I continue to be busy with real life stuff, with little time for gaming.
But this is me, so “little time” doesn’t mean “no time”. Highlights from this week include Toy Soldiers, which is a Tower Defense game that provides an answer to that itch to hop inside one of your towers and shoot at stuff (you can also fly planes and drive tanks), and Protect Me Knight, which is a sort of survival/tower defense hybrid/retro nintendo love letter. (with local co-op!)
Both games pay a lot of attention to atmosphere. The conceit of Toy Soldiers is that you’re playing with a vintage miniatures set come to life, and the devs execute with a great deal of charm, and plenty of grace notes, from the old war song that plays over the opening screens, to the “vintage” box covers that grace every loading screen.
Protect Me Knight is all about retro, and I think that I’m about to get tired of retro, but not so tired that the opening cutscene (hint: it involves blowing on a cartridge) didn’t pretty much instantly win me over.
The gameplay is good in both. I’m such a picky gamer. Don’t like games that have atmosphere and no substance. Don’t like games that have substance, and no atmosphere. Happily, there are game designers out there willing to put in the work and hours to please me; we live in a fine era for games indeed.