A Tiny Sticker Tale by developer Ogre Pixel (the same devs who made Lonesome Village) is a cute and cozy little adventure game with a heartwarming story. Play as Flynn the donkey, as you explore Figori Island. You’re there to search for your father. Things aren’t quite what they seem, though, as everything is a sticker! You’ll complete quests and manipulate your environment to solve puzzles by using the stickers you collect. Move a bridge to get across the river. Find a bird’s egg. Even decorate your very own home with cute decorations!
There isn’t much of a story to A Tiny Sticker Tale, actually. You start the game by hopping off a boat onto Figori Island. There, you speak to a rabbit NPC who teaches you how to manipulate the stickers in the world, but also mentions you’re looking for your father. That’s it. That’s all the backstory and information you get about why you’re here in the first place. Of course, having a story at all isn’t necessary for a successful game, and I don’t think the lack of story impacts this game. Nevermind that the game is a solid two hours of gameplay, so it’s not bogged down by too much exposition or cut scenes.
A Tiny Sticker Tale is simple to learn and easy to play, which makes it a great little palette cleanser between heavier games. You move around the island, collect stickers, solve puzzles, and complete quests that are often fetch quests. That’s it! There’s no complicated mechanics. Nothing is hard to understand or do. It’s a great game idea that I thoroughly enjoyed. It’s reminiscent of my childhood and using sticker books for entertainment.
The characters you encounter add life and warmth to the world. They each have a reason for needing help that makes you feel good about performing good deeds. But what really adds to the overall heartwarming feel of A Tiny Sticker Tale are the graphics and soundtrack. The cartoony nature of the art is charming and adorable. They’re inviting and easy to look at, while the soundtrack sits perfectly in the background accompanying you on your journey.
Overall, A Tiny Sticker Tale is an enjoyable experience. It’s a cute little game worth the few hours it takes to play!
In Good Job! you are the clumsy child of the company’s CEO and you must climb the corporate ladder. To do that, you need to complete different puzzles in multiple ways through experimenting with the interactive environments. Gently wheel a projector through the door, or catapult it through a wall, for example. However you choose to accomplish tasks, you’ll need to work to prove your worth to make it to the top of the company and make dad proud!
Your duties in Good Job! vary from fixing the office’s internet connection to cleaning up unidentified goo. There’s always the chance to bump into your coworkers or knock over some priceless items while you toil around the office, but don’t worry! What’s important is you getting the job done at all. Completing jobs will get you that much closer to the executive suite. Plus, you can replay levels to complete puzzles faster and with less damages. The office also doesn’t have a strict dress code, so you can collect over 100 different outfits that range from business casual to Viking chic. And if you don’t want to play alone, get a friend to join you so you can split responsibilities between the two of you.
Neva is the moving tale of a young woman named Alba. Play as Alba as she sets out on an emotional journey about identity and growth. With her wolf companion by her side, she’s searching for a new home. The world is being overcome by dark forces, and those forces also threaten to overwhelm the pair at every step. Determined to defeat the darkness, you and the wolf cub will explore a dying world in search of a new home. As your journey goes on, the cub will grow from a rebellious cub, to an adult who seeks to forge his own adult image, challenging the relationship he has with you. Although you love your wolf companion, his growing up strains your friendship. It will take love and compassion to overcome all obstacles.
Armed with courage, steadfastness, and fortitude, will you make it to a new home safely and together?
You can find Neva on Steam where you can add it to your Wishlist. There is currently no release date, though. It’s also been announced for Xbox, PlayStation, and Switch.
We’re another week closer to Christmas and I can’t wait! I love going around the neighborhood looking at people’s decorations. I think that’s part of why ACNH having lights in trees feels so satisfying to me. What else is super exciting about the Christmas season, is the new gaming systems and games you get! And with Steam Decks being fairly popular, what better way to celebrate the approach of the holiday with some gift ideas for that system?
The following list only features games that have been Steam Deck verified, to save the gamer in your life some troubles and heartache!
My Time at Sandrock
My Time at Sandrock is the long awaited sequel to My Time at Portia. And just like the prequel, this one takes place in a post-apocalyptic world 330 years after the Day of Calamity destroyed a lot of modern technology. You accept the role as a builder of Sandrock, a desert community. Gather resources to build machines, befriend locals, fight enemies, and lead the town to economic prosperity! Uncover the backstories for over 30 NPCs while you forge friendships with them. Complete side quests, play fun minigames, and even team up with a friend to play the game together!
APICO is a lovely game where you leave your boring city job and return to Port APICO, where you grew up, and return to your beekeeping roots. The APICO islands feature a set of lush, beautiful environments for you to explore. Each biome has its own breed of bees for you to discover. Gather resources to use in your studies or crafting. Make and sell Apicola (honey) and other beekeeping items you will discover. Play fun beekeeping minigames, without the stings! More importantly, breed different cross breeds of bees and discover 30 new species to help repopulate the APICO islands with. Plus, uncover the secrets of the islands while you explore.
I even have a review of APICO here, if you want more information!
Cornucopia offers the same comfortable features players have grown to love from the farming game genre, but in a lovely 2.5D pixel art style. You plant 52 types of fruit trees, 15 types of berry bushes, and grow 52 different crops, including their different artisan varieties. Sell crops or cook them up in one of 200 different recipes! There’s also logging, fishing, mining, and pet breeding to occupy your days. Also enter the pets into competitive races or use them to help you fight monsters. Then, kick back and relax with some crafting and decorating. Unlock furniture and decorations to turn your farm into your favorite getaway. Make friends with Cornucopia’s NPCs, too. Who knows, maybe one of the over 47 NPCs will catch your fancy! Romance them, go on dates, and unlock their romantic cut scenes. Even marry one, start a family, and decorate their room in your house.
While the Iron’s Hot
Play as a simple journeyman blacksmith in While the Iron’s Hot. You’re looking to become a master blacksmith. This game features an exciting combat-free experience. Journey to the mystical lands of Ellian where you’ll meet a cast of quirky characters. Explore tunnels full of puzzles and resources. Master every step of the blacksmithing process. Smelt ore, turn metal into ingots, and shape them into useful items. Use your skills to repair machinery to open up new areas to explore. Craft equipment that helps you explore new regions. Even work hard to restore the defunct blacksmithing town of Stal. Revitalizing the village just might prove to Eillian’s artisans that you’re worthy of being a master blacksmith!
In Loddlenaut, you play as an interstellar custodian who has been hired by the spacefaring mega corporation GUPPI to clean up their mess. They’ve inundated GUP-14 with pollution, and want you to restore the planet. This is an open-world ocean adventure where you’ll get to explore this beautiful alien planet, along with the corporate ruins of GUPPI. You’ll find remnants of their buildings, ships, and machinery that have all sunken to the bottom of the game’s ocean. Use your bubble gun, clean up the trash, remove oil spills, and uncover clues about the past inhabitants. Unlock better gadgets to help you clean up different types of ocean pollution. Recycle the trash you collect and use it to craft items. Even befriend cute little axolotl-looking creatures called loddles!
Behind the Frame: The Finest Scenery is an interactive narrative game that tells the tale of a young artist getting a painting ready for a gallery exhibit. Step into her shoes as she goes about her daily life cooking a simple breakfast, observing her grumpy neighbor, and finishing her masterpiece. Things aren’t all what they seem on the surface, though, as you’ll soon learn by unlocking familiar memories that relive the past.
I won’t give away the entire storyline as that takes the fun out of getting to play on your own, but it’s an incredibly beautiful one. Behind the Frame: The Finest Scenery starts as this unassuming, easy-going little interactive narrative. You play as the young woman artist who’s trying to finish her grand masterpiece for a gallery submission. You cook a simple breakfast, prepare coffee, and work on an application at an easy pace. The quiet background music and the apartment that suits an artist’s spirit add to the overall relaxing nature of the game and story. Then you start experiencing some memories that flood back to the young woman. They’re comfortable, but emotional and their cutscenes look very Studio Ghibli inspired. There’s even some plot twists that keep you on your toes. Overall, it’s an engrossing story that I absolutely loved experiencing.
While it’s an interactive narrative at its heart, Behind the Frame: The Finest Scenery is also a puzzle game. In order to finish the painting, you must find the woman’s missing paints. They’re locked away in different parts of the scene, and you need to solve the different puzzles to get them. None of the puzzles are super difficult, though, allowing the game to keep its relaxed tone. Plus, the controls are easy to use, and the game is only about an hour of play time. So, it’s a short and easy experience, but such a worthwhile one. You even get to physically paint the woman’s masterpiece, which was fun!
If you like the idea of visual novels, but want more of a role than just clicking through dialogue like in the Coffee Talk games (which I also recommend to people), then this game is absolutely for you. Besides, it’s gorgeously done, has a great story, and isn’t super hard. It’s perfect for a relaxing hour or so.
Behind the Frame: The Finest Scenery combines the idea of an escape room with a classic interactive narrative story. Experience a vivid, emotional story about a young artist who’s on the cusp of finishing the final piece of her gallery submission. She’s missing the necessary colors to bring her painting to life, and you’ll need to search for them. There’s more than meets the eye, though, as you soon discover.
With a 360 degree panoramic view of the small apartment, you can explore the young artist’s sacred space full of art and comfort. Behind the Frame will have you painting her masterpiece by filling in the canvas. Search for the missing paints by solving mild puzzles. Even learn about the grumpy old artist neighbor in an exciting, but relaxing experience.
Step into Percy’s shoes as he embarks on an adventure to find his missing relatives in Bilkins’ Folly. With your beloved dog Drayton by your side, explore a series of odd islands while digging up buried treasures and solving puzzles. There’s something weird and foreboding going on with the disappearance of your grandfather and mother, and you’ll need to discover what it is!
Bilkins’ Folly awed me with its beauty and witty charm. The character designs and scenery are absolutely delightful. Colors pop without being overwhelming. Animations are done well, and move smoothly. The dog moves and feels like a real dog, and the setting transitions beautifully from one area to the next. The whole thing is visually just charming and gorgeous.
Drayton and Other Characters
Bilkins’ Folly almost immediately equips you with a trusty companion named Drayton. What I really love is that the Drayton is useful and not just an annoyance. He doesn’t simply follow you. He’s a lovely dog that will sniff out buried treasure as you walk by it. Plus, as you level up his skills, he can help out in more ways. IWhat really endears me to Drayton is that he never got in my way. Being able to walk through him helped with that, but it was refreshing to have a useful companion that wasn’t a hindrance.
And yes, you CAN pet the dog!
Characters look, and act, different from each other, too. There’s no mixing up someone with another character. Each one has their own engaging backstory. They also speak their own version of “Simlish” speech and I love it. It sounds like utter nonsense, but lends a bit of levity to the whole thing.
You know what else awed me? My apparent lack of puzzle solving skills. I thought I was a great puzzle solver, but Bilkins’ Folly proved me to be otherwise! There are so many different types of puzzles and riddles, though, you’re bound to have a great time. From seek and find items, riddles, maps showing where to dig, cryptograms, and so much more are in this game.
There’s not really a way to be permanently stuck, either. The game is set up so that even if you come across a puzzle now, it may just need to be solved later. Your tools or hints may not be complete until later. That leads to a lot of running around, but it’s great for sight-seeing! The running around does get exhausting, though.
If you love vast amounts of puzzles, Bilkins’ Folly is for you. The delightful visual and fun characters make for an engaging game, too. Plus, the overarching story is interesting and gives the whole thing an ultimate goal. It’s a great combination of elements!
Tales from Hazelwood Post is a cozy combination of puzzles and visual novel-like gaming. Your grandmother has fallen ill, so you return to the small town of Hazelwood to care for her. You unwittingly take on the job of being the new postmaster at the post office, and today is your first day! The post office is a small, dusty little operation that ought to be an easy task to run. However, the homes of Hazelwood don’t have addresses!
You’ll experience a gentle day-to-day cycle where you open the post office each morning. Explore the ongoing story of Tales from Hazelwood Post as you get to know the residents of the town and nearby Lighthouse Point and Crow Hollows. Piece together clues and figure out who everyone is, then deliver the mail to the people you think it belongs to! Sometimes it’s the regular newspaper delivery, and sometimes it’s a special delivery. You might even come across lost love letters with no signatures, and it’s up to you to deliver every piece of mail properly.
Your choices affect the story, so choose wisely and see what happens!
Tales from Hazelwood Post is listed on Itchi.io and Steam. There is no release date available, though!