lines of blocks or various other combinations in order to clear the games panel. New blocks are falling from the panel's top and the game continues until the panel fills with blocks. There's no more space left so the player looses.
The innovation in Sycolux is that the panel will randomly spin and flip, or even zoom in or out. This makes the game more challenging, because the player have to focus on the new state of the panel each time flipping occurs. Another feature of the game is it's splitted game panel, with blocks coming from each side and the ability to transfer a block between them. And there's a Laser Gun mode where instead of clustering the blocks, you simply shoot them. This mode is unlocked if you manage to cluster three "special" blocks of the same color.
The game's graphics are alright, but the sprites have a blurry look and could be better. At sound level the game performs pretty good, having clear sound effects and cool background music.
Here's the link: Sycolux @


Friday, September 15, 2006

Smashing - Arkanoid Flash Variant

Arkanoid is an arcade game with a great history and since it's first release at 1986 by Taito, it was ported on many platforms, including gaming consoles and personal computers. A lot of other games are inspired by Arkanoid and Smashing is another one. Of course Smashing is not the first flash game based on Arkanoid's idea. I've seen other games in the same style and I believe this is the best.
The game's rules are as follows: You have to break all the bricks on each level to move on to the next one. To do so, target the little ball on them by using the pad at the bottom of the screen, witch is under your control to move sideways. If you miss to bounce the ball on the pad, the ball will get out of the game's screen and you'll loose a pad. When you run out of pads, it's game over.
Various power ups are hidden inside the bricks and when the ball hits them, you can pick them up and make your task easier. Beware though, because some of them are not power ups and have negative effects, like reducing the pad's length.
To conclude, this game is a good variant of Arkanoid but I believe it could be better. Sometimes you can't predict the ball's direction after it bounces on the pad. In other games the ball's direction depends on the point of the pad it bounces on. That's an issue reducing the game's overall gameplay value.
To try it out yourself, click the image above(game will open in it's own window) or follow this link to Totebo Online Games. To learn more about Arkanoid's history, you can read this article from Wikipedia.


Thursday, September 14, 2006

Lost Picture by Tonypa

To continue on games following a simplistic design, today I post about Lost Picture. It's a puzzle game coming from Tonypa, an inspired games designer having a pack of quality games in his portfolio, all being very simple in both graphical and sound related aspects.
In Lost Picture your target is to reveal the hidden line-drawn picture, using a sonar scan mechanism. Using the mouse, you send sound waves in vertical and horizontal directions scanning the game screen for the connection points between the lines that shape the lost picture. The closer you get to those points, the brighter red circles will appear on the screen to indicate it.
Play around a bit and you'll understand it, personal experience is better than reading plain text ;)
Note: Once you click the game link, you'll land on the homepage of Tonypa. All games are listed there in a strange way. Highlight LOSTPICTURE and click it.


Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Drag The Dot - Don't touch anything!

Use your mouse to drag the dot from the starting point to the exit. Be cautious though, if you touch anything in your way, you'll have to start over. The obstacles consist of boxes and lines, usually moving around, rotating, varying scale and in some cases are invisible when the mouse cursor is not hovered around them. In later levels you'll have to use one-way portals to get to the level's exit.
This game is based on a very simple idea, yet it's so enjoying to play. It's a proof of the fact that a game doesn't have to be fancy in order to be good.
Check it out yourself here: Drag the dot. Or click the image to play the game in it's own window.


Sunday, September 10, 2006

Trials Mountain Heights

Even though this game is featured on for a long time and I run on it about a year ago, I believe it's worth posting. It's a Java based trials bike simulator and if you like this kind of motor sports you'll be excited playing it. Your task is to get through the levels as fast as you can without falling. So it's about maintaining your balance while passing of the obstacles in your way. To do so, lean the rider's body to the front or to the back to change the center of gravity of the bike and the rider. Enough with physics, you'll get the point when you start playing :)
The game's graphics are pretty good, even in this reduced-resolution online version. At sound level, you'll hear realistic sound effects but no in-game music. The game's best part is it's awesome physics model, witch makes it so fun to play. Nice work by the programmers.
This is a demo online version and it's a pity that you can only play 2 levels. The full version features 12 levels and full screen support with high resolution graphics. You have two options if you want to play the full version. Either buy the game, or search the web and download it for free, if you understand what I mean.. Probably somebody else have uploaded the game somewhere(Rapidshare, ghouh ghouh!). Of course if you like it you have to support it's creators and pay for their efforts.
Controls: up arrow key to accelerate, down arrow key to brake, left arrow key to lean backwards and right arrow key to lean forward.
The game is hosted at miniclip, click here to play it on the original page. If you don't have Java installed on your machine, follow the link on the sidebar to download and install the latest version.

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Friday, September 08, 2006

Classic Snake remix in flash

Remember playing the classic snake game on your Nokia? Or, your friend's Nokia, or any of those variants spread around the world. Well, this one is far beyond of it's old fellow. It's packed with a lot of features, like choosing your snake's skin from a collection counting 90 skins in total and an option to change the skin randomly each time you start a level.
Another major feature is the way you control the snake and the snake's movement in general. Block by block movement is replaced by free 360 degrees movement, with the snake following your cursor.
Good graphics with lively colors, nice in-game music witch can be deactivated if you're bored hearing, cool levels and save/load option if you want to quit and continue later. A pause option could be useful though... Time to get addicted again!
Click the image above to start the game in it's own window, or go here to play in the original page.


Thursday, September 07, 2006

Soap Bubble - Help the bubble escape

Take the role of a little soap bubble that was playing peacefully with it's friends and got in trouble driven by it's curiosity. A hole behind a bush is where it all started: The bubble wanted to know what's inside and got trapped inside a strange tunnel. As the bubble, you have to guide yourself through the tunnel, hoping there's a way out at the end..
The game is pretty good, well coded and addictive. The graphics are very simple, but someone have to be enough talented to make a picture look so cool as this game's designer did. And there's an atmospheric background sound to enforce your feeling of being in a wet dark tunnel, along with various other sound effects.
To control the bubble use your keyboard's arrow keys. Even though the game is not very hard, you'll have to practice and get comfortable with the bubble's movement if you want to finish the game. Every time you pass a level a password will be shown so you can continue the game from this level is you loose. The problem is that the password is shown for a small period of time, so pause the game and note it somewhere before you forget it :)
The game is coming from Anders Gustafsson. Check out Strumaland, where he hosts his other creations.


Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Traffic Jammer JX - Cool Java Puzzle Game

This is the first time I write about a Java based game and the reason is that Flash and Shockwave games available online are numerous and better in quality than their competitors made in Java. So it's easier to find a good game written using one of Adobe's(and former Macromedia's) platforms. Today I decided to give Java a try and see if I can find something.
And so I found Traffic Jammer JX, witch is a well made Java Applet. It's a puzzle game and the story is about traffic control. Different coloured cars get on the road and have to be routed to the appropriate exit locations. To achieve this, coloured arrows are at your disposal to be placed on the cross roads and junctions.
The levels are of variable difficulty, starting from totally easy to get to very very hard ones that demand a lot of brain-squishing to solve. By the way, after you spend a minute on a level, a hint button is activated at the bottom toolbar. You can click that button to get some help.
The game's graphics are moderate for a game of this type. Nicely coloured objects with funny shapes and that's all. At the sound level things are very simplistic again, with no in-game music at all and a few sound effects that are disabled by default. To enable them, click the mute-unmute button located at the bottom right corner of the game screen.
Try playing the tutorial levels first, they will help get started.
To play it is required to have installed the Java Runtime Environment. Follow the link on the sidebar to get the latest release from Sun Microsystems.
The applet is coming from Crystal Squid.


Monday, September 04, 2006

Domino Pressure

When I was a child, dominoes was one of my favorite games. Playing with my friends or stand them on edge in long lines, then topple the first and watch them fall serially.
This game is about the second use of dominoes mentioned above. The bones are on place and you have to find witch one to topple first in order to make all others fall. The last one will squash the tomato and the stage will end. If you click the right one additional time will be awarded, else you'll loose as many seconds as the sum of remaining bones.
Some stages are very hard to beat, especially when you're running out of time. For those stages you have three tomatoes(at the bottom right of the game screen) that can be used to instantly pass the stage.
A very addictive and challenging game, coming from Gamedesign.
The game's original page: Domino Pressure.
Information about dominoes on wikipedia.

Find Mulch - Match the pairs

Bored of playing concentration games that require you to find differences in pictures and want to try something else? Then this is for you. Try to identify those dwarfs by their noise. Your target is to find Mulch, a criminal dwarf. The problem is that all dwarfs look the same and the only way to go over this is the so-called "Gas Test". Every dwarf in front of you has an identical one that makes the same noise when you click his nose. Except of Mulch.
Take everybody else away and you win. Before you start I have to warn you: There's a lot of farting and burping separating you and Mulch!
Note: the game features a funny option with the name "Gas Bomb". Set the timer, turn on your speakers, and have fun amusing your friends or co-workers!
The original page is located here: Find Mulch.