Editor’s Note: POMEmag is taking a break from our regular light-hearted content right now to share resources that amplify Black and dissenting voices and can help you take action against police brutality. See our Afternoon Snack resource post for an ever-evolving resource list! We’re also sharing timely content — like the piece below — that can help support the movement, either by raising awareness or funds. Stay safe out there, y’all!
The Bundle for Racial Justice and Equality on Itch.io has over 1400 games for the minimum donation price of $5 — which is astounding, considering the whole bundle is worth over $7,000 individually. The offer ends on June 16th, so if you want to help them reach their goal then now is the time to donate and grab this bundle! All proceeds are going to the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund and the Community Bail Fund so if you can afford to, I would recommend donating more than the minimum. As of writing this, they have already raised an incredible 4 million dollars for those charities.
There are tons of great gems in this bundle, from video games, to creative assets, to tabletop RPGs. Below, I’ve highlighted some of my favorites.
A Short Hike
A Short Hike is an IGF-winning game that focuses on nature, relaxation, and exploration.
You play as Claire, a bird who is spending some time with her aunt at a national park. She needs cell phone service to get an important call and the only place around with a cell signal is at the peak of the forest’s tallest mountain.
While the game gives you a goal, it also encourages you to wander about and get into other adventures on the way. The scenery is super pretty and filled with winding paths, green forests, and rugged mountain sides. It’s especially great if you’re missing nature right about now. A Short Hike is a nice romp that will lead you to a few hours of entertainment and tells a heartwarming story.
Wide Ocean Big Jacket
Wide Ocean Big Jacket is a short, charming narrative game that follows Mord and Ben, two middle school sweethearts, as they go camping with Mord’s aunt and uncle.
The story is sweet and funny, perfectly mimicking the wholesome awkwardness of a family camping trip. It’s a bonafide summer experience complete with birdwatching, midnight beach trips, and roasting hot dogs by the fire. I personally loved Wide Ocean Big Jacket for shining a light on the simple pleasures of being with friends and family.
Signs of the Sojourner
Signs of the Sojourner is a card-based narrative where you communicate through a deck of cards. I’ve been watching out for this game for a while, so I was really excited to finally play it.
The card conversation system is a really interesting mechanic that centers the gameplay and story on the conversations you have with other characters. There are many branching narratives you can choose to follow; I’ve played through twice and I still feel like I’ve only scratched the surface of the game.
This game is weird but I adore it. ART SQOOL casts you as Froshmin, a first-year art school student in a colorful world.
As someone who goes to an art school, I have to say that I really appreciate Froshmin’s design. Froshmin looks like a quintessential art student, right down to the bangs and the tote bag. I feel called out but the accuracy is hilarious.
The game gives you prompts to draw and a strange surrealist 3D environment to explore. It can be a fun exercise for artists or just a chill time for anyone. Thanks to ART SQOOL, I am now prepared to go to a modern art museum and scratch my chin as I look at abstract sculptures.
It’s easily the strangest game I’ve ever played and it was really cool!
Now these are just the games I have gotten around to playing — this bundle has so many more unique and crazy games. Personally, I’m looking forward to trying the Carly Rae Jepson cult themed TTRPG I just downloaded. The bundle is an insane deal that supports the BLM movement, so I would recommend this to any gamer or anyone who has said they were bored within the past three months. Thanks to this bundle, self-isolation isn’t a problem anymore; I’ve got 1,423 games to go!