XBLIG Fridays: Cthulhu Saves the World

Well, I missed last week’s XBLIG Friday.  I’m so upset with myself! But don’t worry, I still have plenty of weeks of Indie Games ahead for you… so let’s dive right into the good stuff!

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You might recognize the name Zeboyd Games from one of my earlier Friday posts: Chtulhu Saves the World is the spiritual successor to Breath of Death VII: The Beginning.  As you might expect, you’ll get lots of laughs, and fast-paced gameplay that’s a parody of the role-playing genre itself.

But, at least to me, everything about this 16-bit style game is just… better than its predecessor.  The graphics are updated and cleaner, the battle theme is completely rocking, and the story better facilitates for the lulz (I mean, it’s Cthulhu saving the world, with the tagline “Save the world to destroy it!”, what more could you want?).  In addition, everything that was good about Breath of Death is still here, such as the battle counters and the branching level-ups.  It’s practically better than Breath of Death in every way.

But, this edition of XBLIG Fridays comes with a special cause… Zeboyd Games is running a pledge-donation-thingie to get an enhanced version released on the PC (and 360 too maybe?) with new modes and other fun things.  I really like the idea of one mode, where Cthulhu is too lazy to go and save the world, so he enlists angels to do his dirty work for him.  Of course, that leads to new story stuff, so it sounds pretty awesome.  The developer wanted to raise $3,000, which he’s really done, and the more he gets, the more cool things that’ll get added to the enhanced version.  If you like Zeboyd Games and want more cool stuff, then it’s helpful to make a pledge if you can!

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That’s it for this week.  There’s plenty more Indie Games to go through, so make sure to stay tuned!  I won’t forget to post next week.

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XBLIG Friday: The Impossible Game

Alright, it’s Friday, so it’s time for another edition of XBLIG Fridays!  This one’s gonna be short and sweet, since I have a headache and I want to get some sleep.  Regardless of that, don’t think that the pick is shabby and not worth your time!

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The Impossible Game is very simple.  You’re a block, and you jump over spikes and other blocks, and don’t die.  That’s pretty much it.  Even though the graphics are simplistic, the gameplay is completely solid.  It’s also hard as hell, as there are NO checkpoints whatsoever (unless you’re a pansy that plays on Practice mode), and dying means starting back over from the beginning.  The game becomes a test of patience and memorization, which obviously isn’t up every gamer’s alley, but is worth looking into for the 80 MS points for those who are.

Oh yeah, and the music’s pretty awesome, too.  You actually jump somewhat with the beat of the track (though which particular beat it is won’t be the same throughout the level), and is something I found a bit helpful to combat my terrible timing.  Of course, relying on a trick like that would get you killed quickly, as the timing’s not always right, but that adds to the challenge.

It’s good to note as well that The Impossible Game Level Pack (it’s really just a sequal as opposed to DLC) recently came out on XBLIG, which gives you two harder new levels with some crazy effects, all for a buck as well.  Of course, as the developers warn, it’s best to play and beat the original first.

XBLIG Friday: Garden Gnome Carnage X

Oh, would you look at that.  A title with the word ‘Friday’ in it?  It must be a new blogging series!  For XBLIG Fridays, I’ll take an Xbox Live Indie Game every Friday (obviously) that you should play, and well… show it to you.  The Indie game area of the Xbox is horribly ignored, and have some really great games hidden under all the shovelware.  They’re usually pretty cheap, too (the highest that can be charged for a game is 400 MS points, though a game rarely goes that high), and the games I’ll be highlighting are worth wasting an afternoon or weekend on.  So, let’s begin.

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For the first edition of XBLIG Fridays, I scoured the library for some kind of Christmas themed game to feature.  Is IT Christmas Eve, afterall.  And much to my surprise, I actually found one.

Garden Gnome Carnage X (or GGC X, as it’s called in the Marketplace) does not seem like the kind of game that’s… good.  Nor does it seem like a Christmas game in the least.  But bare with me, and I’ll show you why this game is worth your 80 MS Points (or a dollar, if you prefer).

So, you play as a garden gnome.  And garden gnomes apparently hate Christmas.  And… well, that’s all I knew before downloading the demo and booting up the game.  But when I saw a garden gnome semi-parody of the beginning of Mega Man 2, I knew this simplistic castle defense game had something going for it.

Uh... yeah.

Anyway, as I said before, you play as a gnome, and you want to defend the roof of your building so that the nasty elves and Santa can’t deliver their presents.  You’re not as powerless as a gnome as one might think, either.  First off, the gnome is apparently a bungee freak, and he spends the game flailing about the stage, knocking elves off of the building and Santas from out of the sky.  While the gnome’s flying around, you can grab bricks from the building and throw them, causing a lot of splash damage and allowing you to hit elves you couldn’t reach yourself.  Bricks aren’t unlimited, though, and you can only get more by allowing your cat friend to make it to the top.

What, you say it doesn’t make sense?  Oh, did I mention the building is on wheels, and you move it about effortlessly?  How about that you can control the elements themselves, and control the way the wind blows, affecting the gnome’s bungeeing area?  To top it all off, you can call in airstrikes, too.  Yeah, you should have know this game wouldn’t make sense in the first place.

The gnome's always chillin' with his shades

However, the sheer insanity of it all is what adds to the fun.  GGC X is simple fast-paced, completely nonsense fun.  Sure, there are better games out there, but for a buck, there’s not much to lose with this one.  So download it and share it with your family this Xmas.  You’ll be sure to get some laughs and ‘WTF’s from it.