A blog about casual gaming

New Game Round-up

New Game Round-up

We present the last batch of new games from 2010. Enjoy them while you can.

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Published by Alex Kearns on 31st December 2010

The new year is almost upon us but before the famous annual countdown begins, there is still time for us to squeeze in a few new games from 2010. So just for a few moments, return the bottles of champagne to the icer, take your party shoes off, and settle down on the couch with your laptop, because we are taking you on one last journey through the casual gaming world of 2010.

Along the way you will encounter a city of buildings that make music, one of the most addictive time-management games we've played and a crop of brilliantly inventive platform games. Play them now for very shortly they will be games from the past year, and no self-respecting casual gamer would want to be seen dead playing out-of-date games, would they.

1 Isle of Tune

Have you ever had the urge while playing a city building game such as SimCity to create some music, and been annoyed that you have to open up a whole new piece of software to do so. Conversely, have you ever been busy making melodies in some music software and suddenly been overwhelmed by the need to do some virtual city building. If so, then we have the perfect game for you. Isle of Tune is a rare but effective fusion of city building and music creation.

Lay out your city as any good town planner would, providing houses for residents to live in, trees and gardens to keep them happy and roads to allow them to get around. So far, so normal. But - and here's the game's big twist - the environment you create is a musical instrument and the players are the cars. Each time a car passes by an object, it plays a particular sound. Passing by a house will cause it to emit one sound. A tree or piece of street furniture will cause it to make another noise. What would you call such a place? Why, Isle of Tune, of course. Get building your own musical island here.

2 K.O.L.M.

The robot in this clever platform game wakes up with blurry vision and problems walking straight. Now, I know what you're thinking: Mr Robot overdid the engine oil cocktails the previous evening. Actually, no. Something far more serious is afoot for our android. The reason his vision is blurry is because his optical circuits have fallen out. And he can't walk straight because his legs have gone physically missing. If that were not bad enough, there's a whole load of nasty critters out to get him. Still, things could be worse. At least his mum is there to offer helpful advice... KOLM is a thoughtful and initially slow-moving game that if you are into these you will probably love but it might not be for everyone. Play the game here.

3 Papa's Burgeria

I can't think of anything worse than working in a burger joint. Or, at least, I couldn't think of anything more awful. After playing this game, I have changed my mind. I was wrong. Not only is working at a burgeria not the worst job in the world, it is actually among the best jobs ever. Perhaps not up there with being an international footballer or a rock star. But still pretty damn cool.

Don't believe me. Well, I challenge you to play this time-management game where you run a burger joint and if you don't find it as ridiculously addictive as I did, I will personally fry you a burger. Play Papa’s Burgeria here. If you enjoy the game, you might want to extend your fast-food skills still further with another of Flipline Studios's gems: Papa's Pizzeria.

4 Endeavor

Made for the Ludum Dare game competition, Endeavor is a retro-style platform game with an emphasis on exploration and discovery. You play a dwarf on a quest to find the family treasure hidden somewhere in the surrounding land. Initially, you are a wee creature with little strength or guile, incapable of defeating the many obstacles that stand in your way. But as you explore, you find power-ups that boost your jumping ability and endurance. Endeavor is a great platform adventure game offering a vast game world, multiple endings, interactive (usually in a sarcastic way) NPCs and loads of creatures to kill. It should keep you entertained for a good few hours. Play Endeavor here.

5 Carrot

Ferry Halim has created so many beautiful and brilliant games already that even if he were never to release another game, his place in the pantheon of great casual game creators would still be secure. Thankfully, Ferry is not about to retire from game making just yet. He may not be as prolific as in the past but he is still producing fantastic games, as his latest creation - Carrot - proves. Help the bunny find the carrots while avoiding the nasty dogs. Carrot may not be Ferry’s greatest ever game but, boy, is it cute. You can play it here.

6 Tentacle Wars

Tentacle Wars is a conquest strategy game where you defeat your enemy by taking over his bases one by one through force of numbers. It is certainly not the first to use this game-play mechanic to good effect, a similar concept having been used in games such as Lionga Galaxy 2 and the absolutely brilliant Civilisations Wars.

However, Tentacle Wars does bring something new to the genre: tentacles. These function as conduits, through which your army of attacking microbes can burrow into your enemies' bases. You can also use tentacles to reinforce your own bases. Tentacle Wars is an interesting take on the strategy genre and well worth a few plays. Start playing here.

7 Jumpless

On a cursory look, Jumpless by Daesung Park does not appear very promising. The graphics are not up too much, the music is a tad repetitive and annoying. But don't get put off by any of this, because behind its plain Jane facade, Jumpless is hiding one of the most inventive platform puzzle games of the year. You are a little yellow block who can't really do much - you can only move left and right, which makes even the most basic obstacle - a wall or a gap for example - insurmountable on your own. Thankfully, you are not on your own. You have at your disposal other blocks with different skills, such as the ability to move up and down. By positioning these other blocks perfectly, you may be able to get yourself to the end of each level. Jumpless can be played here.

8 City Siege

One for all you action fans out there. City Siege is a side-scrolling romp of a war game where you have to blow up anything and everything that stands in your way. Featuring cute graphics, loads of military hardware and more enemies than you can point an AK47 at, this game will have your eyes peeled and adrenaline pumping just like you were in a real war-zone. Except, of course, one false move won't reduce you to a lifeless heap of bones and flesh. But instead will only require you to press the restart button. So not really like a real war-zone at all. Still, City Siege is great fun. Play it here.

9 Desert Moon

Desert Moon is a slick defence game set on a desert on the moon. Well, that is what they claim. But, as far as I can see, there is no proof that it is a desert on the moon. It could just as well be a desert on earth. So it could be that the American government staged the whole thing for some evil ulterior purpose, just like they did the moon landings. Either way, before playing this surprisingly addictive game, make sure your tin-foil hoodie is in place - you wouldn't want the government beaming hypnotic messages direct into your skull, after all. Desert Moon can be played here.

10 Bubble Tanks 3

It is difficult for me to get excited by a game that is in its third iteration, especially when it is an arena shooter - one of my least favourite types of game. And yet, despite all this, I can honestly say I am excited about this game. Bubble Tanks 3 is simply brilliant and even had an arenashooterphobe like me playing along with gusto. One nice thing about the game is the way you upgrade your tank. Rather than being forced to follow a set upgrade path, you can customise your tank in almost any way you want. There are a ton of weapons and passive abilities you can choose from. Jump into the bathtub and have fun with Bubble Tanks 3 here.

Special mentions

We have a couple of special mentions this issue. Firstly The Flying Machine by delightfully-named game developer Johnny Two Shoes - creator of classics like High Speed Chase and Banana Dash World. We don't have the full game to show you just yet as it has not yet been completed. But Johnny has kindly unveiled the first level and boy does it look good. Play it here.

Our second special mention is a snazzy defence style game from Lost Decade Games that is now available in the Chrome web store. Onslaught Arena is of interest for a couple of reasons. First off, it is simply a great fun game - one of the nicest arena shooter survival games we have come across. Secondly, it was made using HTML5 - a new technology that promises to revolutionise the way online games are made in coming years. A demo of Onslaught Arena can be found here. Further information about HTML5 games can be found in our list of The Top 30 HTML5 Games.

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Add comment

Published by Casual Girl Gamer on 18th January 2011
@Jose Knytt Stories is a great game. Thx for bringing it to our attention. Plus, we are well chuffed that you love our blog!
Published by Jose on 17th January 2011
Love your blog as much as I love poetic and refreshing platformers. Endeavor is great in that category. Thank you for sharing. I would like to draw your attention on a free game which I don't recall ever seeing on your blog : Knytt Stories (+ expensions!) by Niffla (http://nifflas.ni2.se/?page=Knytt+Stories) It is cute, deep, trippy, challenging... plus the music is just awesome. I am not advertising or anything. Being a fan of both your blog and this game, I just think it really deserves a place somewhere around here. Keep up the good work.

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