Tag xbox one game

Ashina: The Red Witch


Ashina: The Red Witch is part of the same world of My Big Sister from Ratalaika Games but is it’s own title.

In Ashina: The Red Witch, from Ratalaika Games, you play as Ash, a young woman who wishes for something new while clinging onto the loss of her mother. The game starts as you make dinner for you and your sister, talking some trash as siblings do and enjoying the home-cooked meal. After the sister leaves for the night, you awake to the sound of someone in the other room and find a yokai making food and almost starting a fire. He steals a keepsake of your mother’s and runs. Chasing him leads you to arriving in the afterlife and a world full of yokai. Here you must track down the item, with the help of the thief and his friends.

The dialogue in this game is great. The banter between the two sisters alone is worth playing for. I legit laughed out loud while playing through making dinner during the game’s intro. I honestly can’t say the last time I laughed that often just during the opening, never before in an RPG/JRPG game either. Visually the game and animations are clean, despite being made in a retro style, very similar to SNES titles from back in the day. With the amount of laughing I’d done during my first two hours of gameplay is anything to go by I expect the rest of the game to be funny as hell and a great deal of fun.

Space Gladiators is finally on consoles

Space Gladiators

Space Gladiators from Thomas Gervraud was first released on Steam in 2021 and has finally been released on consoles!

Space Gladiators is a side scrolling game where you must run through a gauntlet to reach an arena where you fight a boss wave. Each wave gives you options of prizes like extra gold or new abilities to choose to determine what foe or foes you’ll face. The tutorial you start with covers the full range of controls quite thoroughly and does it in a way that is simple to follow without neglecting any of them. The only thing missed is to tell you what the importance of the blue butterflies are- I still haven’t figured that out for myself. My guess is that they feed some of your abilities and help you charge them up faster.

The art style reminds me of the early works from The Behemoth and their later Battle Block Theater but without the chicken they are so fond of. Thomas Gervraud is known for BrotatoSpace GladiatorsLost Potato and Potato Tactics. This game includes a space potato as well. I feel like there is an underlying obsession with potatoes going on here. Thanks to a well made tutorial and smooth controls the game is easy to play but due to my own panic I still died. A lot. Overall I found the game chaotic, but in a fair amount of challenge kind of way, and a great deal of fun. The $14.99 price tag is a little on the steep side but not unreasonable either.

Tinykin from tinyBuild


Humanity has spread to the stars and in Tinykin, from tinyBuild, they make their way back to Earth but humanity has changed drastically.

Tinykin is here with a unique take on what happens after humanity spreads out to the stars. Most games see this expansion as bleak and dangerous but in this game from tinyBuild and Splashteam we get a much more friendly and upbeat title. Curious about humanity’s origins you travel by soap bubble back to earth. This travel method reminds me very much about the bubble travel from Disney’s Meet the Robinsons. Upon your arrival you learn that humanity is much smaller than it once was and team up with little creatures called the Tinykin.

You befriend and work with various creatures, most of them are friendly or just less than friendly insects. I have the suspicion that I am just barely scratching the surface of this world and that something sinister is lurking somewhere but every level I’ve played continues to prove me wrong. Where’s the big, bad, monster to fight to give some sense of fear or suspense? Even if I’m wrong and there isn’t one, the game continues to prove that it is a lot of fun.

Visually the game is stunning. You have a beautifully rendered 3d world where 2d cartoon characters interact. On the surface it is a family friendly title that is absolutely adorable. I hope I’m proven right. If not I won’t be sulking though, I’ll still be having fun and it will further solidify my suggestion for the younger children at home to play the game.

Lacuna – A detective story set in the far future


Who doesn’t love a good “who done it” story? Lacuna brings that to a retro 2D platform and is the first release from DigiTales Interactive.

DigiTales Interactive is an indie developer that first released Lacuna directly to Steam and later to consoles and we had a chance to try it out. A few acts of terror threaten this dystopian world where things aren’t as perfect as they first appear. These acts sow the seeds of chaos and risk setting the universe in flames. This slippery slope begins with the death of a diplomat who was actively working to broker peace with your own nation and it is YOUR job to investigate the who, what, where, when (not so much this one) and why.

The game itself feels similar to those “Choose your own adventure” books where your actions and choices determine the outcome of the story. Graphically it looks and feels like some of the old 16 bit games from my youth and the gameplay very much solidifies this feeling. This was one of those titles that checks a lot of the boxes I look for in an entirely new experience but failed to hold my attention even with the promise of more action to come, many of the puzzles and investigation elements just felt tedious.

Transient Extended Edition makes it’s way to Xbox One


Our friends at Iceberg Interactive shared their remastered Eldritch horror title Transient for the Xbox One.

Iceberg Interactive updated their classic title, Transient, for the current generation of consoles with the Extended Edition. The game begins in the distant future, the world was nearly ended and a scientific effort strives to carry the world through the fallout. You wake up in a facility with a weird skull mask on your head and start on your adventure. With the music and the overall ambiance the game is very much meant to be a horror title but as you explore the world this adventure honestly feels mores like the game was more of a game of exploration.

The game is extremely linear but is full of puzzles to keep things interesting. Best part of these puzzles is that they feel organic, none that I have experienced so far felt forced. Any game that brings in inspiration from HP Lovecraft is worth a try in my book but when you add in a gorgeous world and engaging story and you have a game that is worth playing until the end.

Undungeon game review


TinyBuild brings another unique title to the gaming community, this time with Undungeon styled like RPGs from the 90’s.

In Undungeon you play as a Herald, a keeper of an artifact called the core. There are multiple Heralds, each with their own unique core. These cores keep you from dying. Any time your Herald dies the core activates and transports you to a specific location. This world you Heralds find themselves in is the result of a cataclysmic event that brought several unique versions of the world into one amalgamation of them all. There are seven Heralds and presumably seven unique worlds that were combined.

The game looks and feels like the one of the classic roleplaying games I would have played in the 90’s on either the Sega Genesis or the Super Nintendo. Beyond the nostalgic art style the controls are fluid and the combat is dynamic. The game looks simple at first but there is a large amount of options to fine tune your experience and a well fleshed out story makes this a must for old school roleplaying games.

Happy’s Humble Burger Farm

Happy's Humble Burger Farm

Happy’s Humble Burger Farm is a restaurant management simulator with a horrific twist. Will you survive?

Going into the new year TinyBuild brought us several new games and now that the new year is here we should see a few more based on their announcements in 2021. Happy’s Humble Burger Farm is one such game. Throughout the game you play a fast food worker that spends every day going to the Burger Farm, punching the clock, making and serving food. Once finished you return home to sleep and go to bed. Pretty straight, right? Not even close. In the real world the longer you take to make an order the more upset your customers will get. At the Farm it’s not clear if it’s the customers or something much more sinister. As you bumble your way through filling orders the longer you take first the lights start malfunctioning. This is the first sign to pick up the pace. Take even longer then you may see neon messages warning you to save yourself on the floor, a charred man will try to grab you or even one of the mascots will come and try to kill you. Sounds like any other day at a fast food establishment.

Graphically the game is subpar with today’s gaming standards as are the effects. Controls are overly simplistic and yet if your pointer is even slightly off target they won’t work. Spending a couple hours in this game I firmly believe this is intentional. It’s meant to be cheesy and the controls seem to give you a false sense of security because of how simple they are. Having completed several shifts making meals I noticed the game wants you to make mistakes, it even gives you achievements to entice you to screw up on purpose. I found the game to be oddly compelling despite it’s low budget, simplistic and cheesy feel. I was surprised at how much I wanted to keep going to see if I could learn more about the world and why these creatures keep appearing and trying to kill me.

Faraday Protocol – a game of aliens and exploration

Faraday Protocol

Faraday Protocol is a puzzle-centric first person shooter and platformer by Red Koi Box and available on Xbox One and Steam.

In Faraday Protocol you play as Raug Zeekon, an explorer/adventurer, landing your spaceship on Opis. As you leave your ship you are greet by a voice that puts you through a series of trials to test your mettle. Do you have what it takes? The AI is going to find out. Each chamber in the Ziggurats pose puzzles and challenges that increase in difficulty as you progress. Some allow you convert energy types, while others transport it from one chamber to another. Some will even power elevators.

The puzzles themselves, for the most part, are quite easy, they just require some out of the box thinking at times. There are a couple that seem much more difficult. These rare puzzles, at least to the point I’ve completed so far, offer easy solutions that require a bit of creativity. The story is a bit lackluster but the ingenuity of the puzzles more than makes up for it. If you enjoy creative puzzles that require some critical thinking to solve the $25 price tag may be appropriate but I feel it is just too high for what you get out of the game.

Pile up! Box by Box game review

Pile Up

Pile Up! Box by Box is a puzzle platformer from HandyGames where you play an adorable box that uses other boxes to complete puzzles.

HandyGames is back with another family friendly title, Pile Up! Box by Box, a platformer where collecting boxes and keys are your goals. You play as a box that navigates a world of water and cardboard to solve puzzles. Visually the world looks very similar to that of Paper Mario and there is nothing that would make me question if my children should be allowed to play it.

Puzzles are quite simple in the solutions but trying different approaches makes them more worth it. One of the levels has a puzzle that requires moving four boxes from one area to another and each area has bomb boxes. Picking up bomb boxes cause them to explode but if you nudge them you can get them into place without having to find all of the intended boxes. There does not appear to be a story for the game outside of the quests you must complete per level but those are more of a guided objective. Controls are easy to pick up but hitting the wrong button at the wrong time is always a concern. I found the game to be quite enjoyable and I am looking forward to sharing this with my family!

Green Hell has made it’s way to the Xbox One!

Green Hell

Green Hell is an FPS survival horror game based in the uncharted jungles of the Amazon where you must survive physically and mentally.

Creepy Jar is an awesome name for a game developer and those same minds brought us their newest release, Green Hell. Green Hell was previously released on Steam years ago but we were not able to play it until it was ported over to the Xbox One and we recently received a copy for the purpose of this review.

The game itself feels quite unique, or at least I have yet to play anything that came before that had this same feel to it. Some of the mechanics are tried and true across many games but this particular recipe feels new and that is rare. Before playing the game and before even seeing images of the gameplay I saw there was a tabletop version of the game about to go on kickstarter so it gave me a different expectation of the gameplay. I thought that the game would be an isometric game where you had to navigate the Amazon to some unknown end (I literally went into this game without doing any research on the story) and was shocked when I loaded the game up for the first time and was greeted to a first person shooter styled experience.

For the game mechanics you will likely recognize crafting mechanics similar to those in 7 Days to Die or the fact that any items that can be picked up as they are will receive a glowing outline like in so many other games. Graphically the rendering is not the best I’ve seen on the Xbox but I would say that it is on par with the earlier releases of the Xbox One. The story focuses on Jake and his Mia as they arrive in the Amazon. Their first step after making camp is for Mia to earn the trust of a local indigenous tribe. One day you wake up to her screams over your radio and you go charging into the jungle (as Jake) to find her. With several comments regarding Jake’s mental health throughout the tutorial led me to wonder if her voice was real. Very quickly you begin to question everything, like during the tutorial there was a path near your camp and after the tutorial the path is replaced by a stream. Very few games I have played have messed with your senses like Green Hell has and that was just in the first couple hours of the game. I can’t wait to see how else the game screws with my head.