This week is all about a couple of games that a the quintessential pick up and play types. One is a tower defence with a twist and the other a turn-based strategy roguelike with a literal spin! So without furter ado…


It’s Tetris Jim, but not as we know it! Well… it’s not even close to Tetris, but it does have Tetrominos, which immediately gets my attention. Emberward is in fact a pure tower defence game, that mixes in some interesting mechanics.

You get all the usual things, enemies coming to attack a core that needs defending, various towers and turrets to blast the minions away, set paths they walk, etc, etc. All pretty standard fare. However Emberward adds in a maze building mechanic that gives a real fresh take on the genre.

You will get a deck of cards, which are drawn between rounds for you to choose from. Each card has a shape on it, that can be laid on the map to create a new path for enemies to follow. You combine this with the various weapons to create a path of pure destruction!

Whiolst the concept is simple and the onboarding is just sublime, it does remp up the difficulty, which encourages you to experiment with various layouts and combinations. You are rewarded after each round, can do numerous upgrades and more to aid each run.

I found myself getting utterly enthralled by Emberward as it nails that feeling of making you feel challenged, but also rewarded. Hitting all the right dopamine spots and keeping me coming back for more. The game is in Early Access and I will do my usual and take a step back now until a full release of major update, but this is one well worth checking out, even at this stage.


Right, I’ve looked out the window. It is July in the UK and the rain is coming down HARD! So snuggle up on the sofa, use that money you was going to spend on a Costa or Starbucks (Other brands are available) and instead pick up the wonderful Guncho.

Now Guncho is a game that is harder to explain than it is to play, but I’ll do my best. You are a cowboy, who alone must take down the various bandits in turn-based combat. Which in and of itself seems pretty standard right?

Well all you are armed with a six-shooter, which can only fire in the direction the bullets are loaded. Which also moves one space in either direction with each move made. So you need to plan how to move, who to shoot and when to reload.

Honestly the first minute I was all confuddled. But almost instantly after it just made sense and the game more about careful planning and learning how to use the environment to my advantage. Moving instead of shooting, so bandits shoot each other. Making a Ram run into an exploding barrel, and so on.

There are also various upgrades you can earn after each completed level. These can give you some extra abilities, or improve the bullets you have. So for example cause ricochets that can damage two bandits offset from each other.

The hexagonal playfield matches the barrel of your weapon well, so you can easily work out who is in range, where to move to and get the most effective shot off next round, etc. Each run finishes with a boss, which starts off easy to beat, but there are harder runs possible and leaderboards tr encourage further plays.

For the price, it is a great package. My only disappointment is that I want more, more levels, more variations, more scenarios, more locations, just more. I hope this is a success and a sequel can bring extra to the table.

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