Free games of the week

Dank Tomb by Jakub Wasilewski

Top-down platforming is an avenue that I'm kinda grateful more developers haven't wandered down, but I'm willing to participate for the gloomily atmospheric, aptly named Dank Tomb. It's a game about solving little puzzles while bounding across deadly gaps, and it's brought to life by its excellent lighting system.

Bootlegs by Nolen Tabner, Tianyi Sun, Brian Kelly

Let's all take a moment to appreciate the beautiful pun in the title of Bootlegs, because you see, it is a game where you play as a creature with many boots worn over many legs.

OK, moment over. It's a pretty good game beside that, as those many legs allow for some lovely, physicsy fun, as you attempt to leap over pits filled with...some very strange lifeforms indeed, and to platform your way over moving platforms and the like. How far can your bootlegs take you, in this surreal desert adventure? (Via Warp Door.)

enge spin by Tom Boogaart

It took me a while, and many restarts, to figure out how to proceed in enge spin, and even then, this is a small, quiet game where the 'point' is simply enjoying the act of movement in a still, slow, peaceful, bug-filled world. You play as a stick, maybe, but it doesn't really matter what that stick represents, as your tiny animations as you walk, run, climb and glide around the undergrowth are just the best. They're the best.

After a certain point as you inexorably move to the right, a terrible, fearful spider-thing begins to slowly walk towards you, initiating a countdown to your inevitable doom—or so I thought before I learned that you could climb straight up convenient, dandelion-like plants. Climb up these plants and you can then grab hold of a little dandeliony bit, and glide satisfyingly over the spider's head. What lies to the right of the spider? More spiders, sadly. But, of course, you can hover over those too.

URDL by rogueNoodle

URDL brings a fab new idea to the rhythm genre (or, rather, it's new as far as I can tell). Locked in an endless battle with some kinda alien, you have to quickly tap Up, Right, Down and Left when the symbols pop up, with extra points on offer if you do it quickly and without making a mistake. This is harder said than done, because when a red symbol crops up, you have to press the opposite button, meaning, hey, this is a bit like Simon Says. URDL features great art, and a satisfying level of challenge. Play it.

City Lights by badsprite

This is a short visual novel that strangely benefits from being played repeatedly, with the game itself inviting you to begin again once you've exhausted enough options. I don't think there's any new content injected into City Lights when you choose to replay it, but it adds an element of cyclical familiarity that supports this short, melancholy story. That story concerns a man eating alone at a sushi place at night. You decide what he looks at while he gobbles down that food, options that trigger observations, stray thoughts, or memories. It's a brief game, as I said, but I like it for its soft, sad atmosphere.