Game Reviews: 3 Games I Didn’t Like But You Might

 
 

Since this is more of a book blog than a game blog, I usually just talk about the games I like because they’re great and I want people to play them!

But everything is subjective. And sometimes a game that isn’t for me might be perfect for someone else. So I wanted to share a few games that I don’t think are bad games but rather just games that weren’t right for me, and maybe these games will find some new players who will give them the love I couldn’t :-P

*These games might be available on different platforms, but I’m just going to link to where I got them. (None of these are affiliate links.)*


Distress by Light Machine

Distress

Distress is a sci-fi adventure visual novel in which you (the captain) and your crew explore a space station on a mission.

According to Steam, I’ve played this one for 2.4 hours, and I believe I’ve seen maybe half of the outcomes. My biggest issue with this one was that I thought there would be more of a story element. There is a story, but the whole thing goes by quickly and kind of skims the surface rather than pulling you in and letting you get to know the characters and feel for them. Which just isn’t what I want when I play a visual novel.

But if you don’t go into it expecting an in-depth experience, it could be great. The game has got some awesome bold artwork and a creepy feel to it when you’re trying to figure out what’s going on. If I recall correctly, there was some LGBT+, POC, and disability inclusivity among the characters, which is always nice. There are also lots of different outcomes, some that differ only slightly, some that differ wildly, so you might enjoy getting to see how a few small decisions can impact the future for yourself, your crew, and the whole galaxy. And each run-through takes less than an hour, even less when you’ve seen some of the text already, so that’s another bonus if you don’t have a lot of time or like playing in quick bursts.

*Note: This game seems to be fully accessible for blind and visually impaired players (I checked on PC, I don’t know about Mac). Just press V once the game window has opened. Text will be read aloud, and you can navigate using the keyboard, including the menu.*

Buy It Here

Baba Is You by Hempuli Oy

Baba Is You

Baba is You is a game in which you solve puzzles by pushing blocks around, but you also change the rules of the puzzle, which is part of the puzzle… You’re just gonna have to watch the video on the game’s info page :-P

I have no complaints about this game, it just turns out I don’t like this particular type of puzzle. It’s super interesting and unique though (at least, I’ve never seen another game with this type of puzzle), and has a cute, pixel art style. I’m sure other people will love it! In fact, it seems most people do, as it has fantastic ratings on Steam.

Buy It Here

Voyageur by Bruno Dias

Voyageur

Voyageur is a text-based game where you explore space, trade goods, and manage your crew.

This is one of those games that’s basically just a grind. You buy things, you sell things, you hire crew, you improve your ship, you restock supplies, you accumulate points that help with things, and then you rinse and repeat until you have enough money that there’s no challenge anymore. There’s no real story (at least not that I saw, and much of the text is recycled), no puzzles to solve, no list of goals to try and achieve. Just making decisions, mostly on how to spend your money.

That’s not to say it’s a bad game though. It’s cool for what it is. I got tired of this after an hour or two, but I do think these grind kind of games are fun for a short while. And who knows, maybe I’d discover more things if I kept playing or restarted and tried out a different option in the beginning. It does seem you might get to uncover a bit of a mystery about the technology the ships use and where it comes from and some stuff with aliens upon subsequent plays. Basically, this entertained me for a short while, and you might enjoy it if you like these kinds of games or want something you can play in short bursts that will take you away from real life and into other galaxies.

*Note: This game seems to be fully accessible to blind and visually impaired players using a screen reader. At least, it worked for me with the NVDA screen reader, using the same keyboard shortcuts I normally use to navigate. This includes the start screen and menus. Getting to the gameplay menu at the bottom that has Market, Crew, etc. by using the keyboard was a bit tricky at first, but it is doable.*

Buy It Here

 
 
 

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  1. Greg

    Distress and Voyageur sound like they have potential, especially Distress since the premise kind of appeals to me, but yeah I think I’d want a little deeper story too. Still, good to know it’s out there if I ever wanna kill a few hours exploring a space station… :)

    1. Kristen Burns

      I loved the premise of Distress too. I do think it’s just a personal preference, but maybe because we’re readers, we like more in-depth stories in these kinds of games.

  2. Roberta R.

    I’m not a huge fan of games in general (though I’ve spent too much time in the past on Super Mario clones and the likes LOL – but since I started my blog, my spare time is devoted to all things blogging), but I meant to say that you’re really good at writing these game reviews!

  3. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    Yay, you know I love when you talk about games as most people who blog don’t really game all that much (unless it’s Sims, because Sims is universal). Sory these games didn’t work out for you but I was impressed to see Distress and Voyageur were suitable for the blind and visually impaired. That is something I hadn’t even considered when it came to gaming so it’s impressive to see there are companies making that effort to make their games inclusive where possible. I’d seen Baba is You before and never really been all that interested but I do love the art style and a puzzle game can be fun (as long as I don#t find it too frustrating).

    1. Kristen Burns

      It’s funny you mention the accessibility because I’ve learned recently, while looking into whether games are accessible, that games made with a certain program (Ren’Py) all come with the self-voicing mode, I think. Or it’s a simple thing to turn on. Something like that. So it doesn’t necessarily mean the devs put in any effort. In some games, you can’t even navigate the menu on the main screen, screens with stats, etc. I’m playing Arcade Spirits now though, and this game has shown me what it’s like when devs actually do put in the effort. They’ve included descriptions of visuals, sound effects for things (like a sound to let you know when it’s time to make a choice), and made sure every part of the game is accessible.

      I was so interested in Baba Is You because it’s such a cool kind of puzzle! But yeah, being too frustrated is not fun, and that’s what happened here. Which is totally on me though, it’s just apparently not a type of puzzle I am good at or enjoy.

  4. Lola

    It’s fun to hear your thoughts about these game,s even though they weren’t fully for you. Baba is You sounds familiar so I’ve probably seen it on Steam once. I like puzzle games, so I might enjoy that one, will have to check out the trailer. That’s too bad Distress didn’t have as much of a story element as you expected.

    I’ve definitely played some games that were good, but not quite for me. Or they do one thing really good, but other parts don’t work for me.

  5. Flora

    Kristen, I’m not a gamer but this is YOUR blog. Who says you can’t write about games AND books. You can review and write about whatever takes your fancy! Movies, TV programmes, even the takeaway you had that blew your mind or kept you hurling all night.. ;-) I, for one, will read whatever you post, it’s what makes blogging feel like such a wonderfully diverse community. x