This past weekend, I traveled down to San Antonio, Texas for HorrorGeekLife to check out PAX South 2017. While there, I met with several independent game developers and publishers to get the scoop on awesome games that have recently launched, or will launch soon.
I’m going to cover the games I was able to get my hands on, as well as let you know where to find them!
Brawlhalla (Blue Mammoth Games)
About: Brawlhalla is a free-to-play platform fighter that allows up to 8 players online or locally. The game is currently available on Steam as an Early Access Game, which allows the developers to work with the community and patch any issues that comes up. Speaking of community, thanks to Brawlhalla’s circuit competitions and world championships, the game has a strong Competitive Community. Also, the devs guarantee that the game will remain free-to-play permanently.
Gameplay: My first time around, I went in blind and did the good ol’ button smashing method until it was all over. I stepped back and watched other players, hoping to gain some more insight, which did help. I went a lot further during my second game and really started to enjoy myself. The different game modes – offline, online, casual, competitive – will allow players to learn and play at their own pace. I would definitely recommend playing offline a few rounds so you get used to the quick gameplay. If you enjoy fighters such as Super Smash Bros., definitely don’t skip Brawlhalla.
Get It: As mentioned, Brawlhalla is available on Steam as a free Early Access Game. Click here to visit the Steam page.
Loot Rascals (Hollow Ponds)
About: Loot Rascals is a sci-fi adventure turn-based game that also incorporates a fun card element. You explore a planet on a surface made from hexagons and encounter different enemies, like monsters and aliens. When you defeat an enemy, they drop cards that help give you special abilities. The enemies can also loot players as well, which removes a card and makes it available for another player. The choice is given to use or send back. If used, a hologram version of the player who lost the card shows up in the game and tries to murder the person who used it. If it’s sent back, the hologram can help. This should be a required game for every couple who are thinking about marriage…
Gameplay: The things that drew me into this game instantly were the bright colors, art style and humor. Loot Rascals may be adorable and bright, but that doesn’t mean it’ll be easy. In fact, we had fun laughing in the booth when I died miserably my first round. I’m noticing a trend with my gameplay here…moving on. The cards were a great addition because it forces you to be more strategic when it comes to battles. It’s also fun and rewarding to collect. I wasn’t able to experience getting looted and killed via hologram, but I’m definitely going to play the game on my own so that I can.
Get It: Loot Rascals isn’t fully finished and will be released in early 2017 on Playstation 4 and Steam. However, you can purchase a refinery edition, which will get you a Steam key when the final version is launched. Click here to visit the website.
The Long Journey Home (Daedalic Studio West/Daedalic Entertainment)
About: The Long Journey Home is a space exploration RPG game that is coming out this year. After you and your crew get stranded in space, you must explore worlds, find alien allies, search for resources, and fight to keep everyone alive. There are consequences to your actions and decisions, plus you’re able to chart your own course. This allows you to play The Long Journey how you want and helps ensure that you never play the game the same way twice.
Gameplay: As you can see in the screenshot above, The Long Journey Home is absolutely gorgeous. The controls while in space and when landing take a bit getting used to, but the game is smooth and I was appreciative of the hyperdrive capabilities since there is so much to explore. I enjoyed that it is an open game that allows me play my way, without letting me get too lost. If you’re a sci-fi and space exploration fan, with emphasis on games such as Starflight, I think you’ll really enjoy The Long Journey Home.
Holy Potatoes! We’re in Space?! (Daylight Studios/Daedalic Entertainment)
About: Holy Potatoes! We’re in Space?! is another space game also published by Daedalic Entertainment. As you can tell by the title and screenshot, Holy Potatoes! is much more silly and cartoony than The Long Journey Home. You manage your ship and hire on crew, which are all, of course, potatoes. Playing on the food character theme, you also encounter zucchinis, broccoli, and carrots. The puns and character names the writers came up with will have you giggling, guaranteed. In addition to tending to your ship, you’re able to explore planets, find resources, craft weapons, and go to battle.
Gameplay: Since I love cartoony management games that don’t lack substance, I was drawn into Holy Potatoes! We’re in Space?! right away. I always enjoy being able to craft and upgrade, so when I get the game, I have no doubt that I’ll take full advantage. In battle, I was able to move my shield to specific areas of my ship to reduce the incoming damage. There are also stats available that helped me decide the best place to aim and how to encounter. In addition, each planet I traveled to had a difficulty rating and let me know which resources are available. I had a lot of fun and actually got sucked right in during the demo. I was sad when this one ended.
Get It: The release date for Holy Potatoes! We’re in Space?! is February 14th. Click here to visit the Steam page.
Stay tuned as I bring you more coverage from games featured at PAX South 2017!