For this week's download roundup we're going back to the future, as four-fifths of these games debuted on other formats ages ago.
Fear not, however, because chances are you either didn't bother with them the first time around, or they're so aged you'll be glad to be reminded of times when people didn't mock you for your impending mid-life crisis.
But, first up, a rarity: a third-party Move game, and proof that as far as downloadable games go, Sony's motion controller can be a creative goldmine for talented developers.
- PSN - £6.29 - Trailer
- PlayStation Plus price - £3.15
- 3D support coming via a patch.
If it wasn't for Move functionality, StarDrone would be a pretty simple game to describe. You guide a space ship around hazard-strewn environments, trying to gather up all the shinies in the quickest possible time. The usual jazz.
But in the absence of conventional directional control via a thumbstick or dpad, Beatshapers' collect 'em up becomes an entirely different animal. By taking away the cosily familiar, something as simple as basic ship navigation suddenly becomes a precarious affair.
At first the main focus is diligent pointing. You merely use the various latch points to rotate and build up momentum so you can fling yourself around the level and scoop up the stars.
But the further you delve into StarDrone's cankered innards, the more daring manoeuvres become the norm. Judging precisely when to let go becomes all-important; fail and you'll explode into an inglorious shower of bolts, and have to start over.
Surprisingly early on, the game has the confidence to throw a level at you that's so tough it almost dares you to conquer it. After ten or 20 attempts you'll experience one of those make or break moments, but once you're through it, the seat-of-your-pants satisfaction is immense.
From there on, Stardrone carries on taunting you with its breathless pinball-breakout king of swing madness. It's a complex, abusive relationship, and one you should enter into with your eyes wide open.
- PC Steam - £19.99 - Trailer
- Each game is also available individually - (Munch's Oddysee £6.99, Stranger's Wrath £11.99, Abe's Oddysee and Abe's Exoddus - £3.49 each)
- Stranger's Wrath coming to PS3 in Q2 2011.
It's probably just as well we're a tad late to the party with this one, given how many tiresome technical glitches affected its original release a couple of months back.
Three months on, the set is fully patched up and raring to go, and you can now enjoy this four-game Oddworld anthology as portmeisters Just Add Water presumably intended.
Skipping merrily through the set provides a breezy reminder of Oddworld Inhabitant's irreverent creativity and slightly twisted sense of humour. Plus, perhaps more than anything, how the company routinely stood apart from what was going on around it.
Although technically by far the most dated of the set, the wicked brand of platform puzzling in Abe's Oddysee and Abe's Exoddus still holds up well against today's 2D upstarts. Having said that, the former's punishing checkpointing will bloody the nose of anyone used to today's more forgiving standards. If that sounds too much like hard work, a HD remake of the original is in the works.
What's more surprising is how well both 2001's Munch's Oddysee and 2005's Stranger's Wrath look under in the harsh spotlight of 2011. Despite both being designed for the SD era on the original Xbox, they scale up remarkably well at the highest resolutions. Most importantly, they're both as quirky and enjoyable to play as ever.
Munch's Oddysee came in for a fair bit of criticism first time around but it has aged far better than seems possible for a title pushing ten years old. The cut-scenes, for starters, are absolutely top class. While the bizarre mashup of kleptomania and herding might not have been to everyone's taste, there's never been a game quite like it.
Stranger's Wrath skilfully manages to fuse fast-paced action adventuring with a particularly warped brand of bounty-hunting and first-person combat to thrilling effect. Rather than merely give you a boring selection of weapons, the game makes you hunt for specific live ammo. You can then fire away at your unsuspecting foe with amusing results.
Regardless of whether you've played these games before or not, trawling through the Oddbox is a rare pleasure. Such unfettered creativity has been sorely missed.
Pix N Love Rush
- PSN Minis - £1.74 - Trailer
- PlayStation Plus - Free
Like many of the cute and sexy iOS games out there in downloadsville, there's always the suspicion that they'd be a little more enjoyable if only you could play them using actual buttons and a dpad.
Case in point: Pix N' Love Rush. As much as I always admired Pastagames'/Sanukgames' gorgeous retro-twitch platformer, the gameplay was always too damned exacting to rely on touchscreen controls.
To the shock of precisely no-one, this belated Minis port proves the point comprehensively. Now all that precision timing makes the game fun and rewarding, rather than hit-and-miss.
Unlike the iOS version, this one features four modes to test the upkeep of your leathery tendons - kicking off with the Classic Rush mode, where you spend most of your time fretting about plucking plus icons out of the air while avoiding those dastardly minuses.
To make you feel good about your ability to pick up the good stuff, the game's visual signature evolves through contrasting retro styles. But with the environment constantly changing and numerous sneaky obstacles to be wary of, the glory rarely lasts long.
The frenetic Cursed Rush mode, meanwhile, pits you against a continually scrolling backdrop, Canabalt-style, and tasks you with avoiding the inevitable abyss for as long as possible. With difficulty levels ranging from 'Hard' through to 'Hardcorest', you can probably guess that gameplay sessions are measured in seconds rather than minutes.
If you've got enough sanity left over for the On-Off Rush mode you'll be delighted at its penchant for pinging you rapidly left and right, switching the scene from day to night and back again while you scoop up suns and moons for kicks.
Happily for fans of all things fun and retro-tinged, the game comes together marvellously on the PSP - and the fact that it's currently free to PlayStation Plus members sweetens the deal even more.
- Xbox Live Arcade - 1200 Microsoft Points (£10.20) - Trailer
- Previously released on PC and Mac - Steam £14.99
Another port? Yes, I know this week's roundup feels like a celebration of The Download Hits of 2009, but when you're talking about something specifically designed to take away the cravings for Diablo III you can forgive us for covering old ground.
Whether you can forgive Runic for essentially going over old ground with Torchlight probably depends on how much you hanker after its horribly addictive dungeon-crawling formula.
As Alec astutely observed in his original review, it's a kill n' collect that offers nothing new or original. But, my God, it's nigh on impossible to stop playing the blimmin' thing once you're sucked in.
The trick is in the almost incessant rewards and the tight level construction. This game never bores the player with useless padding. Almost every step of the journey is an action-packed frenzy of combat, made all the more enjoyable thanks to the fact you're accompanied by a pet the entire time.
With so much booty to hoover up and endless upgrades to consider, it barely matters that the whole thing's completely hollow and inconsequential - it's the old Bungie 30-seconds-of-fun-over-and-over formula, in abundance.
Given Blizzard's determination to make us wait as long as possible for Diablo III, you may as well sink it into a game that eats time for breakfast.
- Mac App Store - £2.99 (currently 50 per cent off) - Trailer
- Previously released on PC (Steam - £6.99), iPhone (currently free) and iPad (£1.79)
As part of Chillingo's well-oiled plan to conquer the world and every device in it, delicious puzzle charmer Cogs has now found itself a fourth home.
As the title handily suggests, this is another one of those insidious little offerings that attempts to break your brain via the wonders of cog placement.
But rather than allow you to freely lay down a bunch of parts of different sizes (like, say, Geared), Cogs bases its machinery meddling around good old-fashioned tile sliding.
To make things more interesting, Lazy 8 Studios throws in three dimensional objects for good measure. You end up having to make sure everything's connected on all sides before the machinery is happy with your work. You'll also face the odd pipe-connecting challenge as well.
Unsurprisingly, it all works brilliantly on the MacBook's touch pad - better, in fact, than the iOS versions, which always seem prone to confuse slide motions with rotation.
A word of warning, though - you'll need a machine that supports Open GL 2.0. If that's the case, you should absolutely give your money to the mighty Chillingo.