Welcome to a new weekly feature on MHG where we give you a round up of the Indies we’ve played and whether they deserve your attention.
Worldless is described as a 2D active turn-based platformer, set in a newly born universe. That on first viewing seems as confusing as it sounds. Yet after playing for a short amount of time, the mechanics meld together in a fascinating way that just works.
Platforming is incredibly fluid and there is a wonderful sense of discovery. The beautiful musical score and gorgeous visuals wrap you up in an enchanting world, which you will love to be part of. The narrative unfolds at an excellent pace and is rather engaging to boot.
Whilst I expected the 2D platforming and the turn-based combat to be at odds with each other, the opposite is true. It makes encounters have meaning, rather than just being quick disposable fodder. However, you do need to be comfortable with a parry system, as that feels like it holds the key to being successful.
That being said, Worldless really is a wonderful experience and whilst it won’t be to everyone’sd tastes, it is certainly a game that should given a chance, especially with a demo being available on the Steam Store.
Naheulbeuk’s Dungeon Master
I do love me a management/builder type game. From the likes of Theme Park and Two Point Hospital to Oxygen Not Included. There is something so satisfying when reaching those milestones wothin the game and Naheulbeuk’s Dungeon Master is no exception.
On the whole the game fuse traditional builder mechanics and humour really well to create a really enjoyable experience. Set in the years before the equally good Dungeon of Naheulbeuk, there is some light story here, but the focus is on building and expanding. The various characters to have some personality and life that keeps you engaged and there are some really cool little animations within the game.
For the most part I found myself having a great time, however I would argue that I found the controls a little fiddly when playing on the Steam Deck in a way I don’t have issues with in others games, such as the aforementioned Two Point Hospital or Campus.
It’s not that they are bad as such, but I needed to switch to playing on my bigger screen, so I could use mouse and keyboard instead. Which also solved an issue with a tiny UI. Something that I would like to seem improved in many games, so not something Naheulbeuk’s Dungeon Master is alone in.
It’s a shame because the building, laying out, managing, etc all works really well and is pretty intuitive. If you are on the lookout for a management/builder then Naheulbeuk’s Dungeon Master could well be worth a look.
I am a sucker for niche sports games, or at oleast something that isn’t one of football, basketball, hockey, etc. So a chance to play a sailing game based around actual racing events was right up my street, with Hydrofoil Generation.
It is however a bit of a mixed bag. The core mechanics are very good and there is a great sense of being on one of these ships and being on the edge of control. The feeling of inertia is fantastic and you can almost feel the wind and the water spray.
The issue with the game comes two-fold though. First up is the UI is too basic and not very user friendly, which is the same issue with the tutorials, which aren’t intuitive at all and took me a few too many attempts to grasp. It really needs something that is better at on-boarding the player.
The second main issue is the lack of content. At present, outside of the tutorials and just sailing on your own, the entire game is multiplayer only. There are no tournaments, championships or anything like that. So you are left with learning, then going up against real people.
It is one of those things that probably sounds brilliant in the pitch meeting, where everything is bluesky thinking, but in reality alientates a large potential market. Which is a shame, as I do like the look of the game, the actual act of sailing, but it needs offline content. Hopefully that comes with future updates.
What if chess but with a hint of Street Fighter? What if King of the Fighters with a hint of Magnus Carlsen? If you’ve ever had those age old questions swirling around your head then Checkmate Showdown has all the answers.
If I am being honest, I’m still lnot sure if the mashup actually works or not, but I am enjoying finding out. The premise is you play a regular game of chess, but instead of playing bishop to knight 2 and taking the piece, the piece will then battle it our in 2D 1v1 combat.
Yep that’s right. If your bishop tries to take the knight, the knight can save itself by winning a fight. Win the fight and survive another move. Lose, well then you lose the piece. It sounds silly and bizarre… and in truth is really is, but it sort of works and makes sense. Turning to tried and tested genres into something new, whilst keeping the elements that make both genres just work.
Checkmate Showdown is far from perfect, but when I look at the 5 different straight up chess titles and countless fighters, it gives a fun take on them that is just enjoyable to play and have fun with. It really shouldn’t work, but the quirky graphic style and the simple to understand crossover all combine well to make this a solid addition to any library.
Just remember that you can’t roundhouse kick Garry Kasparov if he checkmates you in 5 moves!