Each week our resident Indie Gamer Nicholas takes a look at a different Indie Game that you may or may not have heard about. Join him on his adventures as he sifts through the rubbish to find The Indie Game of the Week.
Today, I'd like to bring your attention to another indie game that's been around for a while - one which might well be one of the most beautiful metroidvania-style games I've ever played. It's called Aquaria, and it puts you in the shoes of a young mermaid-like creature by the name of Naija. Naija is the last of her kind, adrift in a vast underwater world filled with the ruins of long-forgotten civilizations. For much of her life, she's wandered the depths completely ignorant of what she is, completely unaware of her intellect.
Then, one day...her life changes. She ends up encountering a strange, cloaked figure which opens up her mind to the world. From there, she sets out on a grand journey to explore the ruins of ages long past in hopes of eventually finding out who - or what - she is, and perhaps discovering what happened to her people to destroy them. The waters aren't necessarily safe, however: she'll encounter a vast array of frightening, dangerous, and downright horrific creatures drifting through the deeps. In order to protect herself against these creatures, Naija is equipped with a very powerful weapon: her voice.
Naija's power is in the songs she sings - using either the mouse or the keyboard, the player can bring up a whole array of musical 'notes' which can be sung in sequence. Depending on the sequence Naija sings, a number of different effects may occur. She can shield herself from harm, move large objects, and even polymorph her body into new and powerful variants. Of course, these sequences need to be unlocked through exploration of the vast underwater kingdom, which is more or less entirely free-roaming: though there are bosses and an overarching plot, there's actually very little to keep players from exploring the world and doing things exactly as they want. As much as it's possible for a game of this kind to be open, Aquaria is.
There's also a crafting system which allows you to create food to give yourself various bonuses or heal the damage Naija takes.
That's not what defines the title, though. As I've said, virtually everything about Aquaria is positively beautiful. The music is incredible, the graphics, though simple, are incredibly well-designed and quite easy on the eyes. Even if you don't play this one for the gameplay, at least try it for the experience: it's stunning, and I guarantee you won't find yourself disappointed.
Ten Of The Best MMORPG Songs Ever Heard
In many ways, an MMO is only as good as its music. Many of the best and most memorable moments in an MMO invariably have a song associated with them; a piece of music which brings the memories flooding back the moment it reaches one's ears. Today, I'd like to pay homage to some of those songs - and some of those moments. Here, for your listening pleasure (and in no particular order, I assure you) is a list of some of the best songs ever heard in an MMO.
Facebook's Purchase Of Oculus VR Isn't The End Of The World
For those of you who've been living under a rock, Facebook recently purchased Oculus VR to the tune of $2 billion. Understandably, backers and developers alike were rather unimpressed, calling it a betrayal. As for me? I've never been more excited.
Seven Of The Worst Things You Can Say In League
If you've played league, you've probably encountered at least one toxic player. If you haven't, there's a good chance that YOU are the toxic one. Don't believe me? Ask yourself if you've ever said any of the following...
Six Reasons You Should Be Playing Dark Souls II
I've been playing a lot of Dark Souls II lately - and you should be too. Say what you will about the game's flaws, it's still arguably one of the best action RPGs released in the past several years. If you're up for a bit of a challenge, it's well worth the buy. Don't believe me? Let's talk, then.
Eight Reasons The Elder Scrolls Online Will Be Awesome
As you're all no doubt aware, The Elder Scrolls Online - currently in open beta - will be launching in a few months or so. In light of both the new release date and all the hype surfacing around it, I've decided that, over the next two weeks, I'll be looking at all the reasons to look forward to it...and all the reasons we shouldn't.
League of Legends or DOTA 2?
The debate between Dota 2 and League of Legends has been raging almost since the two games were first released. But which game is REALLY the superior of the two?
Ten Fictional Settings That'd Make For Awesome MMOs
Let's look at a few settings, worlds, and stories I'd love to see made into MMOs. I'm sure you'll agree, all the entries on this list have the potential to be downright awesome.
MMO Year In Review: 5 of 2013's Biggest Dick Moves
People are dicks - particularly on the Internet. While that shouldn't come as any great surprise, occasionally we come across someone whose level of sheer dickery reaches legendary proportions. As we move into 2014, let's take a look at a few such individuals from the previous year.
Censorship Spells Trouble for League of Legends Patcher
Internet filtering has been a hot button issue for the past several years. With the slow gutting of protective measures like Net Neutrality, and with governmental powers seeking an end to online anonymity, it's rather harrowing to see the slow progression of political and social policing of the internet. Recently, after about a year of lobbying, the United Kingdom enacted a piece of legislation that many have come to call the "UK Porn Filter." What the filter requires is for British ISP's to implement filters and controls, which are on by default, that will block access to "violent material," not imited to "extremist and terrorist related content," "anorexia and eating disorder websites," and "suicide related websites."
Five Things Riot Needs To Do With League of Legends
The folks at Riot already have their work cut out for them moving into Season 4, and they?re doing a damned find job of weathering the transition so far. That said, here?s a few changes we?d like to see as the new season draws near.