SORE – The Meaning Behind a Meaningless Game

I wonder if I got the job?     Did the interviewer like my resume?

I wonder if he enjoyed my personality?    Did he think I was boring?

I’m boring    What’s wrong with me?

Why am I so boring?    I need to change

 I hate myself

Without haste, people drift towards escalating problems easily to suit societies standards, similar to the example provided above. People always tend to search for the “bigger picture”, but when you look too much into the future, the smaller, simpler things can be overlooked. These insecurities can snowball until questions turn to issues, issues turn to actions, and actions can be fatal. Simple things can sometimes make the human mind very anxious and doubtful. Each case of anxiety is different, as the human mind is our most fascinating, yet fragile feature. Unless you suffer from the illness, you can never fully understand the heartache, but SORE gives you a taste in the life of uncertainty by providing just one task… simply leave a room.

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Before I continue, I must say that this review is based on my interpretation of SORE, the mystery behind the game is still unknown.

You begin this dark tale as a ghost stuck in a small room. The sounds of rain splashing against the roof fill your ears, accompanied by an occasional crack of thunder. Shadows engulf this chamber, with only a gleam of moonlight peaking its way through the one window in the room. Within the shadows sways a man, hung from the ceiling. It seemed as if suicide was his only option. The ideal scene set for SORE left me both apprehensive and curious in the best ways possible. Feeling uneasy but ready for more.

It will not take long to find out what your first objective is. Locate and use three keys to unlock the solid door restricting you from the neighboring room. SORE provides little to no information on why reaching the other room is of importance, making me feel no ambition in reaching my goal. SORE begins to get interesting once you peek your head through the window on the door. Interacting with the window allows you to see what the other room looks like. Is it gold? Is it a path to freedom? Is it an even more complex room? No… its a room just as simple, and just as eerie as the one you navigate through the whole game. The only difference is this room has a living man inside. He has the option of saying a variety of different phrases. Some are just random corny jokes, while others are clues to help you find the three keys. What lies in the middle of those two categories is rather disturbing nonsense. If you talk to this man long enough, he will begin to mention that we never talk back to him. It was then I realized something that made this game seem much more eerie… the man does not know we are dead. He cannot see us as a ghost, but instead a hanging corpse. Only his view of the rope is blocked by the walls of the room, so he can only see a motionless and silent man. To his awareness, we are very much alive and well.

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SPOILERS

The first two keys were uncovered rather quickly, but that third key kept me stumped. I spent about 45 minutes searching for the final key until I got hungry and retreated to my kitchen to make a sandwich. Upon my return, I saw the gleam of heavenly light shine out of the wall… the door was open. I entered to room with caution, expecting another set of challenges. The screen grew dark, and then an old-school computer crash screen appeared

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As anyone would be, I was left in confusion. I ran to my trusty friend, the internet, and read how to actually beat the game. The only answers I found left me in anger. There are two ways to beat SORE. You either stand still for six minutes or go up to the door and press “X”. Really? That’s it? Yup! From what the community has found so far, there is, in fact, no working key to unlock the door

I felt cheated…bitter…enraged! I just spent 45 minutes trying to find a key that didn’t exist. On top of that, the door leads to your game “crashing”, leaving you with numerous unanswered questions. I was ready to uninstall the game and abandon the review as a whole, but then I got to thinking. Yes, the game could just be bull**** to waste everyone’s time, or it could be much more profound. Upon looking deeper behind SORE’s unfulfilling story, I have come up with my interpretation of the ending.

Remember when I mentioned how “People always tend to search for the “bigger picture”, but when you look too much into the future, the smaller, more simpler things can be overlooked.”. That is exactly what this game intends for you to do, search for the bigger picture. Once I entered the world of SORE, I immediately started creating a checklist of what to do.

I have to search here, under that, and above there

No one would ever think that all you had to do was press one button, or stand still for six minutes. That would just be way too simple.

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SORE made me irritable. Not only at the game, but at myself as well. As each minute ticked by I was starting to blame myself for not being capable of finding this missing key. I finally gave up, thinking that this game got the best of me.

The pain and anguish could have all been avoided if I took my time and stuck simply. Overthinking can lead to much more pain than a problem has to be. While SORE may have been unfulfilling and quick, this dark mystery teaches a valuable lesson. The lesson is deep and is only understood if you take the time to attempt the impossible… finding that last key.

Enomview Score: 5 out of 10

Check out the game: http://store.steampowered.com/app/690060/SORE/

One Strike Review – The Quick and Easy Fighter

Have you ever been playing a fighting game and thought to yourself, “this is way too hard?” Well, One Strike is the solution to that exact problem. The game is so simple that it only takes about two-three minutes to be a master at it. The game revolves around six characters who you have the option of playing as. With the character you pick, you will then face off against said six characters back to back. The main catch of the game is that if either player is hit once, they lose. So in the story mode, if you get hit you will restart back to your first fight.

There isn’t much story to the game, it is basically just a 2D, pixelated fighter where you go from fight to fight. The other game modes are a versus mode, which I personally believe would be more fun than the game itself, a tag team mode where you play with an AI against two other AI, a Tournament mode, which puts you into a bracket tournament with up to seven other players, and a “practice” like mode where you face off against the enemies from the story with five lives instead of one. The problem I see with the Tournament mode is the ability to have seven players playing at once. There is no online interaction with the game so it would have to be eight people clustered around a computer with only two playing at a time. And if you do not have eight people for the mode, it replaces them with bots.

The story mode has three difficulties, which are easy, medium, and hard. Easy is in my own opinion far too easy, so once beaten I moved on to medium difficulty, which ramped up the difficulty a little bit, but not enough for it to be a challenge. Finally, when I reached hard mode I was expecting a huge jump in the difficulty of the AI, but alas, I was wrong. All in all, it took me about an hour and a half to beat every difficulty on the main story.

In my personal opinion, the game is not that great, it’s not even that good, but I still gave it a shot and it kept me busy for a while. A few things that could help it out would be to increase the number of characters, thus making the story longer, and have a custom control setup. The controls were kind of tight on the keyboard. The game isn’t inherently bad, it just lacks a story and seemed too easy to master, which is why I did not enjoy it.

With some changes made, I’d love to revisit this article and give it another shot!

EnomView Score 4/10

Liked this review and looking for more cool games? Check out our Steam games section, here!

Back to the 90’s – Rogue Quest: The Vault of the Lost Tyrant Review

Just before we hop into this review, we want to sincerely thank FeedSpot for naming us one of the best indie game sites out there! Make sure to go check them out!

Before we had open world tactical RPG’s, loot box gambling, and convoluted combat systems, there was a simpler time back in the early 90’s where the market was dominated by simple point and click style adventure games such as Space Quest and Monkey Island. You simply clicked and watched as your character walked to that location or interacted with an item to experience a story. That’s it, no strings attached. Simple in their design but often brilliant in their execution. While these games were beloved by many, the community eventually moved on and the genre died out, save for the odd revival. But nostalgia is a powerful motivator, so the small team of ExperaGames sought to bring back the early 90’s point and click goodness with their newest game Rogue Quest: The Vault of the Lost Tyrant. Should you play it? That solely depends on the answer to the question ‘how much nostalgia toward old-school point and click adventures do you have?’.

Almost in a direct homage to the old Sierra Entertainment games (Space QuestKing’s Quest), the game tasks you with escaping from a prickly situation, in this case, the sealed off vault of the lost tyrant. You will do this with the help of the main character: Cassandra Nech, a treasure huntress from the rogue’s guild who arrived at the fabled vault in search of treasure. The game’s coarse pixel art is subpar compared to other modern pixel art outings on the market right now, but it is clear that a lot of love and dedication went into bringing the world alive through animation. Whether it’s Cassandra swinging from a rope to clear a chasm or the comical walking cycle of the wannabe pirate brothers Needlebag and Finspin, a lot of work went into animation, just don’t expect something along the lines of Hyper Light Drifter.

Rogue Quest does a good job of supplying you with tasks and puzzles that strike a proper balance of difficulty. Many point-and-click games are notorious for ‘pixel hunting’, where the hitboxes for puzzle solutions are so small players will need to click every tiny pebble in case it’s interactable. Puzzles in Rogue Quest often boil down to logical solutions. Need to burn away the toxic mushrooms? Perhaps tear off the cloth hanging from the wall and set it ablaze. And if you really can’t figure out what it is you have to do then there is a nifty hint system. There are a lot of little quality of life functions in the game, like being able to double click doors to skip Cassandra having to walk to the door or being able to open up shortcuts to decrease travel time.

There are, however, also a slew of technical problems. Skipping through text sometimes creates a jarring flicker and controls are at times unresponsive when I would try to open my inventory. Writing is often too on the nose and at times even grammatically incorrect. Rogue Quest does little to innovate the genre, the pixel art isn’t up to par compared to other pixel art games and the game is really short clocking just over an hour. Yet, despite these negative aspects, the game does have a charm to it. Do you have overflowing nostalgia for these types of games and an hour to spare? Then give it a shot. But if you haven’t liked point-and-click adventure games in the past then Rogue Quest: The Vault of the Lost Tyrant will not change your mind.

EnomView Score: 6 out of 10

Check out the game: http://store.steampowered.com/app/728420/Rogue_Quest_The_Vault_of_the_Lost_Tyrant/

Dragon Sin – Tiny Human V. Massive Dragons

Looking for a game with a medieval style? How about one where you can kill dragons as a handsome mercenary. Well, I got the game just for you! Fate Dragon Studio has released Dragon Sin, a badass adventure game with surprisingly awesome combat.

The developers of the title have stated that Dragon Sin was produced in their college years, which they have since graduated. For a game that was made in one of busiest years of person’s life lives, it looks surprisingly well done.

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The team has also stated that they have a lot to add to the game, but don’t have the resources to add them yet. If they can make a game as good as this on limited resources, we could only imagine what they can do with more. The game isn’t long, only lasting about 35 minutes.

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Dragon Sin is centred around killing dragons with a little bit of story added in. You play as Greer, the offspring of the Dragon Lord. Sure the graphics aren’t GTA 5 level, but what are you really asking for from a group of college kids with limited time and money.

There’s one thing that I forgot to mention: Dragon Sin is 100% free to play. Use creative, well-thought combat mechanics and a massive sword to slice and dice your draconian enemies right now at no cost. Pick it up on Steam in the link below.

Dragon Sin on Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/534220/Dragons_Sin/

Steam’s Winter Sale Launches Today – What Games Should You Look out for?

Today, Steam’s Winter sale finally begins! Ever since the Autumn Sale, I’ve been waiting to pick up some amazing new indie games for a great price. Not only that, but these games make great Christmas gifts to your gamer friends right in time for the holidays. At 6:00pm EST, hundreds of games will be available at amazing rates, and I for one cannot hold my excitement.

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Although we can’t figure out which specific games will be on sale until the sale begins, we can speculate based on the Autumn sale. Last season, we saw some amazing AAA titles, as well as smaller indie games, for as much as 75% off. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on massive titles like The Witcher III: The Wild Hunt at a whopping 60% off.

What we’re looking for though are indie titles. If massive names like The Witcher goes on sale, we can easily make assumptions that indie games like Cuphead will go on sale too. Here’s a list of indie games that we’re definitely going to keep an eye on:

th1.jpgLook out for sale updates of these games and much more over in our Indie News Section!Steam Store: http://store.steampowered.com/

We’re releasing our Best Indie Games of 2017 – Top Ten Indie Games video soon! Make sure to check out our YouTube so you don’t miss it!

Help a Dwarf in His Time of Need! – Ruggnar

Ruggnar feels like an old game. One that you’d find on your emulator and say “Oh, wow! I remember this game,” then sit there for an hour trying to beat it again. Composed of mysterious yet inspiring music, Ruggnar, which I assume is the name of the main character, features a bearded dwarf harboring a candle on his head. His sole objective is to collect golden coins and keys to escape the dungeon. The game has three chapters for story mode and two miscellaneous modes: random dungeons and daily dungeons, both of which require the player to complete Chapter 1 of the story mode to unlock. Join Ruggnar and help light up his path to victory!

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Immediately after launching the game you are presented with a screen letting you know that a controller is recommended for playing this game. Getting my controller ready, I first made sure that I wouldn’t rather be using my mouse and keyboard. The menu screen is navigated using the arrow keys and with enter to select. The menu screen is simple and includes the title of the game, navigational buttons, and Ruggnar, who says “I need some help. Do you want to try?” After selecting play and the first chapter on story mode, I noticed something interesting. The game included its own online leaderboard with users and their times for completing the level. Even the tutorial had a number-one time at 14.112 seconds. I thought to myself “I could probably beat this”, but after 10 frustrating minutes I gave up with a personal best of sixteen seconds. I decided it was time to delve into the actual game.

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The game revolves around your candles, whether that be the one on top of your head or the multiple that you have at the start of each level. Parts of the dungeon that aren’t already lit up by chandeliers, lava or any other light source are darkened, restricting your vision and leaving you in the dark (literally). To light the area up and see what you’re doing you have two options: move to dark spaces and risk getting killed by something you can’t see, or throw your candles and watch as it lights up the area on which it falls. Although you only have a limited amount of candles to start with, you can pick up more around the dungeon. Beware as waterfalls can extinguish the flame on top of your head, requiring you to relight the candle using one of your own. Each dungeon contains traps to kill you. These include swinging axes, spikes, lava and much more. Checkpoints, which are shown as candelabras, are littered throughout the dungeon so you don’t pull your hair out trying to finish a level. I say that because unless you’re extremely patient, you will die many times.

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The main reason will be because of a lack of knowledge on where to go and how to complete the dungeon. When you die, you leave behind a tombstone with a candle on top, creating a handy light source. Another aspect of the game are the items that you can find and pick up around a dungeon. These include a feather, enabling you to jump much higher and run faster and a light which removes all the darkness in a level for a short period of time. The dungeons get more and more complex as you continue, often requiring some time to figure out a level before beating it. The biggest potential for this game is speedruns. I can already see that the developer has this in mind because of the leaderboards. I found myself wanting to speed through each level but failing as I didn’t know the layout of the map. More experienced players can definitely make this game known for its speed run capabilities by showing off their skills as they complete each level at record time.

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The use of candles throughout the game was an interesting mechanic, but one that I didn’t find much use out of. In my experience, running through the level and using trial and error was the quickest way to complete a dungeon. Perhaps it was my lack of patience that made me choose the speedrun method, however I can’t imagine many people using the candles for their actual purpose. They have a small area of effect and take a little too long to throw. Your tombstone provides a better source of light and even acts as a little reminder so know if you need to watch out for anything. Although the music consists of one looped soundtrack, I found it fitting the game perfectly. It was mysterious, yet encouraged you to continue the level to see what you could find. The old-fashioned artwork helped give the game a nostalgic feeling, enticing players who desire games that bring back memories.

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One thing to keep in mind throughout this review is that Ruggnar is still in Alpha. It’s in its early stages but I hope to see some new elements and improvements in the near future. The potential for speed-runs in this game is huge and could be its main attraction drawing players in. Overall the game offers challenging and solid puzzles to complete, a peaceful and mysterious soundtrack all accompanied by the compelling artwork.

Enomview Score: 7 out of 10

Ruggnar Early Access: https://sirill.itch.io/ruggnar

Countdown to Telltale’s Minecraft: Story Mode Season 2 Finale

Three days remain until Minecraft: Story Mode’s season two finale gets released. The extremely popular series by Telltale has become well known in the Minecraft community, attracting YouTubers and streamers alike. The point and click/choose your own path game focuses on a plot which is based on the ever so popular sandbox game, Minecraft. The player completes puzzles, decides where to go, and most importantly, chooses the dialogue between characters. Subsequently, the end-game depends on the path the player chooses to follow, not what the game forces you to. Many other popular games have taken this approach, a more popular one being The Walking Dead.

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Season one of Minecraft story mode comprises of eight episodes, each a little more than an hour long. If playing more than eight hours of story mode doesn’t sound appealing, countless videos of people playing and completing the game are all on YouTube. I recommend getting your popcorn ready and clearing up three hours of your day as you’ll quickly get drawn in. You can buy the game for $25.99 on steam and play the first season for free for a limited time only. You better go quick, as the season finale is supposed to be mind boggling!

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Check out the game: http://store.steampowered.com/app/639170/Minecraft_Story_Mode__Season_Two/
Season 1 free demo: http://store.steampowered.com/app/376870/Minecraft_Story_Mode__A_Telltale_Games_Series/

Free H1Z1 For a Week – King of the Kill Comeback?

H1Z1, the game that practically launched the battle royale genre, is remaking an appearance on the steam store. With its original price at $19.99, you can find the game at a bargain at $4.99 up until January 4th, or for free during the remaining week.

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PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) is currently the most familiar game in the battle royale genre, but H1Z1 is where it all started and has its fair share of differences. Compared to the current large battle arena norms, H1Z1 may either seem refreshing or backwards. For one, its fast-paced as everyone rushes to A: find weapons and materials to survive (a standard plan for battle royale games) and B: locate a car to use for the entirety of the game.

Vehicles are unimaginably important. Unlike PUBG, you don’t take damage while exiting a moving vehicle, regardless of speed. That means ambushes aren’t as stealth-based and groups are able to instantly get to where they want for team fights. They’re also very important for traversing the map quickly as toxic gas approaches slightly faster from the corners of the map and guns are harder to find. Think of H1Z1 as an arcade version of PUBG, faster and with more sporadic gameplay.

Before PUBG and Fornite took over the market, I was a hardcore H1Z1 player. I was a very early purchaser, back when you could get both King of the Kill and Just Survive under the same game. Now, Just Survive dropped the “H1Z1” and is in early access by Daybreak on steam. My favorite part of the game has always been the battle royale, and I’m sure everyone could enjoy the gameplay.

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H1Z1 could be considered the roots of the battle royale genre. Although the graphics aren’t as appealing as some other games out there (ie. Fortnite, PUBG, etc…), it might suit your playstyle better. Since it is free for the remainder of this week (6 more days) on steam, you might as well try it out for a few matches. Who knows, you might be the new rank #1 player!

Pick up your copy on Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/433850/H1Z1/

Check out the Leader Boards: https://www.h1z1.com/leaderboards/pre-season-2?region=1&page=1&pageLength=25&sortField=tlk&sortDir=desc 

Alto’s Adventure – The Perfect Harmony of Winter, Snowboarding, and Music on the Go

On its cover, Alto’s adventure is just a simple snowboarding game, but after enjoying it, you realise there’s more than meets the eye. When you boot up Alto’s adventure for the first time, you are greeted by a beautiful mountaintop and are thrown right into the game. The gameplay is basic, yet engaging.

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Outstanding visuals in minimalist format

The core structure of the game is snowboarding down a vast, serene mountain. You collect points by hi-fiving llamas (Yes, we said llamas), and collecting coins. By tapping the screen for various amounts of time, you can jump and execute flips, also collecting points that add to your overall score at your run’s end. With coins you can purchase a multitude of one-time use items such as revives, allowing you can continue your game after hitting an obstacle. Next to the transitory items, you can find the permanent upgrades. You can use your coins to buy power-ups that can be found while snowboarding. Those powerups, such as coin magnets, can be upgraded to last longer and appear more often. Although the game has only a few key obstacles to watch out for, when you do encounter them, you must take heed.

At one point of the game, you are being chased by “The Elder”, an enemy that snowboarding behind you. You must avoid him in order to progress. Other than that, the only other obstructions to watch out for are the rocks and your own self-error.

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Due to the simple, yet soothing gameplay, I wasn’t able to sustain gameplay for over a long period of time, but the aspects that keep me reminiscing are the stunning graphics visuals and soothing music. The game has a unique art style rarely found in the app store. Alto’s Adventure also includes time cycles, switching between day and night, complementing the snowy environment in amazing ways. Blending with the visuals perfectly is the soothing soundtrack. It keeps you calm and practically pacifies your heart rate.

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Alto’s adventure is still just a simple snowboarding game with simple mechanics and gameplay. It’s the charming visuals and beautiful music make the app greatly stand out from its peers. You can pick up this game on your respective app store for $4.99, which is a bargain for this caliber of game.

Enomview Score: 9 out of 10

Check out the game: http://altosadventure.com

Flightless – A Free Game that Somehow had me Questioning Life

Life is hard. No one ever said it wasn’t. The doctor who delivered us didn’t offer us any legal form stating that we’ll get it easy. Sure, some people roll the dice and are born into the upper echelons of humanity, living without a care in the world. Even if we’re lucky enough to lead such an easy life, we’re linked to the strings of our morality. I can honestly say Flightless offered me an escape from those harsh realities. For 20 minutes of my existence, I was a body without a care in the world. My only purpose? Get from red square to red square.

Flightless offers impeccable quality, impactful design, and a profoundly soothing music choice all in a game smaller than 50 megabytes. On top of all that, I think the greatest service the game provides is being free, offering an independent place to seek refuge in such a complicated world. The basic, yet moving designs perfectly line up with the peaceful aesthetic. Personally, minimalistic and pixel-based games are my favorite, Flightless not being an exception.

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I will honestly say that the 20 minutes that I spent playing the game felt more like a pleasurable break rather than researching a game for this site. It washed away the doubts and insecurities I feel about putting so much effort behind a website that might not even break through the mold. 

Besides the thought-provoking aspects (that probably didn’t even mean to provoke thought) of the game, the root constructs of the game weren’t all too original. In a way, you could compare the core concept of the game to Super Hot, in that the world and all it’s obstacles only move when you do. This causes you to predict and plan for the future that waits for you. 

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Puzzles included classics like the ice beneath you shattering and a slippery floor that stops when you hit an object, walkable ground, or when you plainfall off the map. There were some obstacles I haven’t seen before such as moving spike balls that require prediction to evade. Retractable spikes that change with every step were also present. One more aspect that I enjoyed with the actual mechanics were having to back travel once or twice to get to the next level. It made the game feel whole to me, like a world with more than one set path.

With the game sadly lasting a mere 20 minutes, I can’t offer much more of an in-depth analysis. Of course, we hope that the game is extended and look forward to any and all work that Bristol Street Studios release.

Enomview Score: 9 out of 10

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Get The Game: http://store.steampowered.com/app/731770/Flightless/