Thoughts on itch’s Bundle for Ukraine, Part 1
I tried to support the people in Ukraine through a few different organisations, but one of the more “fun” ways to support is the bundles that have become a staple on itch when humanity needs assistance. It is amazing to see the indie game community come together to spread help and awareness while also delivering an overwhelmingly large numer of colorful games.
As with the previous bundle I’ve started to try as many games as I can muster and I decided to write a little bit about each one I’ve tried. Disclaimer that my thoughts might be a bit harsh, since there are so many games I had a rule that I would not continue to play a game if it somehow lost me from it’s grasp (be it because of bugs or gameplay). I only played for close to 10 minutes on certain games which is too little time to make a nuanced report. That said, I have the greatest respect for anyone who puts their game out there and manage to find an audience, hats of to you, but these are my raw experiences playing through the first few games in the bundle.
Developed by Stone Lantern Games and published by PQube.
I thought the art style was pretty neat for this one, especially the particle effects. They were colorful, playful and pulled me into the game. Unfortunately the main character and esp. it’s animations were a bit lackluster and didn’t really follow up on the first impression.
Having played my fair share of platformers before, it’s a really hard sell for me and the game is gonna have to present me with something really tasty to hook me. Evergate is a puzzle platformer with a sort of sling shot mechanic where you fire the main character through objects to gain a movement boost. It was a bit hard to understand at first but I got a lot of time to figure it out and the game had a nice step by step tutorial.
After the tutorial I went into some sort of portal that took me to China from 300 years ago if I understood the UI correctly. I thought: “Cool, maybe I get to play through a historic event or something considering I’m some sort of death god that travels to earth for the first time.” Unfortunately I was majorly dissapointed when I was introduced to a very classic puzzle game setup playing through room after room of small action puzzle challenges. I got tired of it after two rooms and turned the game off. Did not at all understand the connection between the gameplay and the narrative.
Developed and published by Glass Bottom Games.
I was a bit hype for this one. This was one of few games on the vast list that I’d heard about before and really wanted to try out. Also my partner is a big fan of birds so we’ve played a lot of Wingspan (board game by Elizaberth Hargrave) and this felt like it tried to evoke the same emotions through it’s art. I was also a big fan of the Tony Hawk skater games when I was younger, although it was probably 20 years ago I played it last.
The main menu and especially character creation screen is absolutely brilliant! Immediately I got all giddy and tried out plenty of different looks for my little skater bird. There were a lot of options and every bird I made ended up super cute!
The gameplay was a mix of self-expression and mission based, mostly the early missions required me to understand one of the different tricks I could perform with the skateboard. It was a pretty nice learning curve, starting out not being able too do much before falling but steadily becoming more proficient in controlling the board.
I could probably continued playing for an hour or so? But turned off the game after around 30 min feeling quite done after that time. This type of game is not really my jam anymore.
Developed and published by Jeremy Couillard.
This game was a crazy ride. Really felt like I was looking into another persons mind with a bunch of references, imagery and sequences that I had no idea of what to make of.
Unfortunately I had some troubles with the game getting stuck and me having to restart. That combined with the fact that I didn’t vibe particularily well with the amount of weirdness I was presented with, resulted in a very short gameplay session. I felt like this game had needed some sort of additional context for me so that I would have a driving force to get through it. One thing it had above the other two above in this list though, I had no idea in which direction this game was headed.