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Play These Three Great Indie Adventure Games

by: Finn Orfano ; edited by: Bill Fulks ; updated: 5/25/2012 • Leave a comment

You may be familiar with Tales of Monkey Island, Nancy Drew, and other popular adventure games, but some independent developers have also created excellent titles that are just as good as the mainstream products. These three indie games are worth playing for their clever puzzles and creativity.

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    Nanobots   The light hearted humor, puzzles, and six robots you play are the best parts about Nanobots. If you enjoy some of the classic adventure games like Sam & Max: Hit the Road or Secret of Monkey Island, you should enjoy the look of Nanobots since the graphics feature similar visuals with a clean and colorful look with a lot of details.

    In the game you play as six tiny robots, called Nanobots, created by a college student named Greg. Each of these Nanobots have their own personality and skills: one Nanobot can lift heavy objects, one can learn foreign languages, like French, and one can mix and create chemicals. Their goal is to escape from a professor who is out to destroy them.

    It's up to you to find out which of the robot's skills will work with the objects you interact with in the game. Which robot can use the cellphone and the computer? Which robots can help you get to the high platform? Puzzles will require teamwork so some of them can be real head scratchers since you will need several robots to solve the situation. Aside from the puzzles to give you some good challenges, listening to the wonderful exchanges between the charming Nanobots, when they argue, encourage, and joke around with each other, should provide an entertaining adventure.

    Created by Erin Robinson in 2008, Nanobots has won three Adventure Game Studios awards, for “Best Gameplay," “Best Puzzles," and “Best Programming."

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    Ben There, Dan That!


    Ben There, Dan That! is definitely for folks hungry for adult comedy in video games. There's not much funniness out in the video games world and thankfully Zombie Cow Studios is here to help. The two protagonists, Ben and Dan, are two British guys who end up getting involved with aliens and landing on alternate worlds. All they want to do is return back home to London.

    The game has plenty of dark humor, like killing a priest with a Bible, or shoving a rocket into Dan's rear end, who also happens to be a corpse at the time. Ben and Dan will make frequent comments and sarcastic jokes when you try to match objects together that don't seem to make sense. If you try to use a pair of metal scissors on an electrical wire, Ben will let you know in a sarcastic tone how brilliant that idea that was. These two guys tend to swear, make fun of each other, and talk to you the player.

    The creators of BTDT often show their affection for the Lucas Arts adventure games, where their game features posters of Sam and Max and Day of the Tentacle, and even a cut out picture of Sam's head for solving a puzzle. Dan and Ben are two guys you will be easily identify with as they talk about Ebay, movies, and games. Don't forget to check out the sequel to BTDT, called Time Gentlemen, Please!.

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    Samorost 2

    It's hard to describe this adventure game in words once you get a look at the surreal art in Samorost 2. The game takes place in outer space, on strange planets, where you play as a little man dressed in a white outfit. His dilemma is that a couple of aliens have nabbed his dog and he ends up taking his rocket ship and chasing the kidnappers down to their planet. You will have to find out why these aliens took the dog in the first place.

    The premise of Samorost 2   the story may not be inviting at first but once you get your feet wet in this world, the wonderful animations and puzzles will get you glued in. Amanita Design has simply created weird, imaginative, and beautifully animated landscapes. It's like walking around in pieces of surreal artworks. When you walk inside giant structures, you will never know what to expect. The places the little man dressed in white walks around in is filled with strange objects, structures, and creatures. It's a mix of science fiction and fantasy, nature and machines, realism and imagination. In some ways a creature may look like a snail or an anteater, but they end up looking very alien because additional features were added to them.

    You will have to click on these strange creatures, items, and buildings to solve the puzzles to get you past each stage. For example when you're stuck dangling on a tree, there might be an animal nearby that can cause the tree to let you go. One of the challenges in this game is finding all the hotspots because a lot of those blend in well with the environments. You will spend quite a bit of your time studying your surroundings keeping a sharp eye on even the smaller details because they might just play a part in a puzzle.

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