INDIE GAMES Recommends: Ludum Dare 39 games for the week of 8/3

If you don’t check often you would be forgiven for not knowing how much we love game jams. After all, we’ve only posted about it twicein the past week. Well strap in for a 3-peat because we’re making this a Ludum Dare themed hat trick.

That’s right, last weekend was Ludum Dare 39 (one of the biggest bi-annual game jams) and it brought with it the theme “running out of power.” We’ve sorted through a portion of the games and would like to present them to you.

Sleepy Orphan Simulator

I’m a big fan of everything the Powerhoof guys put out. Sleepy Orphan Simulator is no exception. This is one of the more interesting interpretations of “running out of power” that I’ve seen with the power being the few minutes before an adorable orphan falls asleep. You’ve got to charm would-be parents while managing your rapidly dwindling energy. Expect to see some wiggly appendages, puppy eyes, and comically large sandwiches.

The Visible City

I’ve never thought about the politics of street lighting. As it turns out this is a real thing. The Visible City sets you as an actor of the state in revolutionary France trying to maintain public lighting against an increasingly violent mob. Obviously this is a losing proposition (don’t lose your head!) but by setting the game on a real map of Paris you’re forced to come to grips with the real implications of public goods in times of crisis.

Like many jam games, the Visible City isn’t lengthy but it’s worth going through a few times. I’m not sure that it’s possible to “win” the game, but repeated playthroughs let you eek out a few more minutes of light before the mob swarms you.

Engolasters January 2021

Deconstructeam are no strangers to jamming. After all, their full release Gods Will Be Watching came from an incredible jam project. Engolasters January 2021 represents one of the teams’ few jam appearances since Gods’ debut and it has all the hallmarks of of a Deconstucteam project– the pixels are chunky, the writing is tense, and there’s a mystery afoot.

If you’re a fan of Gods Will Be Watching, you’ll feel right at home inside of this semi-fictional Andorra. There’s plenty to see, and the game doesn’t overstay its welcome.

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