The Nintendo Switch is the best platform for playing Torchlight 2 on

I love the mindlessness of a good quest-for-loot dungeon crawler. After a long stressful day, playing one for an hour or two gets me right out of my head. They're good games! But, for me, they'll never match the gory, cartoonish charm of Torchlight and Torchlight 2. When I bought my Nintendo Switch, around this time last year, I thought about how great Torchlight 2 would be a perfect port to play on the portable (alliteration, I know. I'm afflicted). I didn't think that it would happen: the game's development studio, Runic Games, closed down in 2017. But here we are: Torchlight 2 was released for the Nintendo Switch this week. After spending a good number of hours with the port, I can tell you that playing the game on a handheld, with control sticks and buttons trumps a keyboard and mouse in every way.

Playing with a joystick provided me with more of a challenge than pointing and clicking at enemies with a mouse. At the same time, it also gave me more of a challenge. Being able to map the Switch's buttons with my various abilities, spells and scrolls? Icing on the cake. Graphically, the game looks a lot tighter: but that could be more about the display resolution than anything else.

My only complaint about the port is that there's no way to tinker with mods like you can with the PC version of the game. But, for $20 Canadian (so, like what: three U.S. dollars?) it's pretty hard to beat the levels of portable entertainment that Torchlight 2 on the Switch delivers. Read the rest

HAPPY WORLD and its dark underside is a game you'll want to play more than once

Earlier this month, a game called HAPPY WORLD by Jimi Masuraki was released on itch.io. When I first downloaded it, I honestly thought I might play it for 15 minutes during my free-block at school, at then uninstall it and be done. But after five or ten minutes of completing simple quests and making the digital people happy, I realized that this wasn’t another free lackluster game.

Not only did the adorably simplistic art style and funny nonchalant conversations between the player and the entities in the game cause me (and a few of my classmates) to laugh out loud, but once I got home and got further into the story, I found that there was intentional – and dark – lore in the game that was left for the player to discover on their own. I immediately knew that I was going to have to finish the game to unravel all the secrets — and in just less than an hour I did — but it wasn’t the ending that I was looking for. I restarted the game and started my attempt to figure out how to trigger the game’s true ending, and I was not at all disappointed.

I do not plan to spoil anything here, but if you are looking for a quick, free, and overall fantastic game to play, I recommend HAPPY WORLD. It’s an incredible mix of a happy-go-lucky simple world, and a darker, more depressing one hidden underneath. I truly doubt you’ll be disappointed. Read the rest