It’s been a while since I last talked about ZED Absolution (ZED). It turns out the guys over at Zombie Killers have been working tirelessly on ZED and there has been some big developments.
ZED is a top down gauntlet shooter that takes inspiration from such classics as Smash TV and Robotron 2048, updating this model and bringing it to us in an all new fast paced HD and 3D format, that’s right ZED will support the Oculus Rift.
It seems ZED is getting close to the beta stage, but before the game can reach its completion Zombie Killer will be looking for some additional funding to move ZED over the line. They hope to obtain a little extra funding through the games pre-orders that offer four different packages to suit your every need and range from $15 to $45. Alongside the game you can also buy a rather nice ZED poster to put up and show your support in the real world.
In addition to the pre-orders Zombie Killers are looking to start-up a Kickstarter campaign in the hopes of raising the required capital to finish the game, and maybe implement some of the teams more ambitious ideas. Like any Kickstarter expect to see some rather great physical rewards from soundtracks to models so stay tuned for the launch.
If you would like to find out more about ZED be sure to head over to the all new ZED homepage for additional information about the game. ZED is also looking for additional up-votes on Steam’s Greenlight service, so if you would like to see ZED on Steam be sure to up-vote.
Today’s game comes from the brilliant pool of games that have been developed for the Ludum Dare 26 competition. My Mini Castle has been developed by TijmenTio and is a great, cute little game.
In My Mini Castle you must fend off wave after wave of slimes with only a limited supply of potatoes. The whole aim of the game is to fire your potatoes correctly to hit the slimes as they come to try to take down your castle.
The most difficult thing about My Mini Castle is the aiming of the potatoes, as there is a slight delay from when you throw it and when it hits meaning you must learn to aim. Although the aiming starts out a little tricky you should quickly be able to pick it up and hit your mark.
My Mini Castle has a fantastic art style, a lot of humorous lines, and some great music all combining together to make one great little game.
Average play time – 7 minutes
My Mini Castle really is quite the stand out game due to its great artwork and interesting gameplay mechanics. The concept is simple but it has been executed fantastically really making the game a whole load of fun.
My Mini Castle can be downloaded from the official Ludum Dare site. If you like the game be sure to vote for it on the Ludum Dare site.
If you are a developer with A fun indie game that can be played over a coffee break, we want to hear from you! Private message us on twitter @IndieGameMag or shoot us an email at email@example.com with the subject “Indie Intermission” and you could be our indie intermission pick of the day!
If you search for the name “Lionel Gallat” on IMDB, you’ll find the name attached to a number of animated feature films: animation director for The Lorax, animation director for Despicable Me, supervising animator for Shark Tale, and the list goes on.
But more recently, Gallat has stepped away from animated feature films, and started developing a video game…on his own. The game is called Ghost of a Tale, and with one look at a screenshot it is easy to see that Gallat’s artistic skills have easily transitioned into the video game. Ghost of a Tale looks beautiful.
“As an animation director I was responsible for the animation of entire movies, leading 60+ [person] teams,” Gallat explained to IGM. “I was longing to go back to the nitty-gritty of creation; writing, modeling, painting, rigging, programming and… playing. I’ve already been in a position where I mostly tell people what they should do (and it’s probable [that] one day I’ll go back to that position) but today I’m having a lot of fun doing things myself for a change!”
Gallat, who is in the middle of promoting the funding campaign for his debut title Ghost of a Tale, chatted with IGM for a bit about his experience transitioning from Hollywood to the game development scene, his woes with Kickstarter, and why Ghost of a Tale deserves your support.
IGM – What inspired you to start working on a game, and move out of the animation industry?
Gallat - It was a good time for me to do so. I’ve always loved games and I’ve always enjoyed writing stories, creating models and animating them. But I also love programming (I’ve written tools used in production in several studios). So it wasn’t really that far-fetched for me to put the two together.
As an artist who programs I can get lost in a coherent game world and get to look everywhere I want, and interact with things that I created. In a nutshell it’s a lot of fun. I feel like a kid again, when I was programming moving sprites (an achievement!) in Microsoft Basic. It’s a huge amount of work obviously, but so rewarding.
IGM – What are some of the pros and cons of working on developing a video game on your own…as opposed to working on a movie with a team?
Gallat - When you work on a big-budget movie the team is obviously very big. Quite a few people have their say, which is normal since a lot of money’s involved and the goal is to appeal to the widest audience in order to reduce the risks. Sometimes you run into the classic issue of “too many cooks spoiling the soup”. Also you are always in a situation were you do what you’re told, no matter your hierarchical position. Which is also very soothing in a sense, because you don’t really have to worry too much about anything else besides what’s on your workbench.
But for me, working on my own allows me to let my imagination roam free; I know where I want to go, I have an idea of where the journey’s going to lead me, but I’m not just doing a job. It requires a lot more personal discipline than when you work in a team. The hard truth is, when you work on your own, if you have a natural tendency of being complacent or if your motivation is only temporary you will fail.
So far that’s the main difficulty; only being able to rely on myself. I have spent my entire career collaborating with people on projects, so that’s a big change for me. So far I’m really enjoying the experience, although if I can manage to get a budget to pay some collaborators I’ll be a happy camper!
RADical ROACH is a fast paced shoot-em-up, set minutes after a nuclear hell falls from the sky engulfing all but a few tough little bugs. Play as a super radiated roach with new-found powers, and get to safety before the army of fleas get you.
With eleven days and just under $30,000 to go on the Chasm Kickstarter campaign, Discord Games is anxiously eyeing the clock. So far, over 4,500 backers have pulled together $121,800 in funding, but Kickstarter campaigns have fallen short on much smaller budget gaps. With an updated demo and a new trailer, Discord Games is hoping to generate the momentum needed to meet the complete goal of $150,000.
Discord Games in incredibly optimistic.
“The response to our Kickstarter has been overwhelming positive,” developer James Petruzzi said to IGM. “A community of passionate fans has quickly sprung up in the last few weeks, and the demo has given them a lot to talk about. We’ve had many people tell us it’s the first Kickstarter they’ve ever backed, primarily due to the demo.”
To reinforce their optimism, Discord Games hopes to not only meet, but surpass the $150,000 goal, as evidenced by the stretch-goal announcement, made yesterday. The very first stretch goal, at $160,000 is an extended soundtrack, followed by the implementation of Achievements into the game at $170,000. The extended soundtrack will come along with the regular Chasm soundtrack, which is available entirely for free on Discord Games’SoundCloud page.
Some of the changes to the demo of Chasm include revamped graphics, a hardcore and time-trial mode, additional weapons, as well as over a dozen bug fixes.
Are games art? Are gamers artists? What do you suck at? Is it launching your game? So many questions (and luckily plenty of answers) in today’s Dev Links.
Are Game(r)s Art(ists)? (Gamasutra)
“”Interactivity’s a very interesting word, because it implies that this is something we didn’t do in art before, which is complete nonsense, because the only interesting art experiences are the ones that engage you in that way; in which you are invited to become part of the authorship of something in some way or another. And usually in some more meaningful way than choosing whether to open this door or that door.” - Brian Eno”
What do you suck at? (Develop Online)
“Mike Bithell on why it is important to be aware of the gaps in your game development skills.”
Launch Day 2.0 (AltDevBlogADay)
“I didn’t sleep well the night before our Sunday launch of Vex Blocks. Despite the weeks we’ve had the game in the hands of testers, a new bug had come to light late Saturday evening. While not game breaking it still needed to be addressed. I stayed up working on the problem until solved. Chat messages, frantic on my part, went back and forth between myself and my partner until between the two of us we were able smooth things out. I then prepped the build for the next morning’s launch and finally after a long day allowed myself to push back away from my desk just after 1am. I tried and failed to sleep after that.”
BattleBlock Theater (Beta): User Created Levels (The Behemoth)
“Ah, yes… the BattleBlock Community Theater. Even after 3 years of playwriting levels, how those Beta builders still managed to surprise me! And kill me. And then surprise me again! Whether I was flung through explosions into rooms made out of teleporters or flung through teleporters into rooms made out of explosions, the experience was quite the rollercoastery deathtrap of emotion.”
A tree killed his Granny! Jack is STEAMing (Owlchemy Labs)
“Mobile’s most poplar game is now available on Steam! Stack beards, chug syrup, and rock flannel as you axe your way through the forest on your PC/Mac/Linux machine and make your Granny proud.”
Receiver’s Greenlight Journey (Wolfire Games)
“Receiver was finally released on Steam today — check it out here! There is a one-week launch sale bringing the price down to $3.99. If you already have Receiver or Overgrowth, then you can claim your Steam key on your Humble Store download page (linked from your purchase email). Whenever a game is greenlit, there are always two questions that come up over and over: “How did it take THIS LONG for this game to get greenlit?”, and “How did THIS game get greenlit?” In this post I will try to answer both questions about Receiver!”
New HUD Layout (Krooked Gaming)
“So after a lot of adjustments, I think I’m finally happy with the new HUD. While I have a few concerns about how complicated it may look to new users, it does contain a lot of useful information.”
Indie Tools: PolyVox (IndieGames.com)
“PolyVox is (according to its developers admittedly) “a fast, lightweight C++ library for the storage and processing of volumetric (voxel-based) environments” that can be used for anything from games to scientific applications.””
Cry of Fear is a psychological single-player and co-op horror game set in a deserted town filled with horrific creatures and nightmarish delusions.
Cry of Fear originally started out as a Half-Life modification, set in the same vein as the classic survival horror games of old. Four years in the making and picking up several modding awards on the way, it is now a free standalone game for anyone to enjoy.
Dan Fitzgerald and Lisa Bromiel are the latest indie developers to try their hand at crowdfunding, having launched their Kickstarter campaign for Dog Sled Saga a few days ago. We covered the game previously, and took a great deal of interest in the game’s approach to the under-represented sport of dog-sledding. Evidently, this interest has been echoed by the wider public too; at the time of writing Dog Sled Saga stands at $4,149, with 25 days to go. If the positive trend continues, this should be more than ample time for the campaign to hit its $6,000 goal. As well as this, Dan and Lisa’s campaign has been featured on the Kickstarter “Staff Picks” list, which gives a great deal of exposure and is a boon to anyone hoping for Kickstarter success. A very impressive start for the pair.
Cubemen 2 is a fast paced, action packed, original 3D Strategy game where you use your little Cubemen units to defend and attack enemies in a range of awesome game modes including CTF, Skirmish, Territory and more.