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David Brown's Free Play | A Tactical Lunchbox Of Tricks

David Brown
Free Play, PC games

David Brown's Free Play | A Tactical Lunchbox Of Tricks

Taking things apart is one of the things we do in games. We take things apart with guns or swords, dismembering humans or used-to-be-humans on a regular basis without batting an eyelid. We disassemble (or deconstruct) tactical plans in strategy games, before developing our own based on the inner workings of the enemy.

But we don't often take lunch boxes apart. That's what you have to do in this Japanese language title, Dismantlement – Lunch, which involves solving puzzles to break/snap/take bits off or out of the box. First you have to crack the code to get into it, then remove individual pieces by mucking about with various conundrums inside, including a personal favourite involving letters.

David Brown's Free Play | A Tactical Lunchbox Of Tricks

There are no hints for any of the puzzles, so you'll certainly get stumped by at least one of them at some point, which can be off-putting, but otherwise it's a simple puzzle game that can wile away a few minutes should you tire of more exhausting pursuits, like running over pedestrians or snapping the necks of innocent guards.

Not many games are set under water, and this is something that Brine is seeking to address. A particularly unattractive female character sinks to the bottom of the ocean for some reason, and she has to swim to safety, possibly to make an appointment at a plastic surgeon to get her disfigured mouth looked at, possibly just to stay alive.

At any rate, she can hold her breath for a long time, which is a skill that . It's a calm explore-'em-up for a while, although hidden dangers can strike. You'll be warned to hide and then you've got to dive into nooks, crannies or indeed crevices to avoid the lurking horror. If you don't find somewhere to hide, you get chomped.

David Brown's Free Play | A Tactical Lunchbox Of Tricks

As more sedate experiences go, it's ok. The music is bleepy and repetitive, so you might want to turn the old speakers off or mute your browser window, but there's a fair amount of exploration to do, if you like relatively monochromatic worlds.

In that game then, you only controlled one character. In this next one, A Tale by Alex, you control three versions of the same guy at once, a boy who is prone to dreaming about exotic adventures.

His dream form is a blob-type creature who can be moved with the arrow keys and the trusty Z and X keys for combat actions. As you go on, the second and third versions of your character appear and you have to guide them all carefully along, avoiding blades in one while battling turtles and such in others.

The major problem is the incredibly annoying voice over that perhaps affects your correspondent here more than it might others. Especially when you die and have to go back to the start, with all the same voice overs repeating.

Once you do finish a level (or die in any of them bar the first one), there's the obligatory shop where you can purchase stuff with the gold you've collected. Like in every other game that's out there (you might have noticed there's a beef with in-game shops here).

David Brown's Free Play | A Tactical Lunchbox Of Tricks

It's quite tough to keep track of what's going on in all the different sections at the same time, but apart from the hideous voice over, it's reasonably good fun, though it gets repetitive quite quickly. Though that voice will drive you from it very quickly, so you might not get bored by things before this happens.

Bit of news now. You might remember we featured an in-browser FPS a while back called BeGone. Now, it's been undergoing rigorous updates since we looked at its one level, glitch-riddled, potential-infused proto-hulk, but it's back and with quite a bit more than you might have expected.

If you want to see where it's been improving, or perhaps just have a first glance if you failed to last time/are new to these pages, have a look here.

Finally then we've got something that's obviously heavily inspired by the likes of Braid. One and One Story looks the pretentious part, but is it less vomit-inducing than its clever-clever cousins?

A boy and a girl need to be reunited, and you're the one who needs to control both of them to achieve this goal. Though sometimes the girl goes off on her own and you've got to hunt her down. This is all done in a platform-y way, though the way the control cues are given to who in a pseudo-story form is nicely done.

David Brown's Free Play | A Tactical Lunchbox Of Tricks

Obviously it's all arty and droning on about love's lost and so on, but this time the guff can be ignored, as the puzzles are thought-provoking without being too obtuse. The music is gentle enough not to annoy, although you'll still probably turn it off.

It also doesn't shove the pretention down your throat too much, as it keeps familiar controls and mechanics separate from the nonsense, meaning it can be enjoyed as a game first rather than a thought piece that forgets that things need to be, like, fun, first and foremost.

So yeah, a decent puzzle-platform effort with a sprinkling of “intelligence” for those who like that sort of thing.

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