Author: Lars Händler

Java-coding Linux guru by day and avid gamer at night. I fall into the group of casual core adult gamers that prefer video games over TV. I tend to play almost exclusively on PC but have a 3DS for offline situations like holidays. I spend around 10 hours per week with gaming. I mostly enjoy playing short narrative or puzzle games from independent developers but will occasionally pick up a narrative heavy game from a big publisher.

The Shapeshifting Detective – Review

the shapeshifting detective - teaser

The Shapeshifting Detective is a full motion video game, meaning every scene is filmed with actual actors. You have to uncover one or more murders in the city of August over the course an evening. The game has Twin Peaks vibes with some Lovecraftian flavor on top. Multiple playthroughs are encourage because dialog choices do matter. Read more

For the Empire – Single-player surprise in Battlefront II

Battlefront II - teaser

When I came across the first rebel soldier, I decided to go for a silent takedown. That surely just makes them unconscious, I thought. I would not feel good at all about hurting rebels on my escape from a prison cell, as they are normally fighting alongside Luke and Leia against the Empire. The sound of breaking bones informed me that a silent takedown does not mean unconsciousness. There it was. I had killed my first rebel. This really did not feel good. Read more

Jetstream – Review

jetstream teaser

Jetstream is a minimalistic roughtly 5 hour long puzzler. You have to steer an airplane to its destination by using or avoiding environment obstacles. There are 100 levels and various Steam achievements to test your skills. Beating each level will require a certain amount of try’n’error as well as clever use of the environment. Read more

Path to Mnemosyne – Review

Path to Mnemosyne teaser

Path to Mnemosyne is creepy two hour puzzler with a unique hand drawn aesthetic. The visuals are disturbing and claustrophobic which fits the tone of the story perfectly. Puzzles in the game are unique, never overstay their welcome and get trickier the further you get into the game. Read more

Warframe, Destiny and Anthem are built around addiction

addictive games teaser

Looter shooter games like Warframe, Destiny and Anthem are extremely popular, and keep hundreds of thousands of gamers invested on a daily basis. Players seem unable to put the games down, despite the fact that they are always the same – rather simple – gameplay loops in the same – yet beautifully crafted – environments. Ultimately, this kind of gameplay boils down to shooting stuff to maybe get a random reward. This gameplay loop can be viewed as a stay-at-home version of casino slot machines. Read more

Tacoma – Review

This game is narrative driven walking simulator developed by the creators of Gone Home. You are tasked with investigating what happened on a now abandoned space station. The story is carried by exceptionally well done voice acting and an interesting twist on how to rewatch recordings of the station’s crew and AI. Read more

LineWay – Review

LineWay Teaser

This a minimalistic yet beautiful line puzzler that will keep you in a zen like state for 1-2 hours. It is reduced to the max but the looks are very pleasing to the eye. Mechanics are easy to learn but harder to master at the later puzzles. Read more

11-11 Memories Retold – Review

11-11 teaser

11-11 Memories Retold revolves around two WW1 soldiers, one from Germany and one from Canada, that become friends although fighting on opposite sides in the meatgrinder of the western front in WW1. It is a story about the humans on both sides of the war and of how the war takes its toll on fighting and non-fighting alike. Everything is embedded in a unique impressionistic art style and a soundtrack done by a real orchestra. Read more

Subsurface Circular – Review

subsurface circular teaser

Subsurface Circular is one of those games that kept me thinking about the topics it touched long after I put it down. It asks questions about where AI and androids will take our human society; and if those deeply human questions about existence might also be asked by AI in the future. Read more