The games made by the six participants in the first round of the Difference Engine Initiative, plus those made by founders Mare Sheppard and Jim Munroe, have been officially released! My own contribution, the Victorian-themed stealth game Adeline’s Elopement, can be found here, but it’s the other games made by my fellow participants (who are amazing and whom I feel grateful to have met) that I’d like to highlight here.
Icarus by Sagan Yee
Description: Loosely based on the Greek myth of Icarus, if Icarus was a 20-something slacker trying to cope with the genius of his inventor father. Also, instead of building wax wings to escape an island, you make a jet pack!
Why you should play it: Beautiful, playful, lovingly-drawn visuals; interesting story; really entertaining parodies of genre novel writing; lonely robots.
Salsa Loco by Stephanie Fisher
Description: Salsa Loco is an anxiety-inducing top-down action game about harvesting vegetables for salsa. Unlike other farming games out there, this one is not played at a leisurely pace, unless you want to lose your crop to pests!
Why you should play it: twitchy, attention-consuming, and fun. Bunny rabbits. Comes with salsa recipes.
Dame Game by Zoe Quinn
Description: A point and click comedy/mystery game about an apartment full of nerds and some missing take-out. Also integrates external websites in to the game world!
Why you should play it: Witty noir-inspired dialog. Fedoras. Pictures of Humphrey Bogart AND Patrick Stewart. Gentle fun-poking at various nerd subcultures.
Unicorn Justice Fighter/Unicorn Robber Baron by Una Lee
Description: Part action game, part political economy simulation. Using your beautifully coloured droppings, you fight off the evil horses who can’t stand the awesomeness you bring into the universe. You can get other awesome unicorns to help you, or you can just knock them over and steal their stuff.
Why you should play it: Unicorns (lots of them). Unicorn droppings as a game mechanic/weapon. Deceptively difficult and twitchy. Makes you feel capitalist guilt when you steal stuff from the other unicorns (look at their sad, broken bodies!)
Kreayshawn: The Game by Beth Maher
Description: It’s here, it’s fresh, it’s shiny and it’s got the swag, and it’s pumping out its ovaries.
Why you should play it: It’s a viral hit, so chances are you’ve played it already! Your enemies drop handbags when you shoot them, and when Kreayshawn dies, she turns into a kitty.
(PS: Are you a woman who would like to make a game of your very own? Or perhaps you’re already making games? Check out Dames Making Games, a friendly group of lady game enthusiasts!)