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8 Chess Apps and Websites (2021): Chess.com, Lichess …

The millennia-old pastime of chess has been enjoying an explosion of interest. Whether people are longing for any engaging hobby to keep themselves sane during the long wait, or they fell prey to a popular Netflix drama about a chess prodigy, competition is heating up. While games using a physical board will have to wait a bit longer for most of us, there are excellent online chess platforms and a healthy chess community available in a few clicks or thumb taps.

The game is the same no matter which of these options you choose, but features differ. Some apps and platforms target a more committed audience, while others are simpler and may suit those seeking to dabble against a less competitive crowd.

The Omnibus

Chess.com (Desktop, iOS, Android)

The website with the most obvious nameChess.comdelivers on its promise: Everyone from newbies to grandmasters has a place here. Games are available at any speed, with time limits for each move ranging from a brisk one minute per side to a leisurely five days.

You can just play and ignore the sites other offerings, but for the curious, options abound. You can play against numerous AI-powered chess bots, each with its own strengths and playing style. Those looking for some noncompetitive study can learn through puzzles and tutorials, or watch chess livestreams (yes, this is very much a thing) and even find a mentor. The one thing that stymies your explorations on the site is a subscription paywall, which pops up in various places more serious players might wander, such as the opening explorer. You can still play as many games as you like without paying, whether against the computer or actual humans.

When you start playing, youll get assigned a rating that denotes your skill level. It will fluctuate wildly over your first several games, then settle into a narrower range. Once that happens, youll generally be matched against players who are within a stones throw of your skill level. Chess.com runs in any web browser, but there are also mobile apps for iOS and Android that successfully recreate the experience. Just know that on medium- to small-size phones, you may find it more difficult to scrutinize the board.

Subscriptions come in three tiers at $5, $7, and $14 per month, or around half those amounts if you pay for a year upfront. Every tier removes all ads, unlocks every bot, and allows for unlimited use of its game analysis tool in which an AI evaluates every move of your games and suggests alternatives. The middle tier allows unlimited access to the sites chess puzzles, while the lowest tier allows you 25 puzzles per day. The top tier opens up Chess.coms full video library of lessons and game analyses. There is so much to explore among the free options that it makes sense to start there, and its easy to scale up as warranted by your desire for chess dominance.

The Alternative

Lichess (Desktop, iOS, Android)

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8 Chess Apps and Websites (2021): Chess.com, Lichess ...

Award-Winning Game ‘Where Cards Fall’ For PC and Switch Gets Release Date – COGconnected

Today we learned indie developer The Game Band along with publisher Snowman will release their award-winning puzzle game Where Cards Fall for the Nintendo Switch and PC via Steam and the Epic Games Store on November 2.

Where Cards Fall is a slice of life puzzle game where you build houses of cards to bring formative memories to life.

After its initial launch on Apple Arcade, Where Cards Fall garnered critical acclaim and was subsequently named a 2020 Apple Design Award Winner.

Soon players on PC and Switch will be able to create their own pathways across dreamlike spatial puzzles all within a coming-of-age story.

Where Cards Fall features:

Where Cards Falls coming-of-age story isnt a straight line, but a cyclical process the characters engage with time and time again. The houses of cards give each scene a distinct identity and sense of place. As you solve puzzles, youll gain small glimpses into the characters lives, uncovering memories within the houses of cards. While the puzzles gently flow into each other, things dont always conclude neatly.

Source: Press Release

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Award-Winning Game 'Where Cards Fall' For PC and Switch Gets Release Date - COGconnected

Eye of the Temple review: Spelunking like Indiana Jones – Android Central

Source: Rune Skovbo Johansen

Most VR games are treated as a more personal first-person expression of a pancake game or one that you play solely on a flat-screen often integrating the same types of virtual movement into the control scheme. But VR wasn't always like this, and Eye of the Temple proves that, with the right level design, it doesn't always have to be going forward.

Eye of the Temple is a physical movement puzzle game at heart. Think of walking simulators like Firewatch or The Witness, where you walk around solving puzzles that fit into a certain narrative, and you'll begin to understand how Eye of the Temple is designed. Maybe the biggest difference aside from being in VR, of course between Eye of the Temple and other walking simulators is that you'll be physically walking around your room at all times while playing.

This physical movement concept is something we haven't seen much since the early days of the HTC Vive when roomscale VR was a new concept. Players need a 2m x 2m space to play Eye of the Temple, as there's no way to virtually move your character. Still, this movement makes the Indiana Jones-esque theme and accompanying puzzles all the more involved and will make it easier for some gamers to jump into the action while simultaneously shutting out those who might have physical movement disabilities.

While this is a SteamVR game played on a PC, I used the Oculus Quest 2 to play the game wirelessly via the Virtual Desktop app.

Bottom line: Eye of the Temple implements a physically walking movement system instead of a virtual one, pitting players against ageless traps and clever puzzles using only their whip and torch. Explore the temple in a way you likely wouldn't expect, and don't forget to look everywhere for the treasure that lurks within.

Disclaimer: This review was made possible by a review code provided by Rune Skovbo Johansen. The company did not see the contents of the review before publishing.

Much as you might expect from an Indiana Jones game, Eye of the Temple sets players on a quest to find hidden treasure in a temple, armed only with a torch and a whip. The whip itself has proper physics applied, so you'll feel like you're cracking an actual whip when you sling it at enemies or to grab levers from afar.

The main schtick of Eye of the Temple is that you'll be using actual walking movements within your roomscale boundaries. That means you'll physically be walking from platform to platform, balancing on beams, and walking backward to ensure you don't fall off rolling platforms.

You'll constantly feel like you're about to run into a wall or fall back into your furniture, yet, you never will, thanks to the ingenious level design that fits perfectly into a 2m x 2m space.

Moving blocks will transport you across the virtual world of Eye of the Temple. All you need to do is step on them, and they'll take you to the next point. Stepping off of a block will result in failure and cause you to start back at the previous checkpoint, but those aren't usually too far back.

There's no virtual joystick movement or teleporting here. You'll be doing everything with your own two feet.

As you might expect from any game, what starts out as a simple exercise of walking from moving block to moving block evolves into a more difficult task the further you get into the game. Rolling blocks require you to walk backward in order to stay on top of them. Rotating statues spew fire and require you to duck.

Minecarts, rolling boulders, and timed ceilings that compress you into oblivion also fit right into the expected themes and obstacles that lay in your path to the temple.

As you progress, you'll collect small rubies that can be traded in for larger emerald-like crystals, which open the pathway to the temple. Eye of the Temple is light on story but, nevertheless, presents an intriguing tale of why these crystals are needed for progression.

The base mechanics of Eye of the Temple are such an absolute joy to get accustomed to. During my time with the game, one of my son's friends was over, and they were watching me play. The initial "why do you have to move like that" questions quickly turned into "oh my gosh, this game is awesome" within just a few seconds of play.

Something is mesmerizing and intriguing about physically moving your body through a video game, and it's a novelty that doesn't seem to wear off in the several hours it will take you to make it to the temple.

The puzzles are often clever, but you'll have to be clever about how to move about them to be successful.

Puzzles were challenging enough, and I got stuck several times throughout the game, especially on the sections where you need to time your movements with the movements of crushing blocks or other dangerous obstacles. The real skill of the game is moving yourself the right way rather than the puzzles themselves, in my experience.

Once you complete the game, several collectibles can be garnered by further exploring the temple. As you gain new abilities, you'll have that "eureka!" moment that'll take you back through already-explored areas to find lost treasures. I always enjoy this Metroidvania-esque type of level design, and I imagine anyone else who does will also enjoy how Eye of the Temple is devised.

Given that you'll be standing the entire time, it's likely that longer play sessions won't be common. Thankfully, Eye of the Temple uses a great checkpoint system that never seems to place you too far back.

There's something mesmerizing and intriguing about physically moving your body through a video game, a novelty that doesn't seem to wear off even after several hours.

Spectators in the room will almost assuredly love watching you complete the next puzzle, and Eye of the Temple has several different spectator views that make the experience even more enjoyable. I particularly loved the third-person view that has a virtual camera flying to specific spots on the map, showing your player character making its way through each level, represented only by the torch, whip, and hat (if you're wearing it).

The puzzles in Eye of the Temple are regularly interesting and get your noodle thinking, but the real challenge throughout the entirety of the game is moving your body as a video game character would.

Roomscale VR is always a bit tricky because, while it's incredibly unique and can't be experienced any other way than through a VR headset, it's also a bit limiting for several players.

The developer, Rune, has taken great care in the level design and obstacles for Eye of the Temple, ensuring that they're not too physically challenging and, yet, still fit properly in a real 2m x 2m space. But that doesn't mean everyone is going to find these movements easy.

Roomscale VR is always a bit tricky because, while it's incredibly unique and can't be experienced any other way than through a VR headset, it's also a bit limiting for several players. Do you have enough space to move around in? Can you physically move with enough speed or agility to complete the puzzles?

A number of accessibility options are present for players who might experience sickness while standing on moving blocks, but without virtual movement of any kind, some players will simply be shut out of the experience. I miss roomscale-only experiences and would like to see more, but I also recognize that it limits the audience that wants to play them.

I don't want this to be a complaint because I thoroughly enjoy roomscale-only games. This is simply an observation of reality with certain physical space and movement requirements.

The whip, like its real-life counterpart, can be awkward to use at times.

During gameplay, you'll be using your whip for a surprising number of actions. Sometimes you'll use it as an extension of your hand to reach otherwise unreachable switches. Other times, you'll light it on fire to set a pyre ablaze or to wack enemies out of the air. The whip feels a bit awkward at all times, but, at least in my very limited experience with Indiana Jones-style whips, that's also the case with them in real life.

Much as a whip could get tangled in the hands of an amateur, I also would not want to play this game on a headset that's tethered to a PC. I initially tried playing it with an Oculus Link cable but quickly gave up. There's just too much physical turning happening, and the cable gets hopelessly tangled in no time flat.

Thankfully, there are several ways to play SteamVR on Quest 2 wirelessly. My preferred method of choice is Virtual Desktop, which delivers the highest quality wireless streaming without comparison.

Some other minor gripes include the odd way you interact with the menu that's with the tip of your torch but this was not a mechanic found in the game and really is a super nitpicky point to bring up.

4out of 5

If you've got a Quest or a Quest 2, a gaming PC, and at least 2m x 2m of roomscale space, Eye of the Temple will give you a unique experience like no other. Sure, there are some roomscale demos from back in the early days of PC VR in 2016, but none of them are full-fledged multi-hour games like Eye of the Temple. It's the chance to see how well roomscale works with a longer title, and it's really just such a perfect fit with the theme it immediately makes sense.

As there's quite a bit of world traversal over the hours you'll be playing it, I can see people getting fatigued or maybe even bored with the concept after a while. Most of the areas are small enough that you won't spend more than 20 minutes or so in each, leading you to constantly wonder what's around the next corner. If you're a puzzle fanatic and love the idea of walking for real in a virtual space, this is going to be one of the best $20 you'll spend on a game this year.

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Eye of the Temple review: Spelunking like Indiana Jones - Android Central

The best hidden object games on PC and mobile – Polygon

Digital versions of Wheres Waldo? or I-Spy, also known as hidden object games, are mechanically simple yet dizzyingly complex. The premise of finding items hidden in crowded spaces can create visual puzzles out of static pages; most of the work in playing a hidden object game happens with the eyes and brain.

In recent years, the hidden object genre has begun to evolve. The core gameplay spotting things in cluttered rooms is branching out in new directions: story-heavy dramas, surrealist worlds, even adventure gameplay. Theres never been a better time to seek out the genre.

Weve compiled a list of the best hidden object games you can play across all platforms Windows PC, Mac, console, and mobile. Some of them may not be considered traditional hidden object games, but all of these selections share the genres basic premise.

Eventide: Slavic Fable, made by hidden object game powerhouse Artifex Mundi, is the genre in its purest form. The narrative of Slavic Fable centers, naturally, on Slavic mythology, using these stories as a backdrop for the gorgeous, complex worlds. There are also simple puzzles to accompany the hidden object gameplay.

Eventide: Slavic Fable is available on Android and iOS devices, Mac, Linux, and Windows PC.

Created by a solo developer, Small Life is a short, free game thats described as an interactive city discovery game. Over a set of in-depth illustrations set in Shenzhen, China, players seek out small interactions that string together to create intimate scenes like a piece of paper that eventually becomes a paper airplane for a cat to swat away.

Small Life is free on itch.io.

Drawn: Dark Flight is another classic hidden object game, this time by prolific publisher Big Fish Games. It plays out like a dark fairy tale, filled with beautiful illustrations to stop and stare at.

Drawn: Dark Flight is available on Android and iOS devices, Windows PC, and Mac.

Milo and the Magpies is a gorgeous, hand-painted game by illustrator Johan Scherft. Simply put, its a world I want to live in helping a curious grey cat called Milo find his way home. The game unfolds as Milo travels through various neighborhood gardens.

Milo and the Magpies is available on Mac and Windows PC.

Labyrinth City: Pierre the Maze Detective, created by developer Darjeeling, looks a lot like Wheres Waldo?, but its not a classic hidden object game. The game is part hidden object, part puzzle maze; each scene is crowded with strange things and people, lots to click on and interact with, and plenty of dead ends to get stuck in. Its simple and based on a childrens book but still plenty interesting to explore.

Labyrinth City: Pierre the Maze Detective is available on Android and iOS devices, Nintendo Switch, Mac, and Windows PC.

Hidden Folks, released in 2017 by Adriaan de Jongh, is an indie darling. The charmingly drawn world by illustrator Sylvain Tegroeg is delightful when paired with Hidden Folks silly animation and sounds. Theres so much to find in these chaotic black-and-white worlds.

Hidden Folks is available on Android and iOS devices, Nintendo Switch, Mac, and Windows PC.

A game about love and letting go, When The Past Was Around plays more like a point-and-click adventure game with hidden object elements. Its got a whimsical art style thats easy to get wrapped up in, with charming music to set the mood.

When The Past Was Around is available on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Windows PC, and Xbox One.

Toem is also an adventure game, one thats centered around its in-game photo mode. But like games in the hidden object genre, Toem is a game about simply noticing things in the world around you which, of course, is magical.

Toem is available on Nintendo Switch, Mac, PlayStation 5, and Windows PC.

Created by Aconite, HoloVista is a weird, surreal world in which youre an architect named Carmen inspecting a mysterious and dreamy mansion. Its played in a unique way, adding alternative reality elements on top of the hidden object format on mobile.

HoloVista is playable on iOS devices via the App Store.

More psychedelic than surreal, Morphopolis is full of bright, brilliant art and a playful story. If you havent guessed from the name, its about bugs specifically, a grub seeking out metamorphosis.

You can play Morphopolis on Windows PC.

Like Hidden Folks, Wind Peaks is described as a searching game with cartoon drawings. Players seek out objects in the world stuff like hats and shoes and flashlights as they move through a cute, campy story.

Wind Peaks is available on Nintendo Switch and Windows PC.

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The best hidden object games on PC and mobile - Polygon

"Midnight Protocol" alluded to: The spirit in the machine – Market Research Telecast

Hackers are mysterious beings. They work in the dark with hoodies or are transhumanist technology nerds who like to plug a cable into their brains in cyberpunk literature. The hacker role-playing game Midnight Protocol largely dispenses with these clichs and sends the players on a revenge mission online.

Data is out for revenge. The hacker we never find out who the person is is fresh out of jail and wants to hunt down the people who got her into this. She builds up her old network and starts: cracking accounts, making data disappear. Unfortunately, it quickly becomes the focus of larger organizations that are turning the tables. Data becomes the hunted.

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Developer LuGus literally puts players behind the screen. Similar to the award-winning indie hit Orwell, Shenzhen I / O and Hacknet, everything happens on the computer screen and is also completely controlled by the keyboard. But nobody needs real programming knowledge. Instead, players enter simple commands such as move or decrypt, which can be completed automatically if necessary.

In the game, Data searches for new jobs in her emails, browses the Darknet for important information or takes a break with mini-games like Hacker Chess. At the end there are credits and reputation points. Sometimes Data also has to choose between two jobs. This has an impact on the order situation and their reputation with the three fractions in the community from the moral apostles of the White Hats to the diffuse Gray Hats to the criminal Black Hats.

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Trailer zu Midnight Protocol

(Quelle: iceberg interactive)

In the missions, the game switches to an abstract isometric representation of the computer world, which is somewhat reminiscent of Tron. As a ghost in the machine, Data sets off from one data hub to the next, engaging in chases with security programs and looting bank accounts. All of this happens in rounds and sometimes causes a little brooding: which way do I take? Should I destroy the firewall and alert the security systems or should I look for a secret detour? Data only has two attempts per round. With each round, the alarm bar of the defense systems fills up, provided that data is not hidden behind a so-called cloud. If the bar is full, it has to disappear quickly.

To make their lives easier, Data can buy software and hardware on the black market. Dagger destroy firewalls, programs like Leech plunder accounts permanently and a tunnel can bypass data threats. However, it can only equip a limited number of these programs. As with a card game, she must therefore carefully consider which one to take with her before each mission. In practice, this leads to a mix of round tactics and puzzle games. Often times, it will take Data several tries to find the right tactic. Funny: Some servers have high latency. Then Data has to plan ahead and enter several commands that are only executed with the next move. This is not the only reason why Midnight Protocol becomes an exciting and original surprise.

Midnight Protocol is an original genre mix of role, card and puzzle game, which provides variety due to its unusual perspective and control. The game, which at first glance seems abstract, develops a pull that we could hardly avoid in our play lessons. It doesnt really matter that some missions can only be solved with a little trial and error. Still, its great fun when a sophisticated plan works or we can save ourselves from the network at the last moment. This does not necessarily correspond to the real everyday life of a hacker, but it makes for some exciting hours on the home screens.

(dahe)

Disclaimer: This article is generated from the feed and not edited by our team.

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"Midnight Protocol" alluded to: The spirit in the machine - Market Research Telecast

How to clear the mist on Tsurumi Island: Every Perch puzzle and feather location in Genshin Impact – Gamesradar

Learn how to get to Tsurumi Island in Genshin Impact and clear the mist, and youll have a lot of fun exploring. However, the latest addition to the Inazuma map isnt that easy to reach, and even harder to fully unlock. Tsurumi Island is completely covered in a thick fog, and any attempt to explore the island without clearing the mist first will result in a quick teleport back to where you came from.

Well not beat around the bush: the road to unlocking Genshin Impact Tsurumi Island is quite a tough one. To keep you from running around looking for feathers and Perch trees and whatnot, were here to guide you through the full Tsurumi Island World Quest.

Perhaps youre wondering why you cant just hop on a Waverider boat and sail to Genshin Impact Tsurumi Island straight away. Although it is indeed possible to sail to Tsurumi Island as soon as you gain access to Inazuma (by completing Escape from Ritou during the Archon Quests), this wont get you very far. You can land on Tsurumis beaches, but you cant walk through the mist.

To clear the Tsurumi Island mist, you need to start the A Particularly Particular Author World Quest at the Adventurers Guild in Inazuma City. Besides unlocking the new area, this quest will automatically teleport you to Tsurumi Island, which is a lot faster than sailing.

Note that A Particularly Particular Author will only pop up in your Journal after completing the Seirai Stormchasers World Quest.

The first part of the Through the Mist questline is simple: just speak to the NPCs, agree to travel to Tsurumi Island, and walk through the large gate. After that, you need to speak to the mysterious boy called Ruu. Keep following the location markers and talk to Ruus family. They will ask you to touch the Perch tree, which will then release three glowing feathers.

All theres left to do is finding the feathers and interacting with them. They will then fly back to the Perch by themselves. Note that the feather locations will pop up on the mini-map whenever youre close enough, so keep an eye out for that!

Once the Perch offering is completed, the surrounding mist will be cleared. Unfortunately, there are four Perch tree locations in total, so youll have to repeat the puzzle a few times. Despite the feather location indicators, actually finding them can be a real pain. Heres how you complete every Perch offering, including the feather locations.

This is the first Perch puzzle in Genshin Impact, and also the easiest one. The Perch itself is inside the circular rock formation (follow the white mist lamps). All three feather locations are nearby and dont require any additional puzzle solutions.

The Perch is on the edge of a cliff, the northernmost part of this area.

This tree is located in the middle of the mist cloud. The main challenge here is the large amount of enemies. A bunch of Rifthounds will spawn before you can touch the Perch, and several more will spawn while you collect the feathers.

We saved this one for last, because its by far the most challenging Perch offering puzzle in Genshin Impact. The tree is located inside the crater, which you can enter from the southeast. You may start the offering, but youll have to drain the water before you can collect the feathers.

Now, just go back to the Perch and complete the final offering. Congratulations, you just unlocked the full Tsurumi Island map! From now on, youll be able to roam the island freely. No more Perch puzzles required.

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How to clear the mist on Tsurumi Island: Every Perch puzzle and feather location in Genshin Impact - Gamesradar

Piece Together The Truth Of A Mysterious Cube – Gamasutra

[This unedited press release is made available courtesy of Gamasutra and its partnership with notable game PR-related resource Games Press.]

October 12, 2021 -Vignette puzzle adventureMoncageis set to release onto PC, iOS, and Android on November 16th, 2021. This award-winning puzzle game invites players to peer through multidimensional worlds to connect the similar yet unique, adjacent yet distant spaces, with a dreamlike adventure that revolves around a young boy, his father, and a lighthouse.

Developed by Optillusion and published by XD Inc.,Moncageis a mysterious cube that connects parallel worlds through mind-boggling optical illusions. Each side of the cube houses a dynamic world with hidden connections to the others; the player must carefully manipulate the cube and find the possible connections and interactions between objects, across multiple sides to decrypt the puzzles. Whether thats illuminating a lamppost by aligning it with the moon, or tipping a scale on one side to cycle through day and night on another - each scene is filled with evocative puzzles that connect to its surroundings from unique perspectives and in mesmerizing ways.

From peeking into an abandoned factory, a secluded island, or an empty nursing home, the player is invited to think outside the cube while searching for clues from within. Set over the course of more than 60 interactive puzzles across 50 scenes, the secrets ofMoncagebegin to unravel as fragmented pieces fall into - or out of - unexpected places. Also nested in obscure corners of the scenes are a collection of photos that, upon recovery, reveal an ambiguous story about a young boy and his father.

Moncageis slated for release for $14.99 onSteam, and $4.99 on App Store and Google Play on November 16th, 2021; wishlists and pre-orders are now open.Can you uncover all the secrets of the cube?

Key Features

About OPTILLUSIONOPTILLUSION is a small indie game studio based in New York. As art students and game designers, the development pair have a strong passion for art and games, and they infused this project with their aesthetics and thoughts. Moncage is their first title, and their goal is to offer players an unforgettable experience in the world contained in the cube.

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Piece Together The Truth Of A Mysterious Cube - Gamasutra

Singaporean Game Knight Crawlers Brings Whimsical Ragdoll Physics to Action RPGs – IGN SOUTH EAST ASIA

While isnt a fantasy game without a party of adventurers plundering dungeons and defeating hordes of monsters, this new game by Good Morning Games and The Iterative Collective are mixing it up with a touch of fanciful fun.

Knight Crawlers is a dungeon-crawling action RPG with ragdoll physics combat where you take on the role of a lone crawler struggling to survive the battles that unfold behind every dark portal.

Hunt for loot, craft powerful equipment, and head into arenas to battle against other crawlers. Use your weapons and skill cards to fight against the threatening yet charming enemies and bosses throughout the Lost Realms.

The game is being developed by Good Morning Games, an indie studio founded by a husband-and-wife team. Established in 2021, their debut title will be Knight Crawlers.

The Iterative Collective is an incubator, co-developer, and publisher for indie games that was founded in 2019. They also recently released the experimental puzzle game, The Signal State.

Knight Crawlers offers a seldom-seen whimsical take on the usually serious action RPG genre, said CEO of The Iterative Collective, Matthew Quek.

Were eager to be supporting Ivan and Tanya at Good Morning Games as they work on Knight Crawlers, juggling between the tongue-in-cheek humour and serious combat.

Featuring physics-based combat, Knight Crawlers will have players fighting their way through hordes of enemies with melee weapons ranging from large mighty hammers to long-handled flails, as well as long-ranged weapons like wands, staves, and bows.

Crawling through the treacherous levels in Knight Crawlers doesn't have to be a lonely affair as players can enter PvP arenas to test their skills against other crawlers or team up to fight the horde together.

Players will also unlock dominions, which are the talents players learn after every crawl. Choose between several dominion classes to specialize your skills and add to your arsenal of astral defences.

Whether its dominion points, skill cards, or weapons, every choice makes every dungeon crawl unique. On top of that, crafting equipment and weapons will be the difference between making it out alive or being overrun by hordes of enemies.

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Singaporean Game Knight Crawlers Brings Whimsical Ragdoll Physics to Action RPGs - IGN SOUTH EAST ASIA

Penn State Trying To ‘Complete The Puzzle’ In Run Game Ahead Of Iowa Showdown – Onward State

When something isnt working quite right, it can sometimes be a challenge to pinpoint the issue. In the case of Penn State footballs run game, the Nittany Lions just cant seem to hit a groove on the ground for some reason

The reactionary response would be to attack a certain back, like Noah Cain, or toss blame at the offensive line as a whole. But, in reality, football is a complicated game. Sometimes, a lot of little things are going wrong and teams can simply be out of sync.

I dont know if you can talk about the running game or the running backs on their own. Its all of it, head coach James Franklin said Tuesday. Id like to see, at times, us be more physical and pound it up there and get the four and five yards and trust it.

This isnt to say Penn States rushing attack has been wildly unsuccessful this year. Despite missing basically the entire Villanova game, Cains racked up 187 yards and three touchdowns this season. Keyvone Lee is right behind him, totaling 174 yards on a 6.4 yard-per-carry clip.

The Nittany Lions are towards the bottom of the Big Ten on rushing statistics alone, but theyve been able to find other ways to win games. No. 3 Iowa, Penn States week six opponent, is in a similar situation, sporting a strong defense and weaker rushing attack. Its one of three Big Ten teams below Penn State in the rushing yards per game category.

JaJuan Seiders crews struggles came to a head in the Villanova game when Penn State managed only 2.4 yards-per-rush against the FCS team. Even Sean Clifford, who usually picks up a good chunk on the ground, finished with a net negative eight yards on eight carries.

Were going to need to get that whole group going because I think theyre very talented, Franklin said following the win over the Wildcats. We need to be better at the running back position, O-line position. I thought today specifically in the running game and the tight end position.

Penn State made its adjustments following its game against Villanova and was much more successful against Indiana, averaging five yards per carry. While this number is slightly inflated by big runs from Lee and Clifford, the Nittany Lions clearly did a better job against a better team.

Still, Penn State isnt running the football like it usually does, and its not running the football like how most fans and coaches know it can.

An impressive rushing attack isnt necessary to be successful, but it does create more opportunities on offense. If a defense doesnt respect your running backs, theyll drop back in coverage and make passing the ball a nightmare.

Despite pointing to areas of improvement amongst Penn States running backs, tight ends, linemen, and coaches, Franklin has said hes satisfied with his teams overall rushing performance. The skipper is trying to walk a line between giving his team credit and always trying to improve.

Offensive lineman Rasheed Walker agreed with the general sentiment that Penn State still has steps it can take on the ground.

In the running game, weve had our flashes. We can be more consistent, Walker said Wednesday. Theres nothing dramatic that needs to be changed. Theres just one or two things needed to complete the puzzle.

Again, its hard to pick out what those one or two things are. Maybe the tight ends need to do a better job picking up their assignments. Maybe the running backs need to focus on hitting holes hard and running north to south instead of east to west.

Offensive lineman Caedan Wallace pointed to everyone needing to do their 1/11th and said Penn State focused on physicality following the Villanova game. Besides, Franklin said after the win over the Wildcats that the Nittany Lions had a bad week of practice. Maybe they just needed to up the intensity to be more successful against the Hoosiers.

It takes time to grow an offense, especially under a new coordinator. Perhaps Penn States rushing struggles are just a matter of things not clicking yet. Offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich said this might be the case.

We need to run the football better, Yurcich said Thursday. Our running backs are still coming along theyre definitely good enough, theres no question about it. For whatever reason, the rhythm hasnt been to where it needs to be, to be elite.

That word elite might be familiar to some of the Nittany Lions faithful who remember the Ohio State game in 2018. Yurcichs sentiment here is similar to Franklins was three years ago. Penn State has a great running game, but it needs to take another step to become elite.

The talent and the scheme are obviously there, but the team just needs to put it all together.

To beat Iowa, which, quite frankly, has an elite defense, the Nittany Lions need to run the football effectively. The rhythm hasnt been there yet, but its going to need to be if Penn State wants to beat the Hawkeyes and then go on to make a run at the Big Ten title.

The Nittany Lions dont need to be a three yards and a cloud of dust team to win games. Theyve done it through the air before, and theyll do it again. But, figuring out the run game would be a very positive sign of things fully clicking under a new coordinator.

It takes everything, and when it doesnt go well, its usually related to a combination of things, and theres so much to it, Yurcich said. Thats why its such a beautiful game

Ryan is a senior business major from "Philadelphia" and is Onward State's social media manager. He writes about a lot of things. If you want to gain absolutely nothing, you can follow him on twitter @rjparsons9. Any "serious" inquiries can be sent to [emailprotected]

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Penn State Trying To 'Complete The Puzzle' In Run Game Ahead Of Iowa Showdown - Onward State

Zookeeper World is a glimpse at life without free-to-play restrictions – Destructoid

If there is one video game genre that has thrived and flourished since the advent of the smartphone, its the match-3 puzzler. I still remember watching my aunt sit for hours at her Gateway PC playing Bejeweled almost 20 years ago, a game that, at the time, cost $20, which is arguably an absurd price to ask for the genre today. But it was huge, and with the arrival of the iPhone andCandy Crush Saga, its easily one of the most played and well-recognized genres today. Its why every few weeks or so, another big match-3 title launches with a licensed IP attached to it.Disney Wonderful Worldsis a recent example, and while that game hasnt yet been deleted from Pixel 3A, its tough to go back to the restrictive free-to-play model after spending a month with Zookeeper Worldon Apple Arcade.

TheZookeeperseries of puzzle games is one Ive never really bothered with but have always admired due to its simplistic and charming art direction. For whatever reason, the cover art forZoo Keeper on the Nintendo DS lives rent-free in my memory. I just cannot escape the charms of those square animal heads.

When it was revealed the series would be making the jump to Apple Arcade, I was immediately interested if only for the fact Id properly burned myself out onPokmon Caf Mix. I thought maybe Id simply had my fill of match-3 games for the time being; that I would need to find another casual genre to focus on. However, following six straight hours of playingZookeeper World, I realized it wasnt the genre I was tired of, but the free-to-play machinations.

If you havent downloaded it yet or dont subscribe to Apple Arcade,Zookeeper Worldtakes the familiar iconography of the original title and its mobile game variants and applies them to a format thatll be more recognizable for people who spend hours trying to grab perfect score in any of KingsSaga puzzle games. This isnt a big board youre continually trying to clear, but rather, 200 uniquely designed boards with increasing challenges. Youll start easy by collecting enough of a certain animal to clear the goal, but it isnt long before the game starts throwing cages, baby birds, tightly secured jars, and more your way. By the time you reach the last set of puzzles, youre praying youll be able to drop the crown piece onto the conveyor belt early enough that its able to move over to its exit point before you run out of moves.

So basically, if youve played something likeJuice Cubes, you should know exactly what youre getting into here.

Now, ifZookeeper Worldwere a free-to-play game, there probably wouldnt be much to talk about here outside of the adorable zoo you build with your puzzle winnings. But because its not a free-to-play game with the predictable restrictions that go along with such a scheme, there is really no limitation on how much you can play. And subsequently, no limitation on how much this game can suck you in.

Zookeeper Worldlaunched on Apple Arcade early last month, and the only reason Ive gotten around to writing about it now is I finally finished collecting every damn star in the game so far. There are 200 puzzles to complete with more on the way. Each puzzle has an objective you need to complete, with a star earned if youre able to chain together enough matches or finish the puzzle quickly enough that your remaining moves are turned into explosive fruit pieces.

With a free-to-play game, theres a limit on how many times you can lose before you have to pay or wait. As anybody who plays these types of games can tell you, theyre designed to make you lose.Zookeeper World is no different, but because its on Apple Arcade, those free-to-play shenanigans are nowhere to be seen. And I can just keep playing for hours and hours on end, which is exactly what I did last night to get that final damn star.

Make no mistake, there are still some player engagement schemes that feel ripped straight from the free-to-play playbook, including randomized prizes, weekend play bonuses, log-in bonuses, and time-sensitive boss battles. The game would be far better without them, but with the more common play restrictions removed, all thats left is an addictive puzzler that I can sink literal hours into every night. And thats all I could ever want from the match-3 genre.

I was going to take a break fromZookeeper World now that I got the final star, but right after I finished the draft of this write-up, the game updated to add 50 more puzzles to the mix, as well as the camel and hippo animals. So I guess its back to the zoo for me.

CJ Andriessen

Just what the internet needs: yet another white guy writing about video games.

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Zookeeper World is a glimpse at life without free-to-play restrictions - Destructoid


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