Last week, I decided to skip Screenshot Saturday. Given the recent protests in the US and the importance of them, it just didn’t feel like an appropriate time. Especially since this particular weekly feature means crawling through the #screenshotsaturday tag on Twitter every week, and as I’ve mentioned before, said tag has been overtaken by spam a lot in these past few months. And with a good amount of that spam already showcasing the worst in humanity and making me feel more drained each week, I didn’t even want to imagine what would show up this time around.
But over this past week, I’ve seen a lot of reactions and articles from other sites that have had me thinking. This is Screenshot Saturday, where the goal is to highlight impressive-looking and interesting games, hoping that they gain more attention, that everyone knows more about them, even if it’s just a little bit. That’s what I signed up for. And during times when certain voices need to be heard, now is the time to give them the spotlight more than ever.
And as this column has featured voices from specific communities in the past, this week will be devoted to games coming from black game developers, who sadly only make up an extremely small amount of the industry, yet have several quality games in the works that deserve to be highlighted. Hopefully, there’s something in this varied batch that you can support in any way, be it wishlisting the games on Steam, following the devs and their work, or anything else. Every little bit helps. So, without further ado…
Aerial_Knight’s Never Yield- According to Aerial’s Twitter bio, he believes that No More Heroes is the best game ever made. And this definitely becomes much more evident after seeing his upcoming side-scrolling runner in motion, which features a nice and insane amount of action (including missile-dodging, seen here) following our hero as they try to grab what they’re looking for in a vibrant, Tokyo-styled version of Detroit. It looks like an absolute ton of fun that I can’t wait to see more of.
Progress on the next upcoming stage, Akamiya. You will not only have to work with ur usual customer base but also must manage ur time with the tide coming and going. Inspired by one of @WakingOni favorite places, Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima #screenshotsaturday @OnsenMasterGame pic.twitter.com/cFLf9C7hr5
— WhiteThorn Games (@WhiteThornGames) April 4, 2020
Onsen Master- The recent Wholesome Games Direct blindsided us with just how many games it covered, and as such, we sadly missed out on featuring a hefty chunk of games included within it. One of those was Onsen Master, a charming game about managing a Japanese hot spring and properly taking care of the incoming customers. As seen here, though, certain springs have layouts that can easily put up a challenge when it comes to getting around and gathering ingredients, all while also showing the inspiration and love put into everything.
— KIDD RADD (@EthanRedd) May 29, 2020
Killer Auto- Well, this is definitely some futuristic arcade racing at its most fast-paced and awesome, with visuals straight out of a classic ’90s game. And to think, this is apparently an older screenshot. So one can only imagine just how intense the final game may be like. If it’s even part as insane as this, we’re all in for a good time.
I just realized today that I never uploaded the Camo Boss Battle proof-of-concept video from March, so here you go!
We roughly put this concept together in about 3-4 weeks (mostly weekends), and didn't completely finish it in time for a con, but I think it still came out nice! pic.twitter.com/pwoATS6EvU
— Breeze in the Clouds (@BreezeGame) June 4, 2020
Breeze in the Clouds- I am definitely getting a strong late ’80s/early ’90s platformer vibe from this game about a corgi and his new friends trying to defeating the pollution ravaging the weather on a faraway island. Thankfully, the vibe is also more NES Rescue Rangers and much, much less Awesome Possum. While Endling seems to be setting the bar high for environmental platformers, this one appears to be no slouch, going by this lovely boss battle and the beautiful artwork. Consider donating to the developer’s Patreon if you also want to help out with something as ambitious as this.
5 Force Fighters- The fighting game scene could definitely use more quality titles these days, including those from smaller developers. And everything about this fighter suggests a lightning-fast force to be reckoned with, featuring some amazing characters, music, and gameplay, even in just this one clip alone. Glad to see it getting even more love and polish.
．．．ｂｕｔ Ｉ’ｍ ｎｏｔ ｇｏｉｎｇ ａｎｙｗｈｅｒｅ．
— Before I Forget Game (@3foldgames) June 4, 2020
Before I Forget- Set to come out next month for everyone to see, we have a narrative exploration game exploring dementia and loss as you try to deal with fading memories as you try and piece together the past. Powerful stuff, especially with moments like this where you hold on to everything around you, and it should make for a haunting yet beautiful tale.
Super Space Club- Genius. In its. Simplicity. I have used those words to describe some of the most impressive games I’ve seen in previous reviews, previews, and features, and it definitely applies with this game as well. A kickass low-poly and lo-fi arcade shooter with some impressive action and dogfights that evokes the classics while still having its own unique flavor, and it looks like a ton of fun. Genius in its simplicity.
Ah, 10 years of Catacomb Kids
2009 vs 2019 pic.twitter.com/nD5giHzhwR
— Tyriq Plummer (@FourbitFriday) December 20, 2019
Catacomb Kids- Currently available in Early Access, this is a platforming roguelike that’s been in the works for quite a while, and it clearly shows here. It’s always impressive to see the beginning stages of a game compared to where it is now, and should be even more impressive to see where the rest of the game and its dungeon-crawling glory goes later on.
Noticed this kind of cool thing you can do with promo videos since twitter doesn't crop videos the same way they crop images; blanketing gameplay within a square-ish border with promo art/info seems like a neat way of posting videos#vndev #indiedev pic.twitter.com/LDYidMh8up
— AkaBLM – CHROMATOSE (@ChromatoseDev) May 5, 2020
Chromatose- So not only did the developer here find a way to make a visual novel/RPG about having to escape a coma world both bright and colorful yet eerie at the same time, but they also found a way to make videos promoting it seem more impressive. Hopefully this sets a new standard for future Screenshot Saturdays…
She Dreams Elsewhere- Well…I have no words to add. This is what we need, and this is what we’re hoping for.