Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Impressions from Cooperative Gaming Coop #3: Zineistar curated by Anna Anthropy

This is definitely the more Avant Garde cabinet.  These games are not all traditionally challenging or fun.  But many are provoking, of thoughts and of feelings.  Original, clever.  This will mark a trend that will continue for the remaining two posts I have planned for this event - which is that I didn't play all the games in these cabinets.  I will try to be more complete next time.  

Zineistar curated by Anna Anthropy

didn't play, but here's: a review.  Oh, and hey look, a play-link!  Alright, now I've played it.  Very interesting.  It plays in-browser.  Give it a look, see how you feel.  

didn't play.  I hear that you roll joints for the lead character and she tells you stories.  There are supposed to be a bunch of different stories. You can download it from this funny french page.

This game was interesting.  It's a terrible pun to call this game 'atmospheric' - but it really is.  The music was a very strong part of the atmosphere.  This game seems designed to provoke an emotional reaction, and 'fun' is not the target emotional response.  It is well put together, polished and short.  Go play it, it'll only take five minutes.

All the art and sounds for this game were created by a small child.  The programming was done by his father.  The results are adorably funny, if a little tough to discern.  In particular, I really appreciate how Putt-Putt is so eager to help.  I highly recommend giving this game a play-through.

11/17/2012:  edit:  I forgot to include this game!  This game was put together with contributions by fifty children, all of whom are listed on the Gaming Co-Op's Arcade Page. This game was ridiculously hard, but worth a look, at the very least to honor the effort of a bunch of kids making a video game.  And I know that's something I want to do, don't you?

(I tried, but I simply could not find a picture for this game.  I suggest you click the link above and play the game.  Then, if you're feeling brave, do an image search for the above title and see what you find)
This game wasn't exactly a game, per-se.  It was more like a power-point presentation where the player gets to hold the clicker.  I don't mean for that to denigrate this game, though.  It is very expressive, and the subject is the struggles of trying to make a game, for a particular character named 'strong.'  

I didn't play this one.  Apparantly you shoot lots and lots of Nazis and all the graphics are hand-drawn.  And also, if you don't do it effectively, you will get downgraded to a desk job.  

This game was super-bizarre.  Downright ridiculous even.  Worth playing.  The gist is that your character - a sort of vaguely anthropomorphic blob-creature, wants to live forever, so it has to collect certain items that give you youth and avoid items that age you.  Youth items are like food and candy and plastic surgery.  Aging items are birthday cakes.  You can also pick up drugs, which make the graphics go all wacked out.  This game was like a piece of modernist, dadaist, something-ist art.  Definitely provoked a reaction from me.  Bewilderment.  And some laughs too =)  Try it! 

Zinestar was an unusual cabinet.  I think some of the most experimental gaming experiences were had on this one.  I'd like to go back and play them all, so I can give a more comparative review.
Zinestar is the first cabinet I'm reviewing where I didn't play all of the games.  The next post will actually be a summary of miscellaneous games I did play.  And the last will be for the Winnitron, which I am excited to talk about.  


When not playing the preceding games, currently playing:
Angry Birds
Trilby's Notes
Plants vs Zombies
Wandering Hamster

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