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From its promotional materials, I assumed Little Nightmares would be a cute, perhaps even quaint game—maybe something tonally along the lines of a creepier Little Big Planet or a Tim Burton film. Just a few minutes into the game, I realized I had it all wrong, and I’m so glad. Honestly, Little Nightmares is unlike anything I’ve played before, so it’s difficult to throw around comparisons. You seriously need to experience it for yourself. Here’s what you’ll love about it:

1. Mechanics

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The gameplay is intuitive. You’re not torn out of the game by tutorials or prompts. You’re dumped into a dark world, alone to figure things out through trial and error. This is gameplay mechanics as they should be. I don’t need a map of the controller to remind me what all the buttons do, and I don’t need to customize any cumbersome in-screen dashboards. (I’m looking at you Breath of the Wild. I love you, but OMG. Chill.) Little Nightmares is clean, with nothing on the screen to distract you from the story, along with natural-feeling controls.

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In the last few years, I’ve been blown away by all the comics centered on female friendship. It’s not something that’s to be taken for granted. Of course, I’m still a die-hard Buffy fan, but it’s hard to recommend those comics to people because you have to 1) watch the show and 2) commit to catching up on 95 single-issues. That doesn’t even count the specials and spin-offs.

So, the books listed below are not like that at all. They’re short, accessible, and easy to dive into. There’s no rabbit hole of backstory to catch up on or multiverses to disentangle. All these titles make for great summer reads to pick up and love right away.

1. Paper Girls

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Started in 2016, Paper Girls is hands-down one of my favorite current comics. That shouldn’t be a surprise, since the writer, Brian K. Vaughan, also pens Saga. Paper Girls starts as a straightforward story about adolescent girls delivering newspapers in their small town, and ends up in a place with aliens, time travel, and monsters. I love it so hard. You can pick up the two completed trades and quickly catch up on the current story.

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Years ago, I played a game demo at the Pop Culture Museum. It included a scene with a talking cat and a fox who get sugar-high off donuts until their paws shake and they swear they can see through space and time. I was sold.

I had to wait an agonizing couple of years before Night in the Woods was complete. I bought this beauty the day it came out, and I tried to savor it, but I finished the game in a week. Here are just a few reasons to love it:

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As much as I love all horror with reckless abandon, women in the genre often fall into clear-cut tropes: the whore, the virgin, the Final Girl. However, we’re starting to see women slip into more sophisticated and complex horror roles. Do yourself a favor and add these films to your watch list, and be in awe of some of horror’s best badass women.

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Behold! The creepy cuteness born out of the mind of artist Ashley Love. Prepare for much gushing over her work.

I think the concept of cute nihilism is brilliant, and there’s an entire section of Ashley’s online store categorized as “Nihilism + Existential” with adorable designs and soul-crushing text that says what we’re all thinking—or maybe it’s just me?

I mean, just take a look at these cute nihilist stickers:

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If you’ve never been to PAX, it can be tough getting your bearings. There are lots of weird little things that you wouldn’t know unless you’ve been before (or you’ve read a post like this one). Here are the tips I wish I’d known before attending for the first time:

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PAX West is just around the corner! My nerdy heart goes pitter-patter just thinking about it. At PAX, I love walking the floor, attending panels, and playing games—but I also love taking advantage of the beautiful host city. Last year, I had so much fun spending a couple of extra days in Seattle, exploring like crazy. Because it’s so massive, the options can be a little overwhelming, so here are my top recommendations for what to do while you’re there.

1. Make Friends with a Bridge Troll

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This friendly troll resides at 4505 North Troll Avenue in Fremont, under the north end of the Aurora bridge. Getting to this troll’s abode means taking a 15-minute Uber from downtown, but it’s worth it. Not only do you get the unique experience of coming face-to-face with this massive monster (which will put a smile on your face), but there are lots of other cool things in the Fremont area—it’s my favorite neighborhood in Seattle.

2. Visit Add-A-Ball in Fremont

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Pinball, arcade cabinets, booze, and an insane Patrick Swayze mural reside in this cozy underground gaming space. Bonus: there’s a nice patio out front with seating if you need to get some air between heated matches of Bubble Bobble. Add-A-Ball is located at 315 N 36th Street, Seattle—just an 8-minute walk from the bridge troll.

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