Ah, yes, freeware games. How we all love them, don’t we? Even more so when they are of the indie persuasion, brimming with quality, polish and innovation. You know, just like the following seven offerings that have been hand-picked for you quality gaming entertainment. There’s something for everyone mind; enjoy!
Warthogs: People that not necessarily hate but, well, dislike Harry Potter and love adventure games should probably love this little gem. It’s a short, sweet, beautifully pixelated, impressively crafted and occasionally sarcastic AGS offering. Interestingly, Warthogs is a also a very good adventure game too, and one discovered by the ever brilliant Indie Games Blog.
Reprisal: Only a demo one has to admit, but such a promising one (one has to also admit). Oh, and everybody will have to further admit that Reprisal is an incredibly intriguing take on Populous, which itself hasn’t been properly remade for ages. Not that I’m talking about a remake; what we have here is more of something inspired by Populous. Obviously something that let’s you raise mountains and destroy virtual lives too.
Ultima IV: A gog.com freebie that will let you enjoy (relatively speaking that is) the Quest of the Avatar on modern PCs complete with a PDF assortment of manuals, maps and spellbooks. Just don’t expect to be overly thrilled. This is an archaic and badly aged roleplaying offering with an infuriating morals mechanic and a demented parser; still, it’s somehow considered a classic so there.
Forget Me Not: You could of course pay and grab this psychedelic Pac-Man-esque thing for youriDevice (should you own one), but the free PC version is just so much better. And rather unique too, as you get to blast an impressive menagerie of vaguely recognizable baddies. Excellent fun for the extended family this one! Besides, grandpa would never get to manage them touch-screen controls.
Cryptozookeeper: A huge, polished, well-written and lavishly illustrated piece of interactive fiction I have yet to finish. Should you enjoy its weird animals, tons of characters, lovely soundtrack, odd visuals and splatterpunk-iness, you’d be better off grabbing the boxed version available. You’d also be helping the rise of a new era of text adventures, which would be really nice.
Maldita Castilla: Locomalito, that amazing indie developer, plays with the Ghosts ‘n’ Goblinsformula. Why? For love, culture and glory of course, and in order to create a pretty brilliant action platformer with a distinct retro feel. The game is short, looks spectacular and sounds like a proper arcade machine. It’s not too hard either.
Hero’s Adventure: Disturbing and over in 30 seconds, that’s what it is, yet I love it. It reminds me of certain teen experiences I might have had. What’s more, Hero’s Adventure is a truly smart and cynical take on top-down CRPGs. And Terry Cavanagh created it. And I love it, but I already said so, didn’t I?
- Tempest 2000
- Sonic the Hedgehog Remastered