Paeroka’s Ponderings: Gamescom 2020 – What’s the verdict? What did you discover?

Paeroka's Ponderings featured image for columnAltogether, I was very happy with the online version of gamescom. Having moved away, we aren’t able to go to gamescom anymore and we probably wouldn’t even go if we still lived closer. It’s just become much too crowded in the past few years. But with everything being online, it was very comfortable to follow the livestreams or explore indie games in the Indie Arena Booth.

I played the To The Rescue demo twice. I already wrote about it in a post about the Indie Arena Booth. After publishing this, Krikket explained to me how the ribbons work and it actually saves quite a lot of time. In short: You can stick ribbons on the show kennels for the visitor and move the dogs from their regular kennel to the show one with just a click instead of manually putting a leash on each dog and walking them to the show kennels – and then walking them back afterwards! I managed to keep up a lot better this way and my hand wasn’t in constant pain (I know I shouldn’t have continued playing at that point, but there was no save in the demo and I really wanted to see what the game is like!). However, I wasn’t able to place the ribbons back on the counter and had to carry them with me everywhere. So basically, you can carry around two items and a leash, but I could only carry one more item because the ribbons were stuck to my hand.

The game is still on my wishlist, but I am more the type of person that would like to build things up, add pretty items, increase the shelter size and the comfort for the dogs I take care of, hiring staff (or inviting volunteers to help out) instead of playing a management game where at some point, you get so many dogs, you can’t keep up anymore and lose the game. It felt as if it was leaning more towards the latter, but we’ll have to wait and see. Hopefully, I am wrong. I know that the “shelter business” in reality is rough, but I don’t want to replay this in a game. I am also glad to see the euthanasia-option can be safely turned off and you can instead send the dogs away. As I won’t get tired of saying: German shelters do not do euthanasia when they’re full. A pet that finds no home has his/her forever-home in the shelter. I have no idea how we manage that, but we somehow do.

I also tried out Lucifer Within Us and Gamedec. I also already wrote about these in my previous post. Out of these two, Gamedec is the more interesting one for me. Then, while watching some more gamescom streams, I saw Interrogation: You will be deceived. This game has actually been released already, but I had not heard of it before. Since it has a demo, I started playing it. And as you may have seen in my other post, I bought the game and am playing through the story. It’s not a long story, apparently, but as I’m playing on the “hard mode”, I have to repeat some missions and interrogations. This can be a bit boring, but at least, you can choose the mode you want to play, so there is no need for this if you don’t want to! It’s another detective game which I apparently really love as a lot of the indie titles I’m currently waiting for belong to that genre as well.

The one thing that got me… intrigued… from a bigger publisher is The Sims 4: Star Wars Journey to Batuu. I haven’t bought it yet and as it isn’t on sale anyway, there is no need to get it right away. But I think I would like to have it at some point. Just because it looks like a fun addition and rather unconventional to combine these two.

So, let’s summarize: I got to play the demos of four games and bought one game – as only one of these four has been released already. The Indie Arena Booth was a great success for me personally, as I found new games and further explored games I already had on my wishlist. But outside of the Indie Arena Booth, two weeks after gamescom, I only remember the Star Wars-Sims 4 crossover. Nothing else got me excited. Maybe I’ll get some exciting news from the digital PAX instead.