Indie game news, reviews, previews and everything else concerning indie game development.

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Dev Links: Unboxing

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Today’s Developer Links feature an Ouya launch game postmortem, Democracy 3 crime stats and a pay-what-you-want indie b-side album.

OUYA indie postmortem: 8,000 downloads and 46 sales for Bombball (IndieGames.com)
“Bombball is an abstract sports game that I released on the OUYA last week, on 6/26, one day after the OUYA launched. The game was inspired by Hokra and the indie eSports panel at last year’s IndieCade, and it was first created for Kill Screen’s 10-day CREATE game jam, for which it won a minor award. First, some juicy sales metrics! After six days of being featured, Bombball has been downloaded about 8000 times and has actually sold 46 full copies (at $4.99 and $2.99 after a recent discount). It’s still early, but I feel that this was a weak launch, and I figured that now was a good time to do some public reflection on the project.”

The making of the Indie B-Side, Vol. 1 album cover (Lost Decade Games)
“Video game composer and arranger Joshua Morse just released his new album Indie B-Side, Vol. 1. It features eight arrangements from indie darlings such as FEZ and it’s pay-what-you-want!”

Postmortem: Game Developer magazine (Gamasutra)
“Former Game Developer magazine editor-in-chief Brandon Sheffield turns the critical lens inward to examine the ups and downs of the magazine’s 19-year legacy.”

Patch 0.705 Plans (Rocket Bear Games)
“I’m planning to release updates in 2 week intervals. Since this is the launch week, the next patch will be smaller than usual.”

Crime statistics in Democracy 3 (Positech Games)
“Democracy 3 has two crime measurements. Violent Crime and Crime Rate. Obviously they can vary massively, depending on your policies. I’ve been investigating the differences between the UK and the USA to try to get the policies to all make sense, whilst also presenting the player with roughly sensible crime and violent crime rates in these two countries. This is, of course, totally impossible. But I like to try six impossible things before breakfast, so I am trying anyway. If all else fails, i can include cultural override scripts to nudge the stats in the right direction. Some countries do naturally have a more law-abiding culture than others, so this is fairly acceptable.”

The Last of Us, Bioshock: Infinite and why all video game dystopias work the same way (The Guardian)
“Video games tell us interesting things about damaged and bizarre societies – but most seem to come to the same conclusion: it’s all about men and violence”

A close up of the Luxuria Superbia’s temple in Unity’s scene view (Tale of Tales)
“This is the hub of the game where you choose which flower to play with. A cross section of each flower tunnel is displayed as a silhouette, surrounded by up to three rings that are the game’s equivalent of the conventional three star rating of the player’s performance. In Luxuria Superbia they express how well you have pleased each flower.”

Have traditional MMOs had their time? (Eurogamer)
“Traditional MMOs have gone out of fashion lately. It used to be that every gaming brand had exciting untapped MMO potential and every publisher wanted an MMO in its stable, but the gold rush inspired by World of Warcraft yielded little precious metal, and a lot of publishers got burned in the process – especially Electronic Arts with Star Wars: The Old Republic – while the term “MMO” has become taboo when discussing a new breed of games that includes The Division and Destiny, even though in many respects they are both massively multiplayer and online. Now it’s not MMOs that publishers are in a hurry to stuff into portfolios, but “shared-world shooters” and MOBAs – multiplayer online battle arena games – because everybody wants a piece of those big fat World of Tanks and League of Legends money pies, and it sure doesn’t cost as much to bake them.”

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Dev Links: Unboxing


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Indie Links Round-Up: Face To Face

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Today’s Indie Links include pieces on a sequel to chess, the No More Sweden 2013 game jam winners, and an indie studio attempting to cure cancer.

Indie studio developing mobile game to pinpoint genetic causes of cancer (Polygon)
“Guerrilla Tea and Cancer Research UK are teaming up to develop a mobile phone game called GeneGame to help pinpoint new genetic causes of cancer, the companies announced.”

Freeware Picks: These are your three No More Sweden 2013 jam winners (IndieGames.com)
“The sixth No More Sweden concluded with over 20 games jammed out over the weekend and Traffic Zoom Denial, Hype Snake, and Ynglet being voted as its best games. First place was Traffic Zoom Denial for Windows and Mac by Alex Camilleri, David Oppenberg, Mattia Traverso, and Michelle Westerlaken. Progress here requires using the mouse to place lights to stop the flow of traffic. However, true winning seems to be in losing, when the game says things such as “Driving home for Christmas… DENIED!” or simply, “Children…. DENIED!” when crashing.”

Well, Thank God, Someone’s Finally Making the Sequel to Chess (Kotaku)
“Next time you complain about Half-Life 3 taking forever, consider this: the modern game of chess is believed to have originated in 1575, and only now is Chess 2: The Sequel coming out. And it’s an Ouya exclusive.”

New Xbox Live Indie Games for week ending July 19, 2013 (IndiePub)
“Best bets this week include: Dark Quest, a turn-based role-playing adventure game; Zombominous 2, a zombie survival game; Fish Warfare, where you must destroy toy enemy submaries; and Bulkhead Survivor, an action-packed FPS.”

Live Free, Play Hard: I Need To Get The Water Pumps Working For Caligula (RPS)
“Post-apocalyptic adventure games. 1001 shards of a kiss. Magical police station.”

Kickstarter Katchup – 21st July 2013 (RPS)
“here have been plenty of weeks with no losers and several winners, but I can’t remember compiling this column and finding losers without winners to sit above them. There are lots of projects that are readying themselves for a spot in the winners’ section though, propped on the podium, parading their plaudits.”

Fishy Warfare (Indie Gamer Chick)
“Fishy Warfare in the brook – Why does your game have no hook?”

Desktop Dungeons Beta Review (Independent Gaming)
“Sometimes a game comes along that is so engaging that you can sit and play for hours and hours without any need for shiny graphics, an overarching storyline, or even fair and balanced gameplay. That was the Desktop Dungeons alpha build for me. A game that is still free from the developers, and just as fun as ever. But what happens when you take that same gameplay and add great art, a kingdom building story element, and balance out all the mechanics? The upcoming Desktop Dungeons release!”

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Indie Links Round-Up: Face To Face


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Dev Links: Exit Strategy

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Today’s Developer Links include good news for The Swapper and Indie Fund, advanced audio streaming in Unity and Cliff Harris asks: Who would be a game developer?

The Swapper Recoups In Less Than Two Days (Indie Fund)
“So yes, it’s a financial success for its creators (Olli, Otto, Carlo and Tom) and for us as well. On top of that, it’s been getting extremely positive reviews and currently holds an aggregate metacritic score of 87.”

Who would be a game developer? (Positech Games)
“Some people, noticeably kids, seem to think being a game developer sounds awesome. You sit there and play games all day (no) and you earn money like notch (no). It’s fun because you do whatever you like (no) and anyone can make a game these days (no).”

Fat Boy Feast – A game about vampires (Broken Rules)
“Here’s a little game jam game we came up with together with Simon Wallner and Florian Landerl back in 2009. It’s actually quite polished for a prototype, but we never got around to finishing it. We’ve finally put it out there after four years. “

Adobe AIR Error on EXE Bundle Package (Andy Moore)
“I’m using Adobe AIR SDK to build Monster Loves You! to an .EXE file for our Steam builds, and have been for a while now. Recently I upgraded to v3.7 and started running into an error.”

Nicole’s progresses (Winter Wolves)
“Nicole made some big progresses. Oh no wait, I mean… I made some big progresses on Nicole (the otome/yuri dating sim I’m working on).”

Ithaka Update (Jonas Kyratez)
“You’ve probably been wondering what’s been going on with Ithaka of the Clouds. Well, I’m here to tell you all about it.”

Comic Con 2013 – Day 3 (The Behemoth)
“On Saturday we had a fun flip book station at our booth so that fans could take home a special flip book in celebration of our 10th year as The Behemoth. Anyone who purchased $10 or more had the chance to perform for seven seconds in front of the camera and then take home a flip book of their performance!”

Now Loading #Screenshotsaturday (Terry Cavanagh)
“This is going really well.”

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Dev Links: Exit Strategy


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Tom Plays – ‘Guns ‘N Zombies’


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Indie Intermission Sunday Round Up: An Immersive Experience

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Hello and welcome to my Sunday round-up reviewing all of the games I’ve covered of the course of the week. I hope this will give you a chance to check out some awesome free games and have a fun lazy Sunday.

As always clicking the title will take you to my original article whilst clicking the image will take you to the game.

Monday: ’ASCII Portal’ Mind Bendingly Fun

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ASCII Portal is a crazy yet fun game that takes the Portal concept and de-makes it into a 2D puzzler using ASCII coding just to add some flare and quirk to the game.

Tuesday: Explore The Lush World Of ‘Samorost’

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Samorost is a beautifully created point and click puzzle game that has you solving some charming puzzles as you try to move through this beautiful world with new surprises round every corner.

Wednesday: Just Go With The ‘FlOw’

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FlOw is a minimalistic fish in pond game that is relaxing and very ambient from start to finish. It is very easy to drift off into this pool and just immerse yourself whiling away a good amount of time.

Thursday: ’Enviro-Bear 2000 Operation: Hibernation’ Bear With It

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Enviro-Bear is quite the strange little game that reminds me a little of games like Surgeon Simulator simply because it has the same zany take on the control system. It’s a crazy little game but it’s also a lot of fun if not highly frustrating from time to time.

Friday: ’King Of Terror’ Who Will Reign Supreme

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King Of Terror is a nice concept piece showcasing a very creative and fun beat em up in which you must battle other horror icons along with some helpless “prey”. It really is a nice idea and I would love to see a more fleshed out version of this game although I don’t know if this will ever happen.

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 Thanks for sticking with me today, I hope you’ve enjoyed my selection from the week and have had just as much fun playing them as I have had. I hope you have a great Sunday and I look forward to seeing you back here tomorrow for an all new Indie Intermission.

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 editors@indiegamemag.com with the subject “Indie Intermission” and you could be our indie intermission pick of the day!

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Indie Intermission Sunday Round Up: An Immersive Experience


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IGM Video – Hands On With ‘Super Panda Adventures’


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Indie Intermission – ‘ASCII Portal’ Mind Bendingly Fun

ASCII Portal ss01

Today’s game is a very interesting de-make of one of the most popular games of 2007, ASCII Portal is an ASCII de-make of Portal from Cymon’s Games.

ASCII Portal is a de-make that has had a lot of love from the developer and has gained a cult following over the years due to the extensive remake. The game takes the original Portal concept and puts it into a 2D ASCII puzzle solving game.

It really is very interesting to see the 3D game become a 2D one, and surprisingly enough the puzzles work very well in 2D even if the portal jumping can be very confusing.

Although I’m sure it is not for everyone, anyone who has tried Portal should get a great deal of fun with this problem solving de-make that is surprising in its scope.

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Average play time – Less than an hour

ASCII Portal is a very innovative idea and takes a modern concept and puts a distinctive retro spin on it, and for the most part it manages to pull it off admirably. Of course being a 2D game compared to a 3D one the game plays out rather differently to the original although many of the mechanics actually feel surprisingly similar and equally as mind bending.

If you are a fan of Portal or just love 2D puzzlers ASCII Portal will provide a great deal of fun. Be sure to download ASCII Portal from the official 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 editors@indiegamemag.com with the subject “Indie Intermission” and you could be our indie intermission pick of the day!

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Indie Intermission – ‘ASCII Portal’ Mind Bendingly Fun


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Indie Links Round-Up: Your Move

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New game announcements from popular indie developers plaster today’s Indie Links.

Die Gute Fabrik reveals adventure game: Mutazione (Shacknews)
“Die Gute Fabrik, developer of Johann Sebastian Joust, has detailed their next game. Mutazione is a “quiet single player” adventure game, “the opposite of Sportsfriends,” according to developer Doug Wilson. Inspired by classic adventures like Another World, the goal of Mutazione is to give a “sense of a living place.” It’s even “a little inspired by Majora’s Mask.”

Double Fine to produce two new games through Indie Fund partnership (VG247)
“During the Horizon Indie Game Conference at E3, Greg Rice from Double Fine and Kellee Santiago announced a new partnership between Indie Fund and Double Fine to produce two new games.”

Lone Survivor PS3 and Vita has new content and endings (VG247)
“The PlayStation 3 and Vita versons of Lone Survivor have a significant amount of additional content when compared to the PC release.”

Oculus Outbreak: IndieCade@E3 2013 Displays 4 Oculus Rift Games (Indie Game Reviewer)
“At E3 2013, IndieCade celebrates its 7th annual E3 Indie Showcase. This year, they’re packing in more indie titles than ever before – a staggering 44 games! As always, the projects span various gaming genres and platforms, including 4 virtual reality indie titles that can be played using the Oculus Rift headset.”

Tiggit: What It Is, and Why You Should Have It (Indie Game Insider)
“If you’re anything like me, you have many fond memories of surfing the web and occasionally discovering a ground-breaking yet humble indie game. I don’t mean to come off as a video game hipster, but back in the day before Minecraft, Bastion, and all the media coverage indie developers are currently receiving, we had to dig much deeper to find these hidden indie gems. As I’m sure you know, innovative ideas and brilliant concepts can emerge from even the loneliest, most forgotten corners of the Internet; the trouble merely lies in finding them.”

IndieCade at E3: Dominique Pamplemousse in ‘It’s All Over Once The Fat Lady Sings!’ (Joystiq)
“IndieCade took over a corner of the E3 show floor this year, complete with giant orange inflatable chairs and almost 40 games on various platforms. Out of all this beautiful madness, I spotted three games that went above and beyond the standard indie call – they were weird, they were different, and they were awesome.”

Ouya’s alleged tussle with the ESA at E3 (Gamasutra)
“The Ouya team chose to show off its upcoming Android-based games console at E3 in a unique fashion this week, renting out a parking lot across from the Los Angeles Convention Center. However, E3 organisers the ESA allegedly aren’t very happy that the Ouya is being showcased outside of the main E3 show, to the point where they have tried shutting the operation down.”

Review: Super Sanctum TD (Indie Game Reviewer)
“The tower defense genre has firmly established itself with a wide selection of gameplay variants and with players always seeking out new experiences the pressure is on for developers to provide original and innovative titles. Tower defense certainly offers a strong canvas for new ideas and Coffee Stain Studios have worked hard to take advantage of this in their FPS/tower defense crossovers Sanctum (our review) and Sanctum 2. Today, though, we’ll be looking at a smaller, lesser known title: Super Sanctum TD.”

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Indie Links Round-Up: Your Move


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Indie Links Round-Up: The Spies Have Eyes

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Today’s Indie Links contain awesome sales news regarding Bastion and 7 Grand Steps.

The Sword & Sworcery Team Are Back For Another Game (Kotaku)
“Capybara Games and composer Jim Guthrie, two of the three parties behind mobile adventure Sword & Sworcery, have this week unveiled Below, a desolate, moody adventure game for the Xbox One.”

PC/XBLIG pick: Penny Arcade Rain-Slick 4 is great, surprising no one (IndieGames.com)
“It would be pretty remarkable if Zeboyd Games dropped the ball on Penny Arcade’s on the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness Episode 4 at this juncture, but that sadly isn’t the case. What you get instead is another quality RPG with an engaging battle system, amusing dialogue, and great retro aesthetics. The story even follows the one found in the previous game coherently. The nerve, that they’d release this! It’s like they were trying or something.”

Bastion sales surpass 2 million (Joystiq)
“During a Transistor demo session at E3, Supergiant Games’ Greg Kasavin confirmed that the studio’s first game, Bastion, has sold over two million copies. “Bastion has done really well for us; it’s sold over two million copies across all platforms,” Kasavin said. “That puts us in a position to make games on our own terms and take the time needed to get it right.””

7 Grand Steps on its way to $100K in first week (Joystiq)
“Mousechief, the veteran indie developer responsible for Dangerous High School Girls in Trouble, launched the first part of his next series, 7 Grand Steps, on June 7. Less than one week later, it’s on track to bring in $100,000, Keith Nemitz (Mousechief) told me at E3′s IndieCade expo.”

PlayStation 4 is The One (IndieGamerChick)
““What are you going to do when XBLIG is gone?” I’ve been getting this since the start of the year. It’s something I’ve thought about myself. ”

They Bleed Pixels (Indie Gamer Chick)
“There are those who define insanity as: “Doing the same thing over and over and, at some point, expecting a different result.” That pithy aphorism pretty much sums up my time with SpookySquid’s They Bleed Pixels. And the “same thing” I was doing over and over and over was dying. After dying almost 100 times (no joke) on the third level, I had enough. I just wasn’t having fun anymore. I play games to have fun and when I stop having fun, I stop playing the fucking game. Period.”

Hohokum E3 trailer is confusing and arousing (VG247)
“I have watched this Hohokum trailer multiple times now and although I cannot give you an elevator pitch explaining what the PS3, PS4 and Vita title is about, I can tell you I want to put it in my life and love it as soon as possible.”

You Could Briefly Buy and Play Cube World. Very Briefly. (Kotaku)
“Yesterday, a post popped up on voxel-based PC adventure-RPG Cube World’s forums. “It’s finally happened, the moment we’ve all been waiting for,” it said, “the game is available [to] play as a Demo and paid Alpha access.” Sadly, the servers were immediately crushed by the thousands of eager players trying to gain access to the game they’ve been waiting years for.”

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Indie Links Round-Up: The Spies Have Eyes


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‘The Open Bundle’ Released, Fights Copyright With Art and Music From Web Games

Six of the artists behind some of the most popular web games on the internet have teamed up to release The Open Game Art Bundle, an name-your-own-price indie bundle replacing games with soundtracks, sprite sheets, and source code.

“The web is meant to be an open landscape; being in this bundle is how we choose to honor this,” the artists explain in a statement on the bundle site. “We want to give works to the public, funded by the public.” Every purchaser will get the items included in the bundle on a Creative Commons Commercial License. If the bundle reaches the threshold of $10,000, all works included will be released into the public domain under a Creative Commons Zero License.

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The artists and items included in the bundle are:

  • HalcyonicFalconX (Three soundtracks from Adventure Story, Bullet Hell, and Epic Battle Fantasy 3
  • Jimp (Art and animations from two unreleased games)
  • NutcaseNightmare (Soundtrack and Source Code from Reimagine :The Game:)
  • Strat Kat (Two full albums and a collection of background music)
  • Kenney (A platformer game art pack)
  • Mind Chamber (art assets from three of his projects)

Right now, the six artists and musicians get 90% of all pledges, split equally amongst them. The other 10% goes equally to Creative Commons and the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

There are also extra rewards based on your donation:

  • $10+ Your name will be credited in all downloadable packages.
  • $25+ DRM-free copies of the Gap Monsters and 4 Horsemen soundtracks.
  • $50+ A DRM-free copy of the Epic Battle Fantasy 4 soundtrack.
  • $100+ NutcaseNightmare will personally draw you or your character.

The Open Bundle is available for purchase until July 14. You can purchase it at open.commonly.cc.

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – ‘The Open Bundle’ Released, Fights Copyright With Art and Music From Web Games