Asylum Night Escape Review

Asylum Night Escape Review

Feb 29, 2016

Yes, Asylum Night Escape is an escape adventure, but it does do its best to set itself apart.

Graphically, it is decently done, with a top down view and useful animations. It makes use of a virtual joystick to effect movement, and the sounds are fairly elementary.

The game has three gameplay modes: Escape (in which one has to find and lead a hostage to safety), Story (which is more of a typical leveled experience) and Survive (which is a true test of one’s ability to take on hoodlums and survive). Each is a slight variation of the core theme, which has to do with a foreboding medical establishment that is manned by more than it’s fair share of violent-minded thugs.

Playing in Story Mode, one takes on the persona of an unnamed female heroine who is tasked with rescuing a tortured kid from the facility. Using the controls described earlier, one looks to get around and, in essence is getting through a serious of jobs, while avoiding guards.

In this mode, the game incorporates moving, physical view areas that correspond to each guards field of vision. To avoid being detected, one simply looks to avoid being caught in said light, because there is no real way to fight the guards in this mode, and being caught causes the level to be failed. It is an interesting way of setting this up, and it works quite well; if one successfully does what is required, a subsequent level is opened, and so on.


Heading on to Escape, one looks for the kid, and either avoids or takes on the guards with the kid in tow. In this mode, one can fight, as all parties have life bars; the key is to get the baddies before they get the player. It’s leveled as well, so one gets this section in small morsels. This level has three pertinent virtual buttons, all dealing with attack.

Those same buttons are available in Survival, where one looks to stay alive as long as possible.

There are ads to contend with, but they aren’t that annoying; collected coins can be used to improve weapons and the like.

The game media does feel a tad bit repetitive in parts, especially with regards to sound. Also, the themes — pooled red liquid, hello — do give the game a dark feel that might make it a bit more appropriate to an older audience, which is reflected in the game’s ratings.

All in all, it is able to bring in different concepts, and bring them in effectively, and for that, it is definitely worth checking out.

Prison Break Review

Prison Break Review

May 18, 2015

Prison Break is an interesting game that has a simple, enjoyable premise: figure out a way.

Out, that is.

It works as a still frame puzzler; one is presented with a scene, and the basic idea is to utilize objects and clues to advance out of the room. Several objects can be interacted with — read, collected, utilized and such — to help solve procedural stumblers that otherwise halt progress.

To be more specific, the opening scene helps frame the gameplay. It starts with a disheveled prison cell, and a few loose objects — the backstory is that the player has been left to die in an abandoned prison. Tapping on objects reveal if they are useful or not, and objects that can be added to the inventory are placed there. Typically, there are several things to investigate, and there are even objects that can be moved to reveal hidden things, with the immediate objective to make it out of the room one is currently in. When that is accomplished, one basically does the same in the subsequent room, and so on, until complete escape is effected.


Thankfully, it’s not necessarily a straight, linear journey. Some objects require the player to travel back to rooms that have already been checked through to use a newly acquired tool. Some solutions require multiple tools used in conjunction. There are plenty of visual red herrings as well, so one is tempted to tap everything in a particular frame.

The game does a decent job of combining more than a single gameplay element while mostly remaining simple. The hand-drawn art is quite becoming. The music was surprising, but can be toggled.

My biggest gripe is the length. The developer should be punished for giving folks such an engaging journey that is, in my opinion, way too short. Just when I was getting warm, it ended, and I want to scream.

All in all, it is a fun romp, worthy of sequels, and at the very least updates.


Escape From Alcatraz Review

Escape From Alcatraz Review

Jul 24, 2013

Escape From Alcatraz as a retro-looking jailbreak puzzler that is quite interesting. I mean, the very name Alcatraz invokes thoughts of the strong arm of the unforgiving law.

I admit, I’m a sucker for arcade-type 8-bit gtaphics. This game got me. Minimal coloration meets old’school animations. It’s effective, and for folks like me, attractive too. It feels a bit like Rogue.

The gameplay is in parts interesting, in parts infuriating. Controlling our freedom-craving jailbird using a simple, 4-way virtual d-pad, the simple goal is to roam around, collect items and effect the escape. It is fairly simple gameplay, that is fairly forgiving of basic bungling around. Interactions are a big part of the game; nearby objects can be collected to be used.escape1

For example, using a sheet to procure a dropped bunch of keys gets the caper underway. Going “up” and “down” from cell to cell (and then to and from rooms) allows for the collections of more materials, and the interaction with other persons. Objects and tools can’t just be collected wantonly; there is a limit to how many items can be stored in inventory. Thus, there are times when an object might be collected to fill up the inventory, and then one that is more immediately useful is encountered; it can be good strategy to ditch the temporarily unneeded gear for a later time. I liked such subtle, logical elements that fit into the gameplay. The gameplay is all about solving mini-puzzles and situational riddles to get the jigsaw of escape complete.

The game is not so easy as just wondering around, solving puzzles and escaping, though. There are things to be avoided. Like guards… of course. Running into a guard is game death, euphemistically known as being returned to the cell. Going down the wrong path and falling, for instance, or using overly loud equipment bring about the same dismal result.

On the other hand, while I think the simplicity is mostly charming, I think the combination process is a bit clunky by way of too many button presses. The bumbler in me would have also appreciated some save points; all or nothing is part of the challenge.

Escape from Alcatraz is a pleasant time waster that is surprisingly hard to put down. No matter what anyone says, escaping from that prison is/was always fascinating. This game lets us keep on pretending we can.

The Past cannot be Outrun Review

The Past cannot be Outrun Review

Dec 21, 2012

Escape games are a different genre than many people are used to. These type of games are a combination of “find what doesn’t belong” and a puzzle game. The Past cannot be Outrun is a game set where the main character wakes up in an building where they have no idea how they go there. Upon looking around, there are a lot of strange things to be found.

Each room has something of value. Looking around consists of tapping on areas of the room if it looks like there is something important there. If not, the game will tell you to move along. On the tablet I used to test The Past cannot be Outrun, it seemed like I needed to tap just below the objects vs. right on them. Even the arrows to move the screens left or right and to back out a screen were the same way.

Make sure to look at each item found quite well. There are more than one use for many of them and they can be used several times to complete different tasks. The items also need to be used in a specific order. There really isn’t any levels per se, just advancing to the end. The overall goal is to escape from the building. As more clues are found, more of the story unfolds.

For any noobies to escape games, The Past cannot be Outrun can be a real challenge. Luckily there are lots of different walkthroughs and clues on various sites out there. I have only played a few and they are always a real challenge. Part of the reason is, the instructions and guidance is very minimal. It is all about using logic and thinking about the items and clues at hand. Sometimes there are creative solutions needed.

Friday Free Game Rundown September 21st

Friday Free Game Rundown September 21st

Sep 21, 2012

Being in jail wouldn’t be fun. All of the TV shows who glamorize being in jail, don’t talk about all of the bad stuff that happens that would make a person want to escape. Since we aren’t recommending anyone purposely go to jail simply to try and escape, here are a few games to simulate the experience and much much more fun way.

Jail Escape

Jail Escape is a 2D scrolling game with pretty simple controls. The goal of the game is to escape jail. The reason for the escape is actually a good one. The character’s wife is being held by the Mafia and he needs to escape jail to free her. By skulking through the sewers in secret rooms to avoid the guards, the faster the escaping happens the better.

Download Jail Escape

old offender | Escape from jail

Old Offender is actually a pretty difficult game. The game starts in a jail cell. while there, the search starts for items within the cell that can aid an escape. for people who enjoy the games where there’s a lot of thought involved this would be a good one. Each stage builds on the last. All of them involve searching for items in different options for escape. Much like it would be if one were to really escape from jail. Be crafty and think like a criminal.

Download old offender|Escape from jail

Prison Ball

Prison Ball is a brick breaker style games. Goals to break down all of the walls to break out of prison. There are 140 different levels to try and beat. Gaining power-ups will help break down the walls more efficiently. Much like in a real jailbreak, time is an enemy. Use a fingertip to toss the ball at the walls.

Download Prison Ball

Jumping Jax’s Jail Break

Jumping Jax’s Jail Break his jumper game where the only real control is to tilt the screen to control which way Jax jumps. The coast isn’t clear for Jax’s jail break attempt. There are angry birds and killercopters trying to thwart his escape. The plot has Jax taking on God and even the Devil. That must be some crazy jail, I can see why he wants to escape.

Download Jumping Jax’s Jail Break

Stckman Prison Escape

Stckman Prison Escape is a funny little game in where the main characters a stick figure dressed in jail. His buddies sent him a cake with a bunch of stuff hidden in. Using trial and error on the different items, one of them will surely help the stick figure prisoner escape. The game isn’t very long, but it has some pretty good cut scenes showing what happens when different items in the cake are used.

Download Stckman Prison Escape

Ounce Bounce Review

Ounce Bounce Review

Mar 8, 2012

With some games it’s not too difficult to guess where the inspiration came from. Others are deliberately random, and that adds to their charm. And some are just sort of inexplicable and are attention-drawing in that way. Ounce Bounce falls into the last category, which is why I tried it out.

Ounce Bounce is the story of a young owl is undertaking flight-training when he accidentally topples backward into a well. The tiny crash-helmeted owl is trapped at the bottom underneath a vast field of strangely suspended debris. Users help him make his way back to the top. In his way are bricks and boards. When crashed into the boards will move slightly, and the bricks will explode for points. It’s an endurance game and Ounce is constantly fighting against gravity, trying to drift up to the top of the well and not falling back down to the bottom. Users help him by swiping their finger up along his path to send him up. Users can rebound him off of boards to gain height, or into bricks to blast a path. The longer Ounce is kept in the air, the higher the score.

It’s a cute game, and the idea is interesting. Crashing into the bricks is quite satisfying, and it’s fun to challenge myself to see how long I can keep Ounce going. But that’s really all I have to say that’s specifically positive.

Truth be told I just didn’t like this game very much. It’s weirdly slow and lackluster, and there is actually very little accuracy when controlling Ounce. He is such a tiny object that swiping across his path only has about a 60% success rate and the lack of control makes it very defeating to play. Ounce himself looks so gloomy and defeated that it makes me wonder why he even wants to leave the well. I gave it a reasonable go but it just didn’t pass the cut.

Escape Review

Escape Review

Jan 23, 2012

Notable Flash games site Kongregate has launched their first published title for mobile, Escape. Developed by Incredible Ape, this game can be most easily described as a cross-between the wall-jumping gameplay of NinJump or Ninjatown: Trees of Doom, with the retro art aesthetic and unforgiving difficulty of Semi Secret’s Gravity Hook HD. Players control a ninja who must escape from the pit it finds itself in by rapidly jumping between walls, and staying above the laser that is coming up to try and vaporize it. Also, the walls have spikes on them, because what is a task without some obstacles in the way?

Escape‘s pixel art is simple but looks great on high-resolution screens. The chiptune soundtrack fits well, being fast-paced and high-intensity, a great fit for this game. The sessions are very short, lasting only a few seconds before death, due to the challenge, which means that a high score is typically not far away. The game’s fast pace and ability to jump faster when perfectly timed leads to an interesting dilemma for players: risk sudden death by trying to ascend quickly, or take it slow-ish, knowing that one wrong move might be the end? It’s an interesting amount of strategy for such a fast-paced game.

Yet, this mid-game strategization comes with a curious subtlety to the jumping controls that I don’t quite know if it works that well given how fast the game goes. Holding down longer causes the player to jump higher, and tapping quickly causes a shorter jump. It just seems too difficult in the environment of the game to determine just how precise of a jump must be used in order to not die.

On iOS, the game doesn’t use Game Center at all, it uses a Kongregate login solely for high scores and achievements. I understand that they published the game, and I wouldn’t have a problem if it was alongside Game Center integration, but to leave it out for their proprietary network is not fair to iOS gamers. As well, is there any reason why an in-app web view couldn’t have been used instead of kicking out to Safari to view leaderboards and achievements on the Kongregate website?

Escape is a fun, challenging diversion for the retro-minded endless jumping fan. Try out the Flash-based web version first, and enjoy the mechanic that sadly didn’t translate to mobile: hitting the escape key to jump.

Stellar Escape Review

Stellar Escape Review

Jun 7, 2011

The endless runner genre is one that’s taken off in popularity since the advent of the smartphone era. The premise is simple – something or someone is coming to get you and you need to escape before it does. The screen constantly moves and all you have to do is get yourself over the obstacles in your path.

Stellar Escape follows the same basic template, but adds a few more buttons into the mix, along with a few nice graphical touches and a story that you can quite easily miss. It’s not a revolution, but it does what it does rather well, and for the price, that’s all you can ask for really.

Sprinting through a space station, you are presented with a variety of space walls, space holes and space rails that you have to navigate to proceed. There are five buttons; jump, grab, slide, fall down hole and dive through gap. Each of the spacey obstacles you encounter refers back to an action – press that button, pass that obstacle.

The problem with the many-buttoned approach is that things can get mighty convoluted when you’re facing large strings of walls, gaps and holes. Not only is the game testing your reaction times, but it’s forcing you to remember which of five buttons you need to press. That doesn’t sound particularly taxing, but when three of the buttons are different kinds of jumps, it can be.

Stellar Escape has taken the running genre and tried to make it more like a “real” or conventional videogame and the results are mixed. It’s still a lot of fun, and once you get the hang of things you’ll be leaping and ducking and falling in holes with the best of them. But the game lacks the instant addictive thrill of something like Cannabalt, or one of the huge swathe of clones you can find on the Android Market.

It’s not terrible, it’s not broken and it is a lot of fun, but you can’t quite help thinking that Stellar Escape has run a little bit too far from the template that makes games like this work.