Mosh Pit Mother’s Day: Power ballads, Martian dust in your boots, and don’t forget the flowers

This Mosh Pit is somewhat inspired by Mother’s Day, which if you aren’t looking at your calendars in panic right now, is on 13 May (this Sunday!). Moms are awesome, and maybe you’ve got a cool, awesome mom who might like something different for Mother’s Day this year. We’ve got a few ideas for you in this episiode of Mosh Pit, from a survival strategy game set on Mars that can become a dystopian nightmare in just a few sols, to kick-ass hoodies, and even some excellent instrumental rock.

Surviving Mars

Surviving Mars is an strategic survival game by Haemimont Games, makers of the popular Tropico series in recent years. On the surface, it’s a survival game set on Mars, where your goal is to set up a colony and export valuable minerals to Earth. However, it becomes much more than that as you get familiar with the concepts and delve deeper. Surviving Mars gives players many ways to play as Martian overlord, from a benign benefactor where you make a successful colony with lots of happy people, to a super-efficient dystopian nightmare where human lives are only as valuable as the minerals they mine.

It’s getting updates and needs a bit of polish in the UI, but this is a clever, clever game with so much hidden depth. If your mom is new to games and needs something fun and easy to pick up, with more advanced concepts just within reach, this is a good choice. Surviving Mars is available on Windows PCs, Apple MacOS, Linux, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 platforms.

Winter gaming hoodies

Winter is coming, and you should prepare with a comfortable hoodie. For some reason, men’s hoodies get a lot more brand choice than women’s hoodies, which is a bit dumb. Most anything you can think of is available at BT Games, AWX, and Raru. You can get loud, colourful designs like this D.Va hoodie, or really understated like this one with the PlayStation button symbols. Maybe your mom’s into nihilism, in which case this one is perfect.

Huawei P Smart

So maybe your mom needs a new phone, and her birthday is far away? Huawei’s P Smart might be right up your alley. It’s a 5.65-inch smartphone with a 18:9 aspect ratio display, which makes it much easier to hold an use with one hand. It features a super-fast fingerprint sensor at the rear, dual cameras for better macro shots and depth sensing, Android 8.0 Oreo, and Huawei’s excellent EMUI interface, now at version 8.0. Internally, it packs a HiSilicon Kirin 659 chipset with a Big.Little core configuration, Mali-T830 graphics, 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage space on eMMC flash memory. For a budget phone, the P Smart kicks things up a notch in the performance and camera department, and cements Huawei’s strong position in the mid-range market against Xiaomi and Nokia.

I, Vigilante by Crippled Black Phoenix

I, Vigilante is the fourth album by progressive/experimental rock band Crippled Black Phoenix. It’s a 48-minute long earworm that stays with you for weeks, a mixture of traditional instruments like the violin and piano, along with electric guitars, a banjo, a trumpet, and a host of other odd choices of instruments for a rock band. But in I, Vigilante, this comes together to form some seriously unique sounds and thought-provoking vocals. The lyrics talk about the dark, stubborn side of human nature, and we haven’t heard something this mesmerising in years. Buy the album online through Google Music, or Amazon. The rest of Crippled Black Phoenix’s music, if you’ll believe us, is just as good as this album.

Flowers and stationery


Your mom is cool, but that doesn’t mean she’s too cool for flowers and stationery. In fact, we can’t think of anyone who doesn’t go ga-ga over nice stationery. Depending on where you live, there might be a stationery shop nearby with nerdy journals, nice pens (especially those erasable ones), and tons of coloured pencils and highlighters. Stationery is just as addictive as… well, anything, really. Don’t forget the flowers! And the chocolate. And the foot massage.