Electron Dance

Electron Dance Highlights

24Jan/181

The Box Impossible

This is the second part of The Ouroboros Sequence, a series on puzzle games.

After bouncing off Snakebird, I pondered the question: was it an objectively good puzzle game?

What does that mean - to be a “good” puzzle game? Perhaps it depends on what it means to be a "puzzle game"?

UH OH

I was starting to do that waht is gaem thing in my head. I didn't want to scribble down an academic definition citing power players like Roger Callois, Bernard Suits or Werner Herzog, but I sure wasn’t gonna let The Room or Monument Valley crash this party. You’re not invited.

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17Jan/1811

Head Meets Tail

This is the first part of The Ouroboros Sequence, a series on puzzle games.

It starts with Snakebird.

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11Jan/1816

Alone and Beyond Help

I tend to have brief, madly passionate affairs.

With mobile games.

The last affair I had was with Lara Croft GO (Square Enix Montreal, 2015) which I couldn't stop wrestling with over several weeks of commutes. On a difficulty curve, it was positioned around taxing-but-not-that-taxing which made it a pleasant diversion from the usual brainkilling puzzle fuckery of something like Cosmic Express (Draknek, 2016), a previous squeeze. But I was done with Lara and, after taking a break from commuter gaming, I cast around for something new. I embarked on Linelight (My Dog Zorro, 2017) and Cityglitch (mindfungus, 2017).

On a whim, I also picked up Six Match (Aaron Steed, 2017) after seeing it mentioned on Twitter. It looked like a garish lo-fi slot machine, complete with sounds like Mario hoovering up coins. I played a bit but it just... it just didn't do anything for me. Still, after becoming frustrated with the touchscreen controls of Linelight and finding I could only invest in playing Cityglitch for short bursts, I was forced to go back to Six Match to break things up a bit.

Today, Six Match is my new fling. And I want to talk about Six Match because its odd mix of mechanics induce an unusual emotion in the late game: loneliness.

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4Jan/184

When Good Luck is Bad Luck

Last year, I wrote a little on first-person stealth game ECHO (Ultra Ultra, 2017) about how its slow, undemanding opening was to my taste. I didn’t talk much about what happens when the action picks up, unless you happened to catch the end of the second Electron Dance Transmission.

I’ve now completed ECHO and find myself considering how I often squeeze through skill-based games with luck - and how I wish I didn’t.

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31Dec/1722

Discussion: Unfinished Tales

The moaning critic. A DMCA takedown. The gamer identity.

Dear subscribers, if you feel like chatting about anything at all from the December edition of the newsletter, please speak your mind in the comments here.

24Dec/175

Side by Side: Feedback Request

A request for feedback on the third series of Side by Side. The third series offered five feature-length episodes on the following local multiplayer games: Cryptark, The Unholy War, Sumer, Johann Sebastian Joust, and N++.

14Dec/172

Transmission: Quadrant & Friends

One hour. Four games.

Stream tonight, Thursday 14 December, and will begin at 2130 UK, 2230 Central Europe, 1630 EST. My Twitch channel can be found at twitch.tv/electrondance.

I will discuss the following titles:

Actually, I'll be covering six games... you'll see.

Here's the recorded stream if you missed it:

10Dec/1716

Discussion: Tooled Up

Dear subscribers, if you feel like chatting about anything at all from - yes - the "November" edition of the newsletter, please speak your mind in the comments here.

If you're not already a subscriber, then go fix that now.

21Nov/172

Side by Side: N++

Side by Side is a video series on local multiplayer games. This is the third series, episode 5 of 5.

We've taken a different tack for the new series, deciding to spend a lot more time on each game. This means we have fewer episodes but each one is a lot longer than before. As this is the series conclusion, we will release a "desperately seeking feedback" video in two weeks time.

In this episode, Joel Goodwin of Electron Dance and Gregg Burnell of Tap-Repeatedly tackle Metanet Software's magnum opus platformer N++. The meat here is both lean and tough... and we're not sure if that metaphor actually works.

There's a wicked purity to N++ that appeals, a brilliant crispness to its design. This is no easy-going party game as it is designed for the hardcore, the nimble of finger. N++ is arranged in sequences of five levels and you will often be stuck on levels for longer than you'd think. If you're not the best player, the game is extremely tactical, an exercise in finding the route that incurs the least risk. There's no point including a crazy jump into your plan that you can only pull off 1 in every 20 attempts.

N++ offers not just one but two local multiplayer modes: competitive and cooperative. Both are enormous fun although we did our utmost best to track down a few subtle flaws.

If you enjoy the series, please like our videos and subscribe to our channel... then share the crap out of them because that's what'll really get more seasons made.

Watch the video here or direct on YouTube.

14Nov/1714

Discussion: Ethan Carter’s Stories Untold

Dear subscribers, if you feel like chatting about anything at all from the... well, let's agree to call it the "October" edition of the newsletter... if you feel like chatting about it, please speak your mind in the comments here.