The Average Gamer

Indie Rock: Random Feedback

There’s a great website (it’s not as good as websites like OMFGDOGS or Thug Kitchen, but those are tough bars to scissor-kick over) called Zero Feedback where the author collects games that received absolutely no feedback when published onto gaming forums. I think that’s a cool idea, publicising games that have gone largely unpublicised. Maybe I’ll start doing a weekly column on that. Maybe I’ll start doing a weekly column on that. Psyche! That sounds stupid. Who’d do such a thing? Pfft.

Recognising that this is a great idea and also recognizing that most of the legwork has been done for me meaning I can get back to doing my other job sooner, I figured I’d also lend a megaphone to help increase awareness of the website (it is a good website!) and some of the games that have already been curated.

In the interest of fun and fairness (two things I am all about), I’ve used the site’s Random functionality and played a handful of different things. Now I’m going to talk about whether they’re good or not!

Spend All Your Allowance On Firecrackers

Oh. Here’s why this idea is kind of silly and I shouldn’t have done it.

SAYAOF, which sounds less like an acronym and instead shorthand for a contest between Goku and Vegeta, is seemingly about being bored and having nothing better to do than buy things that explode a bit. You have only a couple you can throw and then you get more when you walk off screen and return later.

I’m glad this didn’t become anything bigger, because there’s a lot of charm despite not a lot of anything else.

If you fall down the hole you can make the weird man run away. That’s a pro tip from me. Expert-level Spend All Your Allowance On Firecrackers advice, here.

Rainbow Space Donkey Escape

rainbowFirst, be the donkey. Second, move around using the fire that comes out your butt.

To say much more would be a shame, but to say any less would be to undersell the surprise and the whole reason to give this a look. There’s no real way to meet in the middle with that, and presumably this means that there’s not a lot of depth past the initial joy. It’s a good initial joy though. Well done.


This is pretty fun actually. I could see myself playing a more fleshed out version.

It’s not much different from any other game about dodging, but the presentation is really great. There’s a high speed to the projectiles that are being thrown down, but the space between you is displayed with a white line that lets you easily convey the distance. It’s not frustrating when you fail because it’s providing you with the information you need to succeed.

Dungeon BastardThe music’s pretty good too. This is the one you should probably play! I don’t have any stupid jokes!

Dungeon Bastard

It’s a tower defence, but you’ve control over the traps individually rather than setting them up and watching what happens.

It’s also sort of broken, needing to figure out the exact combination of actions in order to succeed and make the best use of your powers. Dungeon Bastard is a decent idea in theory, poor actually played.

[Hey, this is by Richard Perrin who made Kairo. I totally know that guy – Ed.]

Split Fighters

I think we’ll cap it off here because this is genuinely incredible. I’ve been thinking for a while about trying to make a fighting game where all of the actions are nice and at the end you both win and are best friends. It’s interesting to think about fighting games without actually having to have the fighting element of them. Distilled down, they’re button prompts inputed better than the other player. Does that have to map to punching them or breaking their pipes?

This, instead, is a simple fighting game about trying to resolve conflict as amicably as possible while the other person has absolutely no interest in doing so. You can charge an attack, then release it in a later turn, block or talk. If you talk then a dialogue tree starts, presuming you haven’t been attacked that turn.

You can “win” by just knocking your opponent out, but honestly, what does violence solve if you never actually establish the root of the issue?

Oh, Also:

Against my better judgement I’m playing my second game of Neptune’s Pride. You’d know this was a bad idea if you knew how much of a wreck I became during the first.

For those that aren’t in the know (and I feel like I’m explaining the concept of of original sin to remote tribal people who’d be better off living the rest of their lives without ever) it’s an 8-player game that takes place over a huge span of time; we’re talking potentially weeks. You’re all galactic despots trying to control new corners of space. Conflict is inevitable because you need to own half the star system in order to win and have to space-bulldoze your friends to do so. Before that, you’ll collect alliances and share knowledge, but know that inevitably all the niceties are going to crumble like a Jacob’s Cream Cracker all over your new jumper. Basically, the game is a longform explanation of Cold War Prisoner’s Dilemma but it’s set in space and you’re weird aliens.

I’d love to talk in more specifics about the game I’m currently in, but we’ve just started it and I’d have to assume those involved are looking at this. I can’t not assume that. I have to consider that they are out to get me and any bit of information is a step closer to my eventual termination.

Honestly, though? I’m only writing this down here as a vague attempt to justify the upcoming stupid amount of hours actually playing and full days spent thinking about it at the back of my mind. There’s probably a better way to justify this actually. Maybe I’ll write something else this week. That’s a feature pitch, except instead of actually pitching it I’m hiding it here where an editor can see it. Hello! Goodbye!

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