Pony Island (PC)

In the wake of Undertale, self-aware meta games with a cutesy appearance hiding some fucked up shit became a bit of a thing and Pony Island made one of the bigger splashes. The premise is what appears to be a cutesy runner game with a pony was developed by Satan to trap souls, but because he's the worst programmer ever his game is a buggy broken load of jank. Although the metaness is diminished somewhat if you dig around and discover you're playing as a Crusader who was sent to Purgatory after a failed attack on Jerusalem and not, you know, yourself.

With the help of a soul trapped in the game you search for breaks in the code to access and delete the game's three core system files, which are protected by sentient daemons (oh ho, I see what you did there!). And the confrontation with the Asmodeus daemon is fucking glorious.

Although one problem with a game that pretends to be completely broken is that when the game actually does bug out you can't tell. In my case, once or twice after respawning in a pony-running section the game was going super slow until I paused.


The Cat Machine (PC)

A thought that occurred to me while playing this is how limitations can make things easier.

The idea is simple enough; you guide trains of cats around by building tracks between conveyor belts, and when the train comes to a track that's the same color as the cat at the front it'll travel down that track and launch the cat. The aim is to build red, yellow, and blue tracks to remove all the red, yellow, and blue cats, then send the white cat at the back down the pre-determined white track somewhere in the stage. Most levels have multiple trains of cats, which means your setup has to work for all the trains. It's a decent enough little puzzle game, although something about the music is really distracting (but muting the game makes it uncomfortably silent).

So what does that have to do with my leading statement? Because if the game told you how many of each track you could build it'd make it easier to deduce what you had to do in a given level. If there's three blue cats in a row, does that mean you have to build three blue tracks? Two tracks that feed into each other, putting the train where essentially one track would have? One that feeds into itself, stripping away all the blue cats before sending it on to the next color? But maybe that would have given too much of a hint.