A very short walking simulator, DESCEND is very atmospheric and engaging. It certainly left me wanting a LOT more!


Out of all the games on this list, let alone I’ve ever played, DREAMDISC is one of the most surreal. It’s appropriately named, as many of the super-short areas do feel straight out of a dream. The graphics and sound design really work well, and though the overall game is short, it absolutely leaves an impression and encourages re-playing just to continue enjoying the immersion.

Fear the Spotlight

If there’s a game that really hearkens back to the graphics, atmosphere, and mood of classic horror-survivor games, it’s Fear the Spotlight. Thankfully the controls and inventory management are far more refined than those older games. The enemy, while a bit goofy and not scary per-se, were fun to hide and sneak around. The full game is in development, and I look forward to seeing how it turns out.


A bit different from the other lidar games I’ve tried so far, InfraRED uses “flashes” of invisible beams rather than requiring the player to hold down the mouse button to constantly scan. It can be a little more jarring and quite a surprise what might suddenly be revealed. Like the other lidar games there’s an enemy roaming around, and the level itself is a bit smaller than I liked. Regardless, the graphics and immersion were great and left me wanting more.

The Keeper

Oof. Among the normal horror games in these lists, The Keeper is more of an emotional jab. Crashing into the shore (of an island?), you must make your way to the home and lighthouse. The graphics, fog, and atmosphere are amazing. The only thing that was a bit jarring was the player’s voice; too much of an accent for my taste.


Of the few lidar games I’ve discovered and played so far, LIDAR.EXE is my favorite. I enjoy its graphics and atmosphere so much I’ve re-played it countless times. The second level is a bit small and the sudden ending isn’t great, but I enjoy just walking around, whether I’ve hardly used the scanner or blasted every corner to a bright white. I was actually pretty scared when I first encountered the enemy, as I played it several times without encountering it at all!

Lost Lab

A fun lidar game utilizing colored dots, Lost Lab is a much larger area to explore compared to LIDAR.EXE, and the enemy chasing you can kill you and end the game if you’re not careful. Ultimately that’s what happened to me before I could find all 3 artifacts, but I had fun roaming around and seeking every corner.

A Mall Near You

A game that deftly mixes horror, comedy, liminal spaces, and more, A Mall Near You is a great fun short experience. Starting with your mom dropping you off and then hauling off, you wander the mall looking to return items, gain money, and purchase gifts before the mall closes. When it does all of a sudden, you begin to wonder what’s going on and if you’ll actually make it out…

Missing Hiker

After mostly enjoying Gemezl’s previous game Driving Home in last month’s post, I was happy to see the next release, Missing Hiker. While this is also a fairly short game, it also had a great atmosphere and a scary ending. I didn’t mention in the previous review but one thing lacking in both is sound design and ambient noises. In this game for example you supposedly hear a scream after falling asleep in your tent, but I didn’t hear anything. Also, while walking in the woods there should be rustling of leaves and trees, occasional footsteps that could be an animal or a stalking killer, etc. Things like that go a long way to make a complete and immersive experience.

Night Of

Like Fear the Spotlight, Night Of really reminded me of classic survival-horror games. While a short abandoned game/demo, I had a lot of fun playing this, and the graphics and atmosphere rivaled anything I’ve played in quite awhile.

Northwood Legacy

Out of all the games I’ve tried from so far, Northwood Legacy might actually be my favorite. I’m a sucker for mysteries and adventure games, especially those that have little or no combat or other time-dependent stressful features. I was immediately taken in by the graphics, sound design, interface, and of course the story. I had fun exploring the house and finding different clues, notes, and keys. While short like most other games/demos I’ve tried, it certainly didn’t feel as short, and I would really like to play more games like this!

Stick to the Plan

Discovered through’s front page, Stick to the Plan is a wonderful little puzzle game. It has simple but ingenious controls, and each stage is a nice progression in difficulty. I’m glad to hear new levels and other items are forthcoming, I look forward to them!