Summer Game Fest marathon



  • I'm checking the Demos on the Xbox but Steam will probably have some demos too, at least they had last year. It lasts from 15th to the 21st in a total of 40 demos and I plan to get through as many as possible during this week.

    If anyone else is going to check in them please leave your thoughts here.

    I had to start with Sable. When it was announced 3 years ago it jumped immediately to one of my most anticipated titles. BotW meets Moebius, with a wonderful soundtrack by Japanese Breakfast and a cool 24fps animation style, how can you not love it?

    Fortunately the demo delivers and apart from needing some more polishing, even as it stands, it promises to be one of the indie titles of the year (to me at least).

    Youtube Video



  • Justice Sucks: Recharged

    Well, this is a silly one. You are a Roomba... at first I thought this was going to be a chill cleaning game but quickly becomes a bloody mess as your house gets invaded by thieves and it's up to you to stop them by using home appliances as traps, until you murder them. After you have to dispose of the bodies and clean the blood.

    Then it just escalates from there as you are sent to another location. It's a fun game that absolutely doesn't take itself seriously but totally not for me.

    Youtube Video



  • Button City

    Very basic visuals and interactions. Light hearted and silly writing. The kind of game I hope there's not too many among the 40 demos because right until the end, when you get to play a reasonably enjoyable mini game, it was kind of pointless.

    Youtube Video



  • The Eternal Cylinder

    I've played the PC closed beta already and was impressed by it. Now on console it's basically the same with some improvements but it needs better optimisation.

    It's a bizarre game, you are in an Alien world that looks truly alien and in that world there's a cylinder of planetary proportions that grinds everything in its way. You control a group of creatures trying to escape the cylinder, sometimes just by trying to outrun it others by going into mysterious temples solving simple puzzles.

    It's a shame if this game is ignored because pretty much every single aspect of it is well above average.

    Youtube Video

    Catlateral Damage Remeowed

    1st person cat simulator. Apparently this game was released 6 years ago and for some reason someone thought the world needed a re-release "Remeowed". I love cats but this game is a turd.
    Youtube Video



  • Is there a way to force Xbox app to update? I have no demos on Xbox app.



  • @dipset Ah, you're putting too much fate in Microsoft. I had to get a list of the games and manually download the demos.



  • Juggler's Tale

    Cool little demo that kinda sold me on the game. Puzzle platformer that Limbo/Inside fans might find interesting. A shame that isn't longer.

    Youtube Video

    Faraday Protocol

    Your typical 1st person puzzle game in the vein of a Talo's Principle or Turing Test. It starts bad with the Series X struggling to get anywhere near 30fps with lots of pop in, terrible first impressions, clearly a low budget game badly optimised (still an E3 demo so it's okish). The art style is like ancient Egypt meets alien civilization, with black marble and golden dominating the colour palette. Once you enter the pyramid and the game starts going, it seems to be a fairly OK puzzle game. Not impressive but something I would give a chance if it dropped on Game Pass.

    Youtube Video

    Godstrike

    I'm terrible at bullet hell games but I can't say I don't enjoy the challenge. This one is out pretty much everywhere except Xbox. It's fine I guess, I like how time is also simultaneously your energy, it adds an interesting layer of challenge and boy this was a challenging demo. Really don't like the visuals.

    Youtube Video

    Clouzy!

    Farming game that I imagine the target audience is 10 years old children who had very bad luck with their parents and are only allowed to play offensively bland games. Nothing really wrong with it, just seems kind of a pointless game with so much offer in the genre... well I'm surely not the target here.

    Youtube Video



  • @phbz

    I'm sold on Juggler's Tale. If I can have a chance I want to try it.



  • @scotty Looks like a game with potential, I wish the demo was longer.

    Arietta of Spirits

    This demo serves well as a teaser, there's certainly something here and I'm pretty sure it will at least be an OK game. It controls well and has a distinct mood. Top down fantasy action adventure.

    Youtube Video

    Lake

    Rough around the edges but a delightful game, and a very generous demo. You're a person who took the opportunity to comeback to her lakeside hometown and deliver mail for 2 weeks, taking the opportunity to escape city life and professional pressures. You slowly get reacquainted with the people and places as story lines start to unfold. Totally sold on it but... I wish they improve stuff like water effects, lighting model because I feel like it would push the atmosphere and the whole game to the next level.

    Youtube Video

    Teacup

    This is a weird one. Your name is Teacup, you want to make a tea party and you just ran out of tea!!! So you have to go on an adventure (?) to get a variety of teas. Art style is so weird, looks like drawn by a young child but it's obviously intentional. It simultaneously works and it doesn't. I tell you what, you can learn a lot about teas, infusions and maybe biscuits. Fits well under the description of "wholesome games". Maybe a cool game for a parent to play along with a small child? I don't know.

    Youtube Video



  • @phbz said in Summer Game Fest marathon:

    Lake

    I tried this a month or two ago. I even recommend it to someone, maybe it was you.

    I found it boring. It would be nice to see the continuation of the story but game's pacing is not for me. A bit of more budget or publisher boost would make it a more appealing game maybe, just like Spiritfarer etc.



  • @phbz

    Good god that's annoying. Do you have the list? I'm starting to question if this is even available in my country because I searched for Sable (which I thought had a demo) and nothing is coming up.



  • @DIPSET Here https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2021/06/15/idxbox-summer-game-demo-fest-showcases-40-games/

    @Scotty
    I loved the slow pace. I think what might be lacking for some is the gamification of some elements, like maybe having an economy associated with your deliveries, managing fuel etc. I'm fine as it is, depending on how the story lines evolve and if it's not too long.



  • Death Trash

    This is the kind of game I can see having a cult following in the indie scene. A very peculiar, dark, gory and post apocalyptic world with an eerie soundtrack that fits perfectly. The graphics are very simple but unique and full of character. Looks like a deceivingly simple RPG one could easily lose himself for many many hours. There's something special about it, even if flawed.

    Youtube Video

    Rift Breaker

    An interesting mix of real time strategy, with base building and resource management, with action, as you control a mech. Like in some of the other demos there's still a lot of optimization work to be done and I think this is more suited for PC than console but I'll give it a chance once it drops on Gamepass later this year.

    Youtube Video



  • @phbz Played the Death Trash demo myself seems like a very interesting game I could definitely see it catching on. Really cool aesthetic & there seems to be a lot of choice in how you want to play. One to watch.



  • Echo Generation

    Great visual style, reminiscent of Lego but also of the Touryst game, a western turn-based RPG very much inspired by the Stranger Things trend. Gameplay is competent and combat OK but depending on the writing it might be something worth keeping an eye on.

    Youtube Video

    Paint the Town Red

    Hilarious one, first person brawler with very simple and silly graphics. The principle is simple, you start a fight in a location, like a bar, and chaos ensues. Chairs, broken bottles, knives, everything is fair game. This is out, at least in early access for a long time, and I guess now it's coming to consoles. Seems fun if nothing else.

    Youtube Video

    Tunic

    This one is phenomenal but not surprising, lots of media people have been praising it since it was first shown. Classic top down Zelda influences are obvious but I was not expecting to see some souls mixed in, be it in the level design or recovering your stuff after death. Phenomenal music and a clean art style, although I've never was a fan of the light and now that I'm hands on I still maintain that something isn't quite right. But ye, this one judging by the high quality of the demo is going to be lit.

    Youtube Video

    Deathtrap Dungeon: The Golden Room

    One of those choose your own adventure live action games with actors that make a Marvel movies look like high art, this one based on the Ian Livingstone books. You're in a dungeon then there's orcs and a Ninja. Stay tuned, out 2022! (I would totally play this if it came to Game Pass.)

    Youtube Video

    Sail Forth

    I would love to understand the economics behind this type of games and how they end up in this bundle of demos. Maybe it's more of a portfolio thing? The creators understand this is bad but it's a way to show they have some skills?

    This is a procedurally generated sailing game with very poor... everything? They got the sea and the sailing right but everything else is appalling. Who buys this games?

    Youtube Video



  • Ugh definitely doesn't work in Canada. None of these games show up on Game Pass. Really wanted to try Lawn Mower Simulator lol



  • @dipset Would changing your location settings help.



  • @phbz said in Summer Game Fest marathon:

    Tunic

    Yeah, I also looking forward to this even though I annoyed by devs' choice to release a demo without keyboard+mouse support on PC!

    And like you said, it's not a walk in the park for sure. In demo I could feel the challange already.



  • Lawn Mowing Simulator

    Uau, this is incredibly relaxing. Therapeutic even. One of the best demos. Good call @DIPSET

    Youtube Video

    Trigger Witch

    Mediocre twin stick shooter, with mediocre art style, mediocre music and okish gameplay.

    Youtube Video

    ConnecTank

    Nope, here's Google
    "ConnecTank is an action game for one to four players where you step inside a big honking tank. Link conveyor belts together, craft ammo, and put out fires as you battle rival tanks to help Finneas Fat Cat deliver packages."

    Youtube Video

    Fractal Space

    1st person adventure puzzle platformer at times similar to Portal but if Gladus was badly written. Boring enviroments but the puzzles and platforming are engaging and they actually manage to execute 1st person platforming very well. Performance is smooth too. But it's a very uninteresting game even having its qualities.

    Youtube Video

    This is getting rough but I'll get through.



  • Black Book

    This is a cool one. Mix of adventure and card game, with a lot of dialogue and decision making. I'm not a fan of card games but it works well for the combat here without ruining the other parts of the game. Cool atmosphere and lots of Russian lore. This demo is among the better ones and I would play the final game. Granted that me disliking card games and enjoying this it might mean it's not great (as a card game).

    Youtube Video

    Cardaclysm: Shards of the Four

    This one is also a mix of card game with action adventure/ RPG but unlike Black Book the colour palette, art style and sound design are as obnoxious as we should expect in the card genre. It's possible that for those who enjoy card games this is better than Black Book but to me is a big no. A bit too generic but with nice production values.

    Youtube Video

    The Tale of Bistun

    Nothing particularly wrong with this demo, looks like it's going to be an ok game that will inevitably be lost amidst a ton of other games. I think if our character was better animated and combat had impact it could help, overall in such a competitive scene your game needs something and this one just feels bland.

    Youtube Video

    Mayhem Brawler

    This might please beat em up fans. Cool music, cool crew, big character models and great art style. It feels a bit too sluggish, kind of like I remember playing Streets of Rage in the Mega Drive, but it does capture that 90s beat em up feel. Branching story path is a nice touch. Really enjoyed this demo.

    Youtube Video