Best Free Games

So, I stumbled onto an article awhile back on IGN called "Best Free Games', so I thought i would take a look and see what it was all bout. I thought: that's a pretty cool idea. I don't really play many free games myself, but my kids do and I know some people at my work place do.

Now, I get the idea that IGN's 'best games' means completely coded from scratch, where as if I were to find a good game out there, I wouldn't much care if it was built from an RPG Maker, or Game Maker, etc. So, I may do some digging around online, find a few games here and there. In the meantime, I thought I would critique some of the games IGN put out there. I'll link to their article, and to the game, and share my thoughts. I've given 2 a go to this point. First up -

Hot Throttle:

This was the first game IGN recommended. It can be found on [adult swim] games.

The premise is pretty basic. You race around tracks and occasionally use power-ups to gain an edge on the competition. The storyline, loose as it is, is that this group of clothing-less people get together and race around, acting like/thinking that they are in fact cars. It's as weird as it sounds.

Pros: original graphics, free, web-based so there's nothing to download

Cons: the sound track annoys me, the graphics (while original) are pretty mediocre and the racers handle like they're on ice, sliding around oddly.

I didn't really care much for the controls, and upon closer inspection it's actually a pretty low-rated game on the site at 5.-something. Some credit here for creativity, but the overall package is pretty rough, and after doing 4 or 5 races, I had lost interest

Next game -

The next game they recommended was called Megazey and Demons and the actual game's page can be found here. The story is pretty simple: demons are trying to escape hell and cause havoc on Earth. This is a sort of platforming/action game.

Pros: The biggest one for me was the graphics. The backgrounds actually look pretty nice. Nothing too detailed, but the use of color catches the eye quickly. There's actually a fair amount of variety in the combat. You have a couple of different guns you can acquire, a sword, some basic power-ups too. There are a few boss fights and you need to use different tactics on them from time to time. Kind of funny, though maybe at times not intentionally so.

Cons: The creator was clearly not English-speaking natively, and the localization is pretty horrendous. The backgrounds look great, but there's not much to the basic character animations. Your main dude's walk is sort of odd, with his legs spinning in a pinwheel effect. While the weapons vary up, the overall battle against the hordes of demons really doesn't consist of much more than plowing into them gun blazing/sword swinging. It's also a pretty short game - probably less than 15 minutes.

Overall, it's free, and it's nothing more than a short distraction, but it did the trick for me the other morning when we were about to head out to drop our daughter off at camp for the weekend. It's funny on the forum the creator hosts, because people do comment on the abrupt ending, and the user admits he did not expect anyone to ever finish playing it. Not sure if he just did not expect the exposure his game got due to IGN or what, because the difficulty is pretty low. I had to do one boss battle 4 or 5 times, and one other map twice, and that was it.

The actual walking/climbing/jumping mechanism is odd. I can't really put it under a pro or con, I didn't mind it when I got used to it, but it's definitely not what you would expect collision-wise from a typical platformer.
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