IMMERSIVE AND OLD-TIMEY
Return of the Obra Dinn is a gloriously strange game: You're commissioned with figuring out what killed each crew member of an 1803 English merchant vessel, using only a notebook, a manifest, some illustrations, and a magical pocketwatch that lets you see the exact manner of a corpse's death. Simply figuring out who is who takes some clever detective work. That's the strangeness. The glory comes from the throwback look, riffing on the "1-bit" black-and-white graphics from the earliest Macintosh games. The art style gives the grim proceedings a surreal feel, almost like you're walking around inside a 19th-century woodcut. (DANIEL WALTERS)
GET WHAT YOU WANT
Five months after founding member Brian Jones died, and a mere day before their Altamont Speedway concert erupted in violence, the Rolling Stones released their jaundiced, world-weary masterpiece Let It Bleed. The album turned 50 last week, and an interactive website (letitbleed50.com) has been launched to commemorate the occasion. It's like a musical version of CliffsNotes: You can scroll through the timeline of the record's inception, and see and hear footage of the then-current events — escalation in Vietnam, the moon landing, Nixon's inauguration — that shaped its jaded and debauched sensibilities. (NATHAN WEINBENDER)
No-Li Brewhouse took home the People's Choice Award on the first day of Seattle's Winter Beer Festival held Dec. 6-7. The Spokane brewery's Salted Caramel Porter proved the audience favorite of the special seasonal brews on hand. (DAN NAILEN)
THIS WEEK'S PLAYLIST
Some noteworthy new music arrives online and in stories Dec. 13. To wit:
BLAKE SHELTON, Fully Loaded: God's Country. Not sure if ol' Blake intentionally referenced a Herbie/Lindsay Lohan flick or not. He plays Spokane Arena Feb. 15.
HARRY STYLES, Fine Line. Still a few years until Harry hits his Timberlake "mountain man" album.
EMINEM, The Slim Shady LP (Expanded Edition). Twenty years later, Eminem's debut re-released with a bunch of extra goodies including, for some reason, instrumentals. (DAN NAILEN)
At the heart of the darkly funny British series The End of the F***ing World is an exploration of just how far people are willing to go in their desire to be loved. In Season 2, now on Netflix, what started as an angsty teen love story turns into an adult story of survival as the characters cope with emotional scars. From the death of a lover to the trauma of losing family, the murderous plotline takes the viewer from devastatingly tearful moments to laughter in an instant. Love it or hate it, just as the characters will never fully be able to go back to their bright-eyed, innocent beginnings, neither will the show. (SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL)