It’s that time of the year. Many of us are journeying to family dwellings full of humans. This can be great. This can also be terrible. The good news is there might be a few days in there where work will be totally on hold, and you know what that means. When you have run out of social interaction points, go to ground with a game. The digital delivery of many games also happens to be really good when three of your cousins change their plans and wind up with you on Christmas unexpectedly and you have no gift for them. You can also help them avoid your family for a few hours per day when being a human with other humans gets to be just too goddamn much!
Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna), $15
This is the world’s first game developed in collaboration with Alaska’s Iñupiat. Based on Iñupiat lore, this puzzle game is just the most gorgeous. And you can unlock recordings from Iñupiat storytellers. And there’s two lines of game play. And it makes me wish I had one of the consoles it’s available for (Xbox One, PS4 or Windows via Steam). Check out their game website for updates, like the Mac version that will be available in 2015.
Elegy for a Dead World, $15
This is a game about writing fiction pointed out to me by fellow Autostraddler Loraine. I am a graduate student in Fiction and the Geekery Editor, so essentially this is everything I’ve ever wanted in a game ever in the history of games or ever. Basically you’re on a mission to explore three lost world’s and record everything you find out about them. That’s it. That’s the mission. There are prompts, not the least of which are the breathtaking landscapes you’re gonna discover as you move around. You have the option of sharing your stories with the outside world on Steam, and of reading other people’s stories. You can even make a book (digital or print) of images and writing from your journeys. This game is available for Windows, Mac and Linux all via Steam and also via Humble. Check out the game website here, and send all hopes and prayers that Dejobaan Games hires a woman soon to the Goddess of Technology, May She Grant Our Wishes.
Gone Home, $20
Yes yes yes, we know you know. But seriously, I have wanted to play this thing for like half a year and this break I am finally going to do it. And you can too! This story exploration game features some content that is Relevant To Our Collective Interests, so I hear. And it features a female protagonist, so huzzah for that. Available for Mac, Windows and Linux.
Sunless Sea, $19
Here’s another one we know you know. But I couldn’t let a gaming gift guide go by without a shout out to Sunless Sea, an Autostraddle favorite. You play as an Unterzee Captain in the Fallen London universe and you have to lead your crew through the world while trying not to become too wounded or too terrified or eaten by some Unterzee creature. You will die. You will die SO MANY TIMES. You will die five or six times very quickly, and then you might die slower than that. But you will die. And then you will be addicted to this game. Sunless Sea is especially relevant to our interests because the creators are allies who understand the difference between gender, gender presentation and sexuality. And you can make a lot of interesting choices regarding all of these things. Sunless Sea is available for Mac and Windows.
Broken Age, $25 (but on mega-sale for $9)
I have Broken Age. I played through Act I this past Summer. And I loved it. I feel like there hasn’t been a point-and-click adventure quite like this in a long time. It’s almost more like a graphic novel that you play through, and you might recognize a voice or two. This game features two protagonists leading parallel lives, one of whom is a young girl slated to be fed to a monster by her village and who totally saves herself, no knight in shining armor needed. It’s really gosh darn cool. But be aware, this game comes in two acts and only Act I is available at this moment. Doublefine is still working on Act II and it’s taking a little longer than I personally expected, but that’s cool. I’d rather them develop an Act II that lives up to this really spectacular Act I than see an Act II that was totally rushed. This game is available for Windows, Linux and Mac.
This has been the one-hundred-ninth installment of Queer Your Tech with Fun, Autostraddle’s nerdy tech column. Not everything we cover is queer per se, but we talk about customizing this awesome technology you’ve got. Having it our way, expressing our appy selves just like we do with our identities. Here we can talk about anything from app recommendations to choosing a wireless printer to web sites you have to favorite to any other fun shit we can do with technology. Header by Rory Midhani.