- Xbox Indie - 80 Microsoft Points (Ł0.68)
Whoever said that they don't make 'em like they used to obviously hasn't frequented the Xbox Indie Games channel lately. For those of you who like your RPGs wistful and retro-flavoured, you're positively spoiled for choice.
Bonded Realities tries to win your heart by setting its adventures within the fevered imaginations of a bunch of kids at nursery/daycare. With only a few rubbish toys and a sandpit to keep them occupied, the game quickly transports them (and therefore us) to a land of adorably silly 'monsters' and treasure for the taking.
Of course, it all adds up to a flimsy excuse for some basic turn-based combat from the 16-bit era, but it's no less likeable for its lack of sophistication. It won't stop you spending hours dungeon-crawling to take down the sleeping dragon, and doing your best to level up and gain useful new powers.
With its hand-drawn visual style and feel-good vibe, Red Crest Studio's lo-fi effort gets the thumbs up more out of sheer, effortless charm than anything, but sometime's that's just fine.
- WiiWare - 500 WiiWare Points (Ł3.50)
- Previously released on iPhone
Steering a thin line through a scrolling cavern while tapping out dubstep beats is the kind of game specifically designed to make you ponder what you're doing with your life.
There you are with your game face on, studiously tilting the Wii remote up or down to make the errant line do its thing, while simultaneously trying to prove to developer Different Cloth that you've still got the groove. It's exactly this kind of abstract nonsense that got us all into this mess in the first place.
We wouldn't blame you for wondering what the point of bringing this much-admired but poor-selling iPhone game to WiiWare. As an example of experimental indie cool, it worked brilliantly, but you'd never imagine devoting precious spare time to it in the comfort of your own living room.
But if you can get over the fact that it's twice the price of the iOS version, Lilt Line is an unexpected treat. The tilt controls lend themselves perfectly to the Wii, while the presence of actual buttons makes the game a far more playable prospect. Cool as it undoubtedly was, having to tap the screen to the beat often threw you off course at inconvenient moments, and there are no such issues here.
With those frustrations eliminated, Lilt Line feels like the finished article on Wii, and for those of you seeking purist pursuits to a backdrop of neighbour-troubling tunes, Ł3.50 is a small price to pay.