Zelrune’s profile

Hello! I am Zelrune! I like to play story-driven games like RPG’s but sometimes I stray to other genres if the game looks interesting enough.
I have four dogs!
My curator group is here.

Fun fact: I fostered a lost sun conure for a week and it was traumatizing for both of us.
(He was happily returned home.)

Joined on 04/03/2017 but didn’t start seriously working on my backlog until COVID.

April 2024 Progress Report

Hello hello!
April was a pretty good month for me although I did go a bit off track from my plans, however, I finished a lot of games I’ve had in my library for a long while (Cardinal Cross, The Confines of the Crown, AC3.) as well as bought some games I’ve been really excited to try (Cats of the Qing Dynasty, The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, The Inheritance of Crimson Manor) so overall, pretty ok! I intended to finish Coromon but I started fostering a puppy until… lunchtime tomorrow and she is a handful due to her previous unfortunate circumstances. She’s learning! Although has not quite figured out how to drink water normally without sticking her face in the bowl.

Next month! I’m both looking forward to it and dreading it. I’m finally starting Fallout 76, It’s been on my mind for over 5 months and I can get to it now, but I’ll be gone the 10-18th to visit my grandparents and they still have a dial up phone. Wifi? Never knew her. Anyway, that’s a big chunk of my time gone and I’ve resigned myself to physical puzzles, paper (!!!) crossword books, and bird watching. I’ll bring my Gameboy…

Total games added to backlog: 4
Total completed: 6

72% (339/471)
13% (62/471)
8% (36/471)
6% (26/471)
2% (8/471)
5.0 hours
An exceptional puzzle game that's a bit like an escape room, except you try to explore deeper into the manor.

Mr. Hadley Strange was a wealthy affluential Railway Tycoon before he, his wife, and three children drowned suddenly and tragically in the Thames River in a boat accident. As Mr. Strange’s private assistant who managed most of his financial and general affairs for the last ten years, the law office sent you a letter stating you are the only person authorized to collect and read his will. This is all normal procedure until you arrive at the Crimson Manor and realize your employer was perhaps more eccentric than you ever knew.


5+ hours to complete, The Inheritance of Crimson Manor is an interesting mix of a puzzle and an escape room, but instead of leaving you are working through puzzles to open more rooms and explore more of the luxurious manor. Two endings and easy to 100%, It’s a very charming and clever game with an engaging storyline that requires critical thinking, although there is a hint button available if you get too lost in the finely decorated residence. I found The Inheritance of Crimson Manor while looking for games similar to The Painscreek Killings, and if you like one, you will enjoy the other. As for cons, I wish that doors and drawers would stay open after you open them and that a couple of puzzles were not trial and error. Regardless, it’s an amazing and brilliant game, the ending was genuinely surprising despite the foreboding feeling that grew the closer I got to the end. No monsters or Jumpscares.


Half-Life 2
I resent that this was given to me for free with Odyssey, so I couldn't delete it from my library.

Assassin's Creed III Remastered

27.9 hours
no achievements

It’s 1775, The American Revolution is about to begin triggering a political rebellion of historical proportions against the British Kingdom and you are a young Native American caught up in the bloodshed. In an attempt to save your land and your family from being stolen, sold, and overrun, travel far in search of the symbol your elders spoke of, find a mentor, and learn what it takes to be an Assassin.


16-55+ hours to complete, Assassins Creed 3 is a kind of open-world RPG. I say kind of because this game has a very long prologue (6-11 hrs) and doesn’t become “open-world” until sequence 6. There are four areas to explore, colonial times Boston, New York, the Frontier, and the Homestead which is upgradeable by completing side missions with optional caravan trading for extra money. Extra optional naval missions except two that are mandatory for the main story, with plenty of ship upgrades that can be purchased. Hunting, skinning, and feather collecting aside, there is quite a bit of side quests to do, and I will admit the graphics look fairly nice – and now for the reason the game is mixed on Steam and why I can’t recommend it.


Setting aside the incredibly long prologue where it takes forever to start playing as Connor, the main character, and explore the world, Connor is easily the worst protagonist I’ve ever played in the Assassins Creed series. There is no character growth, he’s convinced the world is in black and white, that killing one man will fix all his problems, and doesn’t consider any other perspective than his own. I blame his mentor for allowing him to grow into this blind, innocent, naive idiot who can’t think about the bigger picture, but he should be capable of thinking for himself. He’s an assassin, but cannot deceive and takes what people say at face value – and then becomes shocked when people lie or betray him, when their goals are so clearly different from his own. A significant part of the story happens because Connor doesn’t share vital, relevant information with affected parties for seemingly no reason, he didn’t forget to tell his family, he just chose not to which led to some rather terrible things. Due to bad decision-making, I feel robbed of what could have been a cool story, and the game even acknowledges that he’s a man who’s made too many mistakes by the fact that Connor’s ending isn’t positive. It left a bitter taste in my mouth despite being deserved. The entire game just felt like a waste of time, and I would never recommend anyone to play this. Also, there are quick-time events


Half-Life 2
The ending was rushed and while I honestly thought it was kinda lame, it has some really solid and indepth world building.

Cardinal Cross

12.5 hours
26 of 26 achievements

For generations, humanity amongst the stars has been ruled by one machine that predicts the entire life, actions, and crimes of a person before they are even born. Apheta, an overwhelming, omnipotent AI overseen and kept by the wealthiest and most powerful among the Morai planet and government, has only one weakness. Howler Artifacts; priceless relics of a bygone age made of extinct materials that are so unpredictable they cause a glitch in Apheta’s systems, and one is in the unknowing hands of Lana Brice, a scavenger and procurer of valuable ancient items through not-always-legitimate-sources. Born on Peon-5, Lana’s latest haul from a toxic swamp has drawn a noticeable amount of interest from an anonymous client and gets her wrapped up in more red tape, political plots, and rebel dreams than a small-planet girl could ever wish for.


9-18 hours to complete, Cardinal Cross is an LGBTQ+ space-themed sci-fi fantasy VN with multiple endings and three personality choices for Lana as you play. 3 romance routes, over 70 CGs, and no voice acting. Heavy on world building, there is more lore than action. Exceptionally well written, there are only a handful of spelling errors with more as the game progresses. While Cardinal Cross isn’t a bad VN, far from it, I will mention a few complaints. The game speeds up considerably when you get in the last two chapters, to the point you are teleporting from place to place which is drastically different pacing from the start of the novel. More endings are bad than good, and the plot gets pretty convoluted. Despite leaving Early Access a bit too early, it’s a solid VN I recommend If you’re really into sci-fi.


Half-Life 2
Play a cat HOG on a 1736 version of "Along The River During the Quingming Festival" by five artists. 600 cats!

Cats of the Qing Dynasty

1.0 hours
100 of 100 achievements

1+ hours to complete, Cats of the Qing Dynasty is a Hidden object game with 600 cats over 6 levels. Impressively, no cat is copy/pasted and I did not note any duplicates. They purr when your mouse brushes them, clicking them gifts you with a wide variation of meows, and with multiple sizes, shapes, poses, and types of cats, it’s difficult to feel bored – especially once you realize the entire game takes place on one of the famous variations of the 1085-1145 CE, 5.25 meter (17ft) long painting “Along the River During the Qingming Festival”; specifically, the version made in 1736 by five collaborating artists.


Yes, the reason this game needs 4GB of space on your computer is because someone scanned the entire silk painting in such high quality you can see the texture of the fabric it’s made on, digitally touched it up, meticulously hid 600 cats in it, then sold it on the Steam store for less than 1 USD. Clicking on the title screen in-game grants you access to the entire original scanned painting that you can zoom in and out of, without the cats. This game is absolutely worth the purchase price. There is another version titled “Cats of the Ming Dynasty” by the same developer, if you enjoy this game, you will like that one as well.


Half-Life 2
Weird ending, good walking and detective sim.

The Vanishing of Ethan Carter

4.8 hours
14 of 14 achievements

Paul Prospero is a supernatural detective, one of the rare few who can interact with the unusual, and has a spectacular ability to glimpse into the past by recreating it; solving impossible murders. Reading his fan mail, Paul gets a letter from a young boy named Ethan Carter who has a special ability himself - Using the ability to see hidden things and places in his home of Red Creek Valley, he’s stumbled on something weird, and reaches out for help. Recognizing the significant threat, Paul heads to his location only to find that darkness has already settled in the valley. Follow the trail of corpses, piece together what happened, and discover the fate of the missing Ethan Carter.


4-5+ hours to complete, The Vanishing of Ethan Carter is a supernatural detective walking sim where you solve multiple murders and use a special ability to see into the past to piece the story together. Purchasing this game also gives you the updated redux version made in Unreal Engine 4, while the original was made in 3. Overall, I had a positive experience playing; the storyline, voice acting, graphics, writing, and exploration were pretty fun. In particular, I want to mention that the area is made with Photogrammetry; in which remote sensing is used to take multiple photos to make a digital map to create complicated 2D or 3D digital objects. For example, the mountain range shown is based on the Polish Karkonosze mountains. There is one easily avoidable jumpscare that gives you plenty of warning. The only cons I can think of are that some story sections can be accidentally skipped if you wander off, breaking the flow of the game when you have to backtrack, and that the game is autosave only.


Half-Life 2
Mildly interesting with some pretty good plot twists.

The Confines Of The Crown

6.8 hours
15 of 15 achievements

Prince Oscar of Ocendawyr and attendant Madeline travel to the Kingdom of Gwellinor in a bid for the princess's marriage at her royal debutante ball; but he is not the only one arriving in an attempt for her hand. Madeline’s goal is to advise Oscar, guide him, generally make him look good in the eyes of the princess, and not let him stumble into the political minefield that naturally occurs with so many high-profile guests. Things take a turn for the worse when the princess is kidnapped during her own ball, and your poor Prince Oscar is the main suspect! Not about to let him get arrested for a false crime, Madeline must unsheathe her blades, gather evidence, and investigate the other royal guests without getting caught to save her prince and childhood friend.


7-12 hours to complete, The Confines Of The Crown is an LGBTQ+ VN with 15 endings and 5 romance routes. Well written with some pretty impressive and well thought out plot twists, I didn’t note any spelling errors. Characters are fun, interesting, and well fleshed out, and in particular, Madeleine is a strong female lead who is genuinely competent and intelligent, making this a pleasure to read. Aside from a music mishap where two background tracks played over each other in an early scene, I had a very enjoyable time reading it and would recommend it to anyone interested in the storyline.


March 2024 Progress Report

It’s my birthday! I purchased The Painscreek Killings and Cats of the Ming Dynasty earlier this month for myself and finished both this month. Samwise recommended The Painscreek Killings and it’s hard not to if you love walking around ghost towns and investigating things - there were a lot of places I’m surprised the game let me get into. Ru kindly(?) gifted me Koi Farm once they noticed I was almost done with my backlog, and it was very chill. I finished SAO: Hollow Realization; just working on the DLC now, and I made a fair effort at Ori and the Will of the Wisps, but hard mode is way harder than the original game’s hard mode and one boss in particular is tough as nails.

This month, I’ve already started on BG3, and I’ve made two critical failures in a row, so it’s going swimmingly. I plan on playing Cardinal Cross, The Confines of the Crown, Assassins Creed 3, Moonlighter, and whatever I end up buying for myself today or tomorrow!!

Total games added to backlog: 2
Total completed: 5

72% (334/467)
13% (61/467)
7% (34/467)
6% (30/467)
2% (8/467)
10.4 hours
Amazing logic detective game, explore a ghost town and solve a murder.

Janet Kelly is a journalist taking on an assignment on behalf of her co-worker to investigate a cold case in a ghost town that's soon to be auctioned off and re-developed. Before any evidence is lost for good, Janet makes way to Painscreek to try and solve the mystery of why, Vivian, the wife of the former mayor, was butchered in her own driveway. Things go downhill when she comes to a bone-chilling realization; news doesn’t get very far from town – and there is far more to this murder than it initially appears.


8-10 Hours to Complete, The Painscreek Killings is an Investigation walking sim where you slowly explore a ghost town to solve a murder. An semi open-world with many explorable areas, investigate people around the victim by exploring their homes and workplaces; reading newspapers, articles, journals, and notebooks left behind and take photos for evidence. Break into cars and investigate the hospital, there are a lot of places I’m surprised the game let me get into. There is one jumpscare at the hospital when the electricity suddenly cuts out (no enemies, and you can turn it back on.) and another at the end of the game, but otherwise, it’s very relaxing and go-at-your-own-pace. You can continue playing the game after you beat it, so backtracking is an option if you missed anything. I'm surprised at how much I loved playing The Painscreek Killings, and I hope to find and play similar games in the future.


Half-Life 2
Create and share the prettist koi with friends or fufill objectives.

Koi Farm

8.6 hours
no achievements

8-13 hours to complete, Koi Farm is a casual puzzle deckbuilding game in which you crossbreed different colors and patterns of Koi to fulfill book collection objectives. The atmosphere is very relaxing and it's very nice watching fish swim around in the stream and in your ponds. There is a weather system, and occasionally it will rain or storm and special koi will appear; admittingly I enjoyed this simple game more than anticipated.


All Koi have their own Koi code, a red, orange, and yellow circle made of triangles that you can share with your friends so that they can add your koi to their game. It’s a pretty neat feature you can test out yourself. In the “About This Game” section on the Koi Farm’s Steam page, there is a lovely white, red, and black Koi Code you can use. Drag the code.png image to your desktop, and with the game open, drag the image to your game window, and it will appear as a card at the bottom of the screen


Half-Life 2
Genuinely impressed, the entire game takes place on a famous variation of a 1085-1145 CE, 5.25 meter (17ft) long painting.

Cats of the Ming Dynasty

1.2 hours
100 of 100 achievements

1+ hours to complete, Cats of the Ming Dynasty is a Hidden object game with 600 cats over 6 levels. Impressively, no cat is copy/pasted and I did not note any duplicates. They purr when your mouse brushes them, clicking them gifts you with a wide variation of meows, and with multiple sizes, shapes, poses, and types of cats, it’s difficult to feel bored – especially once you realize the entire game takes place on a famous variation of the 1085-1145 CE, 5.25 meter (17ft) long painting “Ming Dynasty along the River During the Qingming Festival”, essentially meaning you are playing a Cat HOG on what is basically considered China’s version of the Mona Lisa in high definition.


Yes, the reason this game needs 4GB of space on your computer is because someone scanned the entire 17ft long silk painting in such high quality you can see the texture of the fabric it’s made on, digitally touched it up and meticulously hid 600 cats in it, then sold it on the Steam store for less than 1 USD. Clicking on the title screen in-game grants you access to the entire original scanned painting that you can zoom in and out of, without the cats. This game is absolutely worth the purchase price.


Half-Life 2
Unfinished. It was fine, nothing special.


6.1 hours
35 of 35 achievements

Working as a courtesan in a tavern, Grace lives a very satisfying life with her long line of lovers and piles of books to peruse when a particular stranger comes to the bar. A Half dragon decked out with a fancy pirate hat and coat barely has enough time to start a conversation and sit down before they toss their fancy clothing and hat at Grace and darting away – the Navy hot on her tail. Suddenly finding herself in possession of a flying ship with crew, Grace sets out on a romantic, treasure-filled adventure she’s only read about before in her novels.


6-9 hours to complete, Mutiny!! Is a NSFW LGBTQ+ VN with 5 routes, 2 being DLC. There is an uncensored patch available. Routes are chosen by who you pick as your First Mate, and endings are determined by puzzle completions and how well you deal with enemy pirate attacks; there is no harem route. None of the puzzles or text changes regardless of who you pick for your First Mate, it only influences what scenes you get at story points giving the game low replayability. I will warn you that the developers have 3 unfinished games, and that’s reflected in Mutiny!! As well. Two crew members are not romanceable, and Elizabeth’s DLC route has no CGs. I have the strong impression that there was supposed to be more to the storyline as well, as many places you visit to loot only have the word count of a single modest paragraph before moving on to another area. I suggest picking up Mutiny!! only if it’s on sale.


Half-Life 2
Unnecessarily complicated - if you manage to get any good ending without a guide, I would be impressed.

Root Double -Before Crime * After Days- Xtend Edition

29.8 hours
49 of 49 achievements

Watase Kasasagi is the Captain of the Fire Department’s special elite rescue squad ‘Sirius’ on their way to LAMBO, a nuclear facility on the verge of a complete meltdown. At the same time, Natsuhiko Tenkawa, a high schooler with ESP and his friends sneak in during the ensuing panic to stop a terrorist plot – only to find themselves trapped in an increasingly dangerous situation with no way out. Every security system in place has failed; the radiation is getting stronger, the phones and radios are dead, the elevators aren’t working, exits are locked down, fires breaking out in multiple areas and the sprinkler system is offline. Both groups must work together in this desperate situation to escape, but there are more than just environmental threats when it quickly becomes clear the scientists Sirius was meant to rescue are already dead; a killer is trapped in the facility with them.


30-50+ hours to complete, Root Double is a supernatural horror VN about surviving a terrible situation where everything that could go wrong does in spectacular ways. Two protagonists, both unreliable narrators; plus time travel, supernatural powers, multiple endings, graphic murder, and gore. Unlike most VNs where you have a dialogue choice option, there is a much more complicated Senses Sympathy System, or SSS, where you adjust your general feelings of dislike and goodwill towards characters. These values need to be adjusted frequently or you will often hit bad ends. There is no flowchart, and you will need multiple save files to backtrack if you intend to reach any good ending. Regarding this, I highly suggest following a guide, otherwise, your playthrough might reach 70+ hours as you can lock yourself out of endings and not realize that until hours later without knowing where it went wrong.


Route A, or After, should be played before Route B, Before, to avoid story spoilers and major plot points. Route C, Current, is a recap, and Route D, Double, holds the True End and the resolution to the storyline. The pacing is pretty terrible, as Route A is fast-paced survival and B is slice-of-life, and aside from the strong start, the longer you play the weaker the story gets. Additional cons buyers should be aware of is that Root Double likes to spoon-feed you information and tell you plot points beforehand while the protagonists are painfully unaware of it; there are so many recaps and flashbacks to conversations you had 30 seconds ago and it gets genuinely frustrating! There is a noticeable amount of obvious or pointless plot twists; many of the issues in-game are caused by misunderstandings and sheer high schooler stupidity. There is little room for logical deductive reasoning, as the game throws in multiple supernatural aspects leading to confusing conclusions and incredibly unlikely scenarios, even for a VN. I highly suggest spending your time elsewhere.


February 2024 Progress Report

Welp. This month was a… thing?
No game was super incredible. The Silent Swan was by far the absolute best and I considered adding it to my favorites, but looking back it was unpolished among other things. Homestead Arcana was severely lacking in many areas but had a unique theme and pretty fun farming mechanic that juuusttt barely kept it out of being negative. The Xblaze series was something I’ve been wanting to play for a long while, and I’m happy I did although I do not intend to play the other games, because that is parallel timelines and wormhole shenanigans I don’t want to touch with a pole of any length. SOMA.. I liked it but disliked playing it. I wanted to explore more but monsters are creepy stalkers, and the storyline was pretty damn incredible. I would have liked a walking sim of it with more explorable areas that were locked off from you in the main game, such as floors 2 and 3 of the Ackers facility, and the mentioned site omega, but alas. In Fair Spirits… I’m not gonna get into it. I didn’t like it, and you can read the review for that particular rant.

As for March games… oof. I’m gonna be honest, it’s looking kinda weird chief.
I’m struggling to pay attention to my SG win SAO as it’s an interesting game/MMORPG/VN hybrid, and yet I find myself doing pretty much anything else, including playing SOMA, rather than it. I’m gonna start BG3 on my birthday, March 31st. I’m going to try for the Root Double VN, but there are just, a lot of big games I’m kinda cringing from so next month’s report is going to be a surprise to you as much as it will be for me.
Wishing everyone the best…

Total games added to backlog: 2
Total completed: 6

70% (330/470)
13% (59/470)
8% (38/470)
7% (35/470)
2% (8/470)
5.6 hours
A stunning walking sim with detailed, explorable megastructures. I'm fondly reminded of NaissanceE.

Falling asleep at home, the architect Mirov wakes up 17 years into the future and far away from the city of Urzhum he lives in. After finishing his journey, he arrives not to find the tall bell towers he designed in the distance, but a huge imposing wall surrounding the beloved city instead. Abandoned, broken highways littered with ditched cars, military tents pitched up in the middle of the roads, armored vehicles and tanks blocking off entire streets, not a soul to be found. Deep fog blankets the area, the unsettling quiet makes your footsteps echo with every step forward. Make your way home to find any trace of your missing wife, Selene.


5-7+ hours to complete, The Silent Swan is an open-world walking simulator with tall looming spires, incredible, impossible architecture, and dazzlingly detailed megastructures. Similar to NaissanceE but unpolished, with pointless roads and a city that feels like it wasn’t made for people to live in and multiple explorable barren buildings. While I hope that there are future updates to enhance the game and fix some of the sound effects and floating structures, for a fairly small indie group, I’m pretty impressed and looking forward to their second game Embers of the Evening if this is the kind of quality Praenaris can create.


Half-Life 2
Mixed feelings, it could have been better, loved the unique farming mechanics.

Homestead Arcana

26.4 hours
35 of 35 achievements

Thick, toxic miasma blankets most of the world leaving the human race in a perpetual struggle to survive, a scarce few able to carve themselves out a home in safer pockets of the world. Coming from the little town of Little Rock, a new, young pioneer sets out to create a Homestead in a small fertile patch of land good enough to live on and grow a garden. With the aid of potions, magic, and a 300-year-old cat familiar called Huckleberry, settle down on this thin slice of paradise and start growing food to send back home. Like all areas of the world, this new place is dangerous, a dense purple wall of miasma just a short walk away; yet you see things in the fog, new things to explore, new mysteries waiting to be found – but you know what they say about curiosity.


20-30+ hours to complete, Homestead Arcana is a Southern Farming sim with witches, magic, flying brooms, and familiars. There are three areas to unlock with each area granting you a garden expansion for the new plants and vegetables you will inevitably find in each biome. Gardening is pretty fun as you can trim plants, move and adjust leaves, pluck individual fruits, and use magic to help them grow on your Homestead. With potions to brew, skills to unlock, miasma to clear, crops to grow, food to send back home, and catnip to give to your cute cat familiar huckleberry, there are a lot of good things that make Homestead Arcana a really solid farming game; but there are definitely some cons you should be aware of before buying.


The start of this game is genuinely terrible. You can’t jump, the exploration is timed, the tutorial is not explained well with many important functions being completely left out. To make matters worse, you can softlock yourself out of the achievement “Upgraded” if you’re proactive and finish Ruby’s questline, as she kindly gives you the blueprint to make and sell your own Resolve Pendants, which prevents you from buying it and thus, getting the achievement. Homestead Arcana also can’t keep itself straight lore-wise, as the seedlings and plants you collect in the blight shouldn’t exist since the miasma kills or mutates all life. The ending was confusing since a peaceful resolution was available but the game forces to be what I perceive as an unnecessary bad end. Despite its long list of flaws, I still genuinely liked Homestead Arcana for its unique farming system and uncommon story concepts, but in the end, this is a difficult game to recommend.


Half-Life 2
Part 1 of a 2 VN series, for a 2013 game, I'm pretty impressed.

XBlaze Code: Embryo

29.2 hours
39 of 39 achievements

High schooler Touya is heading home from his part-time job when passing by The Restricted Zone, he hears a bell ringing and wanders in only to be attacked by a stranger with supernatural powers. Rescued last minute by a bizarre, petite girl with a sword, he goes home only to find her already waiting in his living room. Apparently having awakened an ability to “hear” and locate people using a supernatural ability, he’s been noticed by a mysterious organization and warrants a bodyguard – and a new job!


9-30+ hours to complete, XBlaze Code: Embryo is part 1 of a 2 game VN series, the other being XBlaze Lost: Memories. Fully voice-acted and with 12 endings to explore, this game has a lot of moving sprites, characters, animations, backgrounds, CGs, and 47 OSTs. The ending route depends on what news articles you read throughout the game; I suggest reading all articles the first time you play. Playing all the routes is fairly simple as there is a “skip already read text” feature and when new articles appear, the game automatically turns it off so you won’t miss anything. Higher quality than expected from a 2013 VN, I had a more enjoyable experience than anticipated and highly recommend playing. My only real complaint is that the keyboard controls are awkward, as this game was clearly made with controller use in mind.


Half-Life 2
Part 2 of a 2 VN series, kept up the good quality and storyline.

XBlaze Lost: Memories

10.0 hours
40 of 40 achievements

Arriving into the blue after chasing after her little sister, a girl finds herself lost in an unnatural area missing her memories and having forgotten her name; and surprisingly, she’s not alone. On a quest to get to the bottom floor of this Phantom Field, collect scattered memory fragments with Nobody to create keys to access more areas and finally reunite with her sibling.


7-11 hours to complete, XBlaze Lost: Memories is the sequel of a 2 part VN series, the first being XBlaze Code: Embryo. Includes full voice acting, multiple CG’s, one storyline, 58 OSTs and the same impressive writing and quality of the first game. More linear in nature and easy to 100%, Memories wraps up the unanswered questions left from Embryo and touches on the backstory of important characters in the BlazBlue series. I can’t mention much more without spoilers, I can’t even name character names, but I highly suggest playing the Xblaze VN series.


Half-Life 2
I won't replay it ever again but I will begrudingly admit - It's good.


10.8 hours
10 of 10 achievements

Simon Jarret is a literature-loving Canadian suffering a brain injury from a recent car accident and goes to see a doctor to get his brain scanned and make a treatment plan – only to find himself 100 meters under the sea a second later. Walking around the abandoned facility called PATHOS-II, Simon must use tools to bypass security locks and other obstacles while avoiding, hiding, or outsmarting machines that sound uncomfortably human, and are strangely intent on killing him.


7-11 hours to complete, SOMA is a sci-fi survival horror, or existential horror if you play in safe mode, with one ending. Many reviewers say you should only play on normal difficulty and nothing else, but I prefer safe mode as you don’t lose out on “the SOMA experience” and the game is not as branching as it appears. Not dying from enemies making you replay stealth sections is the only difference, you still get stalked and knocked out – so I suggest you ignore reviews saying safe mode is for wusses and play how you want. Regardless, SOMA is an excellent game worth playing if you’re interested in the storyline or enjoy horror games. Aside from a scripted hallway chase, there are not any jumpscares.


Half-Life 2
Felt like an unpaid therapist dealing with way too many of other people's problems.

In Fair Spirits

3.7 hours
15 of 15 achievements

Edmund is a man out of time, being from before England was England and now stuck in the modern age living with Iris, an 80-year-old woman. Taking on the role of her caretaker, tending to her garden, and making a living maintaining the church’s graveyard; life in Fenchapel goes on quietly until the local family-owned store has a newcomer at the register.


3-6 hours to complete, In Fair Spirits is an LGBTQ+ KN with no choices, no voice acting, and little to no CGs. A spin-off of The Fairy’s Song and The Fairy’s Secret, but can be read separately. This novel is difficult to recommend as the writers made it as tough as possible to simply like Abel as he’s rating every “MILF” and woman he sees on their “assets.” The first two dates you go on, Able just tries, and succeeds, on getting as drunk as possible to the point he’s vomiting on his shoes and Edmund needs to drive Able's inebriated self back to his home after he cusses Edmund out and calls him names, while Able complains about every single aspect of his depressing life, and Edmund wants to “fix him” when he should be getting a therapist instead. What happened to the interesting fantasy setup? This KN only has five reviews for a reason, skip it and read something else.


January 2024 Progress Report

What a lovely January! this month was really nice, I managed to find two games to add to my sparse favorites list, and DREDGE was absolutely the right choice to be my first game of 2024. To be honest, I’m a bit nervous of the games I picked to play for February, but I did purchase an indie game called The Silent Swan, and I’m curious to see how that goes as it was a bit of an impulsive purchase.CARRION was pretty fantastic, it wasn’t horrifying at all and was actually pretty relaxing, I loved the creature’s movement and the subtle backstory. Birth was really exciting for me, it’s definitely an unusual game to play but after playing Landlord of the Woods, I wanted more of that wholesome morbidness, and Birth absolutely delivered. I’m a bit disappointed in SAO: Lost song, the first 6 hours were super fun but it falls off fast, against my better judgment I’m playing SAO: Hollow Realization, and hope to have all that nonsense in my next post!

Speaking of, I have plans for SOMA, two visual novels, and the Witcher 2, as they are my POP picks and I’ve admittingly fallen behind a fair bit. February is ideally going to be my catch-up month so I only have two games to play in March. I’m going to smuggle in a BL novel, in Fair Spirits, to compensate my uncertainty. I hope everyone has a fun month!!!

Total games added to backlog: 3
Total completed: 6

69% (324/470)
13% (59/470)
9% (42/470)
8% (37/470)
2% (8/470)
20.4 hours
Everything I wanted out of a lovecraftian fishing game.

Washing up onto the shore of the small town called Greater Marrow, take up the job as a fisherman and pay off your new boat by selling your catches of the day. Occasionally, aberrations tug at your line, reeling them in reveals malformed, unnatural sea life that can be sold for a high price at the fishmonger. Upgrade your boat and sail past the jagged rocks to see what ports lay beyond the blue horizon and search for your forgotten past in the depths of the sea; just be sure to find somewhere safe before nightfall and the fog rolls in, as madness is not far behind.


10-20+ hours to complete, Dredge is a Fishing open-world Lovecraftian adventure with an unsettling atmosphere and a fairly impressive storyline. There is a sanity bar that influences the RNG rate for encounters, so keep it low if you want to play it safe, or high if you want to explore more of the Lovecraft theme DREDGE is known for. There are two endings, one you get by following the storyline, and the other by seeking the truth; it’s impossible to lock yourself out of either one. If you liked the base game, I sincerely recommend picking up The Pale Reach DLC for more.


Half-Life 2
Comes with a free DLC.


8.6 hours
21 of 21 achievements

Deep in an underground research facility, a study sample held in a glass container shakes and bursts apart, unleashing a new horror onto humankind. A living biohazard to anything made of meat, it rips apart and consumes flesh to add directly to its own biomass, becoming bigger and evolving into more aggressive abilities. Creep your way through vents or leave blood spatters in the hallways as you make your escape from below the surface.


6-8+ hours to complete, CARRION is a reverse-horror game with pixel graphics where you play as the monster hunting down humanity and those who imprisoned you. Be sneaky or loud! Changing your size changes your abilities allowing a solid amount of gameplay variation. Weirdly chill and relaxing, the character's movement is smooth and natural despite being a mass of flesh-eating tentacles. The level design is clever with engaging logic puzzles and steady game progression. Rare are the games that let you play as the Lovecraftian Monster, rarer that the game is made well, and I highly suggest you take the opportunity to play CARRION.


Half-Life 2
Fly around an empty world full of copy/paste and recolored enemies.

Sword Art Online: Lost Song

38.1 hours
43 of 43 achievements

ALfheim Online, a VRMMO world of fairies, flying, magic, and Norse mythology. Sword Art Online protagonist Kirito and the gang are logging back in to experience and conquer a new update – the floating Islands of Svart Alfheim, but they aren’t the only ones! A huge guild called Shamrock led by child genius and idol Seven are racing to be the first ones to defeat every boss, finish every quest, and snatch every treasure chest they can find! Fly high and be quick to keep ahead of the competition and discover the truth behind the name of "Lost Song."


24-45 hours to complete, Sword Art Online: Lost Song takes place after SAO: Hollow Fragment and shortly after episode 25 of Season 1, the events of ALfheim Online. Game canon is different from the anime, but the game plays and expects you to already know the previous storylines mentioned and does not recap. In total, there are 5 maps to explore, the floating city of Ryne, four islands, and numerous dungeons. I had a fun time with the fast-paced flying, generous height limits, and expansive islands with many hidden secrets and explorable dungeons.


And yet. While this is a lovely game to play if you are a fan of the SAO series, there are things that should have been done better. Aside from the floating city and the first island, a meadow, it very much feels like the game creators went out of their way to create islands with themes that required the absolute minimum amount of effort to embellish. Except for being full of enemies, the second and third islands are completely barren with the last being an almost exact copy/paste of the first island with a gloomy recolor and some new buildings and a couple of things moved around, making them exceedingly boring to explore. Enemies, dungeons, and bosses are frequently reused and recolored, with new ones thrown into the mix on occasion, giving the impression that Lost Song was created with tight time constraints in mind. There is about 15+ hours of grinding if you aim to get 100% as a couple of achievements are RNG dependent, meaning you may need to brute force a single mission for 5 hours to get Excalibur and all 100 weapons. In the end, I will only recommend this to people who like SAO and want to know more about the non-canon storyline because as a game I find Lost Song lacking and full of wasted potential.


Half-Life 2
Made by the same developer who made Landlord of the Woods!


2.5 hours
7 of 7 achievements

Feeling solitude creeping into your studio apartment in a busy city, explore places such as the bakery, post office, florist, restaurants, and a museum around town in search of spare bones and organs to build a partner, a warm, wet heart.


2+ hours to complete, Birth is a hand-drawn point-and-click physics-based puzzle game with a wholesome creepy cute story made entirely by one person. The explorable town is a good size, with many little secrets in its fine details. I bought this game pretty much right after finishing the developer’s previous hand-drawn game from 2021, Landlord of the Woods. If you’re not sure if you would enjoy Birth, I recommend checking out Landlord first as it’s a fairly cheap and enjoyable experience with similar vibes.


Half-Life 2
Physics based fantasy game.


22.7 hours
33 of 33 achievements

A kingdom falls, and grave by grave, the dead arise. Taking advantage of the chaos, a thief slips into the Astral Academy to steal an artifact known as the Trine. On top of the Academy looking through his telescope is a wizard, and seeing the approaching army of the dead, heads down to hide the artifacts for safekeeping only to find a thief already inside. A Knight, in pursuit of the thief, charges into the academy hallways and without much thought, all three touch the Trine, their souls merging into one. To unbind their souls from each other, seek out three great artifacts, discover the reason the dead have risen, and save the kingdom from its peril.


6-15 hours to complete, Trine is a fantasy physics-based puzzle platformer and side-scroller game in which you play as a Wizard, Thief, and a Knight who accidentally merged into one person that you can switch between as needed. The Wizard can conjure platforms and move impossibly heavy objects, the Thief is an archer skilled with a grappling hook, and the Knight is a very strong, healthy tank. Trine features clever layouts, engaging puzzles, smooth gameplay, as well as co-op and local multiplayer. Despite the dated graphics, I had a fun time playing and I'm particularly fond of the OST.



Half-Life 2
Short, post-apocalyptic, and bittersweet.

planetarian HD

2.4 hours
21 of 21 achievements

30 years ago, a Great War broke out, effectively ending the human race. The world with its small handful of remaining humans left is barely surviving the remnants of the war. Great, autonomous mechs known as Warmongers roam the cities and land, still wiping out anything with a heat signature and enemy machines. The cities they were ordered to defend, have long since been empty of any life they had to protect. It started raining toxic water 9 years ago, and since then, it’s never stopped for a single day. A solitary man infiltrates a dead, still-guarded city and stumbles on one of the few places left on Earth with air conditioning, untouched by the apocalypse outside. A Rooftop Planetarium, the sole occupant inside is a robot named Hoshino Yumemi, the last remaining employee. For the first time in his life, he sees the stars.


2-3 hours to complete, Planetarian is a story-rich emotional kinetic novel that takes place in a post-apocalyptic world. There are no choices to be made, only a story to be told. The CG’s are of good quality and the writing was excellent with no noticeable spelling errors. The music is a bit repetitive but overall, I had a positive and lovely experience. Despite its short length, it’s an easy KN to recommend.


December 2023 Progress Report

2023 Resolutions complete!!

Wow. Ok. End of the year!
In total for 2023, I finished 55 games, go me! This December was very nice, I wrapped up Sandrock and now have a craving for Portia. I failed my New Year’s resolution to have 20+ games than I added - I only got to a net positive of 17 - but I’m going to blame Secret Santa and my lovely PAGYWOSG discord group and go for 23 in 2024.

My Time at Sandrock was a long time coming, I knew I was going to beat that before New years, but the most unexpected game and dark horse was Landlord of the Woods, which I spontaneously purchased yesterday and now I’m going to be picking up another game from the developer, of which there is only one. One person made Landlord of the Woods, and it was really, really nice! The Dishonored game series is now neatly wrapped up in a messy bow, Death of the Outsider was a good way to end the series and after that ending, I don’t expect any more games from them. Alekon was cute, I won’t be replaying it but it was my first on-rails photography game. The Gunk was shaping up to be a really good game, but unfortunately, your mandatory crewmember was determined, and successful, in sucking all the joy of it like a vampire.

Looking forward to next year! I’m cautiously optimistic.
Happy New Year!!

Total games added to backlog: 5
Total completed: 5

68% (318/466)
13% (59/466)
9% (41/466)
9% (40/466)
2% (8/466)
160.7 hours
Loved every hour I put in it.

From the verdant Highwind to the desert town of Sandrock, Builder arrives! Start up your own workshop and start taking commissions to give this dried-up town the life it so desperately needs. The town of Sandrock used to be a lush, sprawling oasis that supported plenty of fruit, plants, and wildlife, but after a group of prospectors discovered a sunken metropolis triggering a relic rush, there was tragedy. With little regard to the environment, it was exploited and polluted until the prairie was void of trees, its wildlife hunted, and the oasis barely a puddle of what it used to be. With a new mayor who refuses to leave and remaining hopeful, stubborn citizens, restore the oasis, reforest the desert, and give Sandrock back its lost title – The Jewel of the Eufaula.
90-160+ hours to complete, My Time at Sandrock is a post-apocalyptic desert-restoration reforesting RPG sandbox farming sim with a sprawling open world, dungeons, and town-building. 20 romance options, LGBTQ+ friendly, with optional children that grow up. Build your own home with generous sizing limits, make or purchase furniture, create your own gardens, take on multiple dungeons with varying difficulties, and explore a huge open world full of forgotten treasures and hidden dangers. This game is genuinely incredible and I loved every single hour I put into it. There is so much world-building and content that’s available, farms can be as efficient and high maintenance as you please, or very chill as farming and gardening is encouraged but completely optional.

Half-Life 2
Game is perfect, wish NG+ was better.

Dishonored®: Death of the Outsider™

20.2 hours
30 of 30 achievements

Billie Lurk, formerly known as Meagan Foster, captain of The Dreadful Whale and a rather talented killer. After the events of Dishonored 2, Billie seeks to reunite with her mentor, the legendary assassin Daud – only to be offered one last job, killing The Outsider himself. Together with her teacher, seek out artifacts and a cult known as The Eyeless to rob them of a weapon that can kill the entity, and discover a way to reach him in the endless void… if that’s even possible.


6-20+ hours to complete, Dishonored: Death of the Outsider is a first-person stealth game in which you play as a supernatural assassin in a story-rich setting where your choices matter and you can very much play how you like, with mercy or otherwise. With a variety of weapons, gadgets, abilities, and bone charms granting you perks, explore the beautiful city of Karnaca. As usual for the Dishonored series, the level design is exceptional and I rarely used doors to get anywhere, the combat and stealth is fantastic, the music is immersive, memorable, and enjoyable. Death of the Outsider doesn’t have a high or low chaos system like the previous games, and instead of NG+ there is Original Game+, in which nothing is carried over except your powers get switched out for ones in Dishonored’s previous series, giving you new ways to interact with the environment.


Half-Life 2
Super annoying side character ruined the alien planet adventure vibe.

The Gunk

7.5 hours
17 of 17 achievements

Rani and her crewmate Becks stumble upon an unusual energy spike on a dead planet. Curiosity getting the best of them, Rani heads down to investigate, only to find life on its last legs and something strange, something that looks like it’s smothering anything that tries to grow; Rani calls it what it is – The Gunk. Follow the energy readings and clean up The Gunk to allow life to flourish once again, and hopefully get rich while doing it too!


5-7+ hours to complete, The Gunk is a linear action-adventure nature restoration game with super simple mechanics, easy puzzles and gameplay, and unchallenging enemies. Graphics are beautiful, and for a while I was having a pretty fun time! Rani is very optimistic, while Becks is a pessimist, which made for some interesting back-and-forth dialogue as you explore an alien planet and go on an adventure. However, becks gets more negative as the game goes on and at one point she just straight up becomes hostile and extraordinarily annoying. Despite the angst and the various areas you can softlock yourself into, I was still planning on rating The Gunk positive! However, the ending was abrupt, disappointing and nonsensical. With no spoilers, it made me feel like the entire game I just tried to enjoy was pointless.


Half-Life 2
Photography game with on-rails and off-rails exploration


11.9 hours
40 of 40 achievements

Enter Dream’s Doorstep, the world of your imagination, and meet the fictions that live there. Dull and empty, you are greeted by Japley, the Fiction of Guidance who asks you to share your inspiration to make the world bright again and to find Alekon, the missing Fiction of Creativity! Take photos of Fictions in different poses to gain creativity points and introduce that Fiction to Dream’s Doorstep to unlock their minigame and sidequests, the more creativity you gain and Fictions you take photos of, the more you can change the world around you.


5-13 hours to complete, Alekon is an on-rails first-person photography game with photo editing and creature collecting. There are 4 maps to explore with 3 on-rail pathways and a wander mode where you can freely explore the secrets of each island. Taking a photo of a creature unlocks their minigame in Dreams Doorstep, the “hub” world, a place where you can edit things freely. Nearly everything can be changed, including the color of the grass, adding constellations, making snowflakes, dressing up fictions, and adding more fireflies. Overall I’m impressed that this was made by a fairly small team, and I think pretty much anyone of any age could find enjoyment in Alekon.


Half-Life 2
More enjoyable than anticipated, hand drawn and made by one person!

Landlord of the Woods

0.9 hours
no achievements

Feeling like you’re wasting your life away and falling behind your peers, you respond to an advertisement and apply for a new, hopefully more meaningful, career path as Landlord of the Woods. Much to your surprise, you get the job! Play minigames and collect rent from your bizarre tenants.


40 min – 1 hr+ to complete, Landlord of the Woods is a physics-based point-and-click puzzle game with hand drawn graphics and more impressively, made entirely by one person. Light character creation is available. Admittingly I wasn’t expecting much out of a game I purchased for barely 50 cents, but I fell in love with the art style, the unique tenant design and the slightly macabre story, and encourage you to give it a try.


November 2023 Progress Report

Well, I had a pretty great November. Busy.
Originally, I planned on finishing Sandrock instead of New Vegas, but I think they might have left early access too early, maybe for the Steam awards? Regardless, I don’t want to touch it until the weekly 70+ big fix patches slow down. I bought two games from the autumn sale, Ever Forward, which I really liked, and SOMA, which I’ve exited the game four times in one hour. I might be playing in Pacifist mode but I’m still scared.

Next month is looking kinda rough for me, I won a SG win, butttt it’s the third game in a long series I haven’t started so PAGYWOSG is gonna be very touch-and-go. POP isn’t looking fantastic as it was, I’m planning on removing two games from my library and the other two are not something I want to play right away due to my win and sudden schedule upheaval. Digimon is still in the works! I was planning on doing a combo of Digimon, Tem-tem, and Sandrock for December but now that I need to work on the SAO series it’s not possible. Hoping to have Sandrock finished next month!

Total games added to backlog: 5
Total completed: 7

68% (315/463)
13% (60/463)
9% (40/463)
8% (39/463)
2% (9/463)
3.1 hours
A short, satisfying and beautiful puzzle game.

Maya is a little girl who lives alone on a peaceful island far, far out at sea. The waves are calm, stone pillars loom out in the distance like faraway guardians, and a huge tree stands tall and strong with its roots entangling the earth. Maya isn’t completely alone though, Hestia is Maya’s floating companion cube, a quiet friend who is with her always. One day, out on the beach, something strange appears – a familiar building manifests and a puzzle appears, leading to a memory Maya has forgotten. Seek out all of the memory shards to find the truth about the island, and the secret hidden in Maya.


2-3+ hours to complete, Ever Forward is an adventure puzzle game that is short and sweet. Beautiful graphics, a great soundtrack, fun puzzles and an interesting storyline. The Island is explorable and has secrets and animals you can pet, and the puzzle domains are interesting enough and can be challenging. If a puzzle is too hard, the key for many lies in the layout and the environment. A mix between fantasy and sci-fi, Ever Forward was super fun to play and I’m glad I took a chance on it!


Half-Life 2
Would have rated higher if the game was stable. ):

Fallout: New Vegas

95.2 hours
75 of 75 achievements

Shot in the head and left for dead, rescued by a robot and the good doctor of Goodsprings, Courier Six sets off across the Mojave Wasteland on a quest for vengeance. Hunt down the dead men walking who stole your package across the heat-blasted desert to the twinkling lights of Sin City to retrieve your cargo and your dues. Deliver the chip.


27-100+ hours to complete, Fallout: New Vegas is a post-apocalyptic desert wasteland survival open-world RPG with enough content and questlines to seriously keep you busy. While the graphics are outdated, the gameplay is very exciting with each playthrough feeling different due to the various ways you can solve a questline, the multiple factions to join, and the various game endings to find. In addition, I highly recommend purchasing the DLCs, as they introduce new maps, weapons, items, apparel and npcs to keep things fresh. However, due to Bethesda being notorious for their bugs, I sincerely recommend downloading an anti-crash and game stabilization mods from Nexus.


I had an unforgettable time playing Fallout: New Vegas for two reasons, one, it’s genuinely a fun and incredible game, and two, the insane game crash rate I experienced in the DLCs. Old World Blues must have been over thirty, and Honest Hearts was unplayable. I dropped the game for about three months to take a break, and upon coming back, the game seemed to have fixed itself somehow, as I only crashed once in Dead Money. Despite the game's unreliable stability (or reliable instability), it’s still worth buying and playing, although personally, I like Fallout 4 more by a significant margin


Half-Life 2
It's a fantastic game I can't recommend untill the crashing on start-up issue is fixed.

Child of Light

12.1 hours
no achievements

The beloved princess Aurora passes away in her sleep one night, only to wake up in the fantasy land of Lemuria. After making friends with a blue firefly, seek out the Lady of the Forest trapped by The Black Queen and recover the stolen Sun, Moon, and Stars with a band of friends to wake from this vivid dream.


11-15 hours to complete, Child of Light is a storybook side-scroller fantasy game with turn-based combat and hand-drawn, watercolor graphics. Local co-op is available, with the first player controlling Aurora and the second player moving Igniculus, the firefly around the screen. Several party members are available as the story progresses, with one being locked behind DLC. Quality wise, it’s a fantastic game for children and adults with an engaging storyline, simple mechanics, delightful music, and forgiving gameplay, typically, I would absolutely recommend something like this, except there are some problems.


First, you need to have a Ubisoft Connect account to play Child of Light, most people are not a fan of having two launchers to play one game. Second, if your computer has more than 16 cores, it will forever crash upon start-up, making this game literally unplayable unless you download a specific Windows package and mess with a bunch of game files to trick the game – simply going to your advanced control panel and disabling cores doesn’t work. I couldn’t get the game to function even after 2 hours of messing with it, and as usual for Ubisoft, contacting support isn’t exactly convenient or easy as I’m still waiting for a response three days later.

Half-Life 2
A re-review from 2022! Significant game update.

Hidden Cats in Paris

2.2 hours
46 of 46 achievements

1-2+ Hours to complete, Hidden Cats in Paris is an Indie Point & click Hidden Object game where, as the title suggests, you find cats hidden around Paris. Two modes, normal with 100 cats, and Advanced mode, with 150 randomized cats with 6 bonus stages with an additional 425 kittens; for a total of 675 cats in the game to find. Clicking all the cats on a building will color in that building, making it fairly simple to find any sneaky missing ones. There are a wide variety of felines regarding their shapes, sizes, and fur types. Discovering and clicking each cat gives you a cute assortment of meows.


Originally, in 2022 I reviewed this game as negative due to the fact it took only 15 minutes to complete, there was only one “meow” sound when clicking a cat at the time, a lack of visual variety of felines in what was essentially the same cat in 5 separate poses, and a bug encounter. I naturally refunded the game but with the August 15th massive update, every single one of my complaints was fixed and I can happily say this is a game worth spending your time on. Usually, when a game is finished, the chances of it getting improved is very slim while the developers focus on future games, and I’m pleasantly shocked and surprised Hidden Cats in Paris got such a massive quality-of-life update.


Half-Life 2
Mindless game with satisfying before/after photos.

Fresh Start Cleaning Simulator

6.9 hours
29 of 29 achievements

5-7+ hours to complete, Fresh Start is a cleaning sim with 10 levels and features a skill tree in which the garbage you collect and recycle becomes points to purchase a variety of upgrades. While there is no story besides cleaning up areas, oil spills, and restoring nature back to its beautiful self, Fresh Start is a very enjoyable cleaning sim with satisfying before and after results. I didn’t experience any bugs. Levels are easy to complete to 100% due to the locator perk which highlights missed objects even if it’s hidden on the other side of the map when the skill is fully upgraded.


When I think about any complaints to share, it would be that the Iceland cleaning chapter is located in Greenland and shown incorrectly on the map, as well as a minor spelling error I’ve caught and reported in the skill menu. Otherwise, it's a relaxing and mindless cleaning simulator you can finish at your pace that has a cute ending. Yes, you can pet the animals.



Half-Life 2
The only point I felt like crying was in the last chapter, mostly out of confusion.

Narcissu 10th Anniversary Anthology Project

9.4 hours
no achievements

10+ hours to complete, Narcissu: 10th Anniversary Anthology Project is a story-rich kinetic novel about death, life, and terminal illnesses. 6 stories that you will ideally read in this order – Narcissu 1, Narcissu 2, Himeko’s Epilogue, Zero, then Sumire with A Little Iris as an unrelated short story that can be read at any time. While a lot of comments recommend the game, calling it dramatic and emotional, I just found it to be exceptionally boring, and a little irritating due to things like the ending of Narcissu 1 being spoiled by the game creators themselves in the first 10 seconds of opening the novel, the fact you can’t take screenshots in half of these (Only in 1, 2, and Epilogue: Sumire), as well as noting the poor proofreading and spelling errors.


Recommending Narcissu or not was conflicting for me. Overall, I was having a dull but acceptable time reading, then I got to Epilogue: Zero which I enjoyed! Definitely my favorite of the bunch, and with a happy heart, I started the last Epilogue: Sumire, and promptly regretted picking up this entire kinetic novel in the first place. Truly and legitimately, I have no idea what the hell was going on. There seemed to be a genre change – The story starts as the protagonist heads up to the school rooftop and finds a middle-aged man proclaiming immortality and then jumping off the rooftop, dying, then meeting him again two days later as a busty blond, who leads him to an abandoned building where they teach them how to possess other people in exchange for being bound to a stone bed. (leaving it instantly kills you, for some reason.) The protagonist proceeds to do that for these supernatural powers, then robs people to survive and ends up killing a few people until he possesses a purple hair girl – then suddenly the story gets even weirder and more absurd, ending with an evil nurse, yet another suicide, a 10-year time skip and a mother hating you so much she wants to kill you. Credits roll. The End. What?


Half-Life 2
Liked it more than antcipated, clever writing and a perspective I never considered.


0.5 hours
5 of 5 achievements

Sitting on a precarious ledge, with a dangerous drop on one side and you on the other, She sits and you both talk about Him. A comet falls from the sky, and you ___ talk about what you want to. Say about how much he ______ ___ ___ ___ ___ ____ likes ___ __ _ you. She smiles and you both ____ _____ and get ice cream. Try again.


Com__et is a 30-minute LBGTQ+ horror interactive fiction game where the path forward seems fixed and interchangeable, and by searching you discover unsaid words to give new choices new meanings and uncover other pathways. 7 endings, with one ____ end. I’ll admit this isn’t a game I normally wouldn’t have taken a second glance at, but ended up enjoying more than anticipated due to a friend’s intervention. Cleverly written and with a dynamic soundtrack that can be anywhere from normal to disjointed depending on </strong>_ made, multiple endings to explore and secrets to find. </p>


</div> </div>

October 2023 Progress Report

Happy Halloween!

“Wow Zel, only three games? None of these even look spooky.”
Yeah yeah, hear me out. I have 100+ hours into My Time at Sandrock. I’ll be able to 100% it and add it to my next post, fortunately - of which I will be playing Digimon Cyber Sleuth! I’ve been anticipating this one for a good while and I’m super hyped to- HLTB 190 hours. oh god. What have I done?

On a side note, my November games are looking particularly chaotic and even I’m not sure what will show up on my next post. This month, I played Wytchwood and had a ton of fun. ENIGMA: is a VN I’ve been wanting to play and unfortunately putting off for a few years that unexpectedly left me with many good vibes despite the multiple bad ends + gore. Potion Permit, which I decided to speedrun in 4-ish days, and finished today, leaving me with many mixed feelings.

Handing out candy again, it’s gonna be super cold and might rain so I’m not sure how it’s gonna turn out. I’ve already stolen all the milkyways from the candy bag because I’m an adult. Dressing up as a pirate again! No pumpkin this time. Happy November!

Total games added to backlog: 1
Total completed: 3

68% (310/458)
13% (59/458)
9% (40/458)
9% (41/458)
2% (8/458)
10.2 hours
LGBTQ+ engaging story, lots of bad ends with a satisfying true ending. Warning: Gore

Washing up on the unmarked Island of Carlyle with a terminal illness eating him alive from the inside out and less than a month to live, Chester is rescued from the beach by a friendly villager and offered a place to stay. The beautiful island is peaceful, with warm beaches and endless meadows, the only thing really standing out is the unnatural pure white forest that Chester is warned to stay away from. Aside from being known as a “man-eating” forest, it goes by another name that oddly enough, is the same as your disease. Enigma. Naturally curious and not having much to lose, Chester chooses to investigate.


2-13 hours to complete, ENIGMA: is a story focused VN with LGBTQ+ but due to the protagonist's limited time, doesn’t go anywhere leaving many bittersweet feelings. 3 routes, and 19 endings with a true ending once you’ve cleared them all and discovered all mysteries on the Island. On top of 70+ CGs to peruse and two short movies to watch, ENIGMA: Is notably well written with no noticeable spelling errors. Slight warning: The Man-eating-forest title is literal and this game is not afraid to show you blood. Every bad end is a step forward to learning more about the Island and takes you closer to the true end, which I liked very, very much.


Half-Life 2
Fairytales! Less Disney more Original Source Material.


9.5 hours
14 of 14 achievements

Waking up alone in a dusty home with the feeling of something important forgotten, a possessed goat outside your swampy huts informs you of your new duties. A contract was signed, in exchange for 12 wicked souls, a wish. As Witch of the Woods and Lady of the Swamp, you wonder what you could have possibly wished for in exchange for such a laborious task; something to do with these missing memories, perhaps? Set out and weave spells, bottle potions, and snatch these 12 misbehaving souls so they won't be causing any more trouble.


9-11+ hours to complete, Wytchwood is a crafting adventure game with fables and fairytales. (Not Disney, closer to the original source material.) 3 chapters in which you collect 4 souls each, this game is very much a sort of magpie simulator; if you see a thing, pick it up. If you do not like collecting things, you may get bored and annoyed because the game expects you to obtain crafting materials proactively to make trinkets and cast spells. Wytchwood is a dark, morbid, but strangely cozy game with witty dialogue where you play as an old, ancient, knowledgeable bird-like witch with various powers and interesting (read: chaotic neutral) problem-solving skills that means the bad guys have a real bad time and the villagers are pretty happy. Warmly wholesome, I liked it enough to finish the entire game in one playthrough.

Anna Sun

Half-Life 2
Overall good game but has things that need to be fixed.

Potion Permit

35.3 hours
38 of 38 achievements

Sent by the medical association from the capital to the Island of Moonbury, play as an intelligent budding chemist whose goal is to bring modern medicine to this old town who’s only method of healing is the even older ways of Herbal medicine. With a unique environment allowing rare and valuable plants to flourish, gain the townfolks trust to form a mutually beneficial relationship and bring this dying town back to life.


20-35+ hours to complete, Potion Permit is an LGBTQ+ Crafting Adventure Simulator where you play as a chemist who was sent from the capital by the medical association to introduce modern medicine and healthcare to an old town stuck in the even older ways of Herbalism. 8 love interests and 3 large areas to explore, Potion Permit is mainly focused on the villagers and the social aspect of the town and its inhabitants. Making Potions is fun, it feels rewarding to study water/plant/disease samples and to just be the town’s doctor. There are housing upgrades and home decoration, as well as your own clinic you can upgrade. Yes, you can pet the dog.


While I have an overall positive impression of Potion Permit, there are things I genuinely felt could have been done better. The town’s layout is hell to navigate and is 1/4th the entire map, so many parts felt empty aside from hub areas NPCs regularly visit. Secondly, the material upgrades for simple things are just insane and they only get more absurd as you play which leads to this game, about healthcare and living with nature, to becoming a Deforestation sim since you need 6,000 logs and 5,000 stones to upgrade 3 of your tools, nevermind the building upgrades and the frequent material quest requests. Character notes are out of touch and in some cases, completely false; Leano verbally says she has her hand “cut clean off in a sword fight” but notes say it was a sailing accident. Rue’s notes say it’s her dream to become a chemist, which is literally never mentioned anywhere else in the entire game. Characters claim to be workaholics and are regarded by other characters as a busybody takes frequent strolls around town, reading on benches, and feeding ducks and fish. Playing Potion Permit was a huge love-hate relationship. I genuinely feel that while it’s a good game, it needs work if it wants to be replayable.


September 2023 Progress Report

So the game I thought would suck the most turned out to be the most fun, which was unexpected. Ori and the blind forest was good enough I’m seriously considering buying the second game and playing it next month, and I feel weird about that because I don’t usually feel this way. It didn’t make it to my favorites because I don’t feel the need to play it anymore, but considering that ending and how so many people say the second was better is getting the best of me. Slime Rancher was, ok. I liked it but it could have been better, at least it was cute. Dishonored 2… Not sure what to say, I like it but it absolutely outstayed its welcome, NG+ sucks. I won A Jugglers Tale, and liked that and knocked it out quickly, which made me feel nice.

Excited for October, have some really, really good-looking POP picks and I’m quite excited to start poking around in a few of these, notably My Time at Sandrock. Going to give Wytchwood a second try, I didn’t like it the first time but I’m 80% convinced it was because I was in a negative mood set due to Fallout NV frustrations. The third Dishonored Series, Death of the Outsider looks MUCH more reasonable to complete; and I’ve been half-heartedly trying to squeeze ENIGMA: into my schedule all year.
October is looking good. A Pile of Foxes sent me Digimon Story Cyber Sleuth, which I’m happy to have in my life. Thank you!

Total games added to backlog: 2
Total completed: 6

67% (308/457)
13% (58/457)
9% (41/457)
9% (42/457)
2% (8/457)
40.9 hours
Exceeded Expecations.

A great storm separates a newborn spirit named Ori from the Spirit Tree that protects the forest of Nibel. Adopted by a curious creature named Naru, she quickly takes the role of a loving adoptive mother and cares for Ori as they grow up. Life is peaceful and idyllic until one fateful summer when a strange darkness creeps in and twists the forest, withering the fruit trees and poisoning the water, bringing famine and death. Newly orphaned, Ori flees from their home and meets a mysterious light named Sein who knows why the forest has changed - and needs Ori's help restoring it to its natural order.


9-40+ hours to complete, Ori and the Blind Forest is a fantasy metroidvania RPG with puzzles and platforming. This game is difficult. In my first playthrough on Hard mode, I died over 400 times and truly didn’t enjoy playing until after the first “dungeon”, The Ginso Tree, where the world suddenly opens up after gaining vital movement skills. Regardless, this game is a genuinely wonderful experience that I wish many more people would play. The story was handled amazingly well despite having such little dialogue. Areas are fun to explore, and you are frequently rewarded for your curiosity with lots of hidden places and secrets to find.


Half-Life 2
Liked it, but not enough to buy the second game afterward.

Slime Rancher

26.4 hours
57 of 57 achievements

Beatrix LeBeau. A girl with a dream and a job that sends her 1,000 lightyears away from Earth to a planet called The Far, Far Range to become a Rancher of a strange, unusual, and surprisingly profitable species – Slimes. Take control of an old Ranch, fix her up, build your corrals to contain any interesting Slimes you may obtain after exploring this strange Island, and follow the clues and notes left behind from The Ranch’s former owner.


7-40+ hours to complete; Slime Rancher is an Open-World Singleplayer Adventure game with a vibrant, cute, and colorful art style. There are a wide variety of Slimes you can capture and even more when you start dabbling in making your own type of Slime by mixing two together. The Island is big, beautiful, and for the most part, pretty fun to explore with many mysteries. Some cons I would like to bring up, is the incredibly short story mode; you can finish the game pretty quickly, and on accident if you’re good at exploring! Another thing is the game tends to give you access to useful items far too late; by the time I no longer needed to backtrack and had access to all the Slimes I needed to; I got teleporters. After I explored every inch of the island and found all it’s secrets, I finally got the Treasure Crackers needed to open all the previous inaccessible treasure chests discovered.


While Slime Rancher is a really, really good game, I wish there were just some things it could have done better. Backtracking is very frequent, and finding all these neat treasure chests and having no way to open them during the initial exploration was kinda depressing. Regardless, I liked it, it’s a very good game that’s genuinely enjoyable and many people clearly love it too – considering it’s getting a movie adaptation.


Half-Life 2
Play as a fox in a dreamscape environment.

The First Tree

5.5 hours
14 of 14 achievements

A Fox wakes up alone and searches for her three missing pups while a man wakes up in the middle of the night with a strong feeling of nostalgia and memories of his father he’s long forgotten he’s had. A story of grief, reflection, and moving forward… even if you’re not sure you can.


2-3 hours, The First Tree is a bittersweet exploration walking sim with simple puzzles and light platforming sections. There are 5 chapters, each with their own dreamscape-like environment and optional collectables that have a special function at the end of the game. Both the fox looking for her cubs and Joseph reminiscing about his father with is partner is happening in two worlds simultaneously, While the fox is looking for her three missing kits and digging up strange toys and objects, Joseph is dreaming about the fox searching for them and remembering the things about his father in what she digs up, making for a very unique type of gameplay I really enjoyed.


Graphically, the world you explore is beautiful with the cons being too many of the same assets such as trees being very noticeable. The voice acting is incredibly well done with subtitles being available in the setting option. The music felt very special to listen to, as it matched the strange and dream-like environment very well and did a fantastic job in the more emotional moments of the game.


Half-Life 2
Dragged on, and on, and on, and onnnnn

Dishonored 2

42.2 hours
50 of 50 achievements

15 years have passed since the Rat Plague was eradicated and Empress Jessamine was murdered. Reinstated as Empress after her mother's death, Emily Kaldwin alongside her Royal Protector Corvo brought the Isle back to its former prosperity and glory, reorganizing the city watch to usher in a peaceful era… Only for fate to repeat itself in a similar but somewhat less bloody method. An emerging serial killer in the Isle is marking their murders as orders from the crown, a coup arises alongside an unknown woman claiming an uncertain blood relation who has a strange, untouchable magic that turns your remaining family and ally into stone. Escape from the castle and commandeer a ship known as The Dreadful Whale run by Meagan, a woman who has her own reasons for helping you regain everything that was lost.


12-40+ hours to complete. Dishonored 2 is a first-person stealth/action game where you play as a supernatural assassin in a mostly open world. 9 missions to complete, with hundreds of ways to complete them. Skill trees and Bone charms offer a huge variety of techniques and abilities to assassinate, murder, or move stealthily through the map; and with characters moving and reacting differently on how/where you confront them, what character you’ve chosen to play, or handled the last mission leads to high replayability.


I really enjoyed most of the time I spent into this game, being sneaky is fun and rewarding, Dishonored 2 is very well polished, beautiful, and the storyline was fun to play with satisfying endings. My only complaint is NG+ doesn’t feel rewarding or worth being called a NG+. “Use it or lose it” mechanics, NG+ Imports only runes spent on supernatural abilities and traits of sacrificed bonecharms. Blueprints are carried over but they must be repurchased. Black Bonecharms and Gold are not carried over, making my second run look very similar to my first since I had to grab most of the collectables for money again.


Half-Life 2
Cute, short, a pretty good time.

A Juggler's Tale

2.5 hours
18 of 18 achievements

Abby is a puppet who lives in a beautiful, scenic storybook-like world and works at a lovely circus with the ringmaster and a friendly bear; but sometimes things aren’t so nice, like how the ringmaster locks them up in a cage at night. Abby escapes, and goes on a grand adventure! But the story isn’t done just yet, and the ringmaster isn’t exactly willing to let her go.


2-3 hours to complete, A Juggler’s Tale is a dark fairytale sidescroller with easy puzzle and platforming sections. With a charming storyline and an interesting plot twist, the game is genuinely very nice to play and look at as the graphics and explorable areas are picturesque. Easy to beat, easy to complete, stress-free gaming at its finest.


Half-Life 2
For a pixel point and click, I was completely impressed.

Cats and the Other Lives

6.3 hours
29 of 29 achievements

Aspen is a housecat. They’ve been a companion to the elderly head of house, Bernard, and his two staff members since they were a kitten and watched them be haunted by their pasts. The Mason family has long since been broken and scattered, but with the death of Bernard, the family reunites to settle their inheritances and the mansion left behind. Greed lured them here, but they will find a mystery unsolved and answers to questions they did not want to seek. Someone has to look after the family, and Aspen has always done just fine.


Warning: This game has suicide and self-harm as a topic.
6-7 hours to complete, Cats and the Other Lives is a pixel art point-and-click masterpiece! 3 chapters, this story is one that spans decades that you watch unfold in the present and in visions of the past. It's a bit of a drama, the story is well-written and full of twists and turns. I’m seriously impressed with the amount of work put into this and making the pixel art incredibly detailed. I hope the warning doesn’t scare you off from playing this gem of a game.


August 2023 Progress Report

This month was a rollercoaster, because it started off terrible and ended well. Symphonic Rain and Lemon Cake back-to-back nearly burned me out and for a good week I genuinely wasn’t sure how this month would have turned out, but Ghostwire gave me a much-needed serotonin boost with it’s collectables and huge map exploration.
It really sucked giving Symphonic Rain a negative review but I really, really couldn’t recommend it. You gotta work on two side characters before you can delve into the actual story and it’s super rough, both the good ends are bad ends and the bad ends are still bad ends, and 18-ish hours was just too much!!!!

I don’t even wanna think about next months games; but I’ll note them down here for records and curious readers. Slime Rancher, Ori and the blind forest - looking at the achievements I’m not super looking forward to that dumpster fire, but maybe the game is good? Oxenfree, but I really don’t wanna play it, I hate horror and jumpscares, especially if you know they’re coming and there is so many… I’m probably gonna play something super gay to offset that. I genuinely just, don’t have that many plans for September aside from POP stuff I’m not even sure I wanna get into. I’ll try to make the best of it, and be optimistic. Maybe it will be great and unexpectedly fun!

Total games added to backlog: 3
Total completed: 6

66% (306/461)
13% (59/461)
10% (47/461)
9% (43/461)
1% (6/461)
54.5 hours
While it didn't quite make it to my favorites, it was still genuinely fun and enjoyable.

Following a traffic incident resulting in being possessed by an ex-cop/supernatural detective wraith named KK, a thick fog rolls in blanketing the city of Tokyo making its occupants vanish, leaving disembodied souls in it’s wake and heralding the arrival of thousands of Visitors, malevolent spirits from the world beyond. Sufficiently frightened, newly-possessed Akito immediately makes his way to the nearby hospital where his younger sister Mari lays in a coma, only to witness her kidnapping by a creepy man in a Hannya mask. Panicked and determined, Akito and KK agree to work together in this desperate situation – Rescue and retrieve the thousands of souls scattered around the city before the nightmarish man uses them all in some incomprehensible ritual, and save your sister, who he needs for some reason.


10-60+ hours, Ghostwire: Tokyo is a supernatural open-world exploration game with a special atmosphere that is not actually a horror game. That tag is a lie, as someone who is an absolute coward I assure you the only scary part was in the newly added DLC Quest “Fear for the Children” where they turned it up several notches. Combat consists of using Spirit Skills and “weaving” which was an absolute delight to use, the main skills being elemental – Fire, water/ice, and wind – and alternatives being talismans as well as assassination-like threads that you would also use to grapple around the empty city. Speaking of- the city is absolutely gorgeous. Frequent rainfall, plenty of cats and dogs – that you can use your skills to speak to – wandering around looking for lost owners, occasional enemies and corrupted areas that you can clean out to rescue the trapped souls there, and the collectables. There are, so, so many, from the spirits that are scattered to random but interesting items to pick up, to capsule machines to collect figurines to add to your many screenshots you will inevitably take. By the way, this game handles screenshots oddly…


For the first 20 hours my screenshots were turning out looking incredibly bleak and with a grey film, a complete opposite to how the game appears. Also; do not take screenshots with the in-game photo mode! They do not go to your steam screenshot folder, and you cannot share them. Use the photomode instead to set up screenshots, and then use F12. Aside from that and the admittingly underwhelming ending, I genuinely, truly loved and enjoyed playing Ghostwire, and I hope you like it too.

Half-Life 2
Extremely cute and well made with a good story.

Mhakna Gramura and Fairy Bell

4.5 hours
5 of 5 achievements

Mullbear Orphange is run by Tigrah Anne, a cruel woman who turns her orphans into animals to sell if they are not adopted out by the age of ten. Mhakna and her best friend Sebiarno are just two of the building’s unfortunate occupants. Very unhappy and almost ten, they make a wish to Fairy Bell, a fae known for rescuing children from unfortunate situations, to be taken away to a happier place; a utopia for children just like them! But there is something strange about this place, something Mhakna can’t identify…


2+ hours, Mhakna Gramura and Fairy Bell is a Kinetic Novel with no choices written in the style of a children’s storybook. Very high quality, the artist is Hare Konatusu, the art director for Fault: Milestone One and Fault: Milestone two side:above. Written, animated, and translated very well, the music is superior quality as it’s by Foxtail-Grass, the same studio that has done an immense amount of professional work in the Touhou series. With so many high-level names and groups tagged onto here, I’m honestly pleasantly surprised that Mhakna Gramura and Fairy Bell is only $4.99.


Half-Life 2
2-4 hours of content stretched out into 30+, not a great time.

Lemon Cake

21.4 hours
17 of 17 achievements

Lemon Cake is a 25+ hour Bakery/cat café management game in which you have 42 recipes to unlock as you level up, the max which is lvl40. You are limited to three rooms, the store front, the kitchen, and the greenhouse where most of your ingredients are sourced. Stray cats will frequently arrive in your bakery, and they will be adopted by customers; with cats that have been recently petted that day having an increased adoption chance. You have up to 5 display cases in which to set your baked goods on for people to purchase, and two open tables seating a maximum of 4.


While admittingly cute and somewhat enjoyable, I won’t be recommending Lemon Cake. In total, there is only about 2-4 hours worth of content that is stretched out into 25+ hours, which I don’t appreciate. The tip system is terribly flawed, as even having a menu set to “100% tip” I still got the same or a similar amount as when I had a 0% tip streak shown at my end of the day report, so I genuinely have no idea as to what that was influencing. NPC’s regularly got stuck on cats or someone else, and instead of going around, they would stare at each other until the game deleted the npcs in question; meaning that not only does the game need a better pathing system, you just lost a bunch of sales that day. A lot of the upgrades felt superficial, like they only existed to exist and justify the price hike between them to increase play time. There really isn’t a lot to do, and to be clear, the entire main story, or what can be called a main story, revolves around you getting the lemon cake recipe which you get at lvl 38, and only 4.2% of players ever got that far. Play something else?


Half-Life 2
would have been significantly better if the 18 hour mandatory side character playthrough's were.

Symphonic Rain

26.6 hours
13 of 13 achievements

Piova Communal School of Music is a famous location for budding musicians in Piova, the city of endless rain. With a constant cloud overhanging the sky, Chris Vertin has spent almost three years here writing letters back and forth to his hometown and childhood sweetheart Arietta, a promise he made before he left was that he would return when his table drawer was full of letters; a date that is rapidly approaching. A music prodigy and general wallflower, Chris is a third-year student with a graduation examination; a stage performance happening in less than three months. Needing to find an accompanying vocalist for his instrument to even be allowed to take the exam, Chris must utilize his poor social connections and abysmal social skills to find a candidate to practice with so he can finally leave this city of eternal rain behind and go back to his hometown, to Arietta.


Warning! This visual novel is dark! Only recommended for VN fans or masochists!
30+ hours to complete, Symphonic Rain was actually released in 2004 and has since been updated with many quality-of-life improvements such as the updated, easier to use UI and text box. Hand drawn watercolor backgrounds, full voice acting, 3 routes leading to a final 4th route, I really loved playing Symphonic Rain! Well, almost. Despite how amazing the true route and the grand ending was, recommending this is difficult for two reasons. One, you need to play 3 routes before you can play the real ending, and second… the first 18-ish hours kinda suck. It’s boring, and I didn’t like playing Lise and Fal’s routes which are basically bad ends just so I could start the actual storyline. If their good endings were even remotely enjoyable, or you learned important storyline information that wasn’t told in Torta’s route, or even good, I wouldn’t be complaining about these two side characters that you don’t even need to interact with but the fact you gotta slog through them and that it takes almost 20 hours to get to the genuine game is a bit much?


Overall, I have a positive impression of Symphonic Rain, but I would only recommend it if you’re fine with spending that much time getting to the part of the game that’s genuinely interesting and a pleasure to read. If I had known everything I knew now, I would never have played Symphonic Rain.

Half-Life 2
Wished it was longer.

Wander No More

1.2 hours
4 of 4 achievements

Kouichirou Ayase is a skilled samurai who was previously one of the captains of a military force known as the Kodokushi; an elite force wielded by the government devoted to protecting the people, expanding the Mirai Kingdom’s reach, and driving back invading forces. Kouichirou practiced for years and rose above his peers to join this selective samurai militia, but realizes the truth too late. Unable to leave the group or else he would be hunted down and killed, it takes a couple long years and his wife’s suicide to drive him away from the Kingdom. For weeks, Kouichirou was pursued until he finally had to stop at a small rural village to recuperate and obtain food supplies, only for the forces to suddenly catch up and burn it to the ground, slaughtering all its occupants. Looking for supplies in the flames before everything turns to ash, he finds a newly made orphan instead. Her name is Chiyo. He adopts her, and together, they build Hotsu Village back from the ground up.


30+ minutes to complete, Wander No More is a Kinetic Novel with no choices, no voice acting, little to no character art and simplistic backgrounds. It’s admittingly pretty mediocre, but I enjoyed it because Kouichirou is pretty to look at and because the story isn’t slice of life or extremely optimistic. It’s dark without being too gory and the writing was well received. For the low price of “Free”, you can’t go wrong! Although, it would be better if it was set at $1.99 or something.


Half-Life 2
I cannot believe I gave this a positive review. So bad it's good, fantastic level design, combat, graphics.

Blades of Time

20.2 hours
35 of 35 achievements

Ayumi is first and foremost a treasure hunter, and secondly, an adventurer. After hijacking a magical orb that belongs to a suspicious organization only known as “The Guild”, she teleports herself to Dragon Island in search of wealth and new experiences; only to find herself stuck with hundreds other treasure hunters in the middle of two powerful groups at a standstill. Make your own side, team up with a magical entity that likes to bestow you various powers, and set this cold war ablaze if you want to make it to the top to be the first person to loot the Dragon Temple.


9-14+ hours to beat, Blades of Time is a Fantasy Hack and Slash Adventure with optional multiplayer, co-op, and PVP in “Outbreak” mode. The successor to X-Blades with the same protagonist, Ayumi, Blades of Time has improved itself graphically, in level design, combat, skills, and in magic use. While the voice acting and writing is still so terrible it’s amusing, the game is very fun to play and surprisingly challenging. The Time-Rewind skill keeps the game interesting along with it’s special use against quite a variety of enemies and puzzles. Genuinely enjoyable, highly recommended.


July 2023 Progress Report

Welp, this happened. I got 70+ Hours into Fallout: New Vegas but I’m having soooo many issues with crashes and the game freezes it became impossible for me to finish it in a month. Dishonored 2 is also almost done but man, no powers playthrough + the dukes manor, yikes. I think I would rather go for all the collectables + ghost + clean hands again. Tbh I wasn’t super impressed with most of my games this month which really, really sucks. They were good but every single one I was just like “eeeh” or short and I didn’t really have a great time. Next month should be better as I’m playing stuff I was kinda holding off on while focusing on Pop, but to heck with it! To! Heck!

Total games added to backlog: 4
Total completed: 5

66% (301/458)
13% (59/458)
11% (49/458)
10% (45/458)
1% (4/458)
10.0 hours
A very beautiful post-apocalyptic open-world exploration game.

Miku and Taku have drifted around the world as outcasts, never allowed to live with their own kind due to Miku’s gift after she was blessed by an unknown entity that allows her to bloom flowers and grow plant life. Drifting for a long time over the endless ocean, the siblings discover an abandoned city whose residents have mysteriously vanished in the aftermath of an unusual disaster. Investigate the disappearances to learn what happened, explore the beautiful world around you, and decide if this is a home worth settling for.
5-10 hours to complete, Submerged: Hidden Depths is a gorgeous, post-apocalyptic open world exploration game with fun puzzles and a charming atmosphere. A sequel to Submerged, Hidden Depths is a massive improvement in every single way; musically, graphically, and environmentally. Not only are there now outfits and hairstyles to collect, you have a base that you can improve, a garden to grow, and treasures to discover! Taku is also now an available character to play in some areas, and the interaction between siblings as they explore another sunken city is very well done! I genuinely could not stop taking screenshots and it was difficult to narrow them down to a few to post. While the storyline is admittingly almost as confusing as the first game, it’s still worth picking up and playing them in order.
Big Squid

Half-Life 2
Post-apocalyptic exploration game, map is kinda small. It's a 5 hours game but I did like it enough to play it twice!


10.3 hours
10 of 10 achievements

A drowned city, a strange infection. Taku and Miku arrive at a submerged metropolis in search of medical supplies air-dropped and abandoned on rooftops left over from the end of the world. Taku is injured with a high fever, so it’s up to Miku to take care of her little brother and climb the ancient, crumbling towers. The animal life here is strange, tinted green with glowing bioluminescent spots that light up at night similar to patches of plants floating on the water but even stranger- Miku doesn’t think she and Taku are alone.
2-5+ hours, Submerged is a post-apocalyptic open world with parkour that I actually consider to be a walking sim. It’s fairly relaxing, there is no time limited events, it’s impossible to fall or die, and there are no enemies. While the puzzles are non-existent, the storyline is learned slowly through drawings collected encouraging adventures around the city and looking for landmarks. Graphically, the game is beautiful, climbing around and up towers is pretty fun, and I particularly enjoyed the overgrowth of plant life even in the most unlikely places. Dolphins follow your boat as you explore and there are quite a few interesting locations and encounters should you choose to play.

Half-Life 2
Barely made a postitive reivew. Just barely.

Boyfriend Dungeon

11.9 hours
45 of 45 achievements

t’s summer vacation and your absolutely amazing cousin Jessie is offering up his old apartment room rent-free for you to stay at while he and his fiancé live together and prep for their summer wedding! Verona is a gorgeous town with malls, museums, art studios, a college and cat cafes! Capulet Beach is a popular tourist spot with the Verona Lighthouse as a scenic landmark, and best of all, there are dungeons! The three dungeons are super popular dating locations between wielders and weapons, to clarify… people who wield weapons and people who transform into weapons. This summer, it’s time to be brave, step out of your comfort zone, identify your fears and literally fight them head on as you dive deep into the Labyrinths!
5-11 hours to complete, Boyfriend Dungeon is a Roguelike Dungeon Crawler that’s also a VN and LGBTQ+ friendly with non-binary options. There are 3 procedurally generated dungeons and 10 dating options that can turn into various weapon types that leave a lot of room for creative and diverse playstyles that you can level up and unlock new skills! There are also plenty of customization options and outfits to wear, things to craft, and skill books to use. The music is notably made by Marksye and songstress Madeliene McQueen and is honestly really good to dungeon with. I only really have two complaints.
Bullet Hell
Let me mute my phone! I get it! You have a lot of dating options. That’s great. But when you step out of a dungeon and you have like, 9 people blowing up your phone trying to get your attention and set up dates it just makes me not want to come out. This is made significantly worse by accepting the “Encouraging texts from mom” option when you start the game, which you can’t turn off unless you make a new game btw, who absolutely has no idea what moderation or personal space means. My phone was constantly popping off and it drove me * NUTS. Secondly, not everyone is super comfortable with polyamory! I only tried to date like, 2 people and one of them I decided I didn’t like later on, but I ended up pulling like, 6. If you don’t immediately tell the other person on the first date that you just wanna be friends, I think you just straight up get locked into the romance route; which is a bit terrible because at that point you literally do not know anything except a brief summary and first impression of the other person.

Half-Life 2
Game was a gift! Good vibes, didn't like the main character much.

Assemble with Care

1.6 hours
14 of 14 achievements

Maria’s world traveling and antique restoration takes her to the quaint, quiet town of Bellariva in anticipation of its celebrated historical food festival a few days away. Setting up in a hotel, Maria passes out flyers to make some extra income while she’s here and ends up fixing more than she anticipated. Repair beloved possessions and meaningful mementos to fix fractured relationships in their owners’ personal lives, and discover new perspectives that might allow you to heal your own.


1+ hours to complete, there are 13 chapters with an additional epilogue. Full voice acting, wholesome vibes, and a wonderful hand illustrated story accompanied by an impressionist art style, Assemble with Care is very charming. The game takes place around 1980, so many of the objects you are fixing are things I’ve never actually interacted with before, making for some fun, if easy, puzzles. If you’re wanting to spend a couple hours playing something sweet and simple, look no further.

go away

Half-Life 2
First accepted curator game since 2021. I think I only got sent it due to my Paris complaint.

Hidden Cats in New York

2.0 hours
54 of 54 achievements

This game was given to me for free to curate, which does not guarantee a positive review, and reflects my sincere opinion.

45 minutes – 2 hours to complete, Hidden Cats in New York is a Hidden Object game with 2 modes, normal which consists of 120 cats in a fixed position, and advanced with 200+ special cats which unlock 6 extra maps to find more (425) cats in. Compared to Nukearts Studio’s previous game, Cats in Paris (2022), there is significantly more feline variety in shapes, sizes, colors, and features. Finding a cat offers a wide variation of meows, making sure the game continues to be interesting after 10 minutes.
Due to the large map size, the game cleverly segments the area into sections, and finding all the felines in that area colors it in so finding any missing cats is fairly simple. The animations are fun and fairly amusing, and the music was enjoyable. Admittingly, I wasn’t expecting to like it very much but I had a good time streaming it for two hours with friends going through all the content. There has been remarkable improvement compared to Hidden Cat’s previous titles, and for the affordable price, it’s a solid buy that I don’t think anyone would be disappointed with.