After the cancellation of E3, it’s the summer of the alternative video game conference, and we couldn’t be happier.
No, wait, that’s not right. That’s not right at all. We are not at all happy about it. It’s not that we miss cramming into the LA Convention Center, full of sweaty nerds, working 18-hour days and doing the game journo equivalent of crunch. But there’s just too much of it, spread over too long a period of time? At least E3 just got it all over and done with in a week, like ripping off a really big plaster, or severe food poisoning.
For starters, Geoff Keighley needs to knock it off for a bit. Nobody needs four months of reveals. Nobody. Seriously, Geoff, mate, give it a rest. And there are the publisher-specific events, which are coming out in dribs and drabs, but not really showing us anything at all? And really weird tech reveals masquerading as new console exclusives? And then there are all of the collections and collectives of games; it never ends.
Seriously. Look at this list of every E3 replacement event this summer. It. Never Ends.
Anyway, with all that said, here’s every game that was featured during the Wholesome Direct 2020 video presentation:
- Button City
- Errand Boy
- Kind Words (lo fi chill beats to write to)
- The Spirit and the Mouse
- Sayri: The Beginning
- Mondo Museum
- Bird Alone
- Little Witch in the Woods
- Winding Worlds
- Tokotoko: Hako & Friends
- When the Past was Around
- A Space for the Unbound
- Book of Travels
- Garden Story
- Depanneur Nocturne
- Rainy Season
- Wayward Strand
- Tracks of Thought
- Melon Journey 2
- Weaving Tides
- A Fold Apart
- Sylvan Meadows
- Tracks – The Train Set Game
- Later Daters
- Creative Resort
- Pushy and Pully in Blockland
- Onsen Master
- Old Friends Dog Sanctuary
- Critter Cove
- Roots of Pacha
- The Other Side
- BattleCakes: A Snack-Sized RPG
- Alchemic Cutie
- Ollie Oop
- To the Rescue!
- Rolling Hills
- Orange Island
- Elliot & Ko
And here’s the Wholesome Direct 2020 video, if you haven’t had enough of digital game events and want to watch the whole thing:
Grouching aside for a moment, there’s actually lots of lovely stuff in Wholesome Direct 2020. That’s kind of the idea.
What’s particularly pleasing is how many games on that list aren’t actually unknown. Maybe it just reflects the little indie game pond we swim in socially, but that we’re already aware of so many games in the presentation is definitely a positive for indie games.
From games that have already made waves – like Ooblets, Spiritfarer, Chicory, Skatebird, and Kind Words – to games you might not have heard of – like Rainy Season, Mondo Museum, Garden Story, KeyWe, A Fold Apart, Unpacking, Later Daters – there’s something on this list for pretty much everyone.
It’s nice to see so many lovely games together, and it’s really heartening to see the spotlight shone on the more pleasant aspects of indie gaming. It’s just really unfortunate that it’s happened in the middle of Geoff Keighley season, where the non-stop, round-the-clock, ever-present Geoff Keighley publicity machine is giving people horrific fatigue for online video presentations about video games.
We’re really sorry, Wholesome Direct – it’s not you, it’s us. (And when we say it’s “us” what we really mean “it’s Geoff”. It’s definitely Geoff.)
We have a favour to ask
Thumbsticks has a couple of main aims. We want to write interesting articles and cover games that most outlets won't, and we want to give opportunities to new writers and new voices. And right now, with the current state of online publishing? It's tough! We hate to ask, but if you want us to continue writing what others won't, or to keep covering weird indie games, or to be able to give opportunities to new writers – and only if you can afford it – then please consider supporting us on Patreon.
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