O Trivial Lobotomy, an intimidating experience

I'm surprised. O Trivial Lobotomy by the pretty unknown game developer greenio3 was legitimately going to fall in the pit of overlooked game without even having had a chance. Thankfully, now that I at least have managed to find it, most of the people who can enjoy such experiences will find it. It's true, I can't guarantee it a spot on any major indie gaming news website, but I believe in the potential that this game has, and below, I'll try to explain why did I like it so much.

It's hard to describe it with a single genre, as it really mashes up arcade elements with a peculiar narrative that I'd only expect in a visual novel. Initially, the ominous beating music in the background stood out the most to me, but that feeling, was just because I had no clue about how disturbing everything was going to get later on. Z can be used to skip through the many dialogues, while the arrow keys are the only other controls you're going to need when it comes to reach the arcade-ish parts. Even the artwork looks somehow scary, and although it isn't clearly made by an expert hand, it does a great job at keeping O Trivial Lobotomy the strange game that it undoubtedly is.

There are a couple of people trying to tell you how your heart is bad and you should not help it. And as a matter of fact, in between these weird talks you'll get to defend a realistically reproduced heart with a rotating shield from different kind of particles. The more you repel, the higher the failure count will get. To be honest, aside the increasing difficulty, nothing else will change related to the gameplay. However, what will indeed dramatically alter is the appearance of the people with which you're talking. They're decaying, and they will gain a much threatening attitude. The themes will in fact shift quite unexpectedly, touching controversial ones such as depression, suicidal thoughts and much more.

The developer has also stated that what he wrote, doesn't have any hidden meaning. And it's because of your life experiences that this game may or may not  impress you. It can be downloaded for free on Game Jolt, but unfortunately, runs only on Windows machines.

Video Wednesday: Detuned

Can you believe it? Between all the games that we've seen lately, Detuned, developed for the Glitch Jam held by Game Jolt a few weeks ago was picked by both of our Youtubers. The result was hilarious, and even pretty interesting all things considered. In fact, it turned out to be a great experiment involving how different players react in certain circumstances.

Wretic went straight to the point except for the initial fall.

While Leon, decided to go in completely blind so that he could learn everything as he played it. Tuning here and there, he made it too, and here's the game from his perspective.

If you want to read more about Detuned I suggest you to check my article. But most importantly, like I always remind you, subscribing to Creepy Gaming Youtubers gives you the chance to help directly them out! Let's show these guys that we appreciate their work, shall we?

Road to Ruin lets you explore an aseptic industrial environment

As soon as I spotted Road to Ruin, I knew it was my kind of game, and I hope, that it will turn out to be yours as well. I love these experiences that don't seem to have specific goals nor duties of any sort, even because given the inexistent premises, it can be literally about anything in the end. This one though, was particularly surprising overall. So, now that I think I've finally caught all the wonders that need to be seen, I can finally tell you why you shouldn't miss this.

It's a slow paced first person exploration game developed for the Halifax Game Collective. The developer's idea behind it was to experiment with ways of communicating sensations non-verbally, which, he definitely succeeded at that. In fact, although we can't say what was exactly going on in his mind, Road to Ruin does a magnificent job at creating a grim atmosphere filled with sadness and solitude. Moreover, the colors have been another unusual element. The majority of the screen will be divided between black and a bright cyan, though later on, you'll get to see how disturbing it is when even some red particles will join the other two. Let's not forget, my eyes aren't the strongest ones, hence it might not give you any trouble after all.

You spawn almost in the middle of nowhere, and standing before you, there are some fascinating irregular buildings that can only be barely noticed. Evidently, that's the way you're headed. Treading the road delimited by an infinite series of sharp pillars, the surroundings will proceed to take shape revealing in the end an ambiguous industrial area. Clouds of smoke come out of giant rotating gears, they're imposing and intimidating once you stand right in front of them, and the metallic clanging becomes almost unbearable at a certain point. Nothing will happen, like you should've already understood, but just by slowly walking between the strange buildings you'll almost certainly enjoy your stay.

Expectedly, Road to Ruin ends just like it starts. All at once, which is anyway way deeper inside the area than what you might think, the level will simply abruptly end. You need the Unity plugin installed to play this on your browser, but aside that, you can try it on itch.io.

Dear RED, how will you make it end?

Although just about a hour ago I said that I wasn't going to write anything today, after giving a short glance to my folder of to-be-reviewed games Dear RED caught my attention. I was holding onto this for way too long already, and since it's also quite straightforward, I though that a quick article about this surprising experience by Lee Sang could totally be done.

Despite being made in RPG Maker, the game plays more like a visual novel. The interactivity is very limited, but when it's actually required to choose anything, stay ensured that it will matter a whole lot to the final outcome. Let's proceed by order though. The story starts off with the main character, Red, reflecting on how her poor mother got brutally murdered when she was just 6. And after many years, you learn who the killer was in unknown circumstances.

Turns out that Dear RED is all about revenge at this point, and the game will get more tense as soon as you'll be finding yourself right in front of the murderer's house. You're armed with a knife, and from there on, everything you're going to do will permanently affect the storyline. You can either break in, or be kinder to then backstab the man who killed your mother. Though in any case, what's going to make everything harder is learning about the murderer's ill daughter that's resting upstairs. It made me feel bad all of a sudden.

Let's be honest, I went through most of the endings in the end of the day. But the fact that it provoked a deep thoughtful moment on themes such as the importance of life, and death, is by far what I liked the most of Dear RED. Some paths may be significantly shorter than others. But if you really want to enjoy this at least as much as I did, I suggest you to behave just like you would truthfully do if you were in the shoes of the protagonist. It can be downloaded for Windows on Game Jolt!

SCARY MAZE, but it's not what you would expect

Ready for another round of eye-hurting, highly disturbing wandering? If this sounds like something you'd like to do right now, SCARY MAZE (yes, in all capital letters) by David is Neato has exactly the features mentioned above. It's weird, almost senseless if you consider that your goal consists in finding a glitch-like area to successfully win. However, like we also learned from Glitch Jam, people nowadays go crazy on games that behave strangely.

Here, you get thrown in a psychedelic labyrinth where at least in the beginning, you're going to have quite a few problems to recognize what are the walls, and in general, how to navigate flawlessly without bumping into corners. In fact, what's solid is made anyway of dynamic cubes that keep on expanding and shrinking as if they are actively breathing. In addition, the perfectly orchestrated animation comes also with a significant shifting in terms of colors that makes the visuals even harder to look at considering that the background is filled with a deep black.

The soundtrack comes with hard basses extremely in line with the experience overall. Which essentially, revolves around finding a way out of the maze without getting killed by horrendous mocking faces that will appear if you open one of the wrong doors pressing your E key. Other than that, the controls are the standard FPS ones and it shouldn't be hard to figure them out. Unfortunately, after having opened a lot of doors I found myself always chased by those weird creatures that crave for my blood. Therefore, I went back to the description and found out that "winning is falling". That's it, the only way to escape is to find the tiny hole on the glitched wall that makes you fall from the level. With your P key you can always restart the whole process, but since I made sure that there's nothing procedurally generated, finding the exit once again will be extremely easy.

You need the Unity web player installed to play SCARY MAZE online, and if that's your case, I suggest you to head over its Game Jolt page and enjoy it.
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