Hi, it’s been MONTHS I know. And it’s not like I’ve not been playing anything. I’ve just not been playing loads. I did Titanfall 2 when that came out but honestly, I just thought it was great like everyone else did. I fell into a Bloodborne/Dark Souls 1 hole in which I was trying to do them both simultaneously, (a bit of one and then a bit of the other I mean, not like, one in each hand, though that would be very cool) but even that particular masochistic gauntlet has been rudely interrupted by Horizon: Zero Dawn, which is taking me a million billion years, and yes, like everybody else, I’m really enjoying it.
Anyway. If you know me or this site in general (which I know you do, mum) you’ll know I’m a big fan of The Stanley Parable, its creator William Pugh, and his subsequent studio Crows Crows Crows. Crows Crows Crows (crows crows) have since released a totally completely utterly free game that is gloriously written and stars Simon T4-on-the-Buzzcocks Amstell. Read about that, sort of, here.
As well as Dr. Langeskov, The Tiger, and The Terribly Cursed Emerald: A Whirlwind Heist, and around the same time, x3 Crows released a Twine game called The Temple of No. Twine games are good because they are mostly words and words are good. Free advice right here – you should go and play some (more?) Twine games, and after finally playing through The Temple of No myself last weekend, I can confirm that is absolutely where you should start… or continue, if you haven’t had a go already.
Razor sharp writing, a fun story that will probably make you do at least one sizeable laugh, and some superb pretty pictures that are amusing in their own right, the ability to finish it right here, right now, and that’s not to mention THREE TOTALLY SEPARATE story strands (maybe). Of course it’s also totally free and playable in your browser. If that’s not a solid sell I don’t know what is. Though I have never been good at sells.
The story and its accompanying audio/soundtrack appears on the page with comedic rhythm and cadence. This is Crows(3)’s speciality, weaving together a narrative tissue that goes beyond simply Telling Jokes and instead actively uses the platform to emphasise its comedy. It worked brilliantly in Pugh’s The Stanley Parable, and that same skill is present here in a whole new way. Increasingly I’m inclined to believe Crows+++ can do no wrong, and if their recent, subsequent self-jettison into the world of VR with Rick and Morty creator Justin Roiland is anything to go by, they will continue not doing any wrong for the foreseeable.
Twine games are pretty much all available for the low, low price of free, and like most modes of media, there’re available in funny and sad and insightful and thought-provoking and mood(genre); flavours, as well. For clarification, they’re games in a loose sense of the word, but the only people who would get mad about that sort of thing have already burst all their blood vessels on Twitter so. I wanted to make a point of this here to you, dearest lone reader, because after doing The Temple of No, I did a few more, and I think they deserve to be casting a net wider than [improvised mother-in-law joke]. Some people are doing some brilliant, adventurous stuff with Twine games and lots of them are very worthy of your attention. Go and find them, you won’t regret it.
I recommend itch.io for finding a fair few of them.
Sorry for the silence, I’ll get something else up here soon probably.