Violet: Space Mission

Violet: Space Mission

While Violet: Space Mission features functional visuals and audio, it is the gameplay that impresses the most. The game packs quite a challenge and navigating through the debris strewn areas using only a propulsion pack is no easy feat. The high difficulty might turn off more casual players, but anyone who enjoys a good challenge will appreciate what this game has to offer.

Gameplay: The challenge ramps up very quickly, but the game remains addictive throughout its ten levels.

Graphics: The visuals are good, but nothing spectacular.

Sound: Fitting, but thankfully unobtrusive

Car Mechanic Simulator 2015 by PlayWay

Car Mechanic Simulator 2015 by PlayWay

After creating one of the most popular simulation titles on Steam in 2014, the team behind Car Mechanic Simulator 2014 is back with a direct sequel. According to the developers, the original game was purchased by more than 4 million players, but this doesn’t mean that they are resting on their laurels for the sequel. Instead the team, which is composed of people from PlayWay INC and Red Dot Game Studios, listened to player feedback and is creating a game with plenty of new stuff

HuniePop

HuniePop

If you are looking for something to be offended by you will find plenty to be outraged about in HuniePop. If, on the other hand, you are looking for a polished and entertaining title that combines a couple of different genres very successfully then you will find that this game is money well spent. Hopefully the developers will flesh out the concept further if they get around to a sequel as there is a lot of potential here.

Gameplay: The puzzle elements are fun and surprisingly strategic, while interacting with the girls is entertaining albeit a little repetitive.

Graphics: Beautifully drawn characters with plenty of clothing and hair variations, but no animations beyond lip synching.

Sound: The professional English voice actresses really bring the characters to life and the soundtrack is rather good too

Mechs & Mercs – Black Talons (Camel 101)

Mechs & Mercs – Black Talons (Camel 101)

With games such as Mechs & Mercs: Black Talons from Camel 101 looming on the horizon it would seem that 2015 is going to be another bumper year for gaming. I certainly can’t think of a much better way to kick things off than a real-time strategy game featuring mercenaries and giant mechs. Set to release early in January, Mechs & Mercs aims to offer an extensive campaign mode where players get to take control of the Black Talons mercenary company

This War of Mine

This War of Mine

This War of Mine takes on a serious subject and manages to turn it into a great game without compromising the core message. War is hell and trying to survive it as a non-combatant is something that nobody should ever have to experience in real life. The game offers a glimpse into the trials and tribulations faced by ordinary people caught up in extraordinary circumstances. It is a dark experience that will probably not appeal to everyone, but once it sucks you into its bleak world it can be hard to leave until you have done all you could to save the people placed under your guidance.

Gameplay: Simple to control, but hard to master, this game will challenge you in more ways than one.

Graphics: The unique art style perfectly captures the bleak reality of being trapped in a hostile environment.

Sound: Fitting audio and outstanding sound effects

From The Depths (Brilliant Skies Ltd.)

From The Depths (Brilliant Skies Ltd.)

Sitting down to play From the Depths for the first time is quite a daunting experience. I followed the advice of Nick Smart, the developer, and checked out the tutorial video first, but my first few hours with the game mostly consisted of playing tutorial missions and messing about in the vehicle designer. There are a lot of hand holding and step by step instructions for the tutorials, but From the Depths is a very complicated game and it takes time, not to mention patience, before everything start to make sense

I Am Bread

I Am Bread

As if creating one of the most maddeningly entertaining surgical “simulation” titles we’ve ever played wasn’t enough, the fine folks over at Bossa Studios have now turned their attention to bread. According to the developers, I Am Bread is “the beautiful story of one slice of bread’s epic and emotional journey as it embarks upon a quest to become toasted.” Apparently this will involve traversing the perils of a kitchen, lounge, bedroom and bathroom as a moving slice of bread

Fading Hearts

Fading Hearts

Fading Hearts was a pleasant surprise, more so when I discovered that it is not by a Japanese company. A nice combination of visual novel, dating sim and role playing that has plenty of things to discover. Definitely a title that you will want to complete more than once.

Gameplay: Much more to see and do than typical visual novels.
Graphics: Nice characters and backgrounds, pity about the monsters.
Sound: Very nice

Xpand Rally

Xpand Rally

Awesome graphics if you have the hardware to run it and some challenging gameplay makes this one a winner if you are a rally fan. While Colin McRae still beats it when it comes to pure entertainment but if you are a rally purist then get this.

Gameplay: Good but not for the easily bored.
Graphics: Great looking cars and tracks.
Sound: Average

Always Remember Me

Always Remember Me

Always Remember Me has the distinction of being the first Otome Game on Steam, so how much you enjoy it will depend very much on whether you like the genre or not. The story is interesting, but the focus is more on training stats which can result in repetition, especially after multiple playthroughs. For an older game, Always Remember Me still holds up well and it is quite a relaxing experience, so if you are in the mood for something different it is worth seeking out.

Gameplay: The focus is more on juggling stats than interacting with the characters.

Graphics: The artwork still holds up well.

Sound: The soundtrack is decent, but the speech snippets can start to become repetitive