Lovely Planet the unsuspecting brutal shooter for Linux, Mac and Windows PC

Lovely Planet the unsuspecting brutal fps for linux mac and windows pc

Lovely Planet is a little game for your Linux, Mac or Windows PC box that distils the essentials of the first-person shooter #genre down to the basics: shoot, jump, run.

You will do this, over and over, across five distinct worlds and hundreds of levels armed with nothing more than your adorable little bow and arrow and a sense of adventure.

Be warned, though — you are going to die repeatedly, especially at first, because while the visuals and soundtrack are kawaii as heck, the levels are designed as diabolical tests of your gaming sanity. Maybe take a break.
It is not all distilled run, jump, shoot, though those are the main assets of the game experience.

There’s definitely an influence of bullet-hell shooters, where you need to avoid the bullets being (in this case) spit at you by the baddies, all of whom look like angry shapes. The music and visuals call to mind the adorable Japanese-style hit Katamari Damacy. There’s some platforming, as well, though the platforms all seem to disappear soon after you land on them, hence the cursing.

When you’re hit by an enemy bullet, fall off a ledge, or sizzle to death on one of the red rocks, you’ll start back at the beginning of the level. After I reached my own frustration tolerance around level three, I handed off the Macbook to my daughter, who whizzed her way through several more crazy-hard levels before giving up herself.

While this may sound a bit much, the levels are designed for repeated runs, with a ton of trial and error. I’m sure there will be hordes of YouTube videos showing talented 11-year-olds earning three-star ratings with record speed run times.

While the visual style and brutal difficulty may not be for everyone, this game has a certain something that will truly encourage you to continue well past your frustration level. Each death feels fair, if annoyingly stupid, and there’s a specific joy to be had in mastering a particularly tricky level.

Lovely Planet was developed by Vidhvat Madan from @quicktequila, produced by Luke Burtis and Alex Nichiporchik from @tinyBuild and scored by @CalumBowen.

Currently available via Steam right now for Mac, Linux, and PC, for a measly $5.09 USD (it’s on a 15 percent sale from the original $5.99).

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The players moral test of Gods Will Be Watching

The players moral test of Gods Will Be Watching

My team is on the brink of madness; starving, stranded, and beset by a paralytic contagion. Our only hope of #survival is to repair a radio and signal for #rescue, but our engineer is overworked and underfed. He’ll surely give up hope and abandon camp tonight if he does not get a hot meal, but we’re out of food, out of ammunition to hunt, and the sun is setting fast. I could send the dog to hunt, but that’s a risky move: If he comes back empty-pawed, the lot of us have no chance at survival.

Or I could kill the soldier. We’re out of ammunition, so he’s useless to the team now. With one less mouth to feed, the meat from his bones would sustain us for at least another four days. Maybe long enough to repair the radio. Maybe long enough to survive.

This is what runs through your head in Gods Will Be Watching, a “point-and-click adventure-thriller” created by Jordi de Paco and Deconstructeam. Originally developed during the Ludum Dare 26 game jam, the game has been fleshed out into a full retail release, now available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Moral dilemmas are not a new concept to games. Players are constantly faced with making decisions, and many games attempt to give those choices meaning by weighting them with heavy moral consequences. Is one man’s life worth the cost of saving hundreds? How about six? What about just your own?

But despite the heavy consequences designers hope their games convey, too often these dilemmas fail to really have any effect. Usually they end up as a 50-50 choice that’s ultimately inconsequential. I often have more difficulty choosing between two mutually exclusive power-ups than I do deciding whether or not to detonate the Megaton nuke in Fallout.

Gods Will Be Watching is not that kind of game. You have limited time, limited resources, and the odds are stacked heavily against you. The only way to win is by making terrible, impossible decisions, to do what must be done in order to survive.

Strangely enough, Gods Will Be Watching was never intended to be a torturous moral struggle. It was originally a point-and-click adventure game where you had to manage various things to keep people alive. That it ended up being a harrowing, bleak experience was mostly accident.

For the retail release of Gods Will Be Watching, de Paco and his team drew inspiration from the game itself, watching people play through the original game jam version to learn what their game was capable of doing—and making people do.

The players moral test of Gods Will Be Watching

“One of the main handicaps we want is not just the challenge of the game itself—the mathematical challenge of solving the situation—but your own feelings,” de Paco says . “It’s about making the player handicap himself—the fact that having feelings makes the situation more difficult. That’s one of our main objectives.”

In this regard, Gods Will Be Watching definitely succeeds. It is punishingly difficult. I never once was able to complete the original version’s survival marathon, and the expanded game presents a series of scenarios that again have you juggling multiple criteria in the face of impossible odds.

The opening scene sees me hacking a computer terminal, keeping network security active, managing hostage sanity levels (too stressed and they’ll run, too calm and they’ll revolt), alternating security feeds to monitor multiple locations, and negotiating with (or firing at) enemy forces to prevent them advancing.

All these things have converse effects upon each other, naturally. Shooting at the enemy pushes them back a tad, but raises the hostages’ stress levels considerably, for example.

“I didn’t want to force the player to face moral dilemmas,” de Paco said. “I wanted the dilemmas to emerge as the player made decisions.” It’s possible to make it through the whole game without killing anyone, he says: “If you had to make any hard decisions, it was your fault.”

But the problem with Gods Will Be Watching is that it’s too difficult, or maybe too long. The game is designed so you fail often. In your failure, you learn what went wrong and identify a way to cut corners the next time through. Running out of food? Four mouths are easier to feed than five, why not just kill Jack as soon as the game begins? This worked in the original version, because it only took five or ten minutes, sometimes even less, to completely go from start to failure.

But in the full version, each level can take upwards of 30 or 45 minutes, sometimes with failure only happening if you run out of time. In other words, the reset-try again time loop is considerably longer, meaning that when I inevitably do fail, I’m sent back so far it discourages me from even wanting to try again.

The game Super Meat Boy is also punishingly difficult, but you respawn instantly just a few steps prior to where you ate it. Now imagine if it made you replay 30 minutes’ worth of progress every time you died.

But then, maybe a person is just not being ruthless enough. Maybe sacrifice soldiers for the greater good (that is, one’s own survival) right off the bat. Play Gods Will Be Watching with a shred of morality, care about the decisions made, but its difficulty makes a person more angry at the game itself than upset about the choices made.

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Kickstarter campaign underway for Gryphon Knight Epic for Linux, Mac and Windows PC

Gryphon Knight Epic is a 2D Medieval Shoot’em up currently in #development for Linux, Mac and Windows PC. It tells the story of Sir Oliver and Áquila, an accomplished knight and his loyal #gryphon that are forced back to adventure once again. The gameplay has a blend of classic shoot’em ups, exploration and, mainly, unique duels against bosses.

After five years of hopping between projects that were either too big in scope, did not have proper funding, or lacked commitment from a others on the team. Game designer Sandro Tomasetti finally found Daniel and Joe, the core of the Gryphon Knight Epic team Cyber Rhino Studios. Being the smart fellows that they are, they set off to create a game that they could realistically finish — nothing too crazy-huge — and set off to create a shmup, Kickstarter campaign. They swapped out the genre’s usual spaceships or planes for a knight… riding a gryphon. They drew inspiration from MegaMan’s boss battles, peppered in a good bit of exploration and four months later, they quit their day jobs to focus 100% on the game. It’s now about four months after that, and you have the game you see now.


  • Fight your way through 6 (or more) hand-crafted levels, with multiple paths and 2 bosses each!
  • You will be able to traverse the stage back and forward, up and down.
  • Fight with two kinds of bosses:
    • Huge Bosses: Inspired in classic shmup bosses, they don’t move a lot but will swarm the screen with attacks and bullets! Duel with challenging bosses and get their weapons.
    • Duel-like bosses: The main bosses of the stage, smaller but still deadly. As yourself, these bosses have a mount and a special weapon, which will be yours once you defeat its owner!
  • Explore the stages to find equipment for your character and bits of ancient lore of the world
  • Enjoy challenging gameplay, pixel art graphics and 16-bit sound, just like old times
  • Includes Story, Retro & Boss Battle Modes
  • Linux, Mac, & Windows PC versions with Gamepad support

The Story

“The princess of the realm has been kidnapped, a party of heroes is formed and sent on a quest to find and slay the evil Dragon who holds her.

Months of campaigning passed and finally they find the Dragon`s hideout and promptly begin the confrontation. After an epic battle the leader of the party, Sir Oliver, strikes the dragon with the finishing blow. With the beast dead, he approaches the princess and extends his hand to the imprisoned girl. She takes his hand and instantly falls in love with her hero.

Kickstarter for Gryphon Knight Epic for Linux, Mac and Windows PC

The other party members seeing his friend in such a lovely situation loot the room and share the dragon’s hoard. Among all the treasure, they find weapons and an amulet with ancient runic marks from ancient times. Each of them takes a weapon and they leave the amulet to the knight.

The Knight puts his newfound amulet around his neck and takes the princess in his arms to bring her home. When they reach the castle the heroes are handsomely rewarded and the knight takes the princess as his bride. They live happily ever after…


Sir Oliver has already defeated a dragon, married a princess and saved the kingdom. But during his quest he will face adversaries he never imagined he would, because… in reality all of them were once friends. What happened? These heroes would never go rogue… and all at once? Something is rotten in the kingdom and its up to Oliver to discover what.
We have one boss to show now…and we will reveal others during the campaign!

Gryphon Knight Epic now steam greenlight

Gryphon Knight Epic kickstarter screenshot1

Gryphon Knight Epic kickstarter screenshot2

Gryphon Knight Epic kickstarter screenshot3


Crypt of the NecroDancer rhythm-based roguelike launches on Early Access

Award-winning #rhythmbased roguelike Crypt of the NecroDancer has just launched on PC, Mac and #Linux via Steam Early Access, where it’s going for$14.99 / £10.99 .The delightfully titled game tasks players with dungeon crawling through a proceedurally-generated environment where they can only exert actions in response to the beat. As such, it’s turn-based, but your turns last less than a second. Think Beat Sneak Bandit if it were a roguelike rather than a stealthy puzzler.

Developer Brace Yourself Games‘ peculiar genre mashup can be played with conventional controls, like a gamepad or mouse & keyboard combination, but its grid-based movement system is designed to work with a USB dance pad ala DDR. It even has a co-op mode if you wish to play it by dancing with a friend.

Another cool feature in NecroDancer is that it lets you upload your own MP3s to dungeon crawl to. Though the default music is by Super Meat Boy composer Danny Baranowsky, so there’s no shame in sticking with that.

Crypt of the NecroDancer was an Independent Games Festival 2014 finalist in both best design and best audio. It even snagged an honourable mention for the Seumas McNally Grand Prize.

Crypt of the NecroDancer rhythm-based roguelike launches on Early Access

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Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar a first look and hands-on

Heroes and Legends Conquerors of Kolhar a first look and hands-on

Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar is an #RPG set to be #released on August 21st for Linux, Mac OSX, and Windows PC.  The game starts with you searching for a magical artifact that can prevent an upcoming catastrophe. After finding it and returning home, you’re accosted by the castle guards and thrown in prison. Thus begins your adventure of finding out just what is wrong with Queen Sijsen and the rest of the kingdom.

After an hour of playing, a few unique quirks of the combat system. Characters will only automatically attack the enemy right in front of them, but their abilities can still be used on a random target. However, each of their abilities have a cooldown that only counts down if they’re currently fighting an enemy. Each character also earns experience separately and only if they land the killing blow. It is possible to have your strongest fighter do most of the damage and then swap him or her for another character to give that character the experience.

Heroes and Legends Conquerors of Kolhar screenshot1

Earning items is also unusual as they occasionally appear in the boxes on the left side of the screen. If you do not use a potion or equip one of your characters with the weapon or shield, it eventually disappears entirely. Some of the items give bonuses to a random stat, and the more luck you have, the higher chance you have of getting better quality items. At the end of the mission you can recycle the items that remain into ingredients which can be used in crafting better weapons and armor.

The characters banter with each other between missions, but there has yet to be any decision making so far. A better help system or some tooltips in the final version to give some guidance in deciding what stat to increase when characters level up. Still, the unusual combat and loot systems makes this a game to watch for when it’s released on August 21st.

Heroes and Legends Conquerors of Kolhar screenshot2

Developed by Cuve Games and published by Phoenix Online Publishing, Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar will be available for OS X, Windows, and Linux. Learn more at Phoenix Online Publishing.

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